+44 (0)131 451 3065
Room 2.12
David Brewster Building
Heriot-Watt University
Weiping Lu
Roles and responsibilities
  • Postgraduate Research Coordinator of the Institute of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Bioengineering
  • Heriot-Watt representative of SUPA Graduate School Management Committee

The main research interests in my group comprise two areas:

In Atomic, Molecular and Nonlinear Optics, we currently study the nonlinear phenomena of cold atoms and molecules in novel optical fields. Our aim is to understand and exploit their collective dynamics arising from the nonlinear interactions for applications, such as deceleration of cold molecular beams.

In the area of Physics with Life Sciences Interface, we work with biologists to develop advanced computational techniques for analysing fluorescence microscopy images. Currently we are developing new image processing algorithms capable of detection and tracking of transport particles within biological live cells under low SNR environments.

More details of current work and project can be found on my group website.

Selected publications
  1. R. S. Wilson, L. Yang., A. Dun, A. M. Smyth, R. R. Duncan, C. Rickman,. & W. Lu, Automated single particle detection and tracking for large microscopy datasets, Royal Society Open Science. 3, 5, 160225 (2016)
  2. Z. Qiu, R. S. Wilson, Y. Liu, Y., Dun, A., Saleeb, R. S., Liu, D., Rickman, C., Frame, M., Duncan, R. & Lu, W. Translation Microscopy (TRAM) for super-resolution imaging, Nature Scientific Reports. 6, 19993 (2016)
  3. D. M. Kavanagh, A. M. Smyth, K. J. Martin, A. Dun, E. R. Brown, S. Gordon, K. J. Smillie, L. H. Chamberlain, R. S. Wilson, L. Yang, W. Lu, M. A. Cousin, C. Rickman, and R. R. Duncan. A molecular toggle after exocytosis sequesters the presynaptic syntaxin1a molecules involved in prior vesicle fusion. Nature Communications, 5:5774, 2014.  
  4. M. Smyth, L. Yang, K. J. Martin, C. Hamilton, W. Lu, M. A. Cousin, C. Rickman, and R. R. Duncan. Munc18-1 molecules move between membrane molecular depots distinct from vesicle docking sites. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 288(7): 5102-5113, 2013.
  5. L. Yang, Z. Qiu, A. H. Greenaway, W. Lu,A New Framework for Particle Detection in Low SNR Fluorescence Live-cell Images and Its Application for Improved Particle Tracking, IEEE transactions on biomedical engineering, 59(7): 2040-2050, 2012.
  6. Z. Qiu; L. Yang, W. Lu, A New Feature-Preserving Nonlinear Anisotropic Diffusion for Denoising Images Containing Blobs and Ridges, Pattern recognition letters, 33, 319 (2012).
  7. L. Yang, , A. Dun, K. J. Martin, Z. Qiu, Z., A. Dunn, G. J. Lord, W. Lu, R. R. Duncan, & C. Rickman. Secretory vesicles are preferentially targeted to areas of low molecular SNARE density, PLOS ONE. 7, 11, p. e49514 (2012)
  8. Z. Lan, A. Celi, W. Lu, P. Ohberg & M. Lewenstein. Tunable multiple layered Dirac cones in optical lattices, Physical Review Letters. 107, 25, p. 253001-253005 5 p. (2011)
  9. Z. Lan, N. Goldman, A. Bermudez, W. Lu & P. Ohberg, Dirac-Weyl fermions with arbitrary spin in two-dimensional optical superlattices, Physical Review B: Condensed Matter and Materials Physics. 84, 16, p. - 16 p., 165115 (2011)
  10. Z. Lanand W. Lu, Cavity-induced phase stability to decelerate a fast molecular beam via feedback-controlled time-varying optical pumps, New J. Phys. 13 023031, 2011.
  11. R. Parton, R. Hamilton, G. Ball, L. Yang, F. Cullen, W. Lu, H. Ohkura and I. Davis, A Par-1 dependent graded bias in microtubule orientation establishes cell polarity in the Drosophila oocyte, Journal of Cell Biology, 194, 121 (2011)
  12. Z. Lan, Y. Zhao, P. F. Barker, and W.Lu, Deceleration of molecules in asupersonic beam by the optical field in a low-finesse cavity, Phys. Rev. A 81, 013419 (2010)
  13. L. Yang, R. Parton, G. Ball, Z. Qiu, A. H. Greenaway, I. Davis and W. Lu, An adaptive non-local means filter for denoising live-cell images and improving particle detection, Journal of Structural Biology, 172 (3): 233-243, 2010.

For a complete list of publications see profile on HW Research Portal.


Weiping joined Heriot-Watt in 1988 as a China Research Fellow under the Royal Society and Chinese Academy Exchange Programme. He obtained his PhD from Heriot-Watt in 1991 on nonlinear dynamics and chaos in optical systems and then worked as a postdoc in the same subject area. He was received the 67th Award of the Makdougall-Brisbane Prize in1998 by the Royal Society of Edinburgh for his contributions to this subject. He was appointed a Lecturer in 1997 and is now a Reader in the Department of Physics.