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PhD projects

Secure Computing (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Cyber-Physical Systems, Blockchain Systems, Digital Twins). More details at: https://bit.ly/phdenquiry


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Personal profile

Research Interests

- Autonomous Systems and Security (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles)

- CPS Security

- Blockchain Systems

- Digital Twin


2022: Queen's Merit Award for Fellowship (FHEA).
CyberASAP'22 - Cyber security academic startup.
EiC Travel Grant (Drones Journal).
Co-Chair, IEEE UK and Ireland Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee.
Elevated to Senior Member, IEEE.
Section Editor-in-Chief: Drones.
BCS Accreditation Liaison.
Racial Equity Network School Co-Champion.
2020: Best research paper award for work published during PhD (2016) from Thapar University (Alma mater award).
2020: Top 2% scientists for citation impact during the single calendar year (2019).
2020: IEEE ComSoc: My Article included as one of the Best Readings in UAV Assisted Wireless Networks, Topic: Interference Mitigation and Drone Deployment.
 Appointed Associate Editor: IET Networks.
2020: Appointed Academic Editor: Wireless Communications and Mobile Computing (WCMC).

2019: Appointed Associate Technical Editor: IEEE Communications Magazine.
2019: Appointed Associate Editor: IET CAAI TRIT.
2019: One of my books, “5G Enabled Secure Wireless Networks,” is included in the 2019-IEEE Comsoc Information Security Technical Committee's report (ICC’19).
2019: Top 1% reviewers in Cross-Field (Publons).
2019: Recognized (Outstanding) Reviewer Award- JNCA, FGCS, Physical Communications, Computers, and Electrical Engineering, PMC Elsevier.
2018: Recognized Reviewer Award- Physical Communications, Computers, and Electrical Engineering, PMC, Computer Networks, Information Sciences, Heliyon, Applied Computing and Informatics, Computers and Electronics in Agriculture-Elsevier, IJCS-Wiley.
2018: One of my papers in CCPE, Wiley, "Cooperative frameworks and network models for flying ad hoc networks: a survey," was among the top 20 most downloaded articles between 2016 and 2018.
2018: One of my papers in JNCA, Elsevier, "Intelligent deployment of UAVs in 5G heterogeneous communication environment for improved coverage," had the most social media attention in 2017 and 2018.
2017-2018: International research travel grants: JEJU-03'17, US-05'18, and JEJU-10’18.
2017: Best paper award at ICCMIT 2017, Poland.
2017: Best paper award at CISC 2017, South Korea.
2017: Best paper award at EAI-IoTaas 2017, Taiwan.
2016: Current Erdős Number: 5.
2013-2015: Chair- ACM Student Chapter, Thapar University (January 21, 2013 - November 30, 2015).
2015: Poster selected amongst the top 9 in the area of networks at ACM annual event (IRISS'15).
2015: Awarded Official ACM-Membership Ambassador Certificate.
2015: National research travel grants: IEEE ICECS (Coimbatore-02’15), ACM Annual Event (Goa-02’15), and ACM Security Symposium (Delhi-02’15).
2014: Awarded Official ACM-Membership Ambassador Certificate.
2012: Qualified GATE'12 (Admitted to the Ph.D. program at Thapar University).
2011-2012: University Merit.
2011: TGMC IBM Student Ambassador.
2009-2011: Best project awards (Industrial Trainings).
2008-2011: Recipient of Merit-Scholarship from the Government of India (State: Punjab).
2005-2006: Sports Scholarship for the year.


Vishal Sharma received the Ph.D. and B.Tech. degrees in Computer Science and Engineering from Thapar University (2016) and Punjab Technical University (2012), respectively. From September 2020, he is a Lecturer (~Assistant Professor) in the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EEECS) at the Queen's University Belfast (QUB), Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. Before coming to QUB, he was a Research Fellow in the Information Systems Technology and Design (ISTD) Pillar at the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), Singapore with Prof. Paweł Szałachowski and Prof. Jianying Zhou, under a project entitled, future-proof blockchain, funded by MoE-Tier 2 grant, Singapore. Before joining SUTD, he worked as a Research Assistant Professor under Industry-Academia Cooperation Foundation in the MobiSec Lab. at Soonchunhyang University with research sponsored by ETRI-Korea, NRF-Korea, IITP-Korea, MSIT-Korea, and AFOSR-USA. He was a postdoctoral researcher with Prof. Ilsun You in the Information Security Engineering Department at Soonchunhyang University in association with Soongsil University, South Korea. Before this, he worked as a lecturer in the Computer Science and Engineering Department at Thapar University, India. 

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Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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