Omid’s Conference

30 03 2012

In the middle of all the chaos of 2012, Omid has been to present his work on a Novel PWM Generator at the Power and Energy Conference at Illinois (PECI 2012) This was a fantastic success for him, with lots of people really interested in his work, which for the first time enables PWM signals to be generated in hostile environments. This will be a key enabling technology for the realisation of SiC converters for hostile environment and high power applications. On top of all that, he won the prize for the best presentation, a fantastic achievement.

PECI 2012 Winning presentation


Reader freezes balls and electrocutes gherkins …

30 03 2012

A hugely successful day out yesterday, as our roadshow made an appearance at Hetton School. Whilst this is a long day (especially for those of us who don’t teach much) it was fantastic. The kids are so enthusiastic and the teachers are really switched on to the benefits of technology and how it can improve the future.

cryogen engineering exhilarating

Having shown the science (and fun) of liquid cryogens, it was time for the grand finale, where the challenge is for the kids to use their scientific knowledge to make predictions and then understand their observations. Whilst electrocuting gherkins is fun and makes a good spectacle, it does make people realise why they are yellow and tie this into how you can find your way home at night.

Hetton School Gherkin Exhilarating Engineering

Next stop on our grand tour is Bede Academy in Blyth at the end of April!

Upcoming road trips

27 03 2012

As well as the schools visits, I’m off doing two bits of proper science in the coming weeks. Firstly, I have been invited to give a talk at the upcoming NMI workshop on ‘Wide Bandgap Devices in Electronic Systems‘, which is being held at the Manufacturing Technology Centre in Ansty. This will concentrate on the possibilities of Silicon Carbide power electronic systems and will concentrate on our recent work developing a 1kW DC-DC converter as a test bed for our research.
The next opportunity is a presentation at the upcoming ‘Advances in Wireless Sensor Networks for Hostile Environments‘ day, hosted by the Sensors and Instrumentation Network. This is more targeted at our work in signal level devices and the integration challenges for the realisation of a fully functional sensor node for deployment in extreme environments.

As well as these, I’m off to Hetton School on Thursday for more of our ‘Exhilarating Engineering’ roadshow and then hopefully, a holiday to try and enjoy the unseasonal weather we seem to be having.

Extreme Technology hits the road

22 03 2012

There’s lots to update on here from the past few weeks, a lot of which relates to us being out of the office. Since Christmas, Karthik has been to NRL for six weeks, Omid presented his work at the PECI conference (more on that in another post) in Illinois, Ben has returned from his time at Raytheon, Amit was at the diamond conference in Hasselt in Belgium and me, I got as far as North Tyneside!

Exhilarating resilient technology John Spence

Yesterday, I was at John Spence School in North Tyneside enthusing people into the joys of engineering, mostly by showing things that Engineering can do for you, such as electromagnetism and the challenges of really cold things. This was a fun way to follow my last public event, where I was on stage as part of the Bright Club event at the start of Newcastle Science Fest.

Bright Club Science Fest Newcastle

Bright Club is a lot of fun (although I might not have agreed with you five minutes before I went on) where scientists go along and talk about their research in a stand up comedy setting, to a paying audience. Originally devised in London, these have been described by The Guardian as “a ‘thinking person’s’ comedy night”, and by Londonist as “where funny meets brains”. The next one is sometime in June, come along you will be amazed!