Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies

Students enter the world of FameLab

Thu Feb 05 15:15:00 GMT 2015

20150205-students-famelab-mMatthew Camilleri and Emma Sackville from the Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies (CSCT) found their way to fame at FameLab, an exciting competition to find the new voices of science and engineering across the world. Famelab identifies, trains and mentors scientists and engineers to share their enthusiasm for their subjects with the public. Our two students will be seen at the regional finals in Cardiff on 26 February 2015. 

During the auditions, Matthew captivated the audience by introducing the world of photochemistry, which is the interaction of light with molecules. When light interacts with matter we get colours, but until recently we have not analysed what happens on a molecular level, which is both impressive and informative. When light interacts with molecules, their electrons can get enough energy to escape their energy level, getting free and becoming very reactive. Matthew exemplified the concept using photosynthesis as nature's way of making use of photochemistry.

Matthew described his experience as “a mixture of knowledge being directed towards the audience, with the scientists having to come out of their shells and trust their people skills”.

20150205-students-famelab-eEmma won the votes of the judges by describing the topic of Transport Phenomena, using the analogy of being in a club to describe diffusion. Diffusion is an integral concept in chemistry which explains how molecules move in solution, and is a concept which underpins a lot of her research work. “The Famelab competition is what first got me interested in public engagement so I've wanted to take part for a while. It's also a great way of talking about science.”  Watch Emma's performance.

The next round will be the regionals in Cardiff on 26 February 2015 as part of Techniquest ‘After Hours’ event from 19:00 - 22:00. If you’re up for some fun learning and entertainment, watch Matthew demonstrate how free electrons are vital to everyday life using fun props such as hula hoops, candles and balloons and Emma who is currently developing an exciting new routine – watch this space!.

Read more about our students.

For more information, please contact:

Rubina Kalra
Digital Communications Co-ordinator
Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies 

e-mail: R.Kalra@bath.ac.uk
Tel: 01225 385827

Notes to editor:

About CSCT:
Established in 2008, the Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies brings together academic expertise from the University of Bath with international industrial, academic and stakeholder partners to carry out research, training and outreach in sustainable chemical technologies. We have attracted over £25m in overall funding for our activities and the centre has rapidly become an important hub for sustainable chemistry in the UK.