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Bright Lights and Engineering Technical Seminar June 2015

Summary of Event

This was a technical seminar arranged by the Joint Institutions Group in North Wales to coincide with the Welsh Festival of Innovation and the International Year of Light. The intent was to showcase innovation in the application of light within industry and the new developments within Wales.

Funding of the event was largely provided by the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) and the Welsh Optic Forum (WOF). The various Institutions contributed towards a share of the catering and hospitality for the speakers.

The seminar commenced at 09:30 and was split into three sessions covering: ‘Manufacturing/Quality’, ‘Applications’ and finally ‘New Technology.

Rhys Lewis of Welsh Water started the day describing how UV light is now used to eliminate bacteria from drinking water following two serious cases of Cryptosporidium in the Region in recent years. The system is being rolled out across Water Treatment works across Wales. The second talk was given by David Walker of Glyndwr University who described the precision polishing of the telescope mirror segments for the ELT.

The first session finished with Dr Walter Perrie of Liverpool University describing the use of ultrafast lasers for materials micro machining.

At the coffee break an opportunity was available for delegates to operate a simulator used for training purposes for the use of lasers in civil construction and earth moving. This was an impressive piece of kit allowing the student to operate heavy earth moving equipment on a virtual screen controlled by a laser.

The seminar continued with Kent Periscopes and Qioptiq describing the development of their businesses in the defence industry. The former Pilkington glass technology has contributed to the evolution of several optic related successful companies in the area. These companies are now worldwide key players in optic related equipment within defence, including gunsights, aircraft display and specialist lenses.

The morning session ended with a presentation by Gaia Technologies on the use of Holography and 3D modelling as teaching aids for schools.

After a buffet lunch and networking opportunity, the afternoon session included a presentation by Phil Wallace of TWI Technology who explained how laser ultrasound techniques are used in continuous quality control related to additive manufacturing/3D printing

A fairly deep session on nanoimprinting technology by Swansea University was followed by Dr Dan Lamb explaining the use of Solar applications in Space.

The seminar ended at 16:00 with a vote of thanks to all the speakers.

The varied subjects made for a very interesting day with speakers ranging from University academics to industry leaders in all disciplines of engineering and science.

Extremely positive feedback received from all the delegates on another successful event from the Joint Institution Group in North Wales.

Gareth Cemlyn Jones 3rd July 2015

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