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Norwich Science Festival: Building a better world

PUBLISHED: 09:47 16 October 2017 | UPDATED: 15:54 17 October 2017

KLM aviation academy. Picture: KLM UK Engineering

KLM aviation academy. Picture: KLM UK Engineering

Norwich Science Festival

With engineering, anything is possible - from new vehicles that push the boundaries of modern engineering to extremes, to buildings that reach higher into the skies than ever before. And there’s no better chance to find out about pioneering engineering than at Norwich Science Festival, as Marc Betts found out.

UCTN Engineering. Picture: KLM UK Engineering UCTN Engineering. Picture: KLM UK Engineering

The world is facing a shortage of scientists, engineers and technology specialists, which is why Norwich Science Festival is hoping to inspire a new generation.

One of the sponsors for the festival is the University Technical College Norfolk - which was set up with the “vision to develop tomorrow’s engineering and technology specialists”.

It has teamed up with the festival and aerospace company KLM to help visitors get hands on with some of the world’s most fascinating creations.

Alex Hayes, principal at the University Technical College Norfolk, said: “Where are the
next generation of these scientists and engineers going to come from?

“Sadly many young people don’t realise quite how good these opportunities are - and make the wrong option choices at school.”

“We are delighted to be working with the Norwich Science Festival to promote awareness of the huge range and potential of STEM careers and to join in with the fun of Science itself,” Mr Hayes added.

A KLM UK open day will allow people to get stuck into various aviation tasks and find out about the engineering that goes into modern aircraft.

One of the biggest employers in the East is Norse, which is also backing the Norwich Science Festival.

Sales director Geoff Tucker said: “As employers of electrical, mechanical and gas equipment engineers the company has a need for ‘home-gown’ talent in these fields. For this reason, and as part of its commitment to the county’s education and skills development, Norse is proud to support the Norwich Science Festival Programme.

“Within Norfolk there are a number of specialist engineering, bio-science research and energy technology businesses, generating a wide range of skilled employment opportunities.

“The Norwich Science Festival could be instrumental in helping these students gain a clearer picture of the opportunities that are open to them in the engineering field.”

Engineering events not to be missed

A number of events going on at the festival give a chance to get hands on with engineering:

■ Free KLM UK Engineering Open Day, Tuesday, October 24, 10am-4pm, International Aviation Academy, Norwich.

This workshop will allow visitors to learn more about aviation engineering by joining the KLM team at the Aviation Academy. Demonstrations will be taking place throughout the day and there will be access to a Boeing 737 aircraft.

■ Free Hands on Engineering, Monday, October 23, 10am-4pm, University Technical College Norfolk.

Get hands-on at UTCN with stalls from KLM UK Engineering UK, Bespak and more. Test your skills on various aviation tasks, and find out more about aircraft engineering.

■ Bloodhound SSC – On the Road, Monday, October 23, 1pm – 2pm, The Forum’s Auditorium, tickets £6, £4 concessions.

Experts from across the UK are working to build a car which can travel at 1,000mph and shatter the world land speed record. James Piercy from science made simple lifts the lid on this amazing project

■ Periscope workshop, Monday, October 23, 11.30am-12.30pm and 3pm-4pm, Vernon Castle Room, The Forum, tickets £5.

■ The Puzzle Ninja with Alex Bellos, Monday, October 23, 11.30am-12.30pm, The Forum’s Auditorium, tickets £6, £4 concessions, ages 12 plus. The history of the puzzle and the Japanese puzzle masters.

■ Architecture Workshops, Monday, October 23, build an amazing structure in these hands-on workshops, 10am to 11am Tetrahedrons and Octahedrons, 11.30am to 12.30am Bridges, 1.30pm to 2.30pm Skyscrapers, 3pm to 4pm Ferris Wheel, University Technical College Norfolk, tickets £5, for ages seven plus.

■ Rough Guide to Engineering, Monday, October 23, 3pm to 4pm, The Forum’s Auditorium, tickets £6, £4 concessions, age 11 plus. Science made simple demonstrate diesel engines, earthquake proof buildings and cooking with the sun.

■ Robots, Sunday, October 28, 2.15pm to 3pm, Vernon Castle Room, The Forum, tickets £5. The Little People’s Drama Company will use games, songs, role-play storytelling and improvisation to take two to seven-year-olds on a robotic adventure.

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