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Science of the Sea

2018 is the Year of the Sea in Wales, and to mark this occasion we celebrate our marine research, at the Eisteddfod.

Carnival of the Sea

We are contributing towards the Eisteddfod’s very own Carnival of the Sea - Carnifal y Môr – on the Saturday evening, which will celebrate our deep cultural connections with the sea and the people who have travelled from the four corners of the earth to make Cardiff the cosmopolitan city it is today.

Costume makers from Butetown Carnival are creating illuminated costumes with the artist Megan Broadmeadow. These designs are inspired by an ongoing community collaboration with the University’s School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Our staff have been showing the costume makers how a fluorescent protein found in jellyfish can be used to illuminate research into cell activity, facilitating research into various diseases including cancer and enabling a whole new branch of science to flourish.

Glowing jellyfish in a dark sea
A jellyfish has an ingenious survival strategy which allows us to conduct research into diseases including cancer.

The carnival will take place from 22:30 onwards in Cardiff Bay on Saturday 4 August. The parade will leave the Wales Millennium Centre and make its way down to the waterside in front of the national parliament of Wales, The Senedd, where there will be a film by the artist Megan Broadmeadow, projected onto colossal waterscreens.

Science and Technology Village

Scientific research of international importance is conducted here in Wales, and the Science and Technology Village aims to raise the profile of this work. We will bring many scientists from the University to the Bay to share their research.

You can see the longest living animal on earth and find out how scientists are attempting to use its relative from Pembroke Dock to make new tissues for healing wounds. You can also discover how sea creatures light up the world and provide us with medicines to combat viruses and cancer cells.

The main objective of the Science and Technology Village is to showcase science and STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) to people of all ages. We hope to inspire young people to consider a career in STEM and to increase the take-up of STEM subjects – through the medium of Welsh if they desire. This is achieved by working in partnership with the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol as well as various experts from industry and academia.

The Science and Technology Village is located near Craft in the Bay and the train station.  All activities are free of charge.

RV Guiding Light

Visitors are also invited to climb aboard our research vessel RV Guiding Light, which will be moored in Cardiff Bay..

The 15m vessel is normally used for marine research and carries the latest sonar imaging system for mapping the sea floor. During the week of the Eisteddfod it will be transformed into a floating laboratory to allow members of the public to learn about the marine environment and how it is being studied at the University.


DateTimeActivity TitleDescriptionLocationLed by
4-7 August1000-1630Welsh salt marsh secretsCome and learn about the secrets of our salt marshes as part of Wales’ 2018 Year of the Sea.Science and Technology Village Dr Meghan Alexander
4-11 August1000-1630Living lightsOver millions of years of evolution, sea creatures which inhabit deep-sea darkness have developed an ingenious strategy to survive. Find out how they light up their hostile world.Science and Technology Village Dr Catrin Williams
4-11 August1000-1630Medicines and molluscsDiscover how an invasive mollusc living in our waters may hold clues to the development of new wound healing and anti-cancer treatments.Science and Technology Village Dr Iwan Palmer
4-11 August1000-1630Invasive speciesThe sea surrounding Wales is now inhabited by some very unwelcome guests. Find out what these are, the damage they cause and how scientists are trying to deal with it.Science and Technology Village Dr Siân Griffiths
4-11 August1000-1630Medicines from the seaMarine sponges and other sea creatures have been considered as drug treasure houses for providing us with new drugs for treating diseases such as cancer. Join us for a medicines fishing expedition and then build your own sea drug.Science and Technology Village Professor Arwyn Tomos Jones
4-11 August1100-1200 & 1400-1500Wildlife walksJoin one of our daily wildlife walks to learn from the experts, and get a taste of the richness of wildlife that exists in Cardiff Bay. The walk will last less than an hour and will follow flat footpaths. Red information hutDr Dylan Foster Evans & Daniel Jenkins Jones (RSPB)
6-10 August1000-1630Discover 'RV Guiding Light'Experience life on-board Cardiff University’s very own coastal research vessel, the RV Guiding Light. Once on-board, you will be able to experience first-hand what it’s like to be a scientist at sea by engaging with specialist equipment such as a side scan sonar system, current meter, plankton net, and more.RV Guiding Light Research VesselDr Rupert Perkins, Sophie Nuber & Sarah Gore
8-11 August1000-1630Arctica islandicaCome and see the longest living animal on earth and find out just how old it is.Science and Technology Village Dr David Reynolds