Cardiff researchers showcase pioneering lightning facility

11 June 2015

setting up lights in lab
The Morgan Botti lab featured in a recent filming session for Canadian CBC TV show, 'The Nature of Things.'

A Cardiff University lab will throw open its doors tonight to show how a pioneering team are developing ground-breaking lightning research

Engineers at the Morgan Botti Lightning Laboratory, based in Cardiff Bay, are helping industry develop fuel-saving carbon fibre composite aircraft.

The lab's researchers are inviting the public to see their work in action this evening as part of the showcase Wales Festival of Innovation, a month-long programme of events to celebrate ground-breaking innovation in Wales.

The centre, which was established by Cardiff University and Airbus Group Innovations, Newport, will give visitors the opportunity to learn how it generates artificial lightning and how its research directly helps the aerospace industry.

It is one of dozens of participants in the Festival which is organised by the Electronics and Software Technologies Network for Wales (ESTnet), the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) with the support of Welsh Government.

The festival, now in its second year, aims to highlight innovation to encourage businesses and pioneering organisations to invest in Wales. A wide range of companies and organisations are taking part including software, electronics, life science, automotive and aerospace enterprises, and leading university research departments.

Professor Manu Haddad, Director of the Morgan-Botti Lightning Laboratory, said: "This is a unique research facility dedicated to aerospace applications. The main aim is to help design better aerospace materials and components with optimised lightning protection; our efforts are particularly focussed on carbon composite materials. We are very excited to be taking part in the festival and eager to share with others the achievements of our highly dedicated team here. There is a great spirit of enthusiasm among the research team, which has helped to make significant advances in developing new techniques since its establishment three years ago. We are already attracting key international industries to work with us, which will benefit the economy and enhance the international excellence of science and engineering in Wales".

The event will take place at the Morgan-Botti Lightning Laboratory sited on Pacific Road, Cardiff at 17:00 this evening (Thursday 11June 2015).

For further details about the Festival www.festivalofinnovation.org

To book a place at tonight's event, email JonesJ86@cardiff.ac.uk