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Young ORC scientists present their research in parliament today

Published: 9 March 2015

Three students from the Optoelectronics Research Centre are among 21 University of Southampton PhD students and Early Career Researchers who are presenting their research to a range of politicians and a panel of expert judges today (9 March), as part of the SET for BRITAIN poster competition and exhibition.

Their work has been chosen from a wide range of applicants, to encourage, support and promote Britain's early-stage and early-career research scientists, engineers, technologists and mathematicians who are an essential part of continuing progress in and development of UK research and development.

The researchers, Deepak Jain, Zhixin Liu, and Fariza Suhailin will be judged in a competition that will end in a gold, silver and bronze prize-giving ceremony, judged by leading academics, with the gold medallist receiving £3,000, while silver and bronze will receive £2,000 and £1,000 respectively.

Deepak is presenting his research on high power fibre lasers. He says: “It’s really a great honour to be a part of this event. I am looking forward to meeting our MPs and discuss with them about my work.”

Zhixin will present his work on the new network infrastructure that will be required to upgrade to the next level in high-capacity data transmission. He comments: “This is a great opportunity to show the public our achievements and what technology is coming in the future. Through the presentation in Parliament, I hope that more people become aware of the capability of the future information infrastructure and see that the tax payers’ money has been well spent.”

Fariza is showcasing her research on fiber-based semiconductor resonators for non-linear photonics. She explains: "It will be a great opportunity for me to be able to present our work at Parliament. It is very interesting to share our research with the general public and people who are not familiar with Photonics, while competing with many other researchers from different universities.”

Andrew Miller MP, Chairman of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee, observed, “This annual competition is an important date in the parliamentary calendar because it gives MPs an opportunity to speak to a wide range of the country’s best young researchers.

“These early career engineers, mathematician and scientists are the architects of our future and SET for Britain is politicians’ best opportunity to meet them and understand their work.”

Philip Greenish CBE, Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Engineering, said: “SET for Britain provides a unique opportunity for MPs and Peers to engage with the most talented early-career researchers in science, engineering and maths.

“All the statistics tell us that the UK’s performance in research is world-leading. But we cannot take this for granted as other countries ramp up their investment in research and innovation.

“SET for Britain gives our elected representatives and members of the Upper House a chance to meet and talk with young researchers who are showcasing their research and to support these talented people, many of whom will be the research and innovation leaders of tomorrow.”

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