CSA Catapult sparks the imaginations of future engineers at Cardiff Science Festival 2023

Date: 15.03.2023

Topics: Skills

CSA Catapult’s team of interns spent two successful days at Cardiff Science Festival inspiring around 400 young people and parents.  

As part of the event, CSA Catapult’s current cohort of UK Electronic Skills Foundation Scholars, led the ‘Spark Your Imagination’ session at Cardiff University’s Spark Building as part of their ‘Be a Scientist!’ Programme. On the second the day of the festival, the team presented their activities at the Grange Pavillion in Grangetown.  

The team of interns, Hamza (Photonics), Qali (Electronics), Sofiya (Advanced Packaging), Richard (RF/Microwave) and Vedant (Power Electronics), met around 400 children and parents, showing them how devices are powered by electricity and engineered to work the way they need to, in everything from computers and robots to cooling fans and electric cars.  

The team showed the children how to build circuits and DIY motors made from batteries, and explained how devices change electricity into movement, light and sound. 

The exhibition stand was busy throughout the festival, with the team answering many curious and creative questions from both children and parents.  

Vedant Shah, Power Electronics Intern at CSA Catapult said: “Cardiff Science Festival was an extremely enjoyable experience. Having the opportunity to organise interactive, challenging activities for the children and engage with them was rewarding, as I was able to share my passion for science and engineering.  

“The highlight was seeing the excitement on the children's faces as they saw science at work and witnessed the power of electromagnetism, by successfully building an electric motor and seeing the coil spinning before their eyes.” 

Alex Leadley, Skills Academy Manager at CSA Catapult said: “The Cardiff Science Festival gives us the opportunity to increase the visibility of electronics and electrical engineering skills to a diverse range of students and show them the vast range of opportunities available to them. South Wales is at the epicentre of cutting-edge compound semiconductor technology, and we are looking forward to having the next generation of young people moving into the industry. Anything that we can do to inspire them is a privilege. 

“We are grateful to the festival, Cardiff University and Grange Pavillion for putting on a great series of events over the two days.” 

Susan Monkton, Public Engagement and Civic Mission Officer at Cardiff University said: “The Be a Scientist! event aimed to engage families and children in hands on science, and the CSA Catapult team did that in spades.  

“Their interactive sessions were approachable and accessible to those attending, with a queue of families around them. We had plenty of feedback saying families were grateful for the 1-2-1 support given by staff, and children felt a sense of accomplishment.  

“A huge thank you to the CSA Catapult team for being a part of the event and having such a great impact on the attendees. We have received lovely comments such as “I really enjoyed the activities. I learned a lot in a fun way!”