Soapbox Science’s first visit to Brighton

Head down to the seafront between 1-4pm on Saturday 29 July and celebrate women in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM) with Soapbox Science.

Soapbox Science hosts events across the UK and the world raising the profile of women in science – breaking down barriers and challenging stereotypes about who a researcher is. And they are coming to Brighton for the first time this summer.
Chantal Nobs, a PhD student at the University of Brighton, was one of 12 women selected to participate in the Soapbox Science London event on London’s Southbank in 2016.

Find out more about the Brighton event here.

Finding ways to fill Britain’s Potholes

A team of our Technical Engineering instructors joined students at Midhurst Rother College and engineers from the infrastructure group Balfour Beatty took on the challenge to help solve potholes on our roads.

Part of an Engineering Education Scheme (EES) co-ordinated by our STEM Sussex team, the scheme is a six-month partnership and involved a two-day residential workshop here.

The scheme encourages Year 12 students to recognise the importance of science and engineering by providing an opportunity to gain useful skills and experience by working on a challenging project in partnership with industry.

Midhurst Rother is one of ten schools and colleges which came to the university with engineers from different companies to work on projects including improving security systems, improving ways to monitor phosphates in waste water and creating models to display at science fairs including the Big Bang Fair South East.

Midhurst Rother students are working with engineers to look for more efficient materials and ways of filling road holes. The project follows a report from Local Government Association which estimates the pothole repair bill could reach £14 billion by 2020.

After their two-day workshop, Dominic Ryan, one of our Technical Instructors, said: “The students managed the project from start to finish – they were able to plan and be hands-on, utilising their scientific, innovative and creative skills.”

James Baldwin, science teacher at Midhurst Rother College, said: “The students enjoyed the opportunity to use the university’s concrete lab and equipment. They are all looking to study a subject linked with science or engineering at university and the scheme allowed them to see what this would entail.”

BIM – No theory, just the facts…..

Recently, Professor Mervyn Richards OBE delivered a CPD presentation on Building Information Modeling (BIM) and collaborative working organised by the CIOB and held at the University of Brighton.  The event was well attended by both industry and students alike.

Professer Richards OBE has the only case studies that have been tested, checked and published with government support…so no theories, just the facts and the details of the studies. Mervyn has been involved in the development of CAD and BIM systems, software and business processes for over 40 years. He has been instrumental in the successful development and delivery of ICT strategies for many major projects. His achievements include his work on the flagship Heathrow Terminal 5 project, where he was a 3D modelling consultant for more than eight years. Mervyn is the Director and Principal Consultant for MR1 Consulting. He was awarded an OBE for services to BIM and to the Construction Industry in 2013.

Professor Richards presenting at the University of Brighton

Professor Richards presenting to industry delegates and students at the University of Brighton

Civil Engineering and Construction careers fair

Students studying subjects including Architecture, Civil Engineering, Construction Management, Building Surveying, Urban Planning, are invited to the Built Environment and Civil Engineering careers fair on Friday 2 December. Come along to Cockcroft Hall between 1-3 and find out about placements, part-time work graduate opportunities and more.

It’s a great opportunity to talk to recruiters, academics, Brighton graduates and careers advisors all in one place. Dozens of employers will be there – you’ll find the full list here.

Up for a challenge

img_0467The EWB Challenge provided a great opportunity to experience group work, but with a competitive edge to encourage more innovative, extravagant yet one-dimensional work. Using the resources of all disciplines and experiences there was no idea that couldn’t be achieved and was a perfect chance to unleash all creativity.

Preparation for the work and finals required multiple meetings amongst our group and our assigned tutor. The guidance of our tutor enabled the best of ourselves, our knowledge and our understanding to be extracted and channelled to a development and outcome.

The final itself was a great experience for professional pitching, enlightening to new ideas and concepts to be rivalled with. Having to work effectively with other team members to present our idea and answer the questions to our weakest areas came with many challenges. The challenges it brought across were easily managed and resolved with the great coverage of our disciplinary areas and knowledge.

Overall the opportunity was a great chance to create something with few restrictions and show the best of our abilities through pitching, developments and a final product. The skills obtained through this module and challenge have greatly helped with many tasks and work I have come across to present.

Presentations at COBRA 2016 Toronto

Senior Lecturers Ms Della Madgwick and Dr Hannah Wood presented their research papers at COBRA in Toronto Canada before a global audience of Surveyors Project Managers and Construction experts from both academic institutions and Industry.

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toronto

COBRA is the world leading conference in Construction, Building and Real Estate research held annually by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Three papers were presented:
An exploratory Study of the Impact of Visual Representation on Perception of Energy Consumption in UK households– described how thermal imaging may contribute to energy savings
Embedding Emerging Technology in Built Environment Educations – considered how the latest techniques such as laser scanning, drones and augmented technologies can be integrated into undergraduate programmes
The Impact of Service Charges to Free-holders on New Estates– considered how a changing platform of tenure in new developments requires some thorough research to fully understand the implications to new home owners.

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cobra17r

The papers were well received by delegates and as a result of round table discussions a group of academics from a number of Universities propose to make a bid to the RICS Research Trust for funding to develop the ideas discussed and write Best Practice Guidance.

There was much discussion about the development of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and its increasing impact on projects. In addition delegates were able to visit the George Brown College and tour the Angelo DelZotto School of Construction Management to view how Building Information is Modelling (BIM) is taught in their specialist BIM lab.

Award winning paper

Congratulations to Yahya Ibraheem for winning the SEEDS 2016 Award for Contribution to the Built Environment” at the International SEEDS conference 2016 in Leeds this month.

Yahya won the award for his paper title “Integrated Façade System for office buildings in hot and arid climates: A comparative analysis”.

Yahya is studying for his PhD here at Brighton on the subject of integrated façade systems for highly to full glazed office buildings in hot and arid climates.

Well done Yahya!

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British Science Festival heads for Brighton

british-science-festival-logoOne of Europe’s leading and longest established science festivals is coming to Brighton next year. And we will be co-hosting it!

The University of Brighton will co-host the 2017 British Science Festival with the University of Sussex from 5-8 September.

The festival, organised by the British Science Association, will have a programme of over 100 events featuring cutting-edge science from world-leading academics covering everything from technology and engineering to social sciences.

Welcoming the announcement, Vice-Chancellor Professor Debra Humphris said: “I am delighted that the University of Brighton will be co-hosting the British Science Festival next year. We were keen to grasp this wonderful opportunity to showcase our world-leading research alongside cutting-edge science from around the globe in an accessible and engaging way.

“The city of Brighton & Hove is world-renowned for its Arts Festival. By hosting the British Science Festival, we can throw open the doors of our facilities to the wider community, including our new state-of-the-art Advanced Engineering Building that is currently under construction.”

We’ll keep you posted as more details are confirmed, and hope to see you all there!

University building scoops top award

The project to refurbish the University of Brighton’s iconic Cockcroft Building has won in the Higher Education category of the prestigious Architects’ Journal Retrofit Awards 2016.

The Cockcroft Building on the University’s Moulsecoomb campus has been a familiar landmark on Brighton’s Lewes Road since the 1960’s.

The awards jury said: “This is a bold project, particularly from a sustainability point of view – and a model for future similar projects. It focuses well on how people use the building. The exterior has been elegantly improved and the interior creatively revamped.”


Welcoming the award, Vice-Chancellor, Professor Debra Humphris said: “This is really excellent news and I congratulate the team involved in this major project. The refurbishment of the Cockcroft Building is an important part of our ongoing investment programme which aims to ensure that our students have access to world-class facilities.”

The multi-million pound refurbishment programme, which took three years to complete, was carried out whilst the building was still being used by staff and students and included:
• Development of state-of-the-art new learning laboratories and office spaces to house schools within the university’s College of Life, Health and Physical Sciences
• Installation of new windows to improve insulation throughout the building
• Exposing the ceiling space to highlight the architectural features of the building’s interior
• Opening up corridors in the building to improve lighting, people movement and provide social and informal learning spaces for students and staff to use.
• Reducing noise levels by putting in place sound buffering and dampening features
• Installing a new roof surface to improve insulation and energy efficiency.