Chris Stafford at the STEM poster exhibition

Brighton researcher puts Britain’s science future on parliamentary display

University early career researcher Chris Stafford has showcased his work to UK parliamentarians in the STEM For Britain annual poster exhibition.

Dr Stafford is a Research Fellow in the University of Brighton’s world-renowned Advanced Engineering Centre, and was among a group of rising young scientists chosen as finalists in the STEM For Britain competition. This asks entrants to create a poster highlighting and explaining a current project, collecting flagship UK research to be presented to MPs, Peers and members of the influential Parliamentary & Scientific Committee.

Dr Stafford created a poster illustrating how researchers are advancing efficient spray simulations using insights from statistics. Accurate prediction of how sprays behave is crucial for a range of applications, including surface coating, electronics cooling, and automotive fuel injectors. Sprays are also used to produce dry powder pharmaceuticals, such as inhaled insulin.

After presenting his poster at the House of Commons, Dr Stafford said: “It was an honour to be selected to present a poster at STEM For Britain 2022, increasing the awareness of current research amongst MPs, and explaining the contribution this work can make to society. Meeting other researchers and the judges on the day to discuss our work was a unique experience.”

Dr Oyuna Rybdylova, UKRI Future Leaders Fellow, Principal Lecturer in the School of Architecture, Technology and Engineering, Principal Investigator of the NGSSM, said: “I am delighted for Chris to reach the final at this prestigious event. His work lies on the intersection of applied mathematics and engineering, and it is great to demonstrate the importance of our research area to a wider audience, and contribute to the dialogue between the scientific community and Parliamentarians.”

Stephen Metcalfe MP, Chair of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee, said: “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, mathematicians and scientists are the architects of our future, and STEM For BRITAIN is politicians’ best opportunity to meet them and understand their work.”

Dr Stafford’s work is part of the Next Generation Spray Simulation Model project (NGSSM), supported by the UKRI Future Leaders Fellow programme.

The STEM for BRITAIN scientific poster competition and exhibition has been held in Parliament since 1997, and is organised by the Parliamentary & Scientific Committee. Prizes are awarded for the posters presented in each discipline which best communicate high level science, engineering or mathematics to a lay audience.

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