The School of Engineering and the Department of Chemistry recently played host to a national conference that gave academics from across the UK and beyond the chance to share cutting edge research in the field of liquid crystals.
The 2020/2021 British Liquid Crystal Society annual conference took place between 21-24 June and was hosted by Dr Alf Martinez-Felipe from the School of Engineering and Dr Rebecca Walker from the Department of Chemistry.
Around 100 delegates from countries including the UK, Poland, Spain, Russia, United States, Malaysia and Croatia attended, with a total of 29 oral presentations and 17 poster presentations provided.
Dr Martinez-Felipe said: “It was our honour to hold this national conference, which was attended by delegates, from the UK and beyond, in many interdisciplinary areas, including chemistry, physics, maths and engineering.
“While it is a shame that our peers could not enjoy our hospitality in person, we were pleased to flag how the University is leading the way in first-class research, for example in the role of liquid crystals in energy harvesting, conversion and storage, which my presentation was based on.
“We also had the opportunity to highlight the current and planned facilities we have here in Aberdeen for liquid crystal research related to the energy transition, which gathered a lot of interest.
“Our close work with the Liquid Crystal Group in Chemistry led by Professors Corrie Imrie and John Storey is an excellent example of interdisciplinary research, creating one of the largest teams on liquid crystals in the UK.”
In addition to Dr Martinez-Felipe’s presentation, Dr Walker also gave an invited talk as the winner of the British Liquid Crystal Society’s 2020 Young Scientist award, which is awarded to early career researchers with an excellent track record.
Dr Walker commented: “I was absolutely delighted and honoured to receive the 2020 BLCS Young Scientist Award, and especially in the year the conference was hosted by Aberdeen. The annual BLCS meeting is the most important event for the UK liquid crystal community, and it was great to catch up on the research of colleagues across the country.
“Our team in Aberdeen works in discovering phases that have become the focus of intensive international research, and how their fascinating new properties lead to exciting applications.
“Our thanks go to all those who attended for a stimulating and worthwhile event, and to the staff at the University - especially in the Schools and the team at CPD Services - who assisted in its organisation.”