Hundreds of business representatives and policy makers joined Cranfield University academics at a virtual green technology showcase. Leading engineers and scientists from Cranfield provided insight into the latest environmental technologies being developed at the University.

Green technology is set to be at the heart of the UK Government’s ambitions to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and to create two million green jobs by 2030.

The showcase also saw the formal launch of the University’s Green Technology Grand Challenge, an initiative that is bringing together a team of multi-disciplinary researchers from across the University. The Green Technology Grand Challenge aims to accelerate the development and implementation of environmentally-benign technologies across a wide range of sectors from manufacturing, materials, transport, to aerospace, energy, water services, and waste management.

The showcase event featured a series of short presentations, including:

  • Low carbon hydrogen
  • Developing smart city energy designs
  • CO2 transport technologies
  • Making lightweight lithium sulphur batteries a practical reality
  • Gas sensing technologies for food waste reduction
  • Wastewater, a source of energy and materials
  • 3D printing the future of aviation
  • Circular driven materials

Alongside the demonstrations, there were roundtable discussions with industry representatives including from the Office of Nuclear Regulation, Cambridge CleanTech, Central Bedfordshire Council and Severn Trent who discussed the role of green technologies in mitigating climate change and the circular economy.

Professor Ana Soares, Cranfield University’s Green Technology Grand Challenge Lead, said: “It was fantastic to see such an interest in green technologies and to able to bring together representatives from business, regulation, policy-making and academia.

“Green technology has so much potential to help us transition to a low, or even zero, carbon economy but we stand at a crucial moment where sudden leaps forward could lead to more problems. For example, an international move to 100 per cent renewable energy sources could be made relatively quickly. This kind of transition would result in a lack of capacity and more expensive energy supply. Suddenly, energy supplies would be at the mercy of the intermittent nature of renewables and the demand for storage.

“At Cranfield, we are passionate about not just developing new green technologies but thinking about how and when they are implemented. We have ambitious plans to move the green technologies agenda forward both regionally and internationally. Over the next few months, we have lined up more initiatives and research projects that will see further engagement from a wide range of professionals and academics, where everybody is welcome.”