Have a taster of the Imperial Festival: From robots and AI to food of the future

Thomas Triebel

The Evening Standard has been given exclusive access behind the scenes of the Imperial Festival, a yearly event organised by Imperial College London.

The Imperial Festival showcases the latest research and discoveries of around 500 students in areas as diverse as robotics, science, energy, environment and even food "of the future".

Two researchers from Imperial College invited the Evening Standard into their labs for a sneak peek a week ahead of the Festival.

Daphné Lubert-Perquel, a PhD student, presented a model Mars rover.

The Rover rides through the yet unfinished Mars-like Papier-mâché terrain.

The remote-controlled vehicle uses a technology called "maser"which is the lazer’s older cousin.

Daphné explains: “The maser originated before the laser, about 60 years ago. It is used to amplify microwave signals that are used in technologies like 3G, wifi, deep-space communication.”

This attraction will particularly appeal to children as they will be able to drive it through a model Mars-like environment.

Dr Angela Kedgley is running a research group on the effects of ageing, focusing on the hands. An interactive experiment will offer the public the possibility to undertake dexterity and strength tests wearing specially-designed gloves to simulate ageing.

A new “Food Zone” will be featured this year, but it won’t be the usual hot dogs and burgers.

James Romero, organiser of the festival, explains: “There are opportunities to taste ‘food of the future’ and see how food can be made and produced within our farms or kitchens in a more sustainable and environmentally-friendly way.”

The festival will run on the College’s South Kensington Campus (SW7 2AZ) next weekend, from 12 to 6pm on Saturday and 12 to 5pm on Sunday. The full programme of the festival is available here.