Croydon student to star in televised Christmas lectures

By - Monday 22nd December, 2014

A teenager from Croydon is due to star in the annual Christmas Lecture, presented by the Royal Institution of Great Britain and televised as part of the BBC’s Christmas content. 

Sacha Tiotto-Smith.
Photo by Kindred Agency, used with permission.

Release begins: Sacha Tiotto-Smith, 14, who attends Newstead Wood School, Bromley, attended the filming of the historic science and engineering lectures in London on Thursday 11 December and supported lecturer, Professor Danielle George, with an exciting demonstration for the show.

In this year’s lectures, titled ‘Sparks Will Fly, How to Hack Your Home’, Professor George, an electrical engineer from The University of Manchester will take three great British inventions – a light bulb, a telephone and a motor – and demonstrate how viewers can adapt, transform and ‘hack’ these every day technologies to do extraordinary things. This is tinkering for the twenty-first century.

The 2014 CHRISTMAS LECTURES will be broadcast as part of the BBC’s Christmas schedule on BBC Four at 8pm on the 29, 30 and 31 December. In an action-packed demonstration-led lecture series, Danielle will announce the new rules of invention and show you how to use modern tools, technologies and things from your home to have fun and make a difference to the world around you.

Sacha Tiotto-Smith provided the Christmas Lecturer Danielle with their smartphone so she could shine the torch on the fire exit signs in the Ri theatre. This demonstration showed how these emergency signs are made of photoluminescent material that ‘keeps’ a light trail after the torch or other light source has shined on it. This means the signs ‘glow in the dark’ for longer, helping them remain visible even if all other lights in the room have gone out. The lecture she appeared in will air on 29 December.

She commented: “I was so shocked when I saw the word I wrote into the tablet appear on the fire exit sign because I didn’t think it was possible to do that. I really didn’t think the experiment would work! It was fantastic to see it happen. I love science and the Lecture was great!”

Danielle George, the Christmas Lecturer, commented: “Today’s generation of young people are in a truly unique position. The technology we use and depend on every day is expanding and developing at a phenomenal rate, our society has never been more equipped to be creative and innovative. I want young people to realise that that they have the power to change the world right from their bedroom, kitchen table or garden shed.

“If we all take control of the technology and systems around us, and think creatively, then solving some of the world’s greatest challenges is only a small step away. I believe everyone has the potential to be an inventor!”

Filmed in front of a live audience in the iconic theatre at the Royal Institution of Great Britain, the original science and engineering events for children were started by Michael Faraday in 1825 and have long been seen as a favourite British Christmas tradition.

Release ends.

Release provider: Kindred Agency.



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