My name is Olivia Jackson and I go to Woking College. For my AS I took Maths, Further Maths, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology, though I am dropping Biology this year. After A-level I would like to do a degree in Physics and/or Chemistry and go on to do a PhD. If I am not sick of universities after that I hope to continue doing research and teaching lectures.
I applied for a SATRO research placement as I wanted to do something over the summer that helped me become a better scientist (and also got me out of bed). As well as this, an extra benefit of the SATRO research placement is that it also looks great on applications for university and can help prepare you for undergraduate learning.
I worked with the Advanced Technology Institute at Surrey University and Altro, a flooring and wall company, to develop a method in order to print electronics onto flexible floor and wall tiles for future developments in sensing for hospitals and homes. The issue with printing using traditional methods such as inkjet printing with rough substrates is that often the adhesion is very bad and the so the printed electrics aren’t reliable or long-lasting. For my project I printed with conductive ink using screen printing and then tested the conductivity of the prints before and after extreme stress testing. Because the method had not been explored much there were lots of problems initially such as how to make templates and clean the screens. However, after experimentation and some research these were overcome.
My research placement helped me to develop a lot of skills such as report writing, analysis, and quick thinking. It was particularly useful for showing me what working in science is like on a day-to-day basis and how researchers often face unforeseen problems which they must overcome.