Imperial College London

Earth Science and Engineering at the Great Exhibition Road Festival


Visitors enjoy Exhibition Road, South Kensington

Staff, students and researchers from the Department of Earth Science and Engineering (ESE) were out in force for the Great Exhibition Road Festival.

The annual festival – back in person in South Kensington after the pandemic – brings together arts and science organisations in the Exhibition Road area. This year, the Great Exhibition Road Festival explored the trailblazing ideas, people and communities that are changing our world with a weekend of free events for all ages.

Visitors soaked up the sun (and some rain!) and enjoyed several workshops, fascinating talks and interesting installations run by researchers and students from ESE, as well as exhibits and activities from Imperial, the Royal College of Music, Science Museum, V&A, Natural History Museum and many more.

Deep Earth

ESE Researchers and students show rocks used to store carbon.ESE colleagues explained how we can store Carbon Dioxide (CO2) deep underground, and its importance for mitigating climate change. 

Pictured left, ESE Researchers and students showed visitors rocks that can be used to store carbon.

Meanwhile, ESE 4th years Savvas Marcou and Amy Woodward (pictured below) led an Earthquake Space indoors at the Festival. Visitors created their own mini earthquake, built earthquake-resistant structures from spaghetti and plasticine, and took part in the earthquake shaking challenge. As earthquakes are some of the most powerful forces on the planet, the workshop looked at how we build in places where we get lots of earthquakes without everything falling over. Savvas and Amy explain earthquakes

Make it Mars

Amelie in Mars exhibitESE PhD student Sara Motaghian is a PhD researcher exploring Martian planetary science and space missions. Sara, fellow ESE PhD student Amelie Roberts (pictured), and scientists from the Natural History Museum, gave visitors the chance to steer a rover around a Martian-like landscape, as part of the Roving with Rosalind exhibit.

Mars 2020 PerseveranceTo close the weekend, ESE’s Professor Sanjeev Gupta gave a trailblazing talk, “The search for ancient life on Mars”. Professor Gupta is a member of the scientific team directing the rover's search for rocks that could hold traces of alien life, and he talked about the latest findings from the mission – and why humanity’s first attempt at returning collected samples from Mars will provide unprecedented insights for generations to come.

Helping hands

The festival would not be possible without volunteers, including ESE’s Gareth Oliver (pictured, below left), who welcomed attendees at the start of Exhibition Road, and all the ESE staff and students who supported the weekend’s activities.

Gareth Oliver helps visitors find their way at the Festival

Thanks to all involved!


Victoria Murphy

Victoria Murphy
Department of Earth Science & Engineering

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Tel: +44 (0)20 7594 6445

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Great-Exhibition-Road-Festival, Climate-change
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