In November 2016 Professor Tom Scott, Co-Director of the South West Nuclear Hub presented diamond battery technology at the Cabot Institute Annual Lecture. This innovation was developed by a team of physicists and chemists from the University of Bristol. They were able to grow a man-made diamond that, when placed in a radioactive field, generates a small electrical current.
Ahead of a Public Lecture being given on Wednesday 15th November on this technology, we have gathered the highlights of the extensive media coverage this technology has received.
Two Million Video Views
A video was produced to explain how the technology works to a lay audience. This has become comfortably the second most-viewed video on the University YouTube channel with over 380,000 views.
However the greatest impact has come from the World Economic Forum, who covered the story and reposted the video to their Facebook page in February 2017. This video link has had more than 1.5m views to date and has been shared over 25,000 times.
Combined with other postings of the video, such as on the Cabot Institute's YouTube channel, it has been viewed over two million times across the world.
Public Call for Applications
On Twitter the hashtag #diamondbattery was created for the public to offer ideas of potential applications. Over the past year hundreds of suggestions have been made, ranging from medical devices to space exploration. The hashtag is still being used as the technology continues to engage the public imagination.
We've just had another look at the #diamondbattery thread, brilliant to see people still engaging and suggesting practical applications
— SW Nuclear Hub (@SWNuclearHub) September 28, 2017
For specific examples of suggestions, the Cabot Institute collated some of the best suggestions here.
The group of researchers even took part in a Reddit AMA to discuss the technology with an online community. On Reddit and elsewhere, it has certainly sparked debate and in-depth technical discussions
The research was also covered by a number of national newspapers, including The Times, The Daily Mail and the The Daily Mirror. There was further international coverage in Forbes, The Indian Express, Forum Nucléaire (in French), Prescouter, The Huffington Post. Professor Scott also went on the radio to speak to The Newsroom in a BBC World Service Interview - listen here.
Finally, perhaps the best coverage of all came from British Astronaut Tim Peake, who tweeted the news to over 1.3m followers at the time.
Are diamond batteries a future power source? UK research at the forefront of this novel idea.https://t.co/ixbzEFG2l8
— Tim Peake (@astro_timpeake) December 7, 2016
Public Lecture: Nuclear Seminar Series
There is another chance to see Professor Scott speak about this technology on Wednesday 15th November at the University of Bristol or online - see our events page here.
Professor Tom Scott is Director of the Interface Analysis Centre and a member of the Cabot Institute at the University of Bristol.