Create the Future: An Engineering Podcast

Create the Future: An Engineering Podcast

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Engineering is everywhere. From nanotechnology and the Internet of Things to autonomous vehicles, healthcare, and even your morning cup of coffee – engineering shapes the world around us. Engineers launched us forward from our first use of tools to an era of space exploration, and they will play a central role in solving the challenges of our future. Create the Future explores the wonderful world of skill, creativity, and innovation that is engineering, and highlights how engineers impact our lives each and every day.


Learning from Nature: Synthetic Biology
Oct 2 • 44 min
The heart of the biotechnology revolution, biochemical engineering has seen the launch of entire industries. Biochemical engineers work to develop sustainable solutions to some of our greatest challenges – whether that’s creating better biofuels and…
Building The Burj Khalifa
Sep 10 • 36 min
Standing a staggering 828 metres tall, comprised of more than 4,000 tonnes of structural steel, and setting nearly a dozen world records with its construction, the Burj Khalifa is immense. Not only is it a leviathan amid Dubai’s cityscape, but it…
Bill Nye: The Science (and Engineering!) Guy
Aug 10 • 48 min
Just as internet pioneer Vint Cerf is known for donning a three-piece suit, so too is this week’s guest known for their accoutrement of choice: a bow tie. Whether you grew up in the US or not, chances are you’ve heard of Bill Nye. His titular show, Bill…
A Driverless Future
Jul 13 • 32 min
Today’s technologies would be considered magic to people just a few decades past, but the ideas behind them are often far from new. The promise of a driverless future, for example, may seem to many like it arrived in the last decade, but it’s been both…
Microwaves to Musical Robots: A Career in Engineering
Jun 23 • 36 min
Danielle George is a Professor of Microwave Communication Engineering at the University of Manchester and the incoming President of the Institution of Engineering and technology. Starting her career as a scientist, Danielle studied astrophysics at…
City Skylines With Roma Agrawal
May 28 • 30 min
Often considered to be the world’s first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Building was completed on 1 March 1885, on the corner of Adams and LaSalle Street in Chicago. At 138 feet (42m) high, it wasn’t the tallest building in Chicago at the time – but its…
Origami Engineering
May 12 • 26 min
Fold by fold, engineers have begun to recognise the innovative potential of origami beyond the traditional paper cranes and flowers. With its applications ranging from ingestible robots to deployable shelters, it is easy to see why the ancient art form…
Painting In Space With Astronaut Nicole Stott
Apr 24 • 43 min
If you’ve ever stared up at the night sky with curiosity and a sense of wonder, then this week’s episode of the Create the Future podcast is for you. This month, two huge engineering achievements are being celebrated. The first is the 50th anniversary of…
Vint Cerf: Engineering the Internet
Apr 14 • 47 min
Whether you’re streaming your favourite TV show, video conferencing with colleagues, posting a photo of your food on Instagram, or helping to build a to a global, community-driven supercomputer – you need the internet. Throughout history there have been…
Exploring the Quantum Realm With Jim Al-Khalili
Apr 3 • 21 min
If you’ve ever heard of Schrödinger’s cat, watched Avengers: Endgame, or binge-watched The Big Bang Theory, then a branch of physics called quantum mechanics may sound familiar. Quantum mechanics (or quantum theory) is one of two theories in physics that…
Hollywood Magic: Engineering in the Movies
Mar 10 • 30 min
Bringing a touch of Hollywood glamour to Create the Future this week, we interview two visual effects (VFX) engineers whose companies have, between them, received Oscar nominations for visual effects on the Lion King, Gladiator, Life of Pi, the most…
Earthquake Engineering: Predicting Mother Nature
Feb 21 • 26 min
Earthquakes provide a complex challenge for engineers; they are difficult to predict, difficult to withstand and, subsequently, difficult to recover from. But that’s not all – as seen by the 2004 Indian Ocean and 2011 Tōhoku earthquakes, these events can…
The Eighth Wonder of the World: The Panama Canal
Jan 14 • 21 min
Opened over a century ago, the Panama Canal is widely considered to be one of the greatest feats in engineering history, and a contender for the ‘eighth wonder of the world’. Not only did its construction produce the biggest earth dam in the world at the…
The Origins of GPS
Dec 19, 2019 • 43 min
Today we take our navigation for granted. Just a few moments using our phone and we’ve got our quickest route home, the scenic drive to work, and directions to the nearest coffee shop. But have you ever stopped to wonder how it actually works, or who made…
A Material World
Nov 11, 2019 • 35 min
From swimsuits and coffee cups to quantum computers and medicines, materials science – the “middle of the Venn diagram between chemistry, engineering, and physics” – enables all the products, substances, and general ‘stuff’ with which we interact every…
Alexa, Can You Hear Me?
Sep 30, 2019 • 51 min
The fourth episode of the Create the Future podcast focuses on artificial intelligence, a topic often found at the centre of modern ethical discourse, and one that frequents both the cinema screens of Hollywood, and the pages of science fiction. Joined by…
Smart Cities: All Hype or a Platform for Change?
Aug 19, 2019 • 36 min
In this episode, we explore the origin and potential impact of smart cities. We look back on the technological and economic successes of the 2012 Olympic Games; debate the use of people’s data to improve city infrastructure; and highlight the need to…
Moon Landing and Mars Rovers: Our Forays Into Space
Jul 17, 2019 • 39 min
In this episode, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing, we talk with Apollo engineer Dr David Baker and then traverse the surface of Mars with Airbus ExoMars rover engineer Abbie Hutty.
The World Around Us
Jul 16, 2019 • 21 min
In this inaugural episode we talk with Lord Browne of Madingley, engineer, business leader and Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering Foundation, about the profound impact that engineering has, and continues to have, on the world around us.