Professor Parker’s sensor perspective
02 February, 2017 — By John Gulliver
Professor Evan Parker
YOU just can’t keep Professor Evan Parker down!
For years he lead a team of scientists on devising solar cells to generate energy in warm or hot parts of Mediterranean countries – Greece or the south of France, for instance. And just when it looked as if he and his colleagues at the Warwick Science Park, attached to Warwick University, had cracked the challenge after several years of experiments – costing about £18million – his investors, “venture capitalists”, withdrew their backing in the face of Chinese producers who were turning out cheaper cells subsidised by the state.
With the collapse of his company all looked lost. But Professor Parker, who lives in Belsize Park, turned to another project which has, ironically, attracted Chinese investors willing to stump up £3million to fund a project in a slightly different field – “sensor detector technology”.
Now he is working on a “sensor” idea that will detect the minutest explosive – a few millimetres thick – being carried through a detector gate at an airport. Though he cannot go into details he seemed pleased that the Home Office had shown a lot of interest in the idea.
New ideas in any field attract Professor Parker who will be chairing a debate at Conway Hall, Holborn, on Sunday on the possibility of a “progressive alliance” involving Labour, Greens, Plaid Cymru, the SNP and Lib Dems to take on the Conservatives.
Speakers include Green Party co-leader Jonathan Bartley; Peter Taheri, Hampstead Labour Party and Timothy Barnes, Tory candidate for Bloomsbury.
Billed as “New Frontiers in UK Politics”, the debate starts at 11am.