CERN expert to speak to engineers in Belfast

20 Apr 2012

Dr Stephen Myers, director of accelerators and technology at CERN, with the LHC in the background. Image by CERN

Belfast native Dr Stephen Myers, who works as director of accelerators and technology at the CERN particle physics laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland, will be in Belfast next week to give a keynote at the Engineers Ireland annual conference.

The Engineers Ireland event will take place on 26 and 27 April in Belfast City, and the theme is ‘Engineering Enterprise in Times of Change’.

Myers has been responsible for current and future projects and for the efficient exploitation of the existing accelerator facilities, including the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, since 2009.

It was in 1972 that Myers embarked on his career with CERN, when he started working as engineer-in-charge on the operation of the Intersecting Storage Rings (ISR) Collider. He has worked on the ISR collider, LEP, SPS and the LHC.

He was educated at Queen’s University of Belfast (QUB), where he received a first-class honours degree in electrical and electronic engineering. He then completed a PhD at QUB.

Offshore energy focus

Other speakers over the two days will include Eddie O’Connor of Mainstream Renewable Power. The co-founder and CEO of Airtricity, which was sold to Scottish and Southern Energy in 2008, went on to co-found Mainstream Renewable Power in that same year. Mainstream builds wind and solar plants, both onshore and offshore, and operates in eight countries now.

Just back in February, the company announced it had signed a 50/50 venture with the wind turbine manufacturer Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co (Goldwind) to build the first phase of the Ckani wind farm in Northern Chile.

O’Connor will be covering the topic of offshore energy on the second day of the Belfast conference.

Engineering innovation on the island of Ireland

The opening day of the conference will also feature contributions from Northern Ireland Environment Minister Alex Attwood, PJ Rudden, president of Engineers Ireland, Liam Nellis from InterTradeIreland, and John Barry from Bord Gáis Networks.

The second day of the conference will feature parallel discussion sessions focused on offshore energy and engineering innovation in Irish manufacturing.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic