2023: A look back

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Categories: QEPrize

20 December 2023


As we come towards the end of 2023, we take a look back at some of the highlights from the year which marked the tenth anniversary of the first award of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering.

In February, our 2023 QEPrize laureates were announced. In the presence of HRH The Princess Royal, QEPrize Chairman Lord Browne of Madingley revealed that Professor Martin Green, Professor Andrew Blakers, Dr Aihua Wang and Dr Jianhua Zhao would be awarded the prize for their research work and development of Passivated Emitter and Rear Cell (PERC) solar photovoltaic technology that has underpinned the recent growth of high performance, low-cost solar electricity, harnessing the power of the sun. Read more about this incredible innovation in our blog.

2023 winners and HRH

[Left to right] Professor Andrew Blakers, Professor Martin Green, HRH The Princess Royal, Dr Jianhua Zhao, Dr Aihua Wang and Lord Browne of Madingley. Photograph: Jason Alden/ QEPrize

Earlier this year the new season of our Create the Future podcast was launched with two new hosts - Roma Agrawal MBE and George Imafidon MBE - joining the presenting team. The podcast has covered various topics, from healthcare & solar power to knitting & even baking! You can listen to all the episodes so far by clicking here.

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[Left to right] Roma Agrawal with podcast guest, Andrew Smyth and George Imafidon. Photographs: Peanut & Crumb

In June, the Engineers gallery opened at the Science Museum. The free gallery celebrates our engineering heritage and showcases some of the world's most impactful engineering innovations through the global lens of the QEPrize with current and past prize winners featured throughout.

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Engineers gallery launch at the Science Museum. Photograph: Jason Alden/ QEPrize

To mark International Women in Engineering Day (#INWED) in June, a group of students spoke with early career women engineers, including some of our QEPrize Ambassadors, in a speed mentoring session at the Science Museum, to learn and be inspired by where engineering could take them.

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Early career women engineers at the speed mentoring session. Photograph: Jason Alden/QEPrize

In September, we launched our annual Create the Trophy competition, open globally to young designers aged between 14-24. The winner of this competition has the opportunity to see their design come to life as it is 3D printed ready to be presented to the 2024 QEPrize winner/s in London.

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2022 and 2023 trophies displayed at the Presentation Ceremony. Photograph: Jason Alden/ QEPrize

On 12 October 2023, His Majesty King Charles III presented the 2022 and 2023 QEPrize during a Presentation Ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

Joining our 2023 winners was 2022 laureate Dr Masato Sagawa, recognised the discovery, development and global commercialisation of the world’s most powerful permanent magnet, which has been transformational in its contribution towards enabling cleaner, energy saving technologies.

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[Left to right] Professor Martin Green, QEPrize Chairman Lord Browne of Madingley, His Majesty The King, Dr Jianhua Zhao, Dr Masato Sagawa, Professor Andrew Blakers, Dr Aihua Wang and Dame Lynn Gladden, Chair of the QEPrize Judges. Photograph: Jason Alden/ QEPrize

On the same day as the Presentation Ceremony, QEPrize Laureates, Ambassadors and Donors, and other honoured guests, came together to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the QEPrize at a Gala Dinner held at the Old War Offices in London.

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Guests at the QEPrize tenth anniversary Gala Dinner. Photograph: Jason Alden/QEPrize

For National Engineering Day in November, a new TFL Tube map was reimagined to honour the contributions of 274 engineers in the UK & worldwide and all their contributions to society. The map included QEPrize Laureates, Judges, Ambassadors & our Create The Future podcast hosts.


National Engineering Day reimagined tube map. Image: Royal Academy of Engineering and Transport for London

Also in November, in a world first, a virtual model of a human heart went on display in the Engineers gallery at the Science Museum. The gallery celebrates engineering innovations through the lens of the QEPrize. Created by bioengineer Dr Jazmin Aguado-Sierra using scans of her own heart, it shows the complex interactions between electrical impulses, muscle contraction and blood flow in the heart - a feat only possible using supercomputer power. Read more about Dr Aguado-Sierra's amazing work in our blog.

Gallery view of the Virtual Heart display showing bioengineer Dr Jazmín Aguado Sierra Science Museum Group

Gallery view of the Virtual Heart display showing bioengineer Dr Jazmín Aguado-Sierra. Photograph: Science Museum Group

Our QEPrize Ambassadors ran an engineering 3D modelling & design thinking workshop at the Science Museum STEM Skills Fair for secondary schools. The students experimented with engineering skills using the Create the Trophy 3D Design Studio app.

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QEPrize Ambassadors standing in front of the STEM Skills Fair stand. [Left to right] Chisom Akujobi, Ada Nwadigo, Sarthak Ahuja, Naomi Ekpoki and Erik Cavan.. Photograph: QEPrize

This has been a fantastic year for the QEPrize, and we are looking forward to delivering even more impact in 2024.

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