Meet Science and Engineering leader of tomorrow - Lata Sahonta

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Making electricity storage and transport more energy efficient is central to the research work of Lata Sahonta. Lata explains how she designs electronic devices which are smaller, faster and greener, she is even working on a project to develop paint-on solar cells.

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My name is Lata Sahonta. I’m a physicist working at the University of Cambridge and I work in the Device Materials Group and we design new types of materials to use in electronic devices like mobile phones, computers, solar cells and everyday technology like that.

A project that we are working on at the moment is to improve the efficiency of solar cells. Most solar cells are based on silicon at the moment and we are trying to base them on materials which are cheaper and easier to make. We are trying to make solar cells which are paint-on so hopefully we will be able to cover any surface with them, which will be much more efficient at collecting light energy.

If you like doing it, that’s much more important than economic reasons to choose a certain job. So if the idea of discovering new things and doing experiments and testing logic and exploring the unknown is interesting to you, then you should definitely pursue a career in science. We live in a society which is more and more dependent on technology and it penetrates our whole lives whether we are using sat nav, or Bluetooth or i-phones to communicate with each other. Science is always in our hands and it’s no longer far away from us in a lab that some other people are doing, it’s something that we can be a part of ourselves and becoming involved in science is contributing to society.