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Suffolk steps into technology spotlight as BT showcases cutting-edge innovation at Adastral Park

PUBLISHED: 06:00 12 June 2017 | UPDATED: 17:08 12 June 2017

The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. Pictured is Claudia Christina. Picture: GREGG BROWN

The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. Pictured is Claudia Christina. Picture: GREGG BROWN

More than 1,000 business leaders from some of the country’s largest companies will take part in an innovation event in Suffolk this week.

The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. Left to right, Alex Healing and Dr Ben Azvine. Picture: GREGG BROWN The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. Left to right, Alex Healing and Dr Ben Azvine. Picture: GREGG BROWN

They will join BT’s chief executive officer, Gavin Patterson, at the BT Labs in Martlesham Heath for a major innovation event at its Adastral Park technology campus.

Innovation 2017 is a showcase of the company’s cutting-edge research and technology and will allow BT’s major business customers and more than 2,000 employees to interact with the latest innovations the company has scouted from around the world.

Tim Whitley, BT’s managing director of research and innovation, said: “We’re really proud to host this major event and showcase the very cutting-edge of technology right here in Suffolk.

“BT has been an innovation pioneer for over 170 years and here at the BT Labs in Suffolk we’re continuing to play a key role in keeping the UK a world leader in communications technology.”

The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. From the Glaze Alarm company is George Schaar. Picture: GREGG BROWN The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. From the Glaze Alarm company is George Schaar. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Guests will have the opportunity to hear from award-winning technologists, scientists and innovators, and take part in a range of live demonstrations including a virtual reality sports stadium experience delivered over 5G and how future 5G services can be delivered via drones.

BT will also be hosting the UK’s CoSpace Junior RoboCup finals for 250 children from primary schools across the country.

The children will be working in teams with teachers, alongside technical experts and professors, to programme small robots in a variety of programming challenges.

Mr Whitley added: It’s vital for the UK’s economic growth that our children are equipped with the skills we need for the future, and STEM subjects have an important role to play.

The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. Picture: GREGG BROWN The annual BT Innovation Week showcase at Adastral Park. Picture: GREGG BROWN

“Many of our technical experts are sharing their insights into coding and computer science with teachers to help them with the curriculum.

“It’s great to see children at the start of the competition who have never done any coding - and by the end of the day they’re racing robots they’ve programmed around the track.”

The RoboCup competition aims to develop a robot football team capable of beating the champions of the FIFA World cup by 2050 while engaging young people in science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects.

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