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Thousands of visitors to this year's Balmoral Show were able to get a glimpse of some of the cutting edge research carried out at Queen's, thanks to the team who set up and staffed our interactive exhibition.

Baxter the robot

From food science to an interactive sandbox modelling the formation of lakes in a landscape, visitors were able to engage with the science and the scientists behind some cutting edge technology.

Researchers from the Institute for Global Food Security were on hand to show visitors some of the new developments in improving feed for farm animals - using a range of sometimes surprising sources, from seaweed through alfalfa to insect larvae.

Members of the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences had set up a range of exhibits including a robotic arm suitable for manufacturing functions and a virtual reality headset allowing visitors to create and manipulate virtual objects.

One exhibit, popular with younger and older visitors alike, was the interactive sandbox, supplied by the team from Geography.

This projected a contoured landscape, including mountains on lakes, on sand in a box; participants could create new hills and valleys, and watch as the rivers shifted course and plains were flooded to form new lakes.

Finally, visitors got to meet Baxter the Robot (pictured, with Thomas McRoberts and Conor McElvogue), capable of responding to commands and even able to mimic facial expressions.

2018 marks the 150th Balmoral Show, and the team from Queen's expressed delighted in being able to take part in this successful milestone event.

You can watch a short video from the first day of the Show here.