Chris Banks from Glasgow Science Centre runs through the world-leading innovation happening in Glasgow and across Scotland

SCOTLAND is a leader in creativity and innovation, bringing the world amazing technology and scientific advancements for centuries. 

From MRI scanners to penicillin, television and colour photographs to the humble toaster. All these incredible inventions have driven Scottish science and engineering to become a world leader for innovation and technology.

Innovation is critical – thinking outside of the box and coming up with creative solutions is how we solve the biggest problems facing our planet and its population.
Our newest exhibition, Idea No59, celebrates innovation and aims to encourage all our visitors to find their innovator within. It will be open to visitors when we reopen on 25 June.

In the meantime, this week we have Curious About Innovation, our second digital science festival. It is exploring the latest innovation in Glasgow and Scotland and is a mixture of live events, videos and content. All available for free online.

Innovating for health

We have a whole section on healthcare innovation in Idea No59, and we didn’t have to look too far to find companies in Glasgow that are making breakthroughs.

The Living Laboratory at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Govan helped set up the rapid response Covid-19 testing facility in Glasgow. But its main focus is precision medicine, an exciting innovation that uses your DNA, proteins in your blood and your lifestyle to make medicines tailored exactly for you.

The University of Glasgow is working with Canon Medical Research Europe to help diagnose mesothelioma, a rare and unusual form of lung cancer. The team is creating an artificial intelligence system that can detect and measure tumours without any human input. Inverness company OrganLike builds hyper real 3D human organs to help train surgeons – you can see one of their human hearts in Idea No59. The low cost and realistic models mean trainee surgeons can get hands on practice in a calm, safe environment. OrganLike also prints organs made to order for more complicated surgical procedures.

Innovation to save the planet

How can we save the planet while feeding our growing population? Intelligent Growth Solutions in Edinburgh is creating the ideal climate for plants using commercially-viable vertical farming. Vertical farming is the practice of growing crops in vertical layers, stacked on top of each other. It uses technologies to create a farming environment that benefits farmers, supports environmental sustainability and addresses the ever-challenging demand for food. You can see one of their vertical farms in our Idea No59 exhibition.

Then there’s CuanTec in Oban, which is tackling food waste and plastic pollution through an innovative new approach. Cuan Tec uses waste from shellfish to create packaging materials. Its bioplastic keeps food fresh and completely decomposes, unlike other plastics which take about 450 years to break down.

Scotland in space

Space technology is becoming ever more present in the UK and Scotland’s space sector is aiming to grow in value to £4 billion by 2030. Glasgow is a growing capital of satellite manufacturing, and a vertical launch spaceport is due to be built at the A’Mhoine Peninsula in Sutherland.

Clyde Space, the Glasgow based subsidiary of AAC Clyde Space, built Scotland’s first satellite and since 2005 has been a market leader in small satellite technology and services known as CubeSats and Edinburgh based Skyrora designs, manufactures and deploys rockets specifically for the launch of small satellites and portable launch systems. These are just some examples of the space companies in Scotland and in fact, there are Scottish companies working on such new and innovative space technologies that they do not even have any direct competition yet.

Curious to know more about these companies and more innovative leaders in Scotland? Then check out Glasgow Science Centre’s Curious About Innovation digital science festival, which finished today but the videos and content will stay online afterwards. 

They’re sure to keep you fascinated about innovation even after you’ve visited Idea No59 from 21 June onwards.

Visit for more information.