Who are we?

Chris Allton (Director)

Chris grew up and was educated in Australia and then embarked on a career which has seen him living in four of the Rugby Six Nations. In his day job he lectures Physics and researches fundamental particles such as quarks which make up protons and neutrons, and hence 99% of the known universe. Away from work, he enjoys running, cycling and generally being outdoors in and around the beautiful Swansea and Gower beaches.

Will Bryan

Will is a physicist whose research area is in fast lasers, so fast that they can effectively take “videos” of chemical reactions. He is also very keen on schools outreach projects, co-running Swansea University’s Science for Schools Scheme (S4) and complements his scientific studies with an interest and aptitude in art.

Tanya Foxall

Mary Gagen

Mary is a geographer and geologist by training and now lectures on all things physical geography, and researches climate change. Her research interests lie in the palaeoclimatic information stored in the annual rings of trees and she spends as much time as possible sourcing ancient woodland sites, having led fieldwork in North America, southern Africa, South East Asia and throughout Europe and Scandinavia. Away from the forest and lab Mary is passionate about science outreach and co-runs Swansea University’s Science for Schools Scheme (S4). Spare time is mostly spent outdoors or on a yoga mat, and she is a qualified holistic therapist.

Liz Kenny

Liz is a Research Administrator in the Physics Department at Swansea University and supports Oriel Science’s communications and marketing. Her interest lies in History and Education and she completed her degree and PGCE/MA in Swansea. Her research followed the life works of the notorious Restoration era poet Aphra Behn. Away from work Liz enjoys the outdoors and what better place to live than the Gower. Her passion has always been horse-riding, ever since she was put on a horse aged 3! Liz also has a separate passion/career as a qualified makeup-artist.

Martin O’Leary

Martin is a mathematician turned glaciologist in the Geography Department at Swansea University, and the Curator of Oriel Science. His scientific research focuses on iceberg calving and the interactions between glaciers and the ocean. When he’s not juggling research and his work at Oriel Science, he spends his time as a digital artist, building interactive toys and Weird Internet Stuff.

Kristi Praki

Kristi grew up in Gloucestershire, but moved to Wales in 2008 to study physics at Swansea University, Kristi currently design and leads on our schools workshop programme. She currently has a Master’s degree in theoretical physics and is working towards her PhD. As well as being a member of the Oriel Science team, Kristi is also a part of our partner project, the S4 Science for Schools Scheme, a science outreach project that provides free hands on science workshops to students from local schools. Kristi loves to draw and paint and can often be found trying to explain scientific ideas to people by doodling.