DRAX Power Station will star in a BBC TV documentary tonight about the great inventions which have shaped the modern world.

The “upbeat and inspiring” programme, the first of a four-part series called The Genius Of Invention, will be broadcast from the power station near Selby and focus on generating electricity.

It will tell the story of a handful of extraordinary British inventors and inventions who helped build the modern world by understanding, harnessing, and using power.

Dr Michael Mosley and academics Professor Mark Miodownik and Dr Cassie Newland will put three of the greatest and most transformative inventions of all time under the spotlight – the steam engine, the electrical generator and the steam turbine.

Workers will also be featured talking about how efficient the Drax plant is, how the turbines work and about future plans to become a predominantly renewable plant by burning more biomass instead of coal.

Matt Willey, of Drax, who helped with the filming at the power station, said the BBC crew had been on site for several days, and he had found it fascinating.

“The experiments and demonstrations they did were breathtaking – in some cases literally breathtaking – and Drax itself looked stunning,” he said. “I can’t wait to see how it comes together on screen.”

He said steam and the generation of electricity had transformed our world, starting with the earliest Victorian steam power and culminating with Drax’s ultra-modern steam turbines, which had just benefited from a major upgrade.

He said there were plans at Drax to convert three units to sustainable biomass and the programme would examine how this would help transform it into a predominantly renewable generator, significantly cutting carbon emissions.

• The Genius Of Invention will be broadcast on BBC 2 at 9pm tonight.