IOP South West is very happy to present a day of free talks and workshops, open to families, members and anyone who would like to participate in this exciting day. The talks are all suitable for ages 12+, but children must be accompanied by an adult.
This event is free but registration is required. Refreshments will be provided in the morning and afternoon but we are unfortunately not able to provide lunch. There are many cafes and restaurants near where you can eat, or bring your own and enjoy the spectacular Roland Levinsky building.
Small grants are available if your school would like to bring a party. Please contact Miranda Addey Miranda.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Limited parking is available on campus, and much more in the city centre, including at Drake Circus.
For the first time ever we are very happy to help bring Bright Club- a unique comedy/science event- to Plymouth University's Student Union on the same day as the Festival of Physics in the evening. A comedy/music/science bonanza with the theme of "All at Sea" suitable for ages 18+. Check back for more information.
Talk 1: 9:30-10:30 – Particle physics and the Missing Universe – speaker Dr Dave Newbold Despite steady progress over the last 2500 years, the fundamental scientific questions of 'What is everything made of?' and 'What holds things together?' remain. Whilst pursuing these topics, we have recently noticed that most of the universe appears to be entirely missing, leading to a third question: 'Where did everything go?'. The answers to these questions are bound up with the nature of space, time and matter at the smallest and largest scales. We now have at our disposal a means of investigating yet more deeply: the LHC particle accelerator at CERN. In this talk, Dr Dave Newbold will describe where we stand in fundamental physics, explain how the Higgs boson provides some clues, and give some hints as to the discoveries that might come next at the LHC.
Talk 2: 11:00-12:00 - “Newborn stars and unexplored planets” – speaker Dr Jennifer Hatchell
Dr Hatchell, of the University of Exeter, will bring the process of star and planet formation down to earth. With the help of some hands-on demonstrations she will enable the audience to grasp (literally) the subject, illustrating some fundamental physics concepts in the process. In this talk, Jenny will describe some of her recent astrophysics research and give an insight into the day-to-day life of a scientist working to extend the frontiers of knowledge.
Talk 3 13:30- 14:30 -“The Physics of Superheroes” – speaker Professor Alan Davies
Professor Davies, of the University of Hertfordshire, will discuss a wide variety of different superheroes and he shall show how their ‘unbelievable’ powers have a basis supported by the laws of physics and explained by the supporting mathematics. The only concession that we shall make is that we shall assume that they have these powers, we shall not try to explain where they come from. So, we’ll answer questions such as “How strong is the gravity on Krypton?”, “Where does Magneto get his levitation from?”, “What is Wonder Woman’s amazonium?” etc, amongst others. To answer these questions we shall consider Newton’s law of gravitation, diamagnetism and elementary materials science.
Talk 4: 15:00-16:00 - Tracing Out a Recent History of Carbon, Diamonds, Geodesic Spheres, Nanotubes and Graphene – speaker Dr Sharon Strawbridge
Dr Strawbridge, of the University of Exeter, will give a history of some of the discoveries we had made in the last decades about carbon (element 6), this ubiquitous element which makes up the soot from our fires, the lead in our pencils, as well as the diamonds that adorn our fingers (if we are lucky!).
Workshop 1: 9:30-10:30 Supermarket scientist (Dr Martin Coath) `The Supermarket Scientist' will be dedicated to showing that almost anything that can be bought in a supermarket has potential for illustrating how we do science, and how we can interpret the results of experiments. Everything that you see on stage will be 100% repeatable with (almost) everyday items in a house with a well stocked kitchen (with a bit of parental supervision in some cases). No cheating by bringing along liquid oxygen, or any such stuff! Your shopping trips will never be the same again! Open to ages 8+. Children must be accompanied by adults. Please register: places very limited.
Workshop 2: 11-12 Particle collision mobiles and hands-on physics (University of Exeter undergraduate physics students)
Come and have a go at doing some simple experiments you can do at home. Make your very own particle collisions for hanging in your home. Open to ages 8+. Children must be accompanied by adults. Please register: places very limited.
Workshop 3: 13:30- 14:30 Liquid Nitrogen workshop (David Williams and Badminton school students)
Sixth Form students from Badminton School in Bristol will present a range of low temperature physics demonstrations using liquid nitrogen. A perfect show to enjoy after lunch, as they will be using some of the liquid nitrogen to make ice cream. Open to ages 7+. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Please register: places very limited.
Workshop 4: 15:00-16:30 Meet the scientist workshop (various presenters).
Meet scientists from a vast background, researching different areas of science to get a real idea of what it is a scientist does. Open to ages 12+. Children must be accompanied by adults. Please register: places very limited.