Interactive events bring excitement of science and engineering to life
Get worms drunk, put your head in a hippopotamus's mouth, operate an underwater vehicle or fly a super jet airliner in a flight simulator, and find out whether an asteroid really killed the dinosaurs - these are just some of the exciting activities on offer as the University of Southampton reveals the fascinating world of science and engineering in a series of events to mark National Science and Engineering Week 2008 (7 - 16 March).
The events, which include two hands-on activity days for families, lectures for local schoolchildren and a fundraising comedy show with Marcus Brigstocke, take place at the University between Saturday 8 March and Saturday 15 March. All events are free of charge and more information is available at www.creatingthefuture.net
The two headline events for families are a Science and Engineering Day at the University's Highfield campus on Saturday 8 March between 10.30am and 4pm and Ocean and Earth Day at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton on Saturday 15 March between 10.30am and 4pm. Both days are free of charge and will be packed with hands-on activities, interactive displays, exhibitions and lectures.
A Lego Mindstorm, donated by Berkshire-based company National Instruments, a pocket Laser Light Show and six Horrible Science kits will be offered as prizes in a competition running at both family activity days.
Popular television presenter Johnny Ball is giving two lectures for pupils from local schools on Thursday 13 March and tours of the Chilworth conservation area in Southampton will also be on offer.
University of Southampton Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Adam Wheeler explains: 'We hope lots of people will come along to these events and have great fun taking part. But there is a serious side to these events too: it will be the scientists and engineers who will overcome the major challenges faced by the world in the future, such as climate change and mobile and global communications, just as the University's researchers are helping to shape the future of our world now. Today, more than ever, it is vitally important to get people interested in science and we need more science graduates.'
The University's National Science and Engineering Week 2008 events are supported by The Royal Academy of Engineering under its Shape the Future campaign.
Notes for editors
The University of Southampton is a leading UK teaching and research institution with a global reputation for leading-edge research and scholarship. It is one of the UK's top 10 research universities, offering first-rate opportunities and facilities for study and research across a wide range of subjects in humanities, health, science and engineering. The University has around 20,000 students and over 5000 staff. Its annual turnover is in the region of £325 million.
The National Oceanography Centre, Southampton (NOCS) is one of the world's leading institutions devoted to research, teaching and technology development in ocean and Earth science. It is a collaboration between the University of Southampton and the Natural Environment Research Council.
Founded in 1976, The Royal Academy of Engineering promotes the engineering and technological welfare of the country. The fellowship - comprising the UK's most eminent engineers - provides the leadership and expertise for Academy activities, which focus on the relationships between engineering, technology, and the quality of life. As a national academy, they provide independent and impartial advice to Government, work to secure the next generation of engineers and provide a voice for Britain's engineering community. www.raeng.org.uk