Big Science Saturday
Sallis Benney Theatre
|Sat 27 February, 9:30am-6:00pm
Our huge weekender is back with a full double dose of fascinating science from a vast variety of fields. How are memories created? How do animals navigate? Will AI ever Surpass I? Experts present their research in the theatre alongside a venue-full of stands from top universities, giving you a chance to put professors in the hot seat and get practical with interactive demos.
FREE to enter the venue and visit the stands. Talks in the theatre £9 / £6 for a day pass online or cash on the door (see BIG SCIENCE SUNDAY for Sunday listings). Excludes evening shows within the same venue. Recommended ages 16+. Some talks will include topics of an adult nature.
TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE TO BUY ON THE DOOR. CASH ONLY.
|10:15am Margaret A. Boden: Can AI provide superhuman intelligence?
It’s been over ten years since a human has been able to beat a top computer at chess. Computers are also better at recognising faces and diagnosing diseased cells. But on average, humans are still ahead. Computers can’t plan for a holiday or write good fiction, for a start. Will AI ever actually surpass I? Margaret A. Boden OBE ScD FBA is Research Professor of Cognitive Science at the University of Sussex, where she helped develop the world’s first academic programme in cognitive science. She holds degrees in medical sciences, philosophy, and psychology, and integrates these disciplines with AI in her research.
|11:30am Sussex Wildlife Trust, Tony Whitbread: The Changing Nature of Nature
Conservationists oversee vast biodiversity projects in the countryside, while the public increasingly inhabits cities with hardly a scrap of wild life left. The paradigm is shifting. What’s to be done? Tony joined the Sussex Wildlife Trust in 1991 and became Chief Executive in 2006. He is a national spokesman on woodland issues for The Wildlife Trusts, having also been part of a variety of forums, including the Forestry Commission’s Advisory Panel, Wildlife Link Forestry Group, the England Woodland Biodiversity Group as well as numerous regional, county and local committees.
sussexwildlifetrust.org.uk / @SussexWildlife
|12:45pm Peter Forbes: Nanoscience: Giants of the Infinitesimal
Take a tour of the nanoworld: the realm of the incredibly small. Tiny molecular complexes do everything from photosynthesis to energy creation, plus increasingly, man-made processes, including solar energy farms and self-cleaning surfaces. And we can watch them at it. Peter’s book Nanoscience: Giants of the Infinitesimal, written with sculptor Tom Grimsey, explores the art and science of the very small, from the miracle material graphene to the wonderful iridescent world of butterfly optics; from nanostructures that tell stem cells how to develop to the wacky world of the DNA Smiley.
pforbes.org / @heliconiuscydno
|2:00pm Dr Paul Graham: Amazing Animal Journeys
With the advent of sat-nav, getting lost is harder to do these days. But somehow animals manage to travel thousands of miles without any little voices telling them to turn left at the next roundabout. Discover the wonders of animal navigation, featuring magnetic robins, stargazing dung beetles, and the internal compasses of bats. Dr Paul Graham is a Reader in Animal Behaviour at the University of Sussex and he studies the similarities and differences in the strategies that animals use to solve common problems, like navigation.
Insect Navigation at the School of Life Sciences, University of Sussex
|3:15pm Prof Miguel Maravall: How Our Neurons See Illusions
When we look at things or hear familiar melodies, they seem to appear fully formed in our brain. But it’s a little more complicated than that: neurons divide up the jobs of analyzing edges, depth, colour or pitch, then filter and interpret the information as needed. This is highly efficient, but easily fooled by sensory illusions and magic tricks. Prof Miguel Maravall is a neuroscientist at the University of Sussex. To understand how our brain makes sense of the world, he studies neurons that underpin the feeling of touch. Comparing how humans and mice detect temporal patterns of stimuli, he hopes to understand general principles that shape our ability to recognize a texture or even a melody.
|4:30pm Dr Ildiko Kemenes: A Journey Along Memory Lane
“If you can remember the 60’s you weren’t there.” Is that how the saying goes? I can’t remember. Take a trip along memory lane; find out how memories are created, what they do, and how we maintain them. Dr Ildiko Kemenes is a reader in Neuroscience at the University of Sussex, studying the cellular and molecular mechanisms of memory formation, including the neural mechanisms of decision-making and the processes underlying periods of lapses in memory. Ildiko Kemenes Lab
|ALL DAY Cutting Edge: The Science Of Tooth Replacement
Many animals are able to continuously replace their teeth throughout life. This is achieved by populations of stem cells that reside in adult jaws. Adult human teeth also contain stem cells but rather than generating new teeth, these are required to repair tooth damage. Could these human tooth stem cells be used in some way as a source of cells to generate new teeth? From Kings College London.
Tooth Regeneration / @KingsCollegeLon
|ALL DAY Exhibition: Quantum to Cosmological
Photographer Travis Hodges profiles University of Sussex academics who are solving problems in mathematics and physics that will underpin our future economic and social progress.
|ALL DAY Dr Paul Graham Supported by Sussex Neuroscience: Citizen Science Activity
We regularly navigate complex areas without getting lost: but how? Take part in a mass experiment and test your spatial knowledge.
University of Sussex Neuroscience
|ALL DAY The Astrochemistry Lab, University of Sussex: Stars ‘r’ Us
Take a journey to the cold depths of space where chemical elements first began, through the formation of stars and planets, right up to the surface of the primordial Earth and what lies beyond…
|ALL DAY Beyond the Higgs Boson – What’s Next for ATLAS at the LHC?
The discovery of the Higgs Boson was a momentous occasion – but what’s next for the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider? Discover how physicists are looking at matter on the smallest scale; delving deep into the secrets of dark matter and supersymmetry… From particle physics groups at University of Sussex, University of Birmingham and ICTP-Udine INFN.
ictp.it / ATLAS at CERN / @CERN
|ALL DAY School of Life Sciences: Test your Senses
Make sense of senses, test your reflexes, and find out how important the sense of touch is to make sense of the world. Sussex Neuroscience
|ALL DAY Neuroscientists at the University of Sussex: Snail Pace
Take a snail under your wing and train it up in simple tasks. You’ve made a friend for life. Sussex Neuroscience
|12pm – 3pm Waste House – Tech Take Back with Brighton Repair Café
Bring along your broken electronics and learn how to repair them. Brighton Repair Café is a community of people learning how to repair things rather than dispose of them. Seize the opportunity to bring broken items along to a place where the appropriate tools for repair are available and someone with knowledge and skills can give you advice on how to repair your possessions.
Brighton Repair Café / Waste House Brighton / @WasteHouse
Test the limits of your mental powers! Add to a living data-set, measure how accurate your eyewitness memory is, and how much visual information you can handle. Plus take on a variety of bewildering illusions and see how the world isn’t always how you see or hear it.
sussex.ac.uk/psychology / @SussexUni
|ALL DAY City Books: Pop-Up Science Book Shop
Browse a vast array of informative and exciting books on a wide range of subjects. Plus, the chance to meet the authors and get your books signed!
CityBooks.co.uk / @CityBooksinHove
|ALL DAY Elekta: The Science of Radiotherapy
Scientists and Engineers from leading cancer-treatment company Elekta demonstrate and discuss the principles and practice of radiotherapy. How are high-energy x-rays generated? How are they targeted at tumours without harming healthy tissue? How do they bring about a cure? Come along and chat with the team.
Elekta / @Elekta