Science and Technology

Science on show in state-wide festival of events

Science will dominate University of Tasmania campus calendars in August, as the best and brightest minds shine a spotlight on the subject during National Science Week.

With the support of the University, a bumper program of hands-on activities, demonstrations, forums, presentations, workshops and discovery days will run beyond the official week (13 – 21 August 2016), evolving into a month-long celebration and showcase of science innovation.

Professor Brian Yates, Dean of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Technology, said the state-wide program was an opportunity for the community to explore and discover the fun and fascinating world of science.

“The University has always been a key partner of National Science Week in Tasmania,” Professor Yates said.

“It is an opportunity to showcase how the STEM disciplines (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) are forging future careers while also connecting the community with our campuses, staff and students through a series of engaging and educational events.”

The week’s highlights include:

Southern:

  • Enter the domain of drones at the Sandy Bay campus; experience “Oceans of the Unknown” in a university collaborative exhibition at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS); and meet astrophysicist Dr Jules Harnett, who originated from the state’s North-West and pursued a professional career with NASA while also making her mark at the South Pole.
  • At the Festival of Bright Ideas returning to Princes Wharf 1 on Saturday, 13 August, see how science fuses with engineering at an electrifying educational workshop or watch a University PhD candidate experiment with extremes of the temperature scale. The heat will be on when expert panelists discuss adapting to the warming world; be dared to dip your fingers into the IMAS live touch tanks; or sail away in the Australian Maritime College simulator.

Northern:

  • Hear how harnessing the ocean’s energy could create a sustainable supply of power during the Science Open Season at Queen Victoria Museum, and find out the relevance of the Southern Ocean and Antarctica to Tasmania in a special talk. 

North West:

  • Try out new technologies during drop-in workshops in the University’s CollabLab at West Park in Burnie, or join enquiring minds and experts for a pop-up panel exploring the concept of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics), and how each discipline is shaping contemporary curriculums. In Ulverstone, Tastrofest will encourage locals to look up and examine the night sky.

Dr Adele Wilson from the University of Tasmania said throughout August, Young Tassie Scientists are on the road bringing science into classrooms across the state – reaching over 4,000 students of all ages, from Dover to King Island, Scottsdale to Lauderdale.

“The Young Tassie Scientists program aims to inspire Tasmanians through sharing stories of science research happening right here in our home state,” Dr Wilson said.

“It’s a great experience for school students as well as the young scientists themselves who love to share the research they are so passionate about.”

The prestigious Science Investigation Awards will also headline the University’s month of science, challenging hundreds of young students to investigate a scientific hypothesis and present projects to academic and industry experts on Thursday, 25 August at Inveresk; Thursday, 1 September at the Cradle Coast campus; and Thursday, 15 September at Sandy Bay.

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