Bath’s annual science fair ‘Bath Taps Into Science’ was held this weekend on Friday 18 and Saturday 19 March. A concerted effort between all areas of engineering, maths and the sciences sought to engage the next generation of teachers, researchers and possible world leaders.
The 2010 cohort of the Doctoral Training Centre were in the thick of it: under their ‘Fuel for Thought’ banner they showcased some of the Centre’s very own solar cells, renewable plastics and some almost explosive biocatalytic reactions.
However, any member of the team would tell you that the most popular experiment among all ages was the very messy ‘make your own bouncy ball’ experiment. This DIY attraction represented a rare opportunity for people to experience hand-held chemical transitions as people watched a mix of household ingredients come together to form a bouncy ball in their hands.
Of course a great advantage of this is that you have a captivated audience vigorously kneading their handcrafted paste in front of you. This was all the opportunity the DTC needed to talk about alternatives to oil in both plastic products and energy derivation and, even if not everyone quite understood all aspects involved, they got to take away their bouncy ball as a memento of possibilities brought about by chemistry.