St. Bede’s Science was once again represented on a worldwide scale this half term. Four of our Science Ambassadors spent two mornings of their holidays working alongside the ESO (European Southern Observatory) at Celebrate Science, Palace Green, Durham.
The event organised my Durham University has presenters from all over the world as well as very local to us, presenting new scientific research, allowing members of the public to see inside the Sun, have a trip around our Solar system and get hand-on with a plethora of science experiments. We were lucky enough to be invited to train with the ESO on their recent discoveries with Infrared radiation in to stars and exoplanets as well as being some of the first people to see hoe the ELT (Extremely Large Telescope) works! We were so excited about this because the ELT will be the largest optical/near-infrared telescope in the world: the world’s biggest eye on the sky. The mirror, made up of 798 smaller mirrors, when turned on its side is nearly the height of the West towers of Durham Cathedral!
Having spent Monday morning training (and eating Danish pastries), Wednesday morning loomed. So with our new purple t-shirts we were ready to teach the public about the work of the ESO. Whilst Orlagh, Grace and Holly taught about the many different Exoplanets we are aware of and whether life could exist on any of them, Miss White and Lucy presented an experiment using infrared cameras on constellations.
Once again, we loved meeting all the bussing scientists and teaching people about amazing astronomy, maybe some of us might get to visit the ESO in Munich one day!