With another summer drawing to an end, the first weekend of September heralded the Dorset Show and for the third year running, the Institute of Physics and Thomas Hardye School Science Department collaborated to bring physics to the public. Over 2 days in Dorchester the sun shone (intermittently), the rain stayed away and over 600 people visited our fun hands-on science marquee.
With clucking cups, booming bins, musical tubes and plenty of loud lollies being produced, they may just have come over to see what all the noise was. However they went away having also had the opportunity to kebab a balloon, listen to a coathanger, design a planet and even smash ‘sub-atomic’ particles together!
With the help of members of the Institute of Physics and International Baccalaureate students from Thomas Hardye, visitors were able to try out two of the new ‘Creative Physics’ activities. They could design their own planet, crafting gas giants or rocky terrestrials, variously covered in ice (glitter), rock (sand) and little fluffy clouds (cotton wool).
Or they could be inspired by particle-smashing at the Large Hadron Collider and create their own particle collision mobiles, with beads and pipe-cleaners, to see if they might find the elusive Higgs Boson…
There were also some fun experiments, including old favourites like kebabbing balloons, with only the help of physics (no sticky tape in sight!), listening to coathangers (why not try it yourself?) and some new tricks, such as our inseparable telephone directories…
You can read another article and see more pictures of the weekend on the Thomas Hardye School website here.
Many thanks to all the IOP Volunteers, Judith Wardlaw & Mike Januszewski and all the IB students from Thomas Hardye School who worked so hard over the 2 days.