Special Lecture to Celebrate Dundee Astronomical Society’s 60th Anniversary

In 2016, the Dundee Astronomical Society celebrates its 60th Anniversary. To mark this occasion, the Tayside and Fife Branch of the BSA has teamed up with the DAS to present a special lecture, ‘Listening to Einstein’s Universe: the Discovery of Gravitational Waves‘.

We’re delighted that this lecture on one of the most significant astronomical discoveries of recent times will be given by Martin Hendry, Professor of  Gravitational Astrophysics and Cosmology at the University of Glasgow, and a member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, the worldwide group of scientists at the forefront of the search for gravitational waves.

gravitational wavesmhendry

Join us at 6.00 pm on Saturday June 11 when Martin will recount the inside story of the remarkable discovery in September 2015 of  gravitational waves from the merger of two black holes more than a billion light years from Earth, detected by two laser interferometers known as LIGO, the most sensitive scientific instruments ever built. Martin will also explore the exciting future that lies ahead for gravitational-wave astronomy as we open up an entirely new window on the Universe.

The lecture, which is free and open to all, will be held in Lecture Theatre 3 of the Dalhousie Building of the University of Dundee.



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‘Sowing the Seeds of the Next Green Revolution’ – Thursday 17 March 2016

The final lecture of our 2015-16 winter lecture series takes place on Thursday 17th March, at 7.00pm. Our speaker is Professor Claire Halpin of the College of Life Sciences, University of Dundee, and the lecture is part of this year’s Dundee Women in Science Festival. We are also grateful for the generous support of the Scottish Society for Crop Research towards the lecture.

Crop Lecture poster

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Future Debates discussion event – New Technologies, Society and the Individual

Future Debates Poster-page-001

As part of the British Science Association’s Future Debates programme, the Tayside and Fife Branch is holding a discussion event on the impact of robotics and AI on society. Our panel of local scientists will explore issues and concerns related to the increasing importance of new technologies on our everyday lives, responding to questions from the audience.

Brave New Worlds? Exploring the Impact of New Technologies on the Individual and Society‘ is be on Monday 29 February 2016, starting at 7.00pm, at Scotland’s Jute Museum@Verdant Works, West Henderson’s Wynd, Dundee DD1 5BT.

Book your free tickets on Eventbrite at bsa.sc/dundee

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Next Lecture: In the Country of the Blind, the One-Eyed Man is King

The next lecture in our winter series is on Wednesday 24th February, when our speaker will be Dr John Ellis of the Department of Ophthalmology at Ninewells Hospital, Dundee. His lecture is titled ‘In the Country of the Blind, the One-Eyed Man is King’, and will be held in the D’Arcy Thompson Lecture Theatre in the Tower Building of the University of Dundee, starting at 7.00pm.

Admission, as always, is free.

Opthalmology Lecture Poster 2

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Next Lecture – Mathematics: The Framework of Life


Our first lecture of 2016 is ‘Mathematics – the Framework of Life‘ by Dr Fordyce Davidson, Head of the Division of Mathematics at the University of Dundee.

It’s a common perception that mathematics has been designed purely to torture school pupils and has no relevance to “the real world”. In fact, as this lecture will demonstrate, we interact with mathematics throughout our daily lives, and mathematical tools are being used to address some of the most fundamental challenges facing mankind today.


The lecture, which is free and open to all, will be held in the Kydd Building of Abertay University, Bell Street, Dundee, at 7.00 pm on Thursday 28th January 2016.





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Next Lecture – Chemistry and Energy

The next lecture in our series will be held on Tuesday 10 November, when Dr Mark Read of the University of Birmingham will speak on ‘Chemistry and Energy: From Steam to Nuclear Power’. The lecture starts at 7.00pm in the D’Arcy Thompson Lecture Theatre at the Tower Building of the University of Dundee.

Chemistry Lecture

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2015-16 Lecture Series: Opening Lecture on Wednesday 7 October

Our 2015-16 Public Lecture Series gets underway on Wednesday 7th October with Rob Richardson of Leeds University telling us about his team’s robotic survey of the interior of the Great Pyramid at Giza. Come along and hear his fascinating tale of engineering, archaeology and Egyptology!

Robot Pyramid Lecture Poster

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Public Lecture Series 2015-16: Full Programme

The full programme details for the 2015-16 public lecture series are now available on the website. We have a wonderfully varied and thought-provoking selection of lectures this session; remember, all lectures are free and open to anyone interested in finding out more about science and technology and they role they play on our everyday lives.

We look forward to seeing you!

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Public Lecture Series for 2015-16

We’re now putting the final touches to our forthcoming public lecture series which starts in October, and the full details will be available on the ‘Public Lectures’ page of the website very soon. In the meantime, we can promise you a fascinating and diverse range of topics!

We’ll be taking a robotic journey into the Great Pyramid of Giza, and finding out how maths can help us solve some of the fundamental problems facing us today; looking at the role of chemistry in the production and harnessing of energy, and discovering how plants may hold the answer to food and fuel security in the future; and investigating sight and the visual centres of the brain.

We hope you can join us for another season of cutting-edge science and technology!

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Mad Hatter, Grey Matter Festival – Friday 10th July, Cambo Estate, Fife

We are pleased to be supporting one of the workshop activities at the Mad Hatter, Grey Matter Festival at Cambo House near St Andrews, which runs from 10.00 am to 7.30 pm on Friday 10 July.

Amazing Drawing Machines! will be led by kinetic sculpture artist Lara Greene, giving participants the opportunity to create beautiful& curious drawings using machines powered by pendulums. There will also be the chance to have a go at creating your own unique drawing machines, learning how simple combinations of levers & link rods can move in surprising ways!

Also on hand will be David Bradley, an engineer who has worked on the design of complex systems such as robots. David will explain the technical processes & introduce other aspects of engineering design including structures, machines & numbers.

The workshops are aimed at ages 8 and over, and the 1-hour long sessions will begin at 10.30 am, 12.00 noon, 2.00 pm and 3.30 pm. Further details of the workshops and all the other activities running as part of the Festival can be found here.


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