The Perse School

Students ‘boldly go’ to physics lecture on space

7 Oct 2015

Yesterday over 50 Sixth Form physicists attended a lecture at the Cavendish Laboratory given by Anu Ohja, Director of the National Space Centre.

With a series of demonstrations to illustrate key concepts behind rocket fuel and how big distances in space really are, students were led through the history and science of the space race and Apollo programme, learnt about requirements for payloads sent up to the International Space Station and began to appreciate the importance of space exploration and satellites in so many areas of our lives.

Anu then made a model of a comet nucleus (something students are looking forward to trying for themselves in Science Club) and they explored whether a comet or asteroid impact really could led to the extinction of life on Earth as we know it and what could be done about it.

Pupils and staff alike thoroughly enjoyed the lecture and came away with plenty of interesting physics to think about. After the lecture, the group took their discussions down the road to a local curry house, where they sat down for good food and animated conversation.

Tuesday’s lecture was the first of the academic year in the Cambridge Physics Centre series and the Physics Department will be organising similar trips to lectures later in the year.

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