Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Chemie et energie...detonante!

RSC Belgium's annual demonstration lecture series for International Year of Chemistry (IYC) got off to an explosive start on Tuesday 29 March with two events for schools at the Universite Catholique de Louvain (UCL) site in Woluwe, Brussels.

The lectures given by Prof Istvan Marko and his intrepid assistant Fabbio Lucaccioni (see below) certainly were well recieved by teachers and pupils and covered some explosive aspects of gas, liquid and solids plus oscillating reactions and a number of other chemical tricks.

In the morning Istvan and Fabio entertained and informed pupils from St. John's International School in Waterloo, the European School Brussels II (Woluwe) and Science Infuse.

One immediate comment from a teacher from St. Johns School was: "I want to thank the RSC for the excellent lecture this morning. Professor Marko and assistant were most entertaining and the level was perfect for the students who attended. I already know from our bus ride home that the students really enjoyed themselves and I have no doubt it will have sown some seeds of enthusiasm for our subject."

The afternoon session saw pupils from the Da Vinci International school in Antwerp, the International School of Brussels (ISB), L'Ecole International Le Verseau from Wavre and Science Infuse.

Printemps des Sciences
Prof Marko will be repeating the lecture for a public audience on the evening of Thursday 31 March and for francophone schools on the afternoon of Friday 1 April as part of the Printemps des Sciences organised by Science Infuse at UCL's main Louvain-la-Neuve campus. The evening show will feature an additional contribution from the Wavre Historical Association!

The evening public lecture has already attracted around 500 subscribers and the final francophone school show is "sold-out" at ~550 bringing this year's RSC Belgium demonstration lectures to a total audience of around 1400 - a great success.

New building
The UCL facilties at Woluwe are a new venue for RSC Belgium and worked very well. The UCL site is close to major public transport axes (Alma on metro line 1 direction Stockel, STIB/MIVB and De Lijn/ TEC buses) and close to the Brussels ring road making access easy for all. The Roi Baudoin lecture theatres are housed in the brand new Rosalind Franklin building on the site and easy to find off Avenue E. Mounier.

The section is endebted to UCL for the provision of their facilities, our colleagues at Science Infuse and to Air Liquide for gas supply at short notice. And of course to Prof Istvan Marko, Fabio and the UCL team (see above) for putting on these spectacular shows for the International Year of Chemistry.

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