The Science Café is a chance to informally explore the latest ideas in science and technology and debate the issues. All are welcome.

12th February 2018: What Can Network Science Tell Us About Cities?

Dr Nick McCullen, Dept of Architecture and Civil Engineering

Cities are highly complex systems where people interact and communicate in a variety of ways. The science of how cities function is in its infancy, but we are starting to understand some of the rules of interaction governing their behaviour. The physics of interactions between individual components of complex systems is described by the mathematics of networks. In this talk I will introduce some of the scientific and mathematical theories which have been used to explain complex phenomena in human interactions​ in cities, with sometimes surprising results.

Link: Dr Nick McCullen


8th January 2018: Designing Virtual Reality Experiences with Perception in Mind

Dr Dan Finnegan, Computer Science Dept at Bath University

Arguably, 2017 was the year virtual reality, or VR to those in the know, came to maturity. It has been around for some time however. While processing power and memory are much improved on over previous hardware generations, people’s expectations of virtual reality experiences are increasing. Simulating physical phenomena in a machine is a gargantuan task. Luckily, we may not have to physically simulate environments for them to be perceived as realistic. In this talk, I’ll discuss how studying fundamental human perception can lead to better designed virtual worlds that seem real to us.

Link: Bath University Computer Science Dept


13th November 2017: Building with dirt to clean our homes

Dr Daniel Maskell BRE Centre for Innovative Construction Materials, University of Bath

Are modern low carbon buildings detrimental to our health? Modern buildings have been developed to be very airtight, improving their energy efficiency and reducing their carbon footprint. However, these sealed environments have created unexpected side effects, with research showing that a build-up of potentially harmful chemicals in the air is potentially causing negative impacts on occupants. Dan will present research on how innovation with the use of dirt could result in an improved indoor environment quality.

Bath BaleHaus

Link: Dr Daniel Maskell