The inaugural London Science Festival, which starts today, is aiming to take science out of the laboratory and on to the streets of the capital.
Thanks to this laudable aspiration, visitors will be able to ‘meet’ Mars Rover prototype Bridget, visit a Field of Jeans – to see air-purifying trousers in action – and watch a film made for chimps and starring chimps (well, people in chimp suits actually).
The festival will be held across a series of venues including the Science Museum, the Royal Albert Hall and Shakespeare’s Globe, and features a programme of exhibitions, installations, lectures, films and plays.
Bridget the Mars Rover, developed by Astrium for the European ExoMars Rover Vehicle Project, which is due to launch in 2018, will be holding court at University College London.
Although only able to move a distance of a few centimetres per second, Bridget is apparently powerful enough to overcome the severe obstacles of the Martian soil.
Euston Square, one of the polluted areas of London, is playing host to the Field of Jeans, an installation of specially catalysed jeans that have been planted into the ground. The installation is part of the Catalytic Clothing project developed by Helen Storey from the London College of Fashion and Tony Ryan from the University of Sheffield.
Other highlights include a lecture from everyone’s favourite aetheist Richard Dawkins and Rebecca Mayeri’s Primate Cinema project – a film created for a chimpanzee audience and performed by human’s in chimp suits.
It’s no Eastenders, but maybe we’re not the target audience…
The London Science Festival runs until 22 October. For more information visit www.londonsciencefestival.com