Science Festival begins in Belgrade

This year’s Science Festival creates a world in which visitors can walk on Mars, explore lost cities on the seabed, telepathically drive a Star Wars spaceship or create music by movement.

The tenth annual international Science Festival will be held at Belgrade Fair from December 15 to 18. Over the Festival’s four days, visitors will have the opportunity to see 60 different programmes showcasing the adventurous side of science.

The festival gathers hundreds of scientists from different faculties and scientific institutions from across Serbia, as well as guests from abroad. Together, they will hold thousands of experiments, workshops, lectures and science shows for festival goers.

This year, National Geographic will present a virtual reality encounter with future travel to Mars. The interactive presentation allows guests to experience the sensation of walking in Mars’ low gravity atmosphere and offers a simulation of a landing on the red planet.

The Geological and Hydrometeorological School Milutin Milankovic and Mining-Metallurgical Faculty will present an exhibition about the most dangerous places on earth for people to live, where volcanoes are still active and devastating earthquakes, tornados and hurricanes are common.

As this year marks the 160th anniversary of Nikola Tesla’s birth, the Science Festival will have several exhibits highlighting his significant and influential body of work.

Visitors will have the chance to virtually enter Tesla’s world just by sitting in 4D special chairs that will instantly take them back in time to stand next to Tesla in his hydropower plant on Niagara Falls or to visit his room in the New Yorker Hotel.

Guests will also see how Tesla produced electricity from vegetables, built an electro-magnetic train, created the first remote control and have the opportunity to learn about more of his greatest discoveries at the Nikola Tesla Museum’s exhibition.

Tickets for the Science Festival cost 450 dinars [about €3.6] per person, while children under the age of five can visit the festival free of charge with their parents.

The only event that will cost extra will be the laser show prepared by Lund University. That ticket costs additional 100 dinars [less than one euro] per person.

Organisers announced that the first two days of the festival will mainly be for hosting group visits from schools across the country, while December 17 and 18 are reserved as family days.

The Science Festival has grown every year. In 2015 it hosted about 28,000 people, including 20,000 students from 350 elementary and high schools.

Science Festival highlights

Grand scientific laser show

Visitors to the laser show are treated to onstage physics experiments, including breaking a wine glass with sound waves and creating explosions with simple chemical combinations. The show finishes with a spectacular light display featuring over 1,000 lasers.

December 15: 10am, 11.30am, 1pm, 2.30pm
December 16: 10am, 12pm, 1pm, 2.30pm
December 17: 10.30am, 12pm, 1.30pm, 3pm
December 18: 10.30am, 11.30am, 1.30pm

Mars up-close

Visitors will have the chance to learn interesting facts about Mars and the possibility of intergalactic travel. The organisers prepared a simulation of a walk on Mars, virtual reality landing on the planet and a place where they can take a photo in Mars look-alike ambient.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

Animal’s anatomy

The programme will present lectures on different animals and the similarities and differences of their bone structures with the help of different life-size skeletons, including those of a horse and a lion.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

Secrets of the sea

Experienced divers and underwater archaeologists will present different artefacts discovered deep under the sea’s surface and introduce you to wondrous tales of lost cities, fortresses, ships and whole civilisations discovered underwater.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

Crime scene science

The national crime tech centre showcases how detectives work in the 21st century by introducing you to the techniques, methods and machines they use to solve crimes and catch criminals at a simulation of a crime scene.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

From Equator to North Pole

If you have ever wondered how it physically feels to live in different parts of the world, you’ll have the chance to feel it on your skin during the Science Festival. There will be simulations of weather in equatorial, desert and sub-polar climate zones.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

All the colours of physical chemistry

The scientists will introduce visitors with the minutia makes up the world. They’ll demonstrate how one molecule can simultaneously transport electricity but also reveal whether a solution is acidic or basic, and how one electron means the difference between a liquid and solid state.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

Catch the light

On the Austrian Circus Lumineszenz stage, music is created as visitors move through laser lights. At the light playground, guests can make different compositions by manipulating light objects, movement which is then translated by a computer into different sounds.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

Jedi powers

Those focused enough can try moving a hologram of a Star Wars spaceship with the help of sensors placed on their heads. If that turns out to be too demanding, you can use your brain waves to try to move little plush ears.

December 15-16: 10am – 6pm
December 17-18: 10 am – 8 pm

Exploding discoveries 

The festival offers insight into the world of fires and explosives that are not only used for destruction but for good.  For example, hundreds of grams of explosive and highly poisonous sodium are built into car airbags with the aim to save lives. This and many other interesting facts from the long history of explosives, along with different explosive experiments, will be shown during the last two days of the festival.

December 17: 6pm
December 18: 5.30pm

(Balkan Insight, 14.12.2016)

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