Orkney International Science Festival 2015
It was a Maxwell year as well, being the 150th anniversary of his paper showing the electromagnetic nature of light. The world marked the occasion by designating 2015 the International Year of Light, and a torch was carried around Scotland for the varied events. A film of his life was brought north from his home territory of Galloway.
Confirmation of Maxwell’s theory came with the discovery of radio waves, and the story of the early days of radio was told in a presentation from two museums of technology.
2015 was the centenary of Einstein’s general theory of relativity, which pictured gravity as a warp in spacetime, and Prof. Martin Hendry of Glasgow University presented a lecture on ‘Einstein’s Universe’.
Prof. Rebecca Stott looked back to the man who first developed a theory of gravity, Isaac Newton, to bring his life – and some of the still unexplained aspects – into closer focus.
“The open road still softly calls, like a nearly forgotten song of childhood. We invest far-off places with a certain romance.
Herman Melville, in Moby Dick, spoke for wanderers in all epochs and meridians: ‘I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas …’ “
Dr Helen Maynard-Casely from Australia described the research identifying some of the minerals that form ‘The Shores of Titan’.
Also from Australia Prof. Graham Durant showed dramatic images of volcanic eruptions, and a team of outstanding science communicators provided a series of science shows.
There was a geological outing, a paranormal workshop, a look at the potential of hydrogen for Orkney power, the history of the horse, stories of Arctic char and sea trout, insights on cellular communication, and food and drink ranging from beer to beremeal.