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Doug Allan - An Eye Below Zero

Doug Allan - An Eye Below  Zero

The Abingdon Science Partnership in collaboration with Science Oxford present:


"For me, wildlife cameramen don’t come much more special than Doug. There’s just no one else who knows these frozen worlds as he does" - David Attenborough


Did you ever wonder how to approach belugas underwater? Get up close and personal with polar bears without being eaten? Stop your fingers falling off from frostbite? And not lose that important dive hole when you’re diving under the ice?


Doug Allan is one of the world’s best known and respected cameramen, and in this presentation he’ll be giving his own personal insights about marine biology, diving, and filming at the poles. Illustrated with his own photographs and clips from his best-known series, and with a wealth of behind the scenes stories – Doug’s aim is to amaze, inspire and challenge. Because in the forty years since Doug first went to Antarctica, he’s witnessed first hand how the warming of the poles and the changing ice is affecting the animals north and south. What should we be doing to turn the tide? He’ll also be signing copies of his book Freeze Frame – A Wildlife Cameraman’s Adventures on Ice.


“What’s great about talking face to face is that it’s my chance to bring people right in behind the scenes. It’s like live TV only better, and it’s for all the family!” – Doug Allan


Doug Allan spent seven years in Antarctica as a research diver, scientist and photographer for the British Antarctic Survey, before changing direction to full time freelance filming in 1983.


Since then he has become one of the world’s best known and respected cameramen. He specialises in natural history, expeditions and science documentaries in some of the wildest and most remote places on our planet, particularly the polar zones. In his 35 year filming career, he's worked for the BBC, Discovery, National Geographic and many others, filming for series like The Blue Planet, Planet Earth, Frozen Planet, Ocean Giants, Operation Iceberg, Wild Cameramen at Work, and Brian Cox’s Forces of Nature.


His photographic awards include eight Emmy’s and five BAFTA’s. He has three Honorary Doctorates in recognition of his camerawork, as well as two Polar Medals. He’s an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society and of the Royal Photographic Society.

Friday 2 Mar 201819:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

Horizon Lectures: John Blashford-Snell (H)

Horizon Lectures: John Blashford-Snell

"Colonel John Blashford-Snell is one of the world’s most renowned and influential explorers.  Often cited as an inspiration by the likes of Ranulph Fiennes and Bear Grylls, he has spent decades at the forefront of British expeditions. John’s achievements include the first descent of the Blue Nile in Ethiopia, an arduous crossing of the Darien Gap and the first navigation along the full length of the Congo River.


Heralded by the Telegraph as “the last of the great adventurers” John’s talk is a chance to hear his daring exploits first hand – from deserts and mountains, to wildlife and people."



Tickets are available on the Horizon Lectures website.

Thursday 8 Mar 201819:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: Double Bill - Science and Understanding (H)

ATOM Festival: Double Bill - Science and Understanding

Two talks exploring science, human understanding and its limits.


"How Science can Help Us to Understand Music" - Dr Alex Tester at 18:30


Alex Tester and Lawrence Tao are musicians with an interest in science and psychology, on a quest to discover why we have the deep emotional ties with the music we hear. Join them for a thought-provoking hour where we question the nature of music, wonder whether we can ever expect the same response from our listening, and explore whether it matters that we can’t decide what consists a musical masterpiece.


"What We Cannot Know" - Professor Marcus Du Sautoy at 20:00


Science is giving us unprecedented insight into the big questions that have challenged humanity. Where did we come from? What is the ultimate destiny of the universe? What are the building blocks of the physical world? What is consciousness?


‘What We Cannot Know’ asks us to rein in this unbridled enthusiasm for the power of science. Are there limits to what we can discover about our physical universe? Are some regions of the future beyond the predictive powers of science and mathematics? Are there ideas so complex that they are beyond the conception of our finite human brains? Can brains even investigate themselves or does the analysis enter an infinite loop from which it is impossible to rescue itself?


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Thursday 15 Mar 201818:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: Double Bill - An Evening on the Final Frontier (H)

ATOM Festival: Double Bill - An Evening on the Final Frontier

Two talks from leading scientists exploring the outer reaches of our understanding of space.


"Nothing" - Professor Frank Close at 18:30


If you take away the Earth, Moon, stars - what remains? The concept of the void has alarmed and fascinated humans from the dawn of time. The talk chases "Nothing" from the philosophical speculations of early civilisations to the cutting edge of modern science, quantum mystery, the Higgs field and the origin of the universe. How can you get something out of nothing?


"I want to Believe: an Astronomer's Search for Aliens" -  Professor Chris Lintott at 20:00


Astronomers have discovered that the Universe is full of potential homes for life, with planets around the vast majority of stars, yet the skies remain disappointingly free of swooping starships, visiting aliens or radio signals from space. Chris Lintott looks at the evidence for life in the Universe, explains how you can help and tries to argue that the truth is out there somewhere.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website              

Friday 16 Mar 201818:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: In Search of Giant Pterosaurs - A World Tour (H)

ATOM Festival: In Search of Giant Pterosaurs - A World Tour

by Dr Dave Martill


Pterosaurs, flying reptiles of the Mesozoic, were originally thought to have been small aquatic animals and only 30 years later was it realised they could fly. Some evolved into giants as large as a Spitfire. This talk takes you around the world in search of these fossils, from the deserts of North Africa to the jungles of Brazil and the holiday beaches of the Isle of Wight.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Saturday 17 Mar 201811:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: The Bessemer Society (H)

ATOM Festival: The Bessemer Society

Spinning out Science for Business Success: A Round-Table Discussion on the Risks and Rewards of Commercialising Science.


Taking cutting-edge scientific research and commercialising it can lead to massive value creation and the emergence of game-changing companies - and even new industries. But there are significant challenges - financial, scientific, human - in doing this in Oxford and the Science Vale. In this round-table discussion, chaired by The Bessemer Society, three science and technology spin-off companies share the ups and downs of science commercialisation: what are the risks, where are the rewards, and how might science allow British companies to play for the biggest stakes on the world technology stage?


To book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Saturday 17 Mar 201811:00 Book Now (Charles Maude Room)

ATOM Festival: Size Matters (H)

ATOM Festival: Size Matters

by Dr Martyn Sene.


Our everyday life is peppered with measurements and we usually trust them without thinking.  The petrol pump; our bathroom, kitchen and supermarket scales; tape measures; barometers; and thermometers that confirm a heatwave or provide an indication of health.


These are, however, just the tip of an enormous and mostly invisible iceberg. Just about every aspect of our economy, our quality of life and our very lives depends on confidence in measurements that we make or, more often, that are made on our behalf.  


This confidence is enabled by one of, if not the largest and coordinated science and technology activities on the planet – the international measurement system.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Saturday 17 Mar 201813:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: Stopping Bad Guys with Lasers (H)

ATOM Festival: Stopping Bad Guys with Lasers

by Stuart Bonthron of Agilent Technologies


Using lasers to see inside stuff and gather unique fingerprints of what’s inside has some really useful applications. Stuart will discuss and demonstrate a range of techniques and products that use Raman spectroscopy in airport security, bomb disposal, pharmaceutical manufacture and others.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Saturday 17 Mar 201815:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: Seeing and Believing (H)

ATOM Festival: Seeing and Believing

by Professor Brian Rogers


Is what we see affected by what we believe, what we know and what we think?  Does the world look the same to me as it does to you?  How do other animals see the world?  Why are we fooled into seeing smooth, continuous movement on a TV or cinema screen when there is only a series of stationary images?  How is it that we can be looking directly at something but fail to see it?  These and other similar questions have intrigued philosophers and psychologists for thousands of years but it is only now that we are beginning to find the answers.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Saturday 17 Mar 201817:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: Out of this World (H)

ATOM Festival: Out of this World

Examples of how Satellite Data is Driving Innovation.


The increasing quantity and quality of environmental indicators and imagery tracked from space is creating huge new capabilities in the field of geospatial analytics. Combining Big Data analysis and machine learning with local expertise and observations on the ground is allowing huge leaps forward in areas such as disease tracking, natural resource monitoring, disaster recovery and environmental risk.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Saturday 17 Mar 201819:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: Domestic Cats - the Lion in the Living Room (H)

ATOM Festival: Domestic Cats - the Lion in the Living Room

by Dr Andy Sparkes


Cats have been in the process of domestication for around 10,000 years, but are generally still regarded as semi-domesticated at best. Cats remain enigmatic animals, partly as a result of their lack of domestication and yet in many countries are now the most popular domestic pet. This talk will look at the development of the domestic cat, its behaviour, some common misunderstandings and how we can better integrate cats as domestic pets in the future.  


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Sunday 18 Mar 201812:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

ATOM Festival: The Challenges of Working with Water (H)

ATOM Festival: The Challenges of Working with Water

by Dr Mike Dearnaley of HR Wallingford


Population growth, economic expansion and changes to natural hazards are leading to altered risks to people, infrastructure, the economy and the environment.  Global water demand is expected to increase with water resources becoming scarcer, leaving ever more of the world’s population in severely water stressed river basins.  Global energy demand is expected to be higher in the future with the associated risk of increased greenhouse gas emissions, acceleration of climate change and exacerbation of global biodiversity loss, drought, flood and erosion risk.  At all levels water is central to these issues.  Today the need to understand and apply the relevant science to make informed decisions is critical.  Mike will illustrate some of today’s scientific challenges in the world of water through the work undertaken by HR Wallingford.


For more information and to book tickets, please visit the ATOM Festival website.

Sunday 18 Mar 201813:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

Horizon Lectures: Mark Beaumont (H)

Horizon Lectures: Mark Beaumont

"Last July, long-distance cyclist Mark Beaumont pedalled out of Paris, just 78 days and 14 hours later he was back at the Arc de Triomphe having cycled 18,000 miles around the world. Mark’s record-breaking ride made headlines the world over, yet it’s just one part of his story.


Whilst Mark is perhaps best known for his cycling adventures - including solo trips covering the length of both Africa and the Americas – he's also rowed from Resolute Bay to the magnetic north pole, capsized during a crossing of the Atlantic and followed the Queen’s Baton Relay around the Commonwealth to hear the varied stories of athletes from a diverse range of backgrounds."


Tickets are available on the Horizon Lectures website.

Wednesday 16 May 201819:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

Horizon Lectures: Anna McNuff (H)

Horizon Lectures: Anna McNuff

Adventurer, Girlguiding ambassador and self-confessed “mischief-maker” Anna McNuff is joined by Charlie Walker and Jen Roberts for the first Horizon Lectures Adventure Fund Night.


Anna once represented Great Britain at rowing, but now spends her time darting around the world on the hunt for new and exciting endurance challenges.  Anna is a hugely entertaining speaker and will be telling the story of her self-supported run covering the length of New Zealand – from the characters she met along the way to her very special “Pants of Perspective”.  


Charlie and Jen both picked up grants through the Horizon Lectures Adventure Fund last year and will be returning to share their stories.  Between them, they've since completed a 5,000 mile journey from Siberia to Istanbul and a month-long science and mountaineering trip to the Stauning Alps in Greenland.


Tickets are available on the Horizon Lectures website.

Wednesday 6 Jun 201819:30 Book Now (Amey Theatre)

1918: The Bloody Road to Victory (H)

1918: The Bloody Road to Victory

The story of the apocalyptic final year of the Great War, as the British and German armies are tested like never before. A lecture by BBC historical advisor Gareth Howell, accompanied by a comprehensive ordnance display by collector Rick Stevens.


No age restriction, but recommended for ages 10+.


Tickets available soon.

Friday 9 Nov 201819:00 Book Now (Amey Theatre)