Didcot First

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Talks start at 7.30pm on the third Tuesday of every month at Cornerstone, Didcot.

There is no need to book - just turn up! However, please be aware - should visitor numbers exceed the capacity of the venue, some people may be denied entry, therefore, do come early to get a good seat!

Each month we have a different speaker, and would welcome your ideas for topics or speakers.  The events are aimed at an audience aged 16+.

Whilst the event is free, we do ask for a voluntary donation to cover the cost of hiring the sound amplification that is required now our numbers have grown.  Donations will not be regulated - we're well aware that some will be able to pay, some will wish to overpay at some meetings and ignore the pot at others, and some may find it difficult to contribute in this way. 

Didcot First has been organising the Didcot Café Scientifique since 2010.  It is important to us because we have some really ground breaking and earth shattering science happening all around us: at Harwell, Rutherford, Culham, Milton Park, etc. and we want to help connect local people (scientists and complete novices) with what is happening in these places.

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  • Cafe Scientifique - The iPhone and how we got here

    Cafe Scientifique - The iPhone and how we got here

    15th May 2018

    The iPhone and how we got here It has changed our lives. It has changed the way we interact with other people, the way we obtain information, the way we amuse ourselves and the way we work. It is on course to become the most popular invention since the wheel and the match. And this worldwide revolution in human behaviour has all happened within the last 10 years. This presentation will provide a technical insight into the smartphone, using an ‘ordinary’ iPhone as one example of this ‘extraordinary’ device. Geof Haigh has spent over 40 years working in telecoms & IT, all of it in industry, and most of it working on fixed and mobile communications. Geof lives in Goring. ...

  • Cafe Scientifique - Your Immune System is the best friend you will ever have

    Cafe Scientifique - Your Immune System is the best friend you will ever have

    17th April 2018

    Forget your dog, your parents, and your partner; your immune system is the best friend you will ever have. Thanks to this collection of organs and processes, our bodies really are a fortress. We may still get sick, but we successfully fight off millions of microbes and viruses every day. Yup, our...

  • Cafe Scientifique - Printing the Future: a talk by the students and staff from UTC Oxfordshire

    Cafe Scientifique - Printing the Future: a talk by the students and staff from UTC Oxfordshire

    20th March 2018

    Printing the Future - a talk by the students and staff from UTC Oxfordshire 3D Printing is giving ordinary people the chance to make extraordinary things. Come and see what the students at UTC Oxfordshire make when given free rein on the latest technology; from bearings to epicyclic gears, space...

  • Cafe Scientifique - An overview of drug discovery and drug design

    Cafe Scientifique - An overview of drug discovery and drug design

    20th February 2018

    Drug discovery is the process by which new medicines are identified to treat specific diseases or indications that have an unmet clinical need. In order to provide a safe and effective treatment for patients a significant financial and time investment is required, with the typical development time...

  • Cafe Scientifique - History of Satellite Meteorology by David Pick

    Cafe Scientifique - History of Satellite Meteorology by David Pick

    16th January 2018

    The practical demonstration of the capabilities of routinely measuring temperature, humidity and composition of the earth’s atmosphere started in 1964 with the launch of the NIMBUS series of Spacecraft by NASA. The technique relies on the ability to measure accurately the outgoing radiation from...

  • Cafe Scientifique-The European Space Agency’s Gaia mission

    Cafe Scientifique-The European Space Agency’s Gaia mission

    19th December 2017

    Gaia is an ambitious mission by the European Space Agency to make a three-dimensional map of our Galaxy, the Milky Way. Gaia is measuring the positions and motions of over a billion stars with unprecedented (and almost unbelievable) accuracy, to the extent that it is necessary to account for the...

  • Cafe Scientifique-Through the Looking Glass – micro adventures with materials

    Cafe Scientifique-Through the Looking Glass – micro adventures with materials

    21st November 2017

    Dr Alison Crossley is a senior research fellow in Oxford University, Department of Materials. Alison gained her first degree in Chemistry at Liverpool University and subsequently a Ph.D. in surface science under the supervision of Professor Sir David King. Alison then worked at Harwell for...

  • Cafe Scientifique-Understanding Patents

    Cafe Scientifique-Understanding Patents

    24th October 2017

    This talk will discuss a number of aspects of the patent system, for example seeking to explain why patent attorneys will transform a scientific paper into something written in a completely different language. Michael Butler graduated with a degree in materials science and then qualified as...

  • Cafe Scientifique: Why confidence in measurement is so important

    Cafe Scientifique: Why confidence in measurement is so important

    19th September 2017

     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...

  • Cafe Scientifique-The evolution of radioactive waste management in the UK

    Cafe Scientifique-The evolution of radioactive waste management in the UK

    18th July 2017

    Radioactive waste has been generated from commercial nuclear reactors since the opening of Calder Hall in 1956. This talk will present a pictorial journey through the evolution of waste management practices in the UK to the present day including sea dumping, surface storage and the quest for a...

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