There were fireworks when a top science presenter inspired the scientists of the future.
Matthew Tosh, said to be the UK’s number one fireworks science whizz, shared his secrets at a number of Christmas lectures held at the University of Chester’s Thornton Science Park on Ellesmere Port’s outskirts, home to the university’s faculty of science and engineering.
A presenter, voice actor, pyrotechnician and education consultant, Matthew is described as having built a reputation for bringing energy, enthusiasm and creative spark to events including live performances, television programmes, professional development and education projects. He has a passion for science, technology and the performing arts.
The lecture was delivered to audiences of young people from across Cheshire, unveiling the physics, chemistry, engineering and workings behind professional firework displays around the world. Matthew showed how pyrotechnicians create colours, sound effects and perfectly timed bursts in time to music.
Students were 'amazed and surprised at the physics'
Featuring shock waves, flames, sparks, smoke effects, forces, energy transfers and real indoor fireworks, the exciting and fascinating lecture had the audience on the edge of their seats. There were two daytime lectures to a total of 10 schools and 250 students. An evening lecture was attended by university staff, students and families and members of the public.
The events were organised to encourage more young people to get involved with STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths) and to go on to study and follow science based careers.
Angela Lupton, the university’s higher education STEM co-ordinator, said: “The feedback has been amazing. Not only did everyone thoroughly enjoy the lectures they also were amazed and surprised at the physics, including quantum theory and Newton’s Laws of Motion to name but two, involved in firework displays.
“The feedback from schools suggests that some students are now more interested in STEM and may go on to study science subjects.”