Public lectures celebrate International Year of Chemistry

15 Feb 2011 12:38:06.777

PA 52/11

Have you ever wondered how many water molecules you need to dissolve salt? Do you know how to measure fragments of DNA? Could you say how many atoms are needed until a substance actually does what it’s meant to?

These questions and many more will be answered in a series of public lectures being staged by The University of Nottingham to celebrate International Year of Chemistry.

“Can Chemistry be Green?” and “From Avogadro to Zeptomole” — a chance to peer into the world of mass spectrometry — are the first two in a year-long programme of lectures organised by the School of Chemistry from this Thursday, February 17 2011.

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Dr Sam Tang, Public Awareness Scientist, said: “2011 is an extra special year for Chemistry and a great way to celebrate it is to engage with the public and communicate our passion for science. Chemistry plays an integral part in so many everyday applications and products but all of these would have had to be researched and developed at some point; these talks aim to give the public an overview of some of the work carried out in Nottingham and how these ideas are taken from the ‘drawing board’ to the research lab, and potentially further into industry.”

Academics will set out to explain this often mystifying and complex science — how it permeates our lives from the formation of molecules to the search for green technologies and the contribution it has made to some of the most exciting medical discoveries. They will look at the chemistry of stars, surfaces and gastronomy — so there should be something for all tastes and interests.

The International Year of Chemistry 2011 celebrates the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humankind.

The lectures will take place in Lecture Theatre X1, in the School of Chemistry on University Park between 6pm and 7pm. For more information go to

Admission to the lectures is free and there is no need to book in advance.

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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham, described by The Sunday Times University Guide 2011 as ‘the embodiment of the modern international university’, has award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. It is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 75 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and the QS World University Rankings. It was named ‘Europe’s greenest university’ in the UI GreenMetric World University Ranking, a league table of the world’s most environmentally-friendly higher education institutions, which ranked Nottingham second in the world overall.

The University is committed to providing a truly international education for its 40,000 students, producing world-leading research and benefiting the communities around its campuses in the UK and Asia.

More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnight analysis of RAE 2008 ranked the University 7th in the UK by research power. The University’s vision is to be recognised around the world for its signature contributions, especially in global food security, energy & sustainability, and health.

More news from the University at:

Story credits

More information is available from Dr Sam Tang on +44 (0) 115 846 7229,
Lindsay Brooke

Lindsay Brooke - Media Relations Manager

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 951 5751 Location: University Park

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