UCL Department of Physics and Astronomy


Science Centre Lectures

The Science Centre was first established in 1987 by Dr Sadiq Kadifachi and it was incorporated into UCL in 1997. Videos of past lectures can be viewed in our archive. The Science Centre Lectures are free lectures on a range of scientific subjects for sixth form students and their teachers. They are held on Friday evenings throughout the academic year.


All are welcome, admission is free and no booking or tickets are required.

The talks are aimed at sixth form students and teachers, but are frequently attended (and enjoyed) by members of the public, teachers, academics and undergraduates. There is usually a lively Q&A session at the end of the talk. Sixth form & fifth form (year 11) students are welcome with or without a teacher.


All talks are held on Fridays at 6.30pm and last for approximately 1 hour, followed by a maximum of 30 minutes for discussion. Refreshments are available free from 5.30pm onwards.


In the autumn and spring terms lectures are held in the Chemistry Auditorium, Christopher Ingold Building, 20 Gordon Street, London, WC1H OAJ.

In the summer term lectures are held in Harrie Massey Lecture Theatre, entrance in Gower Court, off Gower Place.

Programme 2018-19 - Autumn Term 2018

5 October
Right Hand left Hand: The origins of Assymetry in Brains, Bodies Atoms & Cultures
Professor Chris McManus
UCL Faculty of Life & Medical Science.
12 October
Artificail Intelligence and Robotics
Professor Peter McOwan.
School of Engineering & Computer Science, Queen Mary University of London.
19 October
What ever Happened to replacing fossil fuels by Hydrogen as source of energy?
Dr Paul Dodds,
UCL Institute of Energy & Sustainable Resources.
26  October
No lecture ( School half term)  
2 November
The Hidden World of the Atom - a lecture demonstration
Dr Robert Palgrave,
UCL Department of Chemistry
9 November
Scientific benefits of establishing a permanent village on the Moon
Pofessor Ian Crawford,
Planetry Centre and Astrobiology, Birkbeck University of London
16 November  
A Map of the Invisible: Dicoveries of the elementary particles, Electrons to Quarks and Higgs boson and the latest results from CERN
Professor Jon Butterworth,
High Energy Particle Physiscs,
UCL Department of Physics & Astronomy.
23 November
Applications of Ultrasound and how to make an Ultrasound Levitator - a lecture demonstration
Professor Bruce Drinkwater,
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Bristol
30  November
Photons, Spacecraft, Atomic Clocks and Einstein Relativity
Professor Marek Ziebart
UCL Department of Civil , Environmental and Geomatic Engineering.
7 December
Milonkovitch Cycles: Ice Ages and Climate change
Professor Alan Aylward,
Atmospheric Research Group,
UCL Department of Physics and Astronomy
14 December
The Origin of Life
Professor Nick Lane,
UCL Department of Genetics, Evolution & Environment


Past Lecturers and Comments

A list of past lecturers and comments by attendees, can be seen on our Past Lecturers and Comments page.

Promoted jointly with the Institute of Physics and Institute of Mathematics and its Applications
Disclaimer: The Science Centre and UCL disclaim all responsibility for any information presented in these lectures. We assume no responsibility or liability for any information, materials or other content provided by any of the lecturers. All content is viewed and used by you at your own risk and we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of any of the information. The views expressed are those of the individual contributors and not necessarily those of the institution.