iCHSTM 2013 Programme • Version 5.3.6, 27 July 2013 • ONLINE (includes late changes)
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E306. Screening: Ernest Rutherford documentary
Sponsoring body:
Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society
Fri 26 July, 16:00–17:30Schuster Blackett
Special session organiser: John Campbell | Rutherford Documentary, New Zealand

Amazingly, until now, there has never been a documentary on Ernest Rutherford, New Zealand's internationally most famous son, the first Nobel Prize recipient for research performed in Canada, and probably the most illustrious British scientist of the first half of the twentieth century. The Rutherford Documentary has been produced by John Campbell, based on his book, Rutherford: Scientist Supreme. Recorded in high-definition digital video, it consists of three one-hour episodes, for which the Canadian Nuclear Society awarded John an Education and Communication Award.

This special session will be introduced by John Campbell himself. John will talk about the making of the documentary before screening Episode 2, ‘The Alchemist’, which covers Rutherford’s life and work in Canada and at Manchester. At McGill University, Rutherford transmitted the first wireless signals between a station and a moving train, explained radioactivity as the natural transmutation of atoms, discovered radon, dated the age of the earth, and earned himself a Nobel Prize. At Manchester, he developed the Rutherford-Geiger tube, showed that the atom had a nuclear structure, and became the first person to split the atom, or put another way, became the world's first successful alchemist. During the First World War, he directed the scientific work associated with detecting submerged submarines.

John will be happy to answer any questions. He is the author of Rutherford: Scientist Supreme (1999) and maintains the website www.rutherford.org.nz. He initiated and runs the Ask-A-Scientist programme, which has seen some 100,000 column-centimetres of science in New Zealand newspapers. He has several awards for communicating science to the public and has organised some 50 firewalks throughout New Zealand, plus three in the USA, which probably makes him certifiable.

Location: Schuster Building Blackett Theatre
Part of: Schuster Building