Edinburgh Science Festival 2020 goes digital

In the face of cancellation amid the coronavirus outbreak, this year's Edinburgh Science Festival is now online.

The Pleasance, Edinburgh will be hosting many of this year's Edinburgh Science Festival's space-theme talks.
Published: February 20, 2020 at 1:21 pm
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The 2020 Edinburgh Science Festival has been reimagined as a free online programme of science talks, downloads, Facebook Live events, Q&As and videos, following the outbreak of coronavirus and the lockdown restrictions now in place across the UK.


As a result, the festival's website has become a hub for online science activities that can be accessed by those currently in self-isolation at home.

While the theme for this year's festival is Elementary, looking at the classical five elements of Air, Earth, Fire, Water and Aether, there is still a good amount of space and astronomy-related content worth checking out.

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Space-themed events for young and old will be taking place during the Edinburgh Science Festival.
Space-themed events for young and old will now be taking place on the Edinburgh Science Festival website.

National Space Academy will present a series of online events including demo videos with UK astronaut Tim Peake, a virtual tour of the Science and Technology Facilities Council including space rocks brought from Apollo missions, the online library of the National Space Centre, a series of videos in which the National Space Centre team answer questions they've received via social media and a TEDX talk from Kierann Shah on how space can save the world.

The festival's Into the Blue photography exhibition has now also moved online, and every day Ed Sci Fest will upload a new image onto their Instagram account, showcasing visions of Scotland's dramatic coastlines captured by local artists.

Short science videos hosted by some of this year's speakers will appear on the festival's website, and there will be live-streamed content from Claudia Hammond on the importance of rest, science writer Marcus Chown on the complexities of the Universe and Professor Ilan Kelman discussing on how human choices cause and exacerbate natural disasters.

The 60 Seconds Science series will see Prof Nick Jelly talking renewable energy, Pragya Arwal discussing unconscious bias, Prof Geraint Lewis and Dr Luke Barnes chatting about their book The Cosmic Revolutionary's Handbook and Jan Hodel revealing his work in brewing and distilling.

For kids who are mad about dinosaurs, there will be a series of dinosaur crafts to download and make at home.

Two more events will now take place online as part of an Edinburgh Science takeover of the Earth Live Lessons YouTube series. On 10 and 11 April, viewers can livestream talks focused on Earth's oceans and Scottish wildlife.


For the full list of online events, visit the Edinburgh Science Festival website.


Iain Todd, BBC Sky at Night Magazine
Iain ToddScience journalist

Iain Todd is BBC Sky at Night Magazine's Staff Writer. He fell in love with the night sky when he caught his first glimpse of Orion, aged 10.


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