Featured Events

Travels in Chernobyl

Aidan Heavey Library, Athlone - Tuesday 12 November 2019 6:30 – 7:30pm

This event will explore the accident at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power  which took place on April 26th, 1986. Reactor number four experienced a power surge which caused an explosion that sent a cloud of radioactive materials across parts of Europe. It was the world’s worst nuclear accident. Rare and endangered animals have thrived in the Chernobyl disaster zone since it was evacuated in 1986. 50,000 people visited the nuclear reactor and ghost town of Pripyat last year, and it has even hosted a rave.

Science teacher, writer and birdwatcher Rory Duffy will explore the science of Chernobyl and his recent visit to the site. The discussion will be moderated by toxicologist Dr Craig Slattery of UCD and he will be joined by Prof Gillian O’Brien of John Moores University Liverpool who has a special interest in dark tourism and the human fascination with diasaster sites.

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Secrets of the Bog Revealed – The National Museum of Ireland Bog Bodies Research Project

Midlands Park Hotel, Portlaoise - Thursday 14 November 2019 7-8:30pm 

This event is appropriate for aged 14+ and will explore the history and science of bog bodies in Ireland with Isabella Mulhall, Assistant Keeper at the National Museum of Ireland. The NMI Bog Bodies Research Project was established in 2003 following the discoveries of two remarkably well- preserved Iron Age bog bodies in the Irish midlands. The scientific investigation which followed produced a wealth of exciting results.  Since 2003, further finds of bog bodies have come to light in Ireland’s peatlands and include the exceptionally well-preserved remains of Cashel Man unearthed in Cúil na Móna Bog in 2011 and subsequently radiocarbon dated to 2000 BC.

This event is the result of a partnership between the National Museum of Ireland and Midlands Science to bring museum outreach to the midlands region. The Laois events are presented in association with the Heritage Office of Laois County Council.

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Discovery Day

A family fun day exploring science which is suitable for all ages. Join Dr Mindflip’s Ultimate Learning Experience, Dale Treadwell’s dinosaurs, the Exploration Dome, Anyone 4 Science, Cell Explorers, the Reptile Zoo and many more for a day of discovery and fun.

This day will provide a wide range of activities and experiences which will bring alive the excitement and discovery which lies at the heart of science. Come along and learn about how dinosaurs had feathers or learn how to make ice cream without a freezer, hold a tarantula in your hands or blow your mind with quantum physics. With science, the choices is yours!

The Midlands Science Festival celebrates science in the midlands in a number of ways, everything from astronomy to zoology can be explored through shows, workshops and talks.

This year’s festival includes a family open day, Travels in Chernobyl, the Science of Harry Potter, Cancer Causes and Cures Myth Busting, National Museum of Ireland outreach events and much more. Popular activities such as science knitting patterns for local knitters and a Science Festival Book Club for adult and younger readers are back again this year.

Exploring everything from invisible ink to Darth Vader's voice, the Midlands Science Festival is a unique opportunity to explore science through a diverse programme of interactive events, workshops and shows. This year's festival also includes a specially curated ASD appropriate event.

Supported by Science Foundation Ireland and a number of partners, this year is the seventh year of the festival.