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Bonfires with a bang

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Warning: There will be smoke, bright flashes and loud bangs!

Spectacular Chemistry Demonstration Lecture Dr Andy Szydlo returns this year to educate, entertain and enlighten all ages on the subject of bon res and bangs. Starting with the Chemistry of bon res: the gaseous, liquid and solid products which are formed as intermediates during the combustion of wood; dry distillation (pyrolysis) and gas, wood tar, charcoal; gaseous and solid (ash) products of the nal products of combustion (oxidation) of wood will be shown and discussed. Then a brief history of the science of bangs will introduce the chemistry and physics of thunder and lightning. Throughout the talk, anecdotal material from the history of science will be used to enhance the explanations. A total of twenty-one experiments, with widely varying effects, will be shown. About the Speaker An enthusiastic and engaging science communicator, Dr Szydlo frequently gives lectures in the UK and has appeared on Channel 4’s TV series That’ll teach ‘em. He is also an expert on the history of alchemy. His book, Water that does not wet hands: The Alchemy of Michael Sendivogius, tells the story of an unfairly forgotten Polish alchemist. Event free – suitable for ages over 8

This talk is part of the Chemistry Departmental-wide lectures series.

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