Understand through experimentation? Scientastic’s audience has tried it out as a family. © Alain Herzog / EPFL 2017
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The first edition of Scientastic in Valais is a success
This weekend of the 29th and 30th of April, the Valaisan public came to the EPFL Valais Wallis de Sion campus, which is hosting the third edition of the School’s Science Festival.
In front of the doors of the campus EPFL of Sion, solar flowers in papers do not stop turning on themselves. These crafts come straight out of the workshop of manufacture of the Scientastic festival. A photovoltaic cell, a small motor, a rod and a few pieces of paper and here is a mobile in the form of a flower that starts moving as soon as it captures light. Visitors of all ages walk around with their creations under their arms. “Since this morning, the workshop is not unfilled,” says one of the facilitators.
The discovery of energy
This is the first time that the festival – organized by the EPFL Science Promotion Service (SPS) – takes place on a campus branch. After two successive editions in Ecublens, he exported to Sion to meet the Valaisan public. Through educational and fun workshops for children, conferences, exhibitions and laboratory visits, the festival invites us to discover energy in all its forms. A theme that is particularly relevant to the place, since energy is precisely one of the main fields of scientific research of the campus EPFL Valais Wallis of Sion.
Energy, what is it? How to store it and transform it? What is renewable energy? In the interactive exhibition called “Everything is transformed”, young and old are asked to find answers to these questions. The visitor is invited to participate both physically and intellectually. A bike that produces energy, a plasma ball, weights attached to a pulley, there’s plenty to do. Everywhere animators dialogue and bring their light. “Energy is a hot topic that is of interest to the public and raises questions,” said Farnaz Moser, head of the SPS.
To produce electricity with the strength of its muscles? Not that easy! © Alain Herzog / EPFL 2017
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Promoting the dissemination of scientific and technological knowledge to the general public and answering its questions are part of our mission. ” Scientastic is also dedicated to arousing scientific curiosity. Over a weekend, the general public has the opportunity to visit laboratories, discover demonstration stands and discuss with researchers. “What is this beast?” Asks a senior, seeing an X-ray diffractometer. The atmosphere is in good spirits. The scientist in charge of the stand applies to give simple explanations with a smile. The message is gone.
source: The Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)