Cambridge Science Festival Success

Posted on By Sarah Bohndiek
Categories: Outreach


For two weeks in March, Cambridge became abuzz with excitement as the 2017 Cambridge Science Festival captivated audiences young and old across the city. This was a chance for the University of Cambridge SPIE Student Chapter (CUSPIE) and VISIONLab to reach out to the general public and share our love of optics, photonics and general science.



On Saturday 25th March, Dr. Sarah Bohndiek launched our activities with an exciting talk, ‘Shedding Light on Cancer’, in which she described the work of VISIONLab in manipulating light to detect cancer sooner.


Following this exciting talk, guests were invited to get hands on with some demonstrations at our stall, ‘What is the Colour of Cancer’, where Sarah was available to answer further questions.


Dr. Sarah Bohndiek, Group Leader of VISIONLab, answers questions about her lab’s work.


Manned by real scientists from both CUSPIE and VISIONLab, the stall demonstrated the equipment we use to manipulate light, and gave the audience a chance to engage with the real researchers.


Polarising glasses were used to demonstrate the polarisation of light and diffraction gratings were used to show splitting of light into its constituent colours, much to the attendees’ delight!


Guests enjoyed the diffracting and polarising glasses.

Arfa Karani, a PhD student in Optoelectronics, and CUSPIE Vice President demonstrates diffraction to some of our younger attendees.


And there was plenty of time for attendees to ask questions about the research going on right now.


Dr. James Joseph, a PostDoctoral Researcher in VISIONLab explains his research.

Michal Tomaszewski, a PhD Student in VISIONLab, answers questions regarding his work.


The stall was another great success for CUSPIE and VISIONLab, gathering great feedback:


“The “What is the colour of cancer” was fascinating and the person was really engaging.”


“What is the colour of cancer was so cool and the person hosting it was really engaging and passionate.”


We hope to see many people return to our future events.


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