Pictured above: Dr Edward Duca launching this year’s event
A line-up of surprises, exciting research, and science-related experiments, exhibitions, talks, debates, films and performing arts is set to further brighten the 4th edition of Science in the City—European Researchers’ Night, the annual science and arts festival. It will be held in Valletta on Friday 25 September 2015 from 6.00pm until midnight. The city streets will come to life as visitors explore innovative activities ranging from flying drones to space rockets, DNA extractions to dissections, health and dental checks to lots of child-friendly experiments and games.
Project Coordinator Professor Alex Felice said: “Science in the City is the right festival to experience anything from fun experiments and learning at the Science Fair or explore Malta research activities. As for space enthusiasts, there will be a life sized Rosetta’s mission of the Comet 67P, while health conscious persons can have a free dental check-up at the new mobile dental clinic or other free health check-ups. Interactions between scientific work and the performing arts offer another dimension to this festival aiming to communicate science.”
Chief Executive of the University of Malta Research Trust Wilfred Kenely said: “Science in the City plays a major role in promoting Malta University’s scientific research projects. The festival, which is free of charge, is a collaborative effort between researchers, academics, students and performers who together provide a memorable annual night of fun and learning in various fields, irrespective of age of attendees.”
Project Manager Dr Edward Duca said that Science in the City reaches out to a wide range of audiences — children, youths, and adults. The main activities will take place at the new city gate entrance, along Republic Street till St. George’s Square, with other centrally located venues in Valletta.
The Science Fair at City Gate will be bursting with spectacular experiments, exhibitions, music, theatre and performing arts. These will include revving racing cars, Quakes and Shakes, street labs by Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST) and the Institute of Applied Science Student Organisation (IASSO), an interactive exhibition by the National Student Travel Foundation (NSTF), underwater projections, Giant bubbles & Fonzu l-fenek by Malta Council for Science and Technology (MCST), an EU Corner, Coca-Cola’s Eko printer, Science in water and a CSI forensic team.
St James Cavalier (Spazju Kreattiv) will be holding science-fun activities for children and young teens at the Theatre and the Atrium, while talks about Science and Culture of Ageing will be held in the Centre’s Cinema. Inspirations Café will host a series of talks on the hour by Malta Café Scientifique. The studio room will have the Science of Electronic Music for all to play with.
At Teatru Rjal, visitors can watch CineXjenza a series of short films on manipulating memory from 7pm and participate in great discussions afterwards. While Palazzo Ferreria, opposite Teatru Rjal, will run a series of science debates.
For the first time, the new Parliament building will showcase an exhibition of exciting research projects by the University of Malta.
Along Ordinance Street, the University of Malta’s Research Trust (RIDT) will be showing research projects in health and rare diseases including a mobile dental clinic, dialysis machines for kidney failures and breast cancer research.
Republic Street will be taken over by buskers with the participation of student organisations namely the Science Students’ Society S-Cubed, University Engineering Students Association (UESA), Malta Association of Dental Students (MADS), the Institute for Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), ICT Student Association (ICTSA), Malta Medical Student Association (MMSA), Malta Health Students’ Association (MHSA), Malta Pharmaceutical Students’ Association (MPSA), and BetaPsi Psychology Students’ Association. While outside the Law Courts, shows will include experiments, talks and stand-up comedy.
St George’s Square will transformed into the Rosetta Satellite Space Mission. Last year a satellite orbited a comet. To celebrate the festival is filling the square with a life-sized satellite, drone, 20 m rocket blast-off, 3D printed rovers (by Thought 3D) and a comet surface you can walk through. Music and talks will discuss the science behind the spectacle. This is a ‘must-experience’ activity.
This year ‘speed-dating’ sessions with Maltese scientists will be set up at the King’s Own Band Club, while indie game developers invite participants to play their games at the Ritz Arcade, City Lights. BirdLife Malta will be presenting experiments and talks and those who wish to explore the Neolithic period can visit the exhibits at the National Museum of Archaeology.
There will also be street performers, swarming dancers and jugglers roaming along Republic Street with flames and robotic movements.
Other participating organisations include Institute of Space Sciences and Astronomy (ISSA), Faculty of Science Centenary Celebrations, Malta Chamber of Pharmacists, STEAM, Action for Breast Cancer, Europa Donna, Alive Charity Foundation, UoM Racing, Electronic Music Malta, TAKEOFF Business Incubator, University of Malta Library, Play Fuel Manchester, the Malta Police Forensic Science Laboratory, Heritage Malta, and Water Services Corporation.
Science in the City is part of the EU-wide celebration European Researchers’ Night. It is funded by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions of the Horizon 2020 Program of the EU, and a number of corporate sponsors. It is recognized as a Festival by Europe for Festivals and Festivals for Europe (EFFE)
The festival is supported by the European Commission Representation in Malta, the Parliamentary Secretary for Research, Innovation, Youth and Sports, Karl Borg Events, Central Bank of Malta, MCAST, MCST, Studio 7, MEUSAC, PBS, Levo Laboratories, Valletta Local Council, Notte Bianca, Arts Council Malta, and General Soft drinks with Coca Cola.