• The University opens a Classroom of Scientific Thought to bring research closer to society

    April 16, 2013

    Several scientists will offer open conferences in Avilés, Navia and Ribadesella from tomorrow, April 17, until May 19

    From left to right, Javier Fernández, Pedro Gorría, Jesús Blanco, Luigi Toffolatti, Vicente Domínguez, Javier Cuevas, Gabriela Fernández y Mercedes Fuertes.

    The researchers will show the public, in a didactic way, their work in the fields of Physics, Astronomy, Computer Sciences, Geology or Nanotechnology

    The University of Oviedo starts tomorrow the Classroom of Scientific Thought, an activity that will employ researchers from different areas of the region in bringing science closer to society. In this first edition, the conferences will take place in Avilés, Navia and Ribadesella, between April 17 and May 19, and will be open to the public. The Vice-Rector for University Extension and Communication, Vicente Domínguez, along with seven researchers who participate in the conferences, presented this morning the initiative.

    The Classroom of Scientific Though recovers the spirit from which the university extension was born: bringing together science, culture and society. The goal, according to the Vice-Rector, is to also "combat fraud, intellectual imposition, superstition and the harmful milleniarsims of the television".

    One of the novelties of the initiative is the format of the conferences. In several sessions, there will be two researchers speaking about their specialities, in a didactic and accessible way for all the public. In this first experience, the scientists who participate come from the fields of Geology, Computer Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, and will tackle a wide variety of topics, including the application of mineral resources to the new technologies, the new materials of the 21st century and their relation with the environment, supercomputers, the vision of the cosmos, nanotechnology or Higgs boson.

    The scientists insist that they "share their knowledge" with society using a simple language, accessible to all ages, from children to elderly people. All the participants highlighted the importance of this initiative of the University of Oviedo. Luigi Toffolatti, Professor of the area of Astronomy and Astrophysics, defined this new classroom as a formula to "disseminate the scientific thought, which many times does not reach the villages".

    Jesus Blanco is a Professor of the department of Physics who will speak about the materials of the 21st Century with his partner Pedro Gorría, also Professor of Applied Physics and Physics of Condensed Matter. Blanco explained that, in 30 or 40 years from now, everything we know will have changed. Javier Cuevas and Javier Fernández, Professors of Atomic Molecular and Nuclear Physics, will offer their knowledge on elemental particles and Higgs boson, in a practical way and with applications to daily life. For Cuevas, the most important aspect of this initiative is that it shows that the University is not a closed entity, but rather open to society.

    The conferences by Gabriela Fernández Viejo and María Mercedes Fuentes, Professors of the Department of Geology, aim at "putting the people's feet on the ground", talking about the insides of our planets and see the applications of new materials in the new technologies.

    Amador Menéndez, researcher from the ITMA, will speak in this Classroom of Scientific Thought about the challenges faced by nanotechnology, while José Ranilla, from the Department of Computer Science, and Dimas Suárez, from the Department of Physical and Analytic Chemistry, will speak about electronic devices directed at entertainment.