Surprising Science: The life of lightning

We’re talking lightning in the lab in the October Surprising Science event!

Hear from two scientists whose research has been sparked by lightning in two extremely different ways. Dr Hannah King from Swinburne University of Technology and Dr Emma Lovell from UNSW Sydney will demonstrate the life (and death) of lightning and what this powerful natural phenomenon can mean for us.

How do we control lightning and develop materials to protect humans and buildings from lightning strikes? And how can we gain inspiration from lightning to repeat chemical reactions that occur naturally? How can lightning serve as inspiration to create green processes that produce valuable chemicals for society? 

Join us either at the Shine Dome in Canberra or online on 11 October 2022 to find out the answers to these questions and maybe even experience your own lightning moment.

Speakers

Dr Hannah King, Swinburne University of Technology

Dr Hannah King is developing the next generation of lightning protection devices known as ‘air terminals’ for Lightning Protection International, with the aim of protecting buildings, structures and people against direct lightning strikes. She works with the Surface Engineering for Advanced Materials (SEAM) Australian Research Council (ARC) training centre at Swinburne University of Technology. Dr King earned an Australian Postgraduate Award and began her PhD at James Cook University studying the effect of disorder on the activity of low-cost water oxidation catalysts. She relocated to Swinburne in 2017 to complete her thesis, then commenced research into novel materials for air terminals.

Dr Emma Lovell, UNSW Sydney

Dr Emma Lovell is a senior lecturer in chemical engineering at UNSW Sydney. Her research focuses on catalyst design for a range of environmental and energy related applications. Emma completed her PhD in 2016 at UNSW and the University of Bremen, developing materials for carbon dioxide conversion to help address climate change. Her current research focuses on rational catalyst development for energy and environmental applications including the conversion of carbon dioxide, hydrogen generation, and ammonia synthesis utilising light, heat, electricity and plasma.

Event details

Date: Tuesday 11 October
Time: 5.30pm – 7.00pm AEDT (online 6.00pm – 7.00pm AEST)
Venue: The Shine Dome, Gordon Street Canberra, and online
Cost: $15 in person, free online


This event is part of the Australian Academy of Science's annual speaker series, livestreamed from the iconic Shine Dome. Audiences can join us in person in Canberra, or online from anywhere else in the world. In this series, we will discover how our everyday lives inspired scientific solutions in ways you could not imagine. From carnivorous plants to whale blowholes and even spider webs, the world around us has inspired solutions to problems of all kinds. Join researchers, innovators, industry experts, social scientists and more to be surprised by science in 2022! For more information, visit the series website.

Contact Information

events@science.org.au

5:30 PM October 11 - 7:00 PM October 11, 2022
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Add to Calendar 11/10/2022 5:30 PM 11/10/2022 7:00 PM Australia/Sydney Surprising Science: The life of lightning

We’re talking lightning in the lab in the October Surprising Science event!

Hear from two scientists whose research has been sparked by lightning in two extremely different ways. Dr Hannah King from Swinburne University of Technology and Dr Emma Lovell from UNSW Sydney will demonstrate the life (and death) of lightning and what this powerful natural phenomenon can mean for us.

How do we control lightning and develop materials to protect humans and buildings from lightning strikes? And how can we gain inspiration from lightning to repeat chemical reactions that occur naturally? How can lightning serve as inspiration to create green processes that produce valuable chemicals for society? 

Join us either at the Shine Dome in Canberra or online on 11 October 2022 to find out the answers to these questions and maybe even experience your own lightning moment.

Speakers

Dr Hannah King, Swinburne University of Technology

Dr Hannah King is developing the next generation of lightning protection devices known as ‘air terminals’ for Lightning Protection International, with the aim of protecting buildings, structures and people against direct lightning strikes. She works with the Surface Engineering for Advanced Materials (SEAM) Australian Research Council (ARC) training centre at Swinburne University of Technology. Dr King earned an Australian Postgraduate Award and began her PhD at James Cook University studying the effect of disorder on the activity of low-cost water oxidation catalysts. She relocated to Swinburne in 2017 to complete her thesis, then commenced research into novel materials for air terminals.

Dr Emma Lovell, UNSW Sydney

Dr Emma Lovell is a senior lecturer in chemical engineering at UNSW Sydney. Her research focuses on catalyst design for a range of environmental and energy related applications. Emma completed her PhD in 2016 at UNSW and the University of Bremen, developing materials for carbon dioxide conversion to help address climate change. Her current research focuses on rational catalyst development for energy and environmental applications including the conversion of carbon dioxide, hydrogen generation, and ammonia synthesis utilising light, heat, electricity and plasma.

Event details

Date: Tuesday 11 October
Time: 5.30pm – 7.00pm AEDT (online 6.00pm – 7.00pm AEST)
Venue: The Shine Dome, Gordon Street Canberra, and online
Cost: $15 in person, free online


This event is part of the Australian Academy of Science's annual speaker series, livestreamed from the iconic Shine Dome. Audiences can join us in person in Canberra, or online from anywhere else in the world. In this series, we will discover how our everyday lives inspired scientific solutions in ways you could not imagine. From carnivorous plants to whale blowholes and even spider webs, the world around us has inspired solutions to problems of all kinds. Join researchers, innovators, industry experts, social scientists and more to be surprised by science in 2022! For more information, .

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Contact Information

events@science.org.au

5:30 PM October 11 - 7:00 PM October 11, 2022

© 2022 Australian Academy of Science

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