September 25, 2018by Jessica Huntingford

Why everyone should go to New Scientist Live (like AURORA project)

We’re starting this week being proud to have been involved in some small way in New Scientist Live this year.

AURORA project was there, in the COSMOS zone and Resolvo was lucky to have the chance to work with the project coordinator CNR-IFAC to prepare the stand.

The event was hard work for AURORA’s project manager and the partners that supported her, but it was well worth it. Sometimes European research projects are too far from European citizens; citizens don’t know where our money is going and what it is being used for. New Scientist Live was a chance to show them and, hopefully, to inspire future generations.

AURORA is a space research project, seeking to make significant advances in the management and use of satellite data. Partners are studying how to use the different tools of the Sentinel-4 and Sentinel-5 missions of the Copernicus programme to monitor the vertical distribution of ozone in the atmosphere with unprecedented accuracy. But AURORA is not just research. The work is designed to have a real impact on the everyday life of European citizens.

We wanted the stand at New Scientist Live to represent this: a child and adult friendly stand. Participants could get details of the project’s scientific progress and information about technological developments to visualise and use satellite data. Younger audiences could be introduced to earth observation and to what it can mean to us as we go about our daily work and play.

Visitors said it was amazing to find out that satellite data, and the work AURORA is doing, could have a direct impact on their everyday lives. The fact that the Copernicus system offers free data was a surprise for many – did you know it?

All our material was given out, children built 30 mini satellites with recycled materials, coloured pictures to learn about the UV spectrum and learned about bad and good ozone. Adults of all ages saw the applications being improved thanks to AURORA data and learned about European earth observation programmes.

A fantastic opportunity, a way to interact with people and to share science. Recommended for all!