As in most of the research, I also have to repeat a lot of experiments. Which is to be honest after a time a bit boring. Luckily sometimes you get some surprising effects, like the one below in which the water surprisingly coloured pink. [Read more…]
After the forensic summer school in the Swiss Alps (ESC doctoral summer school) two years ago, I got now the opportunity to go to a more chemistry related summer school…. the MS (Mass Spectrometry) Summer School at the Swansea University Medical School/ EPSRC UK National Mass Spectrometry Facility.
So no Swiss Alps this time but the coast of Wales on literally 1 minute walk. A perfect place for some walking, running and swimming on the beach, but also an area of scientific interests and the”enjoy” reminders everywhere makes it a perfect summer school location.
The summer school itself was a good combination of lectures, tutorials and demonstrations. All the tips and tricks would make the analysis definitely more easy, thanks to all staff members for that. And thanks to all PhD students of the summer school from everywhere in the UK (from Brighton to Aberdeen and Liverpool to Norwich) for all the interesting discussions & ideas and making it an enjoyable summer school!
Multidisciplinarity: 146.000 hits
Multidisciplinair: 867.000 hits
Multidisciplinaire: 2.510.000 hits
More and more multidisciplinary studies arise and if you’re following this website you’ve seen this word already several times. Sentences like “learn from each other qualities” and “bring disciplines/groups together”sounds probably very familiair, but is it really like that?
May 2017, which means only a few months till all the work in Leicester is finished, only some experiments to do and writing up most of it….so time to look back.
From the 18th until 22nd of September 2016 the Australia and New Zealand Forensic Science Society’s 23rd International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences was held in Auckland, New Zealand. This opportunity to experience a massive conference in a beautiful place couldn’t be ignored by Thalassa, Alex, Francisco and me. Luckily our abstracts got accepted so it was time to go.
After a 23 hour flight and two stop overs, Auckland was finally there. The last step was the customs check, so it was time to finish my last apple while waiting in the queue. As New Zealand wants to protect their island’s unique flora and fauna from foreign diseases, the customs check is quite extensive. First some normal checks complemented with a shoe check (is there really no mud present?), and a cute beagle snuffing for fresh fruit and vegetables (yes my bag smelled of fruit, luckily the beagle’s handler understood it).
Although it was spring in Auckland, you could see directly the connection with the UK, it was rainy and grey. Additionally, cars don’t drive on the right side and the one dollar New Zealand coin is almost a copy of the one pound GBP one. Luckily the welcome reception and exhibition opening was calling so time to escape from the weather; a massive hall with some exotic food and a lot of stands were waiting.
After a run early next morning (thanks to the jet-lag) the conference started with a Mihi/Whakatau, including some nose greeting and traditional Maori habits. Despite the presence of a lot of Western Europeans you got directly the feeling of being in another culture. During the subsequent morning tea (with or without milk) it was time to make your own personal conference timetable. Eight parallel sessions with another presentation at different floors every 20 to 30 minutes followed, and the massiveness of the conference was directly visible. There were interesting talks for everyone, from DNA, toxicology, explosives, fingerprints and odontology, as well as wildlife, fisheries and entomology, and archaeology (and way more). During the first overrunning presenter the conference app directly showed its usefulness. With one click you got a list of selected sessions near you and knew whether you had to run to another room/floor or if the next session in the same room was an interesting alternative. In between the presentations there was the possibility of viewing and presenting posters on digital screens. After a day of listening to talks it was dinner time. On Tuesday evening the under the radar themed dinner was on the programme, which can be imagined as a hall full of airplanes, stands with food, performances on a stage and supermen, pilots, bees and out-of-the-box-thinking characters (everyone was asked to wear a theme related costume). At the closure of the week a gala dinner was organised, which looked like a dinner at Hogwarts from Harry Potter.
After some kayaking (with and without sails) with seals and penguins, walks through the mangrove, Lord of the Rings scenery, spotting a kiwi and swimming in hot (mud) pools it was time to visit Sydney. In Sydney, the forensics group of the University of Technology Sydney showed me their amazing facilities, what research they were doing and some of the must-sees of Sydney. After spotting more wild animals, seals behind Sydney Opera house, kangaroos (with baby kangaroos in the pouch) and even a koala, it was finally time to fly back to Europe.
The most frequently discussed topic at the coffee table is……………….. the weather, so a blog about the weather couldn’t be missing. [Read more…]
merry christmas & happy new year!!!!
finally, finally December, almost the end of the year
In Leicester Christmas is already everywhere, coloured lights & Christmas trees in the streets and chirstmassy things in the shops. While in the Netherlands “Sinterklaas” not even left the country, which makes it for me a bit strange to have already a Christmas dinner on the first day of December. To give you an idea how it looks like over here, I’ve included some pictures.
Monday, 20th of June. Although it is the first day of the astronomical summer, by looking outside I see something completely different, 17oC and a bit rainy. Luckily the day after, a trip to the airport was planned…. [Read more…]