Giants of the Infinitesimal

Lead Research Organisation: University of Sheffield
Department Name: Physics and Astronomy


The 21st century is at the beginning of a scientific revolution that will alter the world as radically as the industrial revolution of the 19th century. Whereas the latter rested on the control and engineering of macroscopic objects the new revolution will require the understanding and control of the nanoworld. Controlling nanocomponents lies at the heart of, for example, the clean harnessing of solar energy, the development of smart materials, and the realisation of entirely new concepts in computing. Thus, nanoscience and nanotechnology are buzzwords that are as rife on the academic campus as they are in industrial research laboratories. However, research in nanoscience and nanotechnology has been accompanied by public concerns and much debate has ensued. This debate is necessary and important but it has all but drowned out the sheer excitement, adventure and creativity of probing, understanding and, ultimately, controlling the nanoworld. This project will create an exhibition and public dialogue events that will introduce some of the most interesting and important concepts that drive the nanoworld to the public in a highly accessible and attractive way.


10 25 50
Description This project developed on outreach programme to bring recent achievements in nano-technology to a wider audience. Specifically the aims of the project were to include a younger audiance. This project was highly succesful and reach on the order of 100,000 people.
Exploitation Route The expertise gained by the group has been embedded into the institutes which took part in the work.
Sectors Education,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections

Description The project produced and displayed a science exhibition which was displayed at the Manchester museum of science and industry. The exhibition was open to the public and reached an expected audience of 80,000 people. Beneficiaries: Society and the young people who's interest in nano-science has been sparked. Contribution Method: The project was to bring science from a previous grant to a wider audience.
First Year Of Impact 2012
Sector Cultural,Societal
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

Description Magna Science Adventure Centre 
Organisation Magna Science Adventure Centre
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution We worked closely with Magna to bring our science to a wider audience. This involved 'meet the scientists' days. The output from the Giants of the Infinitesimal project was displayed at Magma for a year.
Collaborator Contribution The partners provide space in their museum and advertised the events. Many of the items built for Giants of the Infinitesimal were displayed at Magna.
Impact We were able to reach a large number of the public.
Start Year 2009
Description Interview by the Manchester evening news paper 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact The GOTI exhibition created a lot of interest. Two major outreach outcomes were achieved

1.) The interviewing of Dr. Cadby by the Manchester Evening news which featured in their paper and on their youtube account.

2.) The interviewing of Prof. Moriarty on radio 4's you and yours.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
Description Love Bytes event 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The GOTI brand has been invited to several outreach events due to its success at MOSI.

Due to the success of the GOTI project we were invited to take part in the long running Love Bytes technology festival in Sheffield. Myself and two students joined MAGNA (sheffield science centre) in a one day event at promoting nano-science and the GOTI exhibition soon to move to MAGNA.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
Description Meet the scientist event 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact At the opening of the GOTI exhibition at MOSI, a meet the scientist event was held to give the public a chance to interact with the scientist.

This event targeted families and had many hands on science demonstrations. The event was manned by staff and students from the Universities of Sheffield, Manchester and Liverpool. About 400 people visited the one day event.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011