Thursday, August 02, 2007

"Atom" part 2 of 3

This evening saw a brisk canter through the discovery of the proton and neutron, nuclear fission and the development of the atomic bomb ("physicists have learned sin").

We then moved to fusion and stellar nucleosynthesis and the super-stable role of iron. Finally we explored the creation of primeval hydrogen and helium via the conflicting big-bang vs. steady-state cosmologies of Gamow vs. Hoyle. This is a programme which likes to personalise.

I think I have sussed this programme out. It's nuclear physics and cosmology pitched for the intelligent 16 year old. No equations or overly technical language and super oversimplified concepts, but if the aforementioned 16 year old had a talented teacher and a decent syllabus and course material ...

Professor Jim Al-Khalili was even better tonight - he's a real natural and TV-land should definitely use him again.