19 March 2016, 14:00 - 15:00
As you read this, you're on a huge, sticky rock called Earth, hurtling round a nuclear fireball at 67,000 miles per hour. If that fact feels weird and unsettling you're more likely to remember it – the bits of our brains that encode long-term memory are linked to the bits dealing with emotion (and our sense of smell). And this odd memory-creating process affects our sense of the passing of time. Lots of what we know about space, time and ourselves is surprising and counter-intuitive. But if it's so peculiar, how did we puzzle it out? Unlike the Doctor in Doctor Who, we can’t feel the turn of the Earth beneath us. We don’t have a TARDIS to take us to other planets for a quick look round. But what does the Doctor do when he lands on an alien world where something strange is happening? He explores, looks for clues and asks awkward questions – sometimes getting in trouble with whoever’s in charge... Illustrated talk using clips from the TV show, we'll shows how Doctor Who uses science to inform its unique style of storytelling – and just how close it has often come to predicting future scientific discoveries.
Dr Marek Kukula, Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich, Royal Museums Greenwich. He regularly appears on TV and radio, this is him on BBC News explaining why Pluto is not a planet.
Simon Guerrier, science fiction author and dramatist. He has given talks at the National Portrait Gallery, Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology and at various literary festivals around the country. He was also on Front Row in 2015.
Marek and Simon have also presented talks at the Science Museum and Conway Hall and at the Radio Times Festival (2015) Simon and Marek are co-authors of 'The Scientific Secrets of Doctor Who'.