Natural History Museum Workshop & Trip

Which one is the Meteorite?

This was one of the activities that the students had to do at the workshop run by Dr Ashley King, from The Natural History Museum and his team including Helen Bates and Enrica Bonato.

The afternoon kicked off with a talk by Dr Ashley King, followed by a hands-on workshop where the students looked closely at different rocks to deduce the differences between terrestrial and space rock. The session ended with a Q and A, with questions such as: "Are there aliens?", "Why did Pluto get classed as a dwarf planet?", " Which galaxy were the new planets discovered in?". This was followed by a feasting on space themed named chocolate!! A sweet afternoon.


Moon and Mars respectively,

and spoof “There is water on Mars!”


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Natural History Museum Research Facility Trip

On Friday 21st April the WP Elite Scientists went underground to the research facility of Earth Sciences, where they met the curator of all the meteorites called Natasha Almeida (one of the previous curators was Professor Monica Grady! who worked with last year’s Elite Scientists).


Natasha showed the Elite Scientists additional meteorites from Mars and the Moon that the public don't get to see, so it was really special. It was also very interesting to hear how application requests for meteorite samples from the NHM is a serious task, and only given to key scientists doing special projects around the world.

We also found out that if a student or anyone took anything, the whole Museum would go into lock-down, and no one can leave the NHM until the stolen item has been retrieved!

In addition to meeting the curator, they also had a tour from Dr King around the research labs, where the rest of his team: Helena Bates, and Enrika Bonata worked. They got to see an electron micro-probe, electron microscope and the the X-ray diffraction equipment in action. The students got to give their talk to academics from the Natural History Museum, and dauntingly, had to answer their questions.


There was an unexpected big surprise, where Dr King took us to The Science Museum, to see Tim Peake’s space capsule that brought him (Tim, not Ashley!) back down to Earth. AMAZING!

It was a fun day where they learned how real scientists work, but also learned how to work as a scientist themselves, as they gave their scientific communication to real scientists.

Thanks to all the staff at The Natural History Museum for a fantastic day!

Ms Kapila
Leader of the Elite Scientists

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