Argon at SOTSEF!

Saturday 18th March was an event we had been looking forward to for a while – the Southampton University Science and Engineering Festival (SOTSEF). SOTSEF is Southampton University’s grand finale to UK Science Week and draws large crowds to the university, with a wide range of activities for all ages.

Together, we planned a series of demonstrations and activities with Argon, from creating crystals to driving reactions using “tweezers”. Using the iOS version of the app (soon to be released on the app store!) as well as the standard Mac version, three of us were able to introduce our virtual chemistry lab to several hundred people.

David and Jon struggle to contain their excitement before the event.

We learnt a lot about how the app works, and how to introduce it to people. In particular, we found that although the audience may not have understood the mathematics behind adding gaussians, they were able to understand the effect they had on the system easily.  We were also able to identify a few bugs with the Windows version of the app, and hope to have those fixed soon! Again, a big thanks to our audience for the amazing feedback, we will definitely implement a few of your ideas in future.

Lee and Jon showcasing the app, whilst David introduces the idea of chemical bonding to a young scientist.

Our next event is a big one – Cheltenham Science Festival! The exact dates are yet to be determined, but we already have plans to ensure that the app will be better than ever. We hope to see you there!

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