This year’s Night of Knowledge in Hamburg took place on Saturday, 4 November 2017. A total of 32,000 people attended the event across Hamburg. On the DESY campus, this already very successful event was combined with the Open Day of DESY and associated research institutes.
Exceeding records, more than 10,000 visitors of all ages and backgrounds had the chance to experience interactive events ranging from a 13 m long Foucault pendulum to demonstrate the earth’s rotation to Arts & Science exhibitions to talks solely at the Centre for Laser Science (CFEL).
NOMAD’s participation with a Virtual Reality (VR) event was a striking success!
Due to the close collaboration of the Advanced Graphics team (especially Dr. Rubén García Hernández) with Raison Dsouza from the MPSD, visitors had the chance to learn about self-repairing UV filters with the help of a 360° VR movie based on data from electronic structure simulations. A focus was set on explaining how advanced graphics and data visualization help researchers to perform complex graphical analyses and facilitate the visualization of complex datasets from Quantum chemistry calculations. Furthermore, the software developed within the frame of the NOMAD project is unique in the sense that it easily reveals time-dependent dynamics data as well. All of these factors help researchers to better understand the studied systems and gain new scientific insights.
Children were excited to experience a live demonstration of the VR tools, while many of the young public and adults were mainly interested in the application of this technology in science and how the film itself was made. Given the high numbers of participants and great interest in the VR event, it was a wonderful opportunity to present NOMAD’s on-going work to the public. The Night of Knowledge fulfilled once again it's purpose to work as a bridge between the general public and the scientific community.