Talks: Science for Lunch

From deep-sea creatures to earthquake hazards, hear about the latest scientific discoveries in and around Aotearoa, straight from the experts.

  • When Wed 23 May – Wed 27 Jun 2018, 12.15pm–1.30pm
  • Where
    Opposite Espresso cafe by Phar Lap, Level 4
  • Cost Free event

Join scientists as they discuss climate change, geologic expeditions, undersea life forms, and more – every Wednesday at lunchtime from 9 May to 27 June.

Please note that no food or drinks can be brought to the talks.

Programme

May 23: Carbon Dioxide Emissions – How Do We Stack Up?

Carbon dioxide levels now top 400 parts per million in the air globally – but what does that really mean? How does that level of pollution affect the Wellington region, and how do we compare to other parts of the world? Hear from Dr Jocelyn Turnbull, who leads a new programme at GNS Science to measure and model CO2 emissions.

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Jocelyn Turnbull, Quatemary Workshop. Photograph courtesy of GNS Science

May 30: The Undersea Brothers Volcano

One of the volcanoes that most fascinates marine scientists lies near New Zealand, 1.8 kilometres under the waves. The Brothers Volcano has vast fields of ‘black smoker’ chimneys up to 20 metres high. These form over vents, and belch mineral-rich hot water that sustains unique marine life. Dr Cornel de Ronde will be onsite above the volcano, and takes you into its undersea world. Dr. Ronde has been studying the Brothers Volcano for 18 years.

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Brothers Volcano. Photograph courtesy of Dr. Anna Louise Reysenbach, Portland State University, Funder, NSF; ROV Jason, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

June 6: Climate Change and the Antarctic Ice Core

The global sea level could rise 1 to 2 metres by 2100, and climate change is causing this dramatic acceleration. Nancy Bertler leads an international team using an ice core from Antarctica’s Ross Ice Shelf to understand climate conditions over the past 70,000 years. Hear Nancy discuss how the ice core is helping scientists to model future climate change.

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Nancy Bertler, National Isotope Centre. Photograph courtesy of GNS Science

June 13: Life in the Extreme

A toxic environment with powerful deep-sea pressure, strong acids, and wildly swinging temperatures – the undersea Brothers Volcano doesn’t sound like a tempting place to call home. Yet life abounds there. How does this oasis flourish in the extreme? Join an expert on extremophiles to uncover what makes these creatures so resilient.

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Photograph courtesy of Dr. Anna Louise Reysenbach, Portland State University, Funder, NSF; ROV Jason, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

June 20: Are We Ready for a Wellington Tsunami?

Tsunamis are an ever-present threat to coastal New Zealand. What would happen around Wellington Harbour if a tsunami hit? Dr William Power discusses the areas of high risk in Hutt City and Wellington City. He outlines initiatives to protect local communities and raise awareness about the danger of tsunamis.

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William Power, tsunami modelling. Photograph courtesy of GNS Science

June 27: The JOIDES Resolution – virtual tour

Take a virtual visit on board the JOIDES Resolution, an international research ship. Recently researching the Hikurangi Subduction Zone – possibly the most important source of earthquakes and tsunamis in Aotearoa – the ship is now at Brothers Volcano. The JOIDES Resolution drills into the ocean floor to collect and study core samples. These give scientists insights into climate change, geology, and Earth’s history. 

Visit the JOIDES Resolution website

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Photograph courtesy of the International Ocean Discovery Program