Science, God and Einstein to feature in Nobel Laureate lecture at DCU

28 Mar 2012

Pictured: Nobel Laureate Dr William Phillips

William Philips who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1997 will deliver two stimulating lectures tomorrow at DCU. The first will focus on ‘Time, Einstein and the Coolest Stuff in the Universe’ and the second will focus on ‘Ordinary Faith, Ordinary Science.’

The lectures are part of a four year Nobel Lecture Series hosted by Dublin City University in association with Magnet Networks. They will be broadcast live on Magnet’s streaming TV service Aertv.

The Series will feature an annual lecture by a Nobel Laureate specialising in one of the following categories:  Physics, Chemistry, Peace, Economics, Physiology & Medicine and Literature.

As Ireland’s University of Enterprise, DCU continuously explores new ways to provide a unique and exceptional learning experience for our students,” DCU President, Professor Brian MacCraith explained.

“The DCU Nobel Laureate Series brings this world-class experience to Ireland through speakers such as Dr William Phillips.  Through our partnership with Magnet Networks the outreach of this important Lecture Series is significantly extended to include schools throughout Ireland as well as the general public.”
The first presentation, Time, Einstein and the Coolest Stuff in the Universe, will be delivered at 2:00pm to an audience of more than 1,000, including primary, second-level and DCU students as well as academic staff.  

This will be a lively, multimedia spectacle demonstrating how Einstein’s thinking is shaping one of the key scientific and technological wonders of life – atomic clocks.These clocks are at the heart of the Global Positioning System (GPS) which uses atoms cooled to incredibly low temperatures to guide cars, aeroplanes and hikers to their destinations.  

Later that evening, Dr Phillips will speak on the theme of Ordinary Faith, Ordinary Science to an audience of academics, students and religious community leaders.  
This lecture will explore the nature of Dr Phillip’s beliefs and the relationship between his science and his faith, comparing religious and scientific understanding.  Dr Phillips will consider questions such as ‘Why is there suffering if God is good?’ and ‘What about all the good people who are on a different path of faith than Christianity?’.

 “Our company thrives on innovation and we believe lectures from such pioneering and interesting academic figures such as Dr William Philips can really bring science alive and encourage an appreciation of this subject amongst students,” Magnet CEO Mark Kellett said.

“Our ability to broadcast the lecture live on Magnet’s online television service – Aertv – means a wide audience will be able to experience the theories of one of the world’s most respected physicists,” Kellett added.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years