Plastic Fantastic lectures At University of Glasgow

Issued: Mon, 21 Aug 2017 11:31:00 BST

What's the link between Lego™ blocks, zero pollution cars, disposable nappies, liquids that flow up hill, and false legs? How is this linked to the perfect recipe for slime? And how can you use all this to make a Million?

Over 45,000 young people have enjoyed this fascinating demonstration lecture given by Prof. Averil McDonald. Once again the Scottish Plastics and Rubber Association will host this popular event with sponsorship from: Institute of Materials Minerals & Mining (IOM3) and the Worshipful Company of Horners.

The lecture is designed to match the Polymers topic in National 4/5 'Properties of Plastics' and bring in elements of Enterprise. The show lasts 1 hour and includes loads of interesting demonstrations.

Resumé of the Show.

After a brief overview of the great variety of physical properties of plastics that make them suitable for various intriguing and surprising applications, students are reminded of the basic concepts of solid, liquids and gases. From there, students are introduced to the idea of polymers consisting of long chain molecules. Polymers can exist as solid and liquids but often have properties of both (as in slime). Lively demonstrations show the effects of increasing the temperature, crosslinking the molecules, "tangling up" the polymer chains, and dissolving them in liquids. Some examples are given to show how by controlling what happens at the molecular level, the characteristics of the final material are determined.


plastic fantastic lecture

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