The Sensual Universe public lecture series

Imperial Astrophysics Group present a new series of public lectures entitled


The Sensual Universe. Astrophysics for the five senses.


Powerful telescopes and sophisticated space missions have hugely enhanced our capability to pierce into the deepest recesses of the Universe: we can now probe the very limits of the visible cosmos. 


But why should we limit our explorations to what we can see? 

By deploying all of our five senses (sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste) we can learn so much more about the fascinating Universe in which we live.


Join us for an incredible voyage through astrophysics and cosmology that will call upon all of your senses.   


Explore the Universe in a way that you have never experienced: this is The Sensual Universe, a discovery for the five senses.


Oct 25th 2012: The Sensual Universe - Hearing 

Prof Jean-Philippe Uzan (Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris): 

Harmony in the Universe. Between Science and Music



Nobody can hear you scream in space. So, isn't space an unlikely place to look for music? But the concept of harmony transcends both music and the understanding of the world by contemporary science and astrophysics.


The quest for harmony allows us to address questions beyond pure science such as: What is the relation between cosmos, music and mathematics that was discovered in ancient Greece? Can we listen to stars, galaxies and the primordial universe? How does the representation of the universe influence musical creation? And many others.


These questions will offer a cosmic ballade that will take you from the Solar system, to pulsars, all the way to the cosmic microwave background. This lecture will invite you to extend your sense of hearing well beyond what you are used to.

Attendance is free but registration is essential. To register, email  astro-outreach@ null or call 020 7594 7531 stating the number of required tickets. 


Refreshements will be available after the lecture. 



Lecture Theatre 340, Huxley Buidling,

Imperial College London, Astrophysics Prince Consort Rd London SW7 2AZ, UK


May 23rd 2012: The Sensual Universe - Taste

Dr Subhanjoy Mohanty (Imperial College London):

Beer in Space 



Interstellar space not only contains simple hydrogen gas, but many more complicated chemicals as well.  Using the complex hydrocarbons in beer as a guide, we take a tour of the chemistry in space, and the many phenomena that it reveals: from the collapse of dense clouds to form stars, to planet formation in accretion disks around stars, to the effect of supernovae explosions.  Ultimately, our knowledge of these compounds helps us not only in the trivial pursuit of making beer in space, but also in answering the profound question of how life on earth, and elsewhere, may originally have been seeded by chemicals from space. 


Refreshements will be available after the lecture. 



Clore Lecture Theatre, Huxley Buidling,

Imperial College London, Astrophysics Prince Consort Rd London SW7 2AZ, UK



Apr 17th 2012 The Sensual Universe - Touch

Dr Saralyn Mark, MD

The Impact of Sex in Space 


Author, Stellar Medicine: A Journey Through the Universe of Women's Health

President, SolaMed Solutions, LLC

Associate Professor adjunct of Medicine & OB/GYN-Yale and Georgetown Schools of Medicine

Dr Saralyn Mark 

will present 
The Impact of Sex in Space  
an event in association with NETPark
Men and women adapt to the challenging environment of Space. From every system in their bodies including the cardiovascular system or heart, the musculoskeletal or muscles or bones, the neuro-vestibular or the brain and nerves, the genitourinary or reproductive system and urinary tract, the immunological or the cells that fight infection, and even the behavioral health or mental health system, there are differences.

The differences between men and women are defined as sex or gender based. When we use the word "sex", we are considering the biological aspects of being male and female at the most basic chromosomal level. When we use the word "gender", we mean at the psychological level whether someone thinks that they are male or female. There are interesting differences between men and women on earth and in Space. Understanding these findings will help promote better health and well being for both sexes anywhere in the Universe.


The lectures are aimed at the general public, who will have the opportunity to ask questions in what will be a lively and interactive discussion.