RETRO: How to name your element – Kit Chapman

Skeptics in the Pub Online Podcast
Skeptics in the Pub Online Podcast
RETRO: How to name your element – Kit Chapman
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Join journalist and science historian Kit Chapman on an adventure across chemistry as he shares the bizarre stories behind the names of the building blocks of science. Which element got its name thanks to a D&D monster? Why couldn’t a German team call the discovery after the nearby town? And how did Lemmy from Motorhead almost end up on the periodic table?

Kit Chapman is an award-winning science journalist with bylines in the Daily Telegraph, Nature, New Scientist and Chemistry World, among others. His first popular science book, Superheavy: Making and Breaking the Periodic Table, was shortlisted for the AAAS SB&F Prize for Excellence in Science Books. Kit is currently completing a PhD in the history and philosophy of science at the University of Sunderland.

The music used in this episode is by Thula Borah and is used with permission.

Racing Green: How Motorsport Science Can Save the World – Kit Chapman

Skeptics in the Pub Online Podcast
Skeptics in the Pub Online Podcast
Racing Green: How Motorsport Science Can Save the World – Kit Chapman
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Racing Green is a fascinating exploration of how science in motorsport extends its reach far beyond the track. The efforts of engineers to go a hundredth of a second faster ripples into our daily lives. We use the aerodynamics of a Formula 1 car to keep our food cool in the supermarket and stop skyscrapers wreaking havoc; we can thank crash helmets and rear view mirrors to keep us safe; and the cutting edge of our future – from electric and autonomous vehicles, 3D printing and virtual reality – began on the track. Motorsport is a testbed, the world’s fastest R&D lab. Including stories from Formula 1, Formula E, land speed racing and NASCAR, and interviews with an incredible cast of characters, from aerodynamicists to Formula E racing drivers, Racing Green is your insider’s guide to how the sport of today could save the world of tomorrow. With an emphasis on green technology, Kit Chapman explores incredible breakthroughs in electric batteries, graphene, hydrogen power, and biofuels. Despite its gas-guzzling past, the constant striving for efficiency and speed from the motorsport industry is driving green innovation. With the stratospheric rise of Formula E and Extreme E, will the drive to produce ever faster electric vehicles help to save our planet? A mix of travelogue and historical retrospective, Racing Green takes us around the world to explore the future of car development, from Silverstone to the Amazon jungle, and from Monaco to the Bonneville Salt Flats. This is a truly electrifying read.

Kit Chapman is an award-winning journalist and adventurer. He is a lifelong motorsports fan who has previously worked with Virgin Racing’s Formula E team to cover the chemistry and material science of their racing cars. With more than a decade of experience writing for titles such as Nature, New Scientist, Chemistry World, Physics World and the Daily Telegraph, his work has taken him to more than 60 countries as he seeks amazing tales from the cutting edge of science. He has interviewed more than a dozen Nobel prize winners, been inside the world’s fastest computer and once convinced an Oscar-winning actress he was a cyborg. Kit’s first book, Superheavy, was shortlisted for the AAAS/Subaru Prize for Excellence in Science books.

The music used in this episode is by Thula Borah and is used with permission.