Aliens!…Where are you? – 28th June 2017

Our June 2017 Society Meeting saw a wonderfully entertaining talk from Dr Francisco Diego, University College London, who is currently a Senior Teaching Fellow at the Department of Physics and Astronomy. Dr Diego hails originally from Mexico and is a keen populariser of natural sciences whilst also a lecturer, author and broadcaster.

His talk was titled “Aliens!…Where are you?” and, for me, was one of the most interesting talks I have ever been to! Dr Diego still has quite a strong accent but this fades away as his dynamic presentation grabs your attention. There is plenty of movement, examples and visual aids used to support his talk and by the end, as Tom Meecham our Treasurer quipped, you certainly can answer the question of “How long is a piece of string?”. If that confuses you, then I can only encourage you to attend this talk at some point in the future to get the answer to the riddle!

The talk ranged over a number of relevant topics that may account for life, primarily on Earth but with the potential for other planets wherever they may be. These included the formation of the stars, solar system and Moon; dynamic Earth, oceans and plate tectonics; cataclysmic extinctions of early Earth life; the fragility of living environments, through to the possibility of alien life in the galaxy or elsewhere. This last topic was rewarding for me as his conclusion was the same as mine ~ but I won’t spoil the ending!

Dr Diego completed the evening by answering a number of well thought out questions.

Thank you Dr Diego! I notice from his website that Dr Diego has a number of other talks in his portfolio and I can only hope that Tony asks him back as soon as possible.

Hugh Alford ~ Vice-Chair

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