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Putting Science to Work

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United Kingdom




Jim Al-Khalili and guests work out how science can best be put to work to solve a pressing problem facing society.





The recent Public Health England report on sugar reduction recommended that we slash the amount of sugar we eat to just seven teaspoons a day. Diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity have all been linked to high sugar intake. Treating obesity and its consequences alone costs the NHS £5.1m per year. Jim Al-Khalili invites three scientific experts from different disciplines into the studio to present the evidence behind their strategy to reduce our sugar intake: - Dr Peter Scarborough,...

Duration: 00:27:50

Crowd Safety

A deadly crowd collapse at the Hajj pilgrimage in September has brought public safety into the spotlight once again. Here in the UK, the Hillsborough inquest has been re-examining the tragic events of 1989 which led to the death of 96 football fans at the Sheffield ground. Today we ask how science can prevent crowd disasters. Jim Al-Khalili invites three scientists into the studio to explain their strategy for improving crowd safety: - Dr Suzy Moat, from Warwick University's Business...

Duration: 00:27:46

Infuriating Packaging

Opening presents can be quite a challenge. Toys incarcerated in rigid transparent plastic cases can bring tears, not of joy. Not to mention vacuum-packed luxury foods that are just impossible to get into. So, can science save us from infuriating packaging? And, if so, which technology is most likely to deliver us from this irksome everyday problem? Three scientists battle it out in the studio, pitching for Jim's imaginary pot of research money. Dr Alaster Yoxall is determined to understand...

Duration: 00:28:02

Air Pollution

As the recent VW scandal reminds us, the exhaust from petrol and, in particular, diesel cars are damaging our health. So what can science do to help? Jim Al-Khalili invites three scientists into the studio to explain how their research or technology could help reduce pollution from dirty car exhausts. Professor of Chemistry, Tony Ryan makes the case for smart materials that absorb noxious gases. If only everyone could treat their jeans with nanoparticles that that clean up the air as they...

Duration: 00:28:10