A summer of science with Newton and Einstein

The Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics is taking part in the finale of the competition for the best popular presentation of scientific research.

June 15, 2009

How can one best present Newton’s gravity and Einstein's theory of relativity in an interactive manner? The visitors taking part in the Summer of Science in Saarbrücken will soon be able to test this out themselves by means of Newton's apple tree, Einstein’s curved space time and various experiments on the topic of gravitational physics. The title "From Newton to Einstein: A Journey through Space and Time" is being used to present the exhibits and experiments of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute, AEI) to the public from the 20th to the 26th June. The AEI is one of three institutes whose project has reached the finals of the "Science Interactive" competition. Up to the 24th of June, the audience at the science festival will be deciding which of the projects is to be designated as the winner.

The award, which is endowed with 10,000 Euros, will be bestowed by the Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft together with Wissenschaft im Dialog. The award money is to be used by the winner for further public relations work.

From Newton to Einstein: A journey through space and time

At the exhibition booth of the AEI, visitors can experience for themselves whether heavy and light things fall to the ground at different speeds and even explore how curved space feels. The basic idea of ​​Einstein’s - mathematically very demanding - general theory of relativity can thereby be experienced here in a manner perceptible to the senses.

A special feature: the experiments are supervised by "guides" - high school graduates and young students who have had great fun acquainting themselves with the topic and want to pass their enthusiasm for mathematics and physics on to the visitors.

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