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ASTRON at Expeditie Next

Submitter: Communications
Description: On Thursday 2 May, ASTRON went to Expeditie Next, the National Science Festival organised by NWO and held in the Maassilo in Rotterdam.

Expeditie Next is a festival for kids where they could learn all about science through 160 different kinds of experiments, kids colleges and exhibitions. All 2800 tickets were sold out, and it showed, the room was packed and our volunteers were continually surrounded by 15-20 kids at a time.

We brought the black hole experiment, where the kids could learn how a black hole worked by rolling marbles along a cloth spanned over the frame of a trampoline. An experiment that Joeri van Leeuwen had done on the children's tv show Willem Wever. First we showed them what happened when there is no gravity in space (marble continues to roll to the other side). Then we would place a heavy ball in the middle (the Sun) and now the marbles would roll towards and around the 'Sun' and finally we placed a heavy piece of led in the middle of the cloth (where we had made a hole with a sock attached), the 'black hole'. The children could now really see how a black hole bends space.

It was a very successful experiment and we all had a great day, it was great to see the children enthusiastically participating in the experiment. Thanks to the volunteers who made this happen: David Gardenier, André Offringa, Leon Oostrum and Robert Schulz and thanks to Joeri van Leeuwen for giving us the idea of the black hole experiment.
Copyright: ASTRON & Lucas Kemper
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