Science on Saturday

Science on Saturday events began in 2005 under a new initiative to emphasize educational outreach to K–12 students. These fun, free science demonstrations at Lincoln Laboratory are given several times each school year by volunteer scientists and engineers. All local community K–12 students, their parents, and their teachers are welcome to attend. Please see our schedule for more recent events and upcoming demonstrations.

Science on Saturday demonstrations from 2005 through 2013 are listed below.

2013 Demonstrations
Hands-On Science
Chemistry Show
Radar
Asteroids
Robotics
2012 Demonstrations
Spy Science 1 & 2
Dinosaurs, Paleontologists & Old Fossils
Radio Astronomy
Radar
2011 Demonstrations
Hands-on Science
Robotics
Acoustics
2010 Demonstrations
2009 Demonstrations
2008 Demonstrations
2007 Demonstrations
2006 Demonstrations
2005 Demonstration

 


Archives


SciGal does a missile demoHands-On Science

December 7, 2013
Speakers: Lincoln Laboratory Technical Women's Network (LLTWN)

This event features hands-on activity stations where students can use radar to measure the speed of a ball they throw, help build a tall gumdrop tower using engineering concepts, and find out about technology that measures specific biological features.

Engineering Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo
Engineering Chemistry Demo Engineering Chemistry Demo

 

Science Guy cartoonChemistry Show

October 26, 2013
Speaker: Dr. Roderick Kunz, Lincoln Laboratory

Chemical reactions make all sorts of products that we use, and chemical reactions even run our own bodies. Come see or volunteer to help with a variety of fun chemical reactions, including reactions that change colors, oscillate back and forth, and produce light.

Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo
Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo Chemistry Demo

 

Sci Guy with radar gunRadar

June 1, 2013
Speaker: Alan Fenn, Lincoln Laboratory

Have you seen a weather report, flown on an airplane, or wondered how we know the speed of a pitch at a Red Sox game? All of these are done using radar! What is radar? What are microwaves? How do we get information from microwaves? A demonstration of radar systems and discussion of microwave propagation will show how radar works and what can be sensed/measured using radar.

Radar Demo Radar Demo Radar Demo Radar Demo
Radar Demo Radar Demo Radar Demo Radar Demo

 

 

Science Guy with AsteroidAsteroids — Fact or Fiction

April 7, 2013 (Science on Sunday)
Speaker: Dr. Grant Stokes, Lincoln Laboratory

What are asteroids like? Where did they come from? What happened when large asteroids hit the earth in the past? How can we detect and prevent large asteroids from hitting the earth in the future? Come and find out!

Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo
Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo

 

 

robotics demoRobotics

February 2, 2013
Presented by: Members of Robotics Outreach at Lincoln Laboratory (ROLL)

You've seen robots in movies, but what can real robots do? What kinds of robots can you buy now? How can you build your own robot? Participants will meet a champion competition robot in person and control its movements!

Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo
Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo

 

 

Science guy cartoonSpy Science

December 1, 2012
Presented by: Lincoln Laboratory New Employees Network

Most of us have probably imagined what it would be like to be a spy—but is being a spy really all it is cracked up to be? Many spy jobs involve secretly but patiently collecting, interpreting, and verifying information. We will demonstrate technology that can be used to gather intelligence for a specific mission including: voice recognition and identification, detection and tracking, and cryptography.

Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Sceince Demo
Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Sceince Demo

 

 

science guy cartoonDinosaurs, Paleontologists, & Other Old Fossils

October 13, 2012
Speaker: Dr. Todd Rider, Lincoln Laboratory

What animals and plants lived at different times in the earth's past? What wiped out the dinosaurs? How did humans originate? Could we use cloning to bring dinosaurs back to life as in the Jurassic Park movies? Come handle real fossils that are millions of years old, and volunteer to help with our demonstrations on stage.

Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo
Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo Dinosaurs & Fossils Demo

 

Sci Guy at radio astronomy telescopeRadio Astronomy

June 2, 2012
Speakers: Philip Erickson and Vincent Fish of MIT Haystack Observatory

In addition to the visible colors of light that the human eye can see, astronomers observe radio waves that are naturally produced by cosmic sources including stars, black holes, and even the big bang.  Atmospheric scientists also use radio waves, created with powerful transmitters, to study the charged upper levels of Earth's atmosphere and the effects of space weather. Come learn more about radio waves and how scientists at MIT Haystack Observatory use them to study the atmosphere and the universe, and volunteer to help with fun demonstrations on stage!

Radio Astronomy Demo Radio Astronomy Demo Radio Astronomy Demo Radio Astronomy Demo
Radio Astronomy Demo Radio Astronomy Demo Radio Astronomy Demo Radio Astronomy Demo

 

Sci Guy with radar gunRadar

March 31, 2012
Speaker: Alan Fenn, Lincoln Laboratory

Have you seen the weather report, flown on an airplane, or wondered how sports broadcasters know the speed of a pitch at a Red Sox game. All of this is done using radar. What is radar? What are microwaves? How do we determine information by using microwaves? A unique interactive demonstration of actual radar systems and discussion of microwave propagation showed how radar works and what can be sensed or measured using radar.

How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo
How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo

 

 

Sci Gal with spiesSpy Science

February 4, 2012
Speakers: Jessica Holland and the Lincoln Laboratory New Employees' Network

Most of us have probably imagined what it would be like to be a spy — but is being a spy really all it is cracked up to be? Many spy jobs involve secretly, but patiently, collecting, interpreting, and verifying information. We demonstrated technology used to gather intelligence for a specific mission including: voice recognition and identification, detection and tracking, and cryptography.

Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo
Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo Spy Science Demo

 

SciGal does a missile demoHands-On Science

December 3, 2011
Speakers: Lincoln Laboratory Technical Women's Network

This event featured hands-on activity stations where students could experiment with colors of light, separate chemicals using chromatography, test buoyancy of model boats and submarines, and simulate missile launches.

 

 

How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo
How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo

 

Science Guy iconSpecial Presentation of Hot Science

Friday October 14, 2011
Special presentation at MIT Museum, Cambridge
Speaker: Mark Hanson, Lincoln Laboratory

This demonstration, a reprise of 2009's Hot Science presentation, was part of the MIT Museum's "Second Fridays" program entitled "Feel the Heat." Hands-on activities based on the presentation were offered until 8:00 p.m. Robotics Outreach at Lincoln Laboratory was also on hand to showcase student-built robots designed for "hot competition."

 

robotics demoRobotics

June 4, 2011
Speaker: Jonathan Williams, Lincoln Laboratory

You've seen robots in movies, but what can real robots do? What kinds of robots can you buy now? How can you build your own robot? Participants met champion competition robots in person and controlled their movements!

 

Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo
Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo

 

chemistry demoSpecial Traveling Demonstration for 150th Anniversary of MIT
How Computers Work

April 30, 2011
Speaker: Masahiro Arakawa, Lincoln Laboratory
MIT Campus, Kirsch Auditorium at the Stata Center

MIT campus hosted a special Science on Saturday presentation during its 150th anniversary celebration. This was a reprise of the June 5, 2010 demonstration.

 

Acoustics demoAcoustics

February 5, 2011
Speaker: Keri Moos, Lincoln Laboratory

What are sound waves? How does sound travel? Is there sound in space? Why do different musical notes or different musical instruments sound the way they do? Can a laser "record" sound? You'll hear like never before!

 

 

Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo
Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo

 

Computer Talk DemoHow Computers Communicate with Each Other

December 4, 2010
Speaker: William Streilein, Lincoln Laboratory

How can two computers talk to each other? How does the internet work?  How can data such as credit card numbers be encrypted to prevent the wrong people from reading it?

 

How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo
How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo How Computers Talk to Each Other Demo

 

Amusement Park Science guy iconAmusement Park Physics

October 16, 2010
Speakers: Curtis Heisey and Jessica Olszta, Lincoln Laboratory

What can amusement park rides teach us about physics concepts like acceleration, momentum, and energy?

 

Amusement Park Physics Demo Amusement Park Physics Demo Amusement Park Physics Demo Amusement Park Physics Demo
Amusement Park Physics Demo Amusement Park Physics Demo Amusement Park Physics Demo Amusement Park Physics Demo

 

Science Guy IconHow Computers Work

June 5, 2010
Speaker: Masahiro Arakawa, Lincoln Laboratory

How do computers use binary numbers? What are AND and OR gates? Why do computers have built-in clocks to time each step the computer makes?  

 

How Computers Work Demo How Computers Work Demo How Computers Work Demo How Computers Work Demo
How Computers Work Demo How Computers Work Demo How Computers Work Demo How Computers Work Demo

 

Science Guy - lasersLasers and Optics

April 3, 2010
Speaker: David Caplan, Lincoln Laboratory

This show demonstrates the properties of optics, lasers, and light. How can you bend light? What are lasers good for? Why is the sky blue? What are fiber optics? What can a Slinky teach you about polarization? Find out at this amazing light show!

Laser Demo Laser Demo Laser Demo Laser Demo
Laser Demo Laser Demo Laser Demo Laser Demo

 

Sci Guy ComputersHow to Talk to Your Computer

February 6, 2010
Speaker: Robert Dunn, Lincoln Laboratory

How is human speech produced? How can we make computers speak? Can we make computers understand what people say? Come see or volunteer to help with on-stage demonstrations of speech production, digital speech processing, voice modification, and automatic speaker and language recognition.

 

How to Talk to Computer Demo How to Talk to Computer Demo How to Talk to Computer Demo How to Talk to Computer Demo
How to Talk to Computer Demo How to Talk to Computer Demo How to Talk to Computer Demo How to Talk to Computer Demo

 

Science Guy IconCold Science

December 5, 2009
Speaker: Dr. Richard Williamson, Lincoln Laboratory

What is cold? What is the coldest temperature possible? What happens to various objects when they get very cold? See a liquid nitrogen cannon, watch frozen pennies shatter, and volunteer to help with other demonstrations on stage.

 

Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo
Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo Cold Science Demo

 

 

Science Guy iconHot Science

October 3, 2009
Speaker: Mark Hanson, Lincoln Laboratory

What is heat? How is it measured? How is it transferred from one object to another? How can it be used to run an engine? How can you keep heat out of your house during the summer and keep heat in during the winter?

 

 

Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo
Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo
Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo Hot Science Demo

 

SoS MusicPrinciples of Acousto-Electric Musicology

June 6, 2009
Speaker: "Richard Pianiopolis, PdB. Hz."

How do musicians describe different sounds? How do electrical engineers describe the same sounds? Come and find out how music, voices, or any sound can be seen and explained both from the musical side and the engineering side. Listen to and watch your voice and music; hear and see all the different ways sounds can be altered.

 

Musicology Demo Musicology Demo Musicology Demo Musicology Demo
Musicology Demo Musicology Demo Musicology Demo Musicology Demo

 

SoS SlimeSlime and Flubber

April 4, 2009
Speaker: Dr. Andrew Siegel, Lincoln Laboratory

How do you make sticky, green slime? Would you like to mix up some flubber to make bouncing balls? Polymers are more than just plastics—they are formed naturally within the earth. They are also "grown" by living things like plants and people. We can synthesize some of them in laboratories, form others in furnaces, and even grow slimy ones in the back of refrigerators (Yuck!). Ever seen a non-Newtonian fluid in action? Come learn about rheology, and see all of the strange things that plastics and polymers can do.

Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo
Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo
Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo Slime & Flubber Polymer Demo

 

Science Guy Cartoon for Lightning DemoLightning, Tornadoes, and Storms

February 7, 2009
Speaker: Robert Hallowell, Lincoln Laboratory

Can you make lightning? How do tornadoes form? What causes fog? How does air pressure affect weather, and how can you measure it? Come see our demonstrations and find out.

This review of the demonstration describes what happened during the Lightning, Tornadoes, and Storms Science on Saturday event.

Weather Demo Weather Demo Weather Demo Weather Demo
Weather Demo Weather Demo Weather Demo Weather Demo

 

Science Guy with AsteroidAsteroids — Fact or Fiction

December 6, 2008
Speaker: Dr. Grant Stokes, Lincoln Laboratory

What are asteroids like? Where did they come from? What happened when large asteroids hit the earth in the past? How can we detect and prevent large asteroids from hitting the earth in the future? Come and find out!

This review of the demonstration explains each topic discussed during this Science on Saturday event.

Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo
Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo Asteroids Demo

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Sci Guy- ROCKETSRockets and Flight

October 4, 2008
Speakers: Curtis Heisey, Jessica Olszta, and Dr. Mykel Kochenderfer, Lincoln Laboratory

How do rockets work? How about airplanes? How can you build and launch your own rockets safely? Come see our fun demonstrations and find out, or volunteer to help with them on stage.

This review of the demonstration itemizes each activity performed and its importance to understanding rocketry.

Rockets Demo Rockets Demo Rockets Demo Rockets Demo
Rockets Demo Rockets Demo Rockets Demo Rockets Demo

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Sci Guy ArchaeologyArchaeology

June 7, 2008
Speaker: Dr. Steven A. LeBlanc, Director of Collections at Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University

What do we know about the mysterious objects and places featured in the Indiana Jones movies? What is it like to be an archaeologist? How old are the artifacts that have been found? The presentation is given by real archaeologists who have done excavations at the same places featured in the movies.

Archaeology Demo Archaeology Demo Archaeology Demo Archaeology Demo
Archaeology Demo Archaeology Demo Archaeology Demo Archaeology Demo

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Sci Guy RobotsRobotics

April 5, 2008
Speakers: Professor Kenneth Stafford of Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and Tom Indelicato of Bishop Guertin High School's FIRST Robotics Team

You’ve seen robots in movies, but what can real robots do?  What kinds of robots can you buy now?  How can you build your own robot?  Participants met world-champion robots in person and controlled their movements!

 

Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo
Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo Robotics Demo

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Sci Guy MathMath for Fun, Profit, and World Domination

February 2, 2008
Session 1: John Peach, Lincoln Laboratory
Session 2: Art Gelb, Four Sigma Corp., and TASC

In Session 1, Mathbusters, John Peach demonstrates how math can be fun for all ages. In Session 2, Why Study Mathematics?, Art Gelb discusses the applications of math and careers for mathematicians.

 

Math Demo   Math Demo Math Demo Math Demo
Math Demo   Math Demo Math Demo Math Demo

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Hands-On Engineering Design Activities

December 1, 2007
Hosted and supervised by Lincoln Laboratory engineers.

Participants learned engineering concepts through four different projects. Children learned about tension and compression by building gumdrop towers with structural integrity. The concepts of flight, lift, gravity, thrust, and drag were tested by designing different types of paper airplanes and measuring their flight distance. The relationship between buoyancy and displacement was proven by various designs of aluminum foil boats filled with strategically-placed pennies and styrofoam. With 25 straws and 1.5 feet of masking tape, children practiced building cantilever bridges applying the principles of torque and center of mass.

Sci Guy Gumdrop tower Towers using gumdrops and toothpicks Sci Guy Paper airplane Paper airplanes
Sci Guy build a boat Boats using aluminum foil for holding pennies Sci Guy Cantilever Bridge Cantilevers using straws

 

Kids folding unique paper airplanes Designing paper airplane for longer flight table full of connected gumdrop towers Girl building cantilever  
Boy with completed gumdrop circus tent dropping pennies in a boat incomplete cantilever Girl building gumdrop tower  

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Sci Guy Plasma & IonsPlasma and Ions

May 12, 2007
Speaker: Dr. Andrew Siegel, Lincoln Laboratory
Presentation Slides (pdf)

What are plasma and ions and where do they exist? Find out how ions are generated in YOU, and what common household items use the power of ions, as well as how this power is used for scientific purposes.

 

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Sci Guy Lasers & OpticsLasers and Optics

February 10, 2007
Speaker: Dr. Jeffrey Roth, Lincoln Laboratory

The Lasers and Optics show demonstrates the properties of optics, lasers, and light. What's the difference between red, blue, and green lasers? What happens when a laser shines through water? What can a slinky teach you about polarization? What are "fiber optics"? Find out at this amazing light show!

 

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Sci Guy Chemistry MagicChemistry Magic Show

December 9, 2006
Speaker: Dr. Roderick Kunz, Lincoln Laboratory

This chemistry demonstration surprises children and adults alike. Can a chemical burn green? Which chemical changes color and changes back over and over again as long as it is heated? This chemistry show will answer these questions and more!

 

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Sci Guy SoundwavesProperties and Applications of Sound Waves

October 14, 2006
Speaker: Robert Haupt, Lincoln Laboratory

Discover how sound works and why soundwaves are used in a laboratory environment. How does sound travel? Is there sound in space? Can a laser "record" sound? Find out how human vocal chords work and use our software to transform your voice to male, female, child, or adult! You'll hear like never before!

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Electricity & Magnetism

June 3, 2006
Speaker: Paul "Mr. "Magnet" Thomas, MIT

Can you "feel" magnetism? How do magnets and electricity work together? Mr. Magnet shows children just how strong a magnet can be, and how that power can be harnessed for scientific purposes.

 


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Sci Guy Cryogenics & Liquid NitrogenCryogenics & Liquid Nitrogen Demonstrations

March 18, 2006
Speaker: Dr. Richard Williamson, Lincoln Laboratory

This popular demonstration amazes everyone with feats of freezing. Can you freeze a balloon? What does liquid nitrogen look like? How cold is "cold"? Learn which items freeze or defrost fastest and why cryogenics are helpful in a laboratory.

 

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