2021 archive

COVID-19 human trials, air pollution monitoring and better plastics

In this edition: Launching human challenge trials for COVID-19, a new air pollution monitoring network for London, and fully biodegradable plastics.

Donwload the complete podcast (mp3)

OR listen to individual chapters:

News: Potential new physics and climate change innovation – Imperial physicists are part of a team that have found hints of a new kind of physics, and a new centre for climate change innovation launches to help accelerate the transition to net zero emissions.

Infecting people with COVID-19 – We hear from the investigators behind the world’s first ‘human challenge’ clinical trial for COVID-19, which will purposefully infect people with the virus behind the disease to see how the infection progresses and how drugs and vaccines could work against it.

Helping London breathe – We meet a researcher behind the new Breathe London network of affordable air pollution monitors, which are being deployed across London to help local communities understand and tackle their pollution issues.

Biodegradable and recyclable plastic – We chat to the CEO of Polymateria about their breakthrough food packaging plastic, which can break down within a year in the environment and can also be recycled into flower pots or pallets.

This is an extract from the IB Green Minds podcast, produced by students on the Business School’s MSc in Climate Change, Management & Finance. You can listen to the full episode on the IB Podcasts website.

(24 March)

Coronavirus on the tube, virus variants and matters of the heart

In this edition: What testing on transport says about coronavirus transmission, how new virus variants are emerging, and chatting to a cardiologist.

Download the complete podcast (mp3)

OR listen to individual chapters:

News: Dragonfly flight, making audio more immersive and landing on Mars – We hear how dragonflies perform mid-air backward somersaults to right themselves, why making more immersive audio experiences could improve virtual interactions, and discover what the next Mars rover, landing on the red planet this week, will investigate.

TfL testing for coronavirus – Imperial researchers are working with the London transport network, testing air and surfaces for the coronavirus (and thankfully finding nothing). We learn what this means about transmission of the virus and how it feeds into a larger project into subway environments.

Coronavirus variants – Variants of the coronavirus are emerging worldwide and hitting the headlines. We find out what these variants mean for controlling the pandemic and the potential impact on vaccines.

You can also watch the full event covering the latest knowledge on the pandemic and what questions remain.

Matters of the heart – We chat to a trainee cardiologist about her experience taking part in an Imperial Lates Valentine’s event and her research understanding blood flow through the heart and arteries.

You can also catch up on the full Relationships Lates workshop.

(17 February)

Election misinformation, future of the NHS, and better cancer surgery

In this edition: Spreading US election misinformation, deciding the future of the NHS, and improving breast cancer surgery.

Download the complete podcast (mp3)

OR listen to individual chapters:

News: Identifying new coronavirus variants and kombucha-inspired materials – We hear about a new consortium, led by Imperial researchers, tracking changes in new coronavirus variants, and find out how kombucha tea ingredients are being used to make new smart living materials.

US election misinformation – Analysis of the past two US presidential elections shows where misinformation originated from, including traditional and social media, foreign influences, and in the case of the 2020 election, the president himself.

This feature is an excerpt from 'Never Lick the Spoon' – a podcast from Imperial's Institute for Molecular Science and Engineering.

Future of the NHS – The NHS has worked incredibly well as an ‘illness’ service, but what about protecting and promoting good health? Investing in health could benefit us all, argues Dr Jonathan Pearson-Stuttard in his new book with Dame Sally Davies, Whose Health Is It Anyway?

Better breast cancer surgery – Around 20 percent of surgeries to remove breast cancer tumours leave some behind, requiring a second surgery. To reduce this, Imperial researchers are testing fluorescent tracers that identify tumours, coupled with special cameras to guide surgeons.

(27 January)