By Steven Lang
GRAHAMSTOWN, SOUTH AFRICA, Jan 19 — South Africa is holdings its annual Scifest Africa festibal in this city in Eastern cape Province under the theme “Science alight!” from March 18 to 24 during which top scientists from the United States space agency NASA will discuss the agency’s innovative plans for a new era of space exploration.
South Africa’s national science festival’s theme this year is “Celebrating the International Year of Light” in collaboration with the United Nations International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies.
The exciting programme includes Skype sessions with key members of the team that drives a remote controlled rover on Mars and with former astronauts, one who learned to play the flute while orbiting the Earth aboard the International Space Station.
Scifest Africa 2015 will also celebrate several important anniversaries ,including the one thousand years of optics since Ibn al-Haytham published a seven-volume treatise on the subject in 1015.
Science Alight! is a more than appropriate theme as only a few months ago the 2014 Nobel Prize for Physics was awarded to the inventors of the Blue LED (light-emitting diode).
This year Scifest Africa will feature more than 600 lectures, workshops, exhibitions and other interactive events spread over six sites looking at myriads of ways that one can see light.