Australian news, and some related international items

Hawker schoolkids given tax-payer funded nuclear promotional trip to Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) in Sydney.

Hawker School Students Visit ANSTO  Ten students aged 11 to 17 from Hawker School are travelling across the country, to explore some of Australia’s most significant science infrastructure at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) in Sydney.

On Wednesday and Thursday next week, the students and two teachers from Hawker School will spend their days not in their science classrooms, but near Australia’s multi-purpose nuclear research reactor.

Their trip will start in the nearby Royal National Park, with Les Bursill, an elder of the Dharawal community, who will share with them the rich traditional heritage of the land surrounding ANSTO.

Les is the Elder in Residence at the University of Wollongong, and has worked closely with ANSTO to ensure that the many sites of indigenous importance around the Lucas Heights campus are protected.

The students will then head to the ANSTO Discovery Centre, which welcomes 15,000 visitors a year, to learn more about radiation and radioactivity through an interactive workshop.

The OPAL reactor will be the next stop, where students will see the reactor pool up-close, before they tour the wider ANSTO campus, seeing the advanced technology used and the low level and intermediate level waste stores.

On Thursday, engineering will be the subject of choice as the students find out more about all different types of engineering, and take part in hands-on activities as part of Discover Engineering Day.

“ANSTO is thrilled to be welcoming our young South Australian visitors next week,” said Discovery Centre Leader, Rod Dowler.

“Every week we have visits from students, from Kindergarten through to university students, but it is always an exciting time when we are welcoming out-of-state visitors.

“Bringing the kids out to Lucas Heights to see the facilities and to show them the work being done at ANSTO will let them know more about the front end of the nuclear cycle – the research, medicine and innovation that nuclear science enables.

“At ANSTO we produce nuclear medicines that are needed by approximately one in two Australians in their lifetime, for the diagnosis and treatment of cancers, and heart, lung, muscular, and skeletal conditions.

“Researchers also use nuclear research techniques to support research into improving human health, understanding our environment and supporting Australian industries.

“For example, nuclear research supports the agriculture industry through helping to understand the sustainability of Australia’s groundwater reservoirs, by determining their age and the ‘recharge rate’ of water, which helps farmers around the country.

“We’ll also talk to students about radiation, and how it is all around us in everyday household items like potting mix, kitty litter, bananas, granite benchtops and even bricks in houses – and, it also occurs in things we produce, like nuclear medicines and its by-products.

“We’ll be talking about all things nuclear from start to finish, so that the students get a really good understanding of all the steps, people, products and by-products generated by Australia’s nuclear industry.

“We are really looking forward to having the students from Hawker in Lucas Heights, and we can’t wait to show them around.”

May 3, 2017 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, South Australia, spinbuster

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