3 STEM Podcasts I’m Loving in Lockdown

Hello, Maisie here! Due to lockdown Lily and I have been living together for a while now, it’s been fab but sometimes I just need to be in my own zone. You will often find me with my headphones on listening to some form of media – podcasts, audio books or music.

So here I am again with a few more STEM related podcast recommendations! Grab a cup of tea and have a listen to these educational and funny podcasts. Hope you enjoy!

The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry

Hannah Fry, Adam Rutherford solving everyday mysteries with the power of science! I think I have a slight obsession with Dr Fry and Dr Rutherford, I love their humour and chemistry – it’s contagious!

Taking inspiration from Sherlock Holmes, they scientifically investigate queries and questions that are sent in by their listeners.

Episode Recommendation: ‘The Scarlet Mark

‘The scarlet mark’ is an episode from rather a long time ago…2016! The questions this episode revolves around are ‘does red hair skipping generations?’ and ‘is the ginger gene is dying out?’ – in essence this episode was all about gingers! When Adam Rutherford called ginger hair “an astonishing beacon of awesomeness” I myself (possessing the ginger beacon) knew I would love the episode!!

Historian Professor Kate Williams tells us a little of the historical background of redheads – for instance Shakespeare calling it the dissembling colour. Also Judas was never described as ginger in the bible but has been portrayed as being a redhead for many years – hence red hair was a sign of distrust.

Listen to The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry here


Encyclopedia Womannica

I love this quick, snappy and easily digestible podcast. Encyclopedia Womannica features short (often 5 – 10 minutes) episodes containing key information about incredible women. The series talks about the women we should have learnt about in school – from warriors to explorers and obviously women in STEM! This being a STEM blog I am obviously going to recommend the ‘STEMinist’ section of the series but there are loads of other interesting and inspirational women featured throughout this podcast!

Episode Recommendation: ‘STEMinists: Emmy Noether

The episode that first caught my eye was about Mathematician Emmy Noether, I have to admit I had not heard of Emmy prior to listening to this podcast.

She was one of only two women sitting in on her university classes at the time. In 1907 she received her PhD in mathematics, after she graduated Emmy worked at the Mathematical Institute of Erlangen for 7 years (unpaid!). She joined the Mathematical Institute in Göttingen and worked on theoretical algebra and general relativity, Emmy proved two theorems that are key in general relativity and particle physics.

Emmy was not allowed to be an official lecturer because she was a woman, however in 1919 Albert Einstein himself stepped in to advocate for Emmy and eventually she was allowed to lecture.

Listen to Encyclopedia Womannica here


Science Vs

Wendy Zukerman hosts the ‘Science Vs’ podcast, this podcast investigates and discusses fads, myths and the big opinions behind them. Throughout the episodes Wendy discusses the topics with experts and tries to separate the fiction from hard science – Wendy is so enthusiastic and her podcast presence is excellent! I love the music that backs up each episode, it makes the half hour episodes fly by and you’ll be wanting to listen to another straight away! The most recent podcasts are relating to COVID-19 so give those a listen if you want to find out more.

Episode Recommendation: ‘Bigfoot

The Bigfoot episode talks about sightings of the human like beast that is Bigfoot – the question is could Bigfoot really be out there? Some people take Bigfoot sightings very seriously, there was even a scientific paper published investigating over 500 Bigfoot reports since 1944! One of the possible explanations they explore in this episode is the extinct Gigantopithecus, a giant ape dated to around 300,000 years ago. Some people believe that there may be one of these large apes roaming forests in America – not so extinct after all. By the end of the episode, after the scientific investigation, you may be able to guess what conclusion was drawn about the big man Bigfoot himself!

Listen to Science Vs here

What are your favourite podcasts at the moment – science related or not? Share your recommendations in the comments – we would love to hear them!

Maisie

2 Sisters In STEM

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3 STEM Podcasts I’m Loving Right Now

Over the last few years I have become obsessed with podcasts! I started with ‘Potterless’, a podcast following a grown man reading Harry Potter for the first time. Since then I have enjoyed all kinds of podcast on topics ranging from food chats to historical figures.

I love listening and learning and find podcasts a really great way to learn more about Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. I thought I’d share some of the STEM themed podcasts that I have been absorbed in recently!

30 Animals That Made Us Smarter

This engrossing podcast is presented by Patrick Aryee who is a Biologist and Wildlife TV Presenter. This podcast series has 30 episodes that are all about 15 minutes long, each episode tells you about a different animal that has influenced innovators and lead to the development of new technologies.

Whether you are an animal, science or technology lover you are in for a treat with this podcast series.

My Favourite Episode: ‘Sea Otter and Wetsuit’

This episode dives into how sea otters have influenced a design for a waterproof and warm wet suit. Some of the amazing facts I learnt from this episode were that sea otters have the finest fur in the animal kingdom, they have the same number of hairs per square cm as a blonde person has on their entire head! Also the incredibly dense fur traps pockets of air in between the hairs to keep the otter warm. The hairs have tiny barbs and these help to keep the fur matted together, this makes sure the fur closest to the body stays nice and dry. A team at MIT created innovative experiments and tests to see how these incredible properties can be applied to wet suit design. Find out more in the episode!

Listen now on Spotify or on the BBC here


The Infinite Monkey Cage

‘The Infinite Monkey Cage’ is presented by Professor Brian Cox and Robin Ince. This is an award winning BBC Radio 4 comedy and science podcast. It’s a celebration of science that is eye opening and inspirational. Every episode there is a guest panel normally consisting of two experts and a comedian who is a little less qualified!

I love the fast paced back and forth discussions that delve into real science and topical issues. There are a lot of series so there is more than enough episodes to get your teeth into!

My Favourite Episode: ‘Origin of Numbers’

I was laughing within the first few minutes of this episode with Robin Ince’s quick fire maths jokes. This episode was about all things numbers and had Prof Brian Butterworth (Cognitive Neurosychologist) , Dr Hannah Fry (Mathematician) & Matt Parker (Comedian Mathematician) on the guest panel. I learnt that some of the oldest words common to different languages are counting words (numbers 1 to 5). Also fish can count, yes you read that right! Fish are able to tell which shoal is larger so they can join a bigger group of fish, this helps them as it decreases the likelihood of the individual fish being eaten.

Listen now on Spotify or on the BBC here


Unprofessional Engineering

‘Unprofessional Engineering’ is hosted by James and Luke, this is a podcast that looks into the history of different feats of engineering. Each week they choose an everyday thing and break it down into engineering chunks that are easy to understand.

The 30 minute long episodes are easily digestible and they teach you about all kinds of different topics you may not have thought of!

My Favourite Episode: ‘History of Airplanes – Episode 53’

This great episode went through the timeline of important plane advancements throughout the years, being an aerospace engineer I absolutely loved this one! Some of my favourite historical moments included Edwin Link creating the flight simulator in 1928, this was used by US pilots in World War 2. The incredible Amelia Earhart completing the first solo flight over the Atlantic ocean by a woman in 1932. And the Concorde airliner flying in 1976 at supersonic speeds, travelling from London to New York in 3.5 hours – that’s twice the speed of sound!

Listen now on Spotify and on Soundcloud here

Maisie & Lily

2 Sisters In STEM

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