Key to the New World: Notes from Session 32 of SELF Talks
Talks from the SELF Fellows opened a new world for the audience during a SELF event held in Xuhui District, Shanghai on May 26, 2019. The event was the third activity hosted by SELF in Xuhui with support from Science and Technology Commission of Xuhui, Xuhui Association for Science and Technology and Shanghai Interdiscinplinary Research Center of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. More than 300 audience were inspired by six scientists to start a new journey of scientific exploration.
1. The first-ever photo of a black hole amazed people across the world. Zuo Wenwen, Associate Professor at Shanghai Astronomical Observatory of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, who participated in the study of the black hole photo, share her experiences to unveil the mystery of the black hole. "The black hole is so far away from us. Why do we still need to study it? What you may not know is the black hole may solve some of the mysteries of the universe." Attracted by the interesting speech of Zuo Wenwen, the audience start an incredible journey to the Universe.
2. High quality sleep is very important to us. Zhang Hongyu, Professor at the Institute of Neuroscience of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, discussed with the public about the factors affecting sleep and biological rhythm, which are closely related to human health and the aging process. In the speech, Zhang said: "In fact, all of us need to pay more attention to sleep. The seemingly complicated scientific principles are closely related to the daily life."
3. In the era of artificial intelligence, the robots developed by scientists and engineers have been used in various fields. Yang Li, President of Zhongke Xinsong Co., Ltd., led the team to explore the forefront of robot research and development. "From machine to robot, what we need to do is to make the robots coexist and cooperate with human beings.” Yang Li also demonstrated the robots developed by the team which were well received by the audience. For instance, the robot arm that can compete with humans for table tennis has seven joints.
4. The brain is one of the most important organs of the human body. Brain tumors are known as a disease that is difficult to cure. Are we really helpless facing a seemingly incurable disease of brain tumors - the glioma? Yang Xuejun, an experienced neurosurgery expert at the General Hospital of Tianjin Medical University, developed a new diagnosis and treatment method for glioma. "Disease that is hard to cure can easily become a feast of pseudoscience." During the speech, he analyzed the causes and treatment of brain tumors and made suggestions on how to judge treatments driven by pseudoscience.
5. "Scientific research is to study what people think is impossible. The more difficult it is, the more valuable it will become." Wang Wenpeng from the Shanghai Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences introduced the ultra-short pulse laser which can be used not only in medical fields like cancer treatment, but also in creating extreme physical environments to detect unknown mysteries of the universe.
This session of SELF was moderated by Xu Zhangli, Shanghai Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences.