MPAS Meeting September 2020

Society monthly meeting pre-recorded without audience during the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions on 20200916. Meeting introduction and rundown of past month and coming month events was given by the President, Dr. Peter Skilton. Given Venus was in the news this month, the theme this evening was around life and love. The planned visiting speaker live talk wasn’t possible this month due to the pandemic restrictions. Instead, a dubbed video from the Free Documentary channel was shown about “Life and Love in Space”, with expert commentary given about the very practical aspects of life on the International Space Station, by seasoned astronaut Prof. Ulrich Walter. The topics covered in the documentary mainly stayed within the PG rating range, though there is some sharing towards the end about research and experiments into the space equivalent of the Mile High Club. This was followed by Vice President, Mark Stephens, presenting “Sky for the Month” online. Following that, Prof. Jane Greaves spoke about “Phosphine on Venus” after the announcement about possible life having been detected there by indirect means. Then Dr. Dianna Cowern, of Physics Girl channel, spoke about “The Surprising Way Mars Is Hostile To Life”, and Jessi Knudsen Castaneda introduced some “Anthropomorphism”. Next, Queenslander and mathematician/physicist, Toby Hendy, of the Tibees channel, showed research she’d down about “Einstein’s Love Letters”, and Victorian-born Dr. Derek Muller of the Veritasium channel, explained “Why Life Seems to Speed Up As We Age”. A musical closure was then featured from member Paula Miles singing acapella the Toto classic “Africa”.