Introduction: Size Matters: Dara O'Briain's Science Club (01:38)
In this episode of Dara O'Briain's Science Club, the team and guests focus on size. Alok Jha will look into an experiment that uses big data to help premature infants. Mark Miodownik will demonstrate the link between size and explosiveness. Dr. Helen Czerski will report on the search for dark matter.
Bacteria are the most successful life forms on the planet. The fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria is a key public health issue. Researchers found that copper can kill bacteria within a few moments of contact.
Antibiotic Resistance (03:40)
By replacing tray tables, IV stands, and hospital bed railings in three U.S. intensive care units with copper, researchers slashed superbug infections by 60%. In the studio, Prof. Dame Sally Davies, England's chief medical officer, joins the team to talk about the dangers of resistant bacteria.
Size and Living Things (03:06)
Mark Miodownik and Dara O'Briain use balloons to demonstrate how size affects the ability of animals to survive large falls.
Surface-to-Volume Ratio (02:57)
O'Briain drops live cockroaches from the top of a ladder; size and air resistance play a role in their survival. Miodownik demonstrates that a pile of sugar will melt under a flame, but small particles are flammable and explosive.
Big Data, Little Lives (04:16)
Infections can kill premature infants quickly. Hospital monitoring systems gather data to see when infections are beginning. Dr. Carolyn McGregor began pushing for analysis after her infant daughter died. The software she developed can predict infections 24 hours before any visible signs of illness.
Human Face of Big Data (03:07)
In the studio, O'Briain and Alok Jha discuss big data and how it affects us. They bring this abstract concept into real terms with applications like the driverless car.
Scales of Existence (02:18)
O'Briain demonstrates an app that allows users to see the relative sizes of objects in the universe, from quantum particles all the way up to the observable universe.
Dark Matter (04:22)
Dr. Helen Czerski visits Prof. Rick Gaitskell to talk about the search for dark matter. Dark matter is almost impossible to observe, because it doesn't really interact with conventional matter. To prove dark matter exists, Gaitskell and his team try to capture it.
Theoretical Physics (03:10)
In the studio, O'Briain, Czerski, and Dr. Jo Dunkley talk about dark matter. Dunkley explains that astronomers first theorized dark matter exists because of anomalies in how galaxies move. O'Briain points out that dark matter seems to be "a bit of a joke," since it's a solution for any problem physics hasn't figured out yet.
Demonstrating the Innards (05:31)
Miodownik swallows a camera so the audience can tour his digestive system. Dr. Simon Campbell explains the process of endoscopy. In the early 1800s, Alexis St. Martin was accidentally shot in the stomach; the wound remained open, allowing doctors to learn about digestion.
Value of a Millisecond (03:34)
Jha travels to Wall Street to examine how fast money travels. Computers do most stock market trades, without human intervention. Because data signals travel slower through wires, trades originating further from Wall Street take longer; the exchange built a special server room that equalizes data travel time.
Other U.S. Trading Centers (03:13)
Traders seeking faster trade times built a multi-million-dollar optical fiber cable link between the Chicago exchange and New York; they upgraded it with a series of microwave towers. Jha says when scientists theorized that neutrinos might move faster than light, traders became excited about an even faster way to make trades.
Population Explosion (05:17)
The Earth's population is growing rapidly, and scientists believe the planet will not sustain this growth if people eat a western diet. O'Briain displays nutrient-rich insects that could replace other foods. The Science Club team and guests discuss the largest and smallest objects in the universe.
Credits: Size Matters: Dara O'Briain's Science Club (Series 2) (00:44)
Credits: Size Matters: Dara O'Briain's Science Club (Series 2)
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