Chemistry evening in Stockholm attracted nearly 100 listeners

The University of Helsinki and the Royal Institute of Technology jointly arranged a chemistry evening on 20 September at the Finnish Cultural Institute in Stockholm.

Chemistry evening in Stockholm attracted nearly 100 listeners

On the occasion of the UN International Year of Chemistry 2011, the University of Helsinki and the KTH Royal Institute of Technology arranged a lecture and discussion evening about chemistry at the Finnish Cultural Institute in Stockholm. This was the first science evening at the Institute, whose primary objective is to promote Finnish culture in Sweden.

About one hundred listeners interested in chemistry came to listen to Professor Markku Leskelä from UH talk about "Importance of Chemistry in Microelectronics" and Professor Ann-Christine Albertsson from KTH about "Polymers for Tomorrow".

One of the points made by Albertsson was that you cannot say "the environment is fun, but chemistry is dull". In order to care for the environment, we have to be familiar with basic chemistry. She hopes that teachers will succeed in making chemistry an interesting subject. Without chemistry, society will not function.

Leskelä talked about, for example, Moore’s law, named after one of the co-founders of Intel, Gordon E. Moore, which describes the long-standing trend that the number of transistors that can be placed on a chip grows exponentially. It shows that this number is doubled every 24 months. Since its formulation in 1965, Moore’s law has proven to be correct, with the exception of a few adjustments of the doubling time.

According to Professor Leskelä, silicon-based microelectronics will continue to develop according to Moore’s law for another 15 years. The development is made possible by new material being introduced at the end of the 1990s and in this century. Chemistry has contributed greatly to this and its importance will not diminish.

The evening triggered a lively discussion that was carried on in the Stockholm Metro when the audience went their separate ways in the autumn night.

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Text and photo: Nadine Aschan
Translation: AAC Global
University of Helsinki, digital communications

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