I see now just how important an aspect the live chats were. Things got serious, silly, deep, dark, hilarious, and on occasions weird; all in a 30 minute burst of direct exchange between today’s researchers and tomorrow’s minds. It was *energising* – I loved it. And I learned a tonne of stuff myself.
As an engineer-turned-researcher, I particularly enjoyed the “science vs engineering” questions when they came up. I too made assumptions about the engineer/scientist divide when I was at school (even when I was at university!), but never did I appreciate the magnitude of their overlap until, by accident more than design, I discovered the world of scientific instrumentation. With this in mind, I plan to use my prize to launch a high altitude balloon with student-designed experiments on board. I want people to get involved in the science *and* the engineering that goes into a near-space mission like this!
I want to thank everyone involved in dreaming up this brilliant scheme and making it a reality: the creators, the moderators, the other electromagnetic scientists, and of course the students!
So… onward and upward! To the stratosphere! Via balloon!