Take a virtual tour from the sea bed to outer space

Events news

Travel 1,000 feet under the sea with TV’s Greg Foot; make art inspired by the placenta and create science heroes from a humble toilet roll.

All these events and more are part of Be Curious, a family friendly programme of events giving questioning minds an insight into the research that goes on at the University. 

Launching on Saturday October 10 and running until Friday 23 October, this year events are taking place online so you can enjoy them from the comfort of your sofa.

Be Curious invites children and adults alike to take part in a range of activities, including learning how to decode protein messages hidden in DNA; competitions; virtual campus tree trail where you can explore the university’s 1,450 trees; a talk about climate change and what you can do to fight it, and how Leeds’ researchers are helping to bring about a carbon neutral future.

All events are free but some require registration. Click on the links below to sign up.


Join us on Twitter, where we’ll be encouraging you to Be Curious with us. Every day from 10-23 October, we’ll be sharing two minute wow-demonstrations, try at home activities and amazing research-related digital jigsaws to give you an idea of just some of the exciting things we get up to at the University of Leeds.

Follow along with the fun on the @UniLeedsEngage Twitter account and by using #BeCurious20.

Deep Ocean Lab with Greg Foot

Join YouTuber and BBC TV & Radio presenter and host of Let’s Go Live!, Greg Foot, for the story of his scientific adventure to the deep. With experiments and stunning videos, Greg will show you the high-tech submersibles that took him down a crazy 1000ft into the twilight zone. He’ll explain the importance of our oceans and – thanks to Greg’s work with the Blue Planet II team – uncover the effect we’re having on them.

Date and time: Saturday 10 October, 11am-noon

How to join: A link will be sent to you when you register at Deep Ocean Lab with Greg Foot 

Everything you ever wanted to know about ultrasound, but were afraid to ask…

Always thought that ultrasound was just used in pregnancy? Think again! Want to know what ultrasound means in the animal kingdom? Curious to see how and why ultrasound works and when it does not, using some unusual "body parts"? Join the NIHR Leeds Biomedical Research Centre to have all these questions answered and more.  Suitable for ages 6-12.

Date and time: Saturday 10 October, 10:45am

How to join: Online – register for ‘Everything you ever wanted to know about ultrasound’ and a link will be sent to you

A Tour of Earth from Space!

Take a guided tour of your planet from space with scientists from the University of Leeds and British Antarctic Survey. Using Google Earth, we’ll show you where the continents are colliding and being pulled apart, and how to identify this from satellite imagery. Using images from the past you can witness glacier calving events and deforestation. Finally, take part in the SENSE challenge, to identify these incredible places on Earth. Suitable for all ages.

Date and time: Saturday 10 October, 2pm–2:45pm

How to join: Register for your free ticket to A Tour of Earth from Space!

Be Calm: Let music soothe your mind

After a busy day, get comfy and join music and well-being platform Brain Beats for an interactive music session to introduce you to music and relaxation through calming sounds. The minds behind Brain Beats, Michelle and Crissie, are music psychology researchers, radio hosts and DJs who specialise in music and well-being. You can find out more on the Brain Beats website. Suitable for all.

Date and time: Saturday 10 October, 4pm-5pm

How to join: Register for your free ticket


Have a go at creating your own art prints inspired by the placenta and learn more about the science behind it in the process. Follow along from home with our PlacentART video tutorial, which will premiere on YouTube  at 12 noon on Saturday 10th October, and be available to watch during Be Curious.

Date and time: Saturday 10 October (and beyond)!

How to join: Register for a PlacentART free kit

DNA Decoding Challenge: Learn how to decode the protein messages hidden in your DNA 

You are made of billions of cells, and each cell contains a set of DNA instructions to build proteins. Join the Aspden Lab to find out how these instructions are decoded and use your new skills to take on our DNA Decoding Challenge for the chance to win a prize! You'll decode a DNA string into a piece of RNA art, and discover the hidden protein word. The DNA Decoding Challenge video will be available to view via our YouTube Channel from 1pm on Saturday 10th October.

Date and time: Launching on Saturday 10 October (winner announced on Friday 23 October)

How to join: Watch the video on YouTube here. Share your entry with us on Twitter using #BeCuriousDNA or via email peteam@leeds.ac.uk 


Meet (and make!) the #LOOminaries! The #LOOminaries are people who inspire or influence others, crossed with the humble loo roll. Check out the growing gallery of #LOOminaries and why not make your own to add to the bunch? 

After an appearance at this year’s Be Curious, the #LOOminaries are heading to Bradford Science Festival. Can you help us to create a gallery of inspirational LOOminaries in the fields of water, climate and sustainability for Bradford Science Festival’s ‘Sustainability in the City’ theme?

How to join: Share your entries on Twitter using #LOOminaries or via email peteam@leeds.ac.uk

Quantum Sauce

Supercharged sauces of fascinating facts from awesome academics! Join Quantum Sauce for two very special Be Curious vid-casts. No tickets required, just tune into the Quantum Sauce YouTube channel to catch the latest talk!

When and where: Wednesday 14 October & Wednesday 21 October

How to join: Visit the YouTube channel here.

The Climate Press presents: The power of collective climate action

The Climate Press would like to invite you to a special, live online event with three very special guests: Professor Paul Chatterton (University of Leeds), Ergon Theatre Company (Manchester) and Zero Waste Leeds. They will discuss local community initiatives taking action against climate change from the perspective of sustainable city planning, performing arts, and fashion consumption. Collective action to face the current climate emergency has proven invaluable, and there are many local initiatives within everyone’s reach. The guests will discuss their motivation, work and challenges and will take questions from the audience.

When and where: Tuesday 20 October, 6:30pm–8pm

How to join: Register for your free ticket to The power of collective climate action

Priestley Centre podcast – Moving society to net-zero 

This special episode of the Climactic podcast tells the stories of the Leeds researchers helping to bring about a carbon neutral, socially just future. Simon Moore, from the Priestley International Centre for Climate, talks to three academics about their work in forest restoration, air quality in our cities, and a wellbeing economy. Featuring Dr Cat Scott, Dr Kirsty Pringle and PhD researcher Jefim Vogel. You can also hear about the progress being made by the University of Leeds Sustainability service, to reach the goal of net-zero emissions by 2030. 

When and where: Thursday 22 October 

How to join: No tickets required, just search for ‘Climactic’ on your favourite podcast provider!

Campus Tree Trail

Use our interactive map to explore the University of Leeds campus from home, through its trees! Researchers from Leads Ecosystem, Atmosphere and Forest Centre (LEAF) and the United Bank of Carbon have mapped all 1,450 trees on campus. Click on each tree to learn its species, size, carbon stored and the pollution they remove from the atmosphere.

When and where: Throughout the festival

How to join: Click here to view the tree trail map