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Science
THE MATERIAL WORLD
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Thursday 16:30-17:00
Quentin Cooper reports on developments across the sciences. Each week scientists describe their work, conveying the excitement they feel for their research projects.
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LISTEN AGAINListen 30 min
Listen to 21 July
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QUENTIN COOPER
Quentin Cooper
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Thursday 21 July 2005
Bagpuss with creators Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin, picture courtesy of Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin
Bagpuss with creators Peter Firmin & Oliver Postgate

Saving Bagpuss

A recent BBC poll voted Bagpuss the nation's favourite BBC children's TV show of all time. 

The saggy old cloth cat is 30 years old and taking part in Southampton University’s Puppet Research Project.

By analysing Bagpuss using infrared spectrometry, researchers are trying to stop him becoming more bag than puss.

On this week’s Material World, Quentin Cooper talks to his creator Peter Firmin and textile conservation expert Dinah Eastop.

Slime mould

Despite the name, they're not slimy or mouldy. Slime mould is a single celled amoeba, found in soils around the world.

But when times get hard, these simple cells join together to form a new slug-like creature. In a strange example of social altruism, some cells commit suicide allowing others to reproduce.

Quentin Cooper finds out more about slime mould from Dr Chris Thompson from the University of Manchester.

Prof Adrian Harwood from Cardiff University explains how these simple creatures could be used to improve drugs for manic depression.
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