Science Cafe, Adam Walton

13th September 2009

Last updated: 11 September 2009

This week, we hear about a sighting of an elusive Risso's dolphin. There's news of the plan to restore one of the UKs oldest computers. We find out why dozens of sand lizards have been released in Mid Wales, plus there's a report from the British Science Festival.

Risso's dolphins

A sighting of a Risso's dolphin recently has excited scientists, and provided some more information on this elusive, rarely seen species. The dolphin, which was spotted off the Cornwall coast, was previously seen three years ago near Bardsey Island off the Llyn Peninsula. Mark Simmonds, international director of science at the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, explains the significance of recent sightings and about the dolphins' preference for some of the deeper waters around the Welsh coast. .

Reboot for pioneering computer

One of the first computers to be built in the UK - the Harwell - is now going to be restored using original parts, at Bletchley Park's National Museum Of Computing. Kevin Murrell, director of the museum, explains the history of the computer, and how it will be restored by some of the engineers who built it almost 60 years ago.

Lizards on the loose

Dozens of specially bred sand lizards have been released into the wild in Mid Wales, and at other sites in the UK, as part of an ongoing project to protect the species. Dr Liz Howe, who is species expert for the Countryside Council for Wales, discusses this latest effort to boost their numbers.

Science Fest

This year's British Science Festival (at University of Surrey, Guildford) has just closed, and featured a wealth of events covering the whole gamut of scientific endeavour. Science writer and broadcaster Sue Nelson reports from the festival.


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