Research Nights: Chocolate and Lasers

Leeds Doctoral College presents Research Nights - a lively, informal series of talks and discussion led by PhD researchers from across the University.

Following three previous successful events, our fourth event takes place on Tuesday 17th April in the Pyramid Canteen, with three speakers delivering entertaining talks on a range of topics from across the faculties. Come and enjoy a sociable evening with others from the postgraduate community, with food and drinks available from the Pyramid Canteen and a pub quiz!

Our speakers include:
- Denise Li (Food Science & Nutrition) - Magical concoctions and fantastic formulations
- Ethan Jull (Physics & Astronomy) - Liquid crystals and laser filters
- Marjorie Ladd Parada (Food Science & Nutrition) - It's not (all) about the chocolate


Denise Li - We are surrounded by formulated products in all shapes and forms; from the food we eat, to skin cream and washing up powders. The scientific concepts of these products are similar, with the ingredients quite often being the same. For example, lecithin (found in egg yolk) is used to make mayonnaise, but is also found in skin cream formulations! Traditionally, the creation and development of formulations is seen as a form of art, rather than requiring scientific knowledge. My research is helping to drive the scientific understanding of these formulations.

Ethan Jull - Hand held lasers are potentially damaging to eyesight, sensors, and cameras. In this talk we will explore the world of liquid crystals, most commonly used in your flat screen TV, and how application of these phenomenal materials can lead to novel laser protection devices.

Marjorie Ladd Parada - Most people say they love chocolate, usually because of the full sensory experience starting from the glossy surface, the snap on taking a bite, the taste, and let’s not forget the way that it melts smoothly in the mouth. To get all of these amazing qualities, we need to get the right cocoa butter crystals and this requires an understanding of how fat crystallises. And fats are not only present in chocolate, they are in our bodies, our skin, and sometimes even clogging our arteries. Hence, the study of fat crystallisation is not just about producing the best chocolate, it’s also about what happens once you have eaten it.

Everyone welcome! No registration required but you can keep updated via the Doctoral College Facebook page