At their 2013 event, the team at TEDxDublin showed physicist Boaz Almog’s mesmerizing TEDGlobal talk, The levitating superconductor, in which he demonstrates the phenomenon known as quantum locking by inspiring an extremely thin superconducting wafer to levitate over a magnetic ring.
Wanting their audience to be able to see this science come to life, they invited former NASA astrophysicist and Dublin local, Dr. Joe Roche, to levitate a blistering cold superconductor in the lobby of the TEDxDublin venue. The demo was a hit, the team said, and bridged the gap between hearing about science and participating in science.
“Quantum locking was probably our most popular demo/activity in the lobby space,” said team member Shaun O’Boyle. “We predicted this, and placed it in an area where lots of people could assemble and ask questions. I think Joe would agree that there was a high level of engagement, and people were genuinely excited to see it in person.”
Or, as one Twitter user suggested, it blew minds:
— Éamonn Kennedy (@eamonnkennedy) September 14, 2013
Below, some snapshots of the demo by TEDxDublin photographer Luis Faustino: