World Space Week 2016

wsw16This week is the start of World Space Week, the worldwide annual celebration of the marvels and mysteries of astronautics, astronomy and all things cosmic.

Launched specifically on 4th October by the UN General Assembly to mark the successful launch of Sputnik 1, the first man-made satellite, in 1957, and the signing of the ‘Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies’ on October 10th 1967, World Space Week has been held every year since 1999, and seeks primarily to educate people about the positives of space exploration and encourage better public understanding and support for space programmes.

This year’s theme is “Remote Sensing: Enabling Our Future,” an inward looking theme which celebrates Earth Observation from Space for the betterment of the human race, highlighting a host of classic Earth Observation missions such as the U.S. Landsat mission, the work of intergovernmental groups such as GEOSS Group on Earth Observations and emphasizes applications such as environment and agriculture monitoring, land use mapping and new uses such as location based services.

Fittingly, we have access to the National Geophysical Data Centre database, which provides the latest satellite geophysical data from the Sun to the Earth and Earth’s sea floor and solid earth environment, including Earth observations from space, and the NASA Scientific & Technical Information database, which includes up-to-date information about NASA’s satellite projects. We also hold a large number of books about satellite communications & navigation among our collection, along with a good selection of books about space & space exploration  in general.

To find out more about World Space Week, visit their website here:

http://www.worldspaceweek.org/

Calling All Geographers and Civil Engineers!

digimapIf you’re studying in the fields of Geography and Civil Engineering, you’ll be certain of finding Geology Digimap extremely useful!

Geology Digimap – http://digimap.edina.ac.uk/ – can provide UK geology maps showing areas with indications of flooding, maps of soil texture, rock units, maximum and minimum permeability, soil strengths – from the very strong to the very weak – vital for physical geography, building and civil engineering.

Geology Digimap can also show what is below superficial and artificial deposits, underneath landscaped ground, the location of faults, fossil horizons, mineral veins and landforms.

Geological photos are available and you can draw on maps and annotate them, use software such as GIS or CAD, as well as save and export maps.

How to register for free –  login to Digimap using your Athens username and Password.   Complete the online registration and click on submit.  An email will be sent to the email address you entered in the Enter Details screen containing a link to activate your account. The link will remain valid for 24 hours.

Why not take a look at the databases stablemates while you’re at it? Marine Digimap and Historical Digimap are also available at http://digimap.edina.ac.uk/

You also can find Digimap from the link in the Geography subject guide http://www.lboro.ac.uk/services/library/subjectguides/geography/  and from the Select Databases tab in Library Catalogue Plus http://lcp.lboro.ac.uk/

Or just ask your Academic Librarian – http://www.lboro.ac.uk/services/library/contact/academiclibrarians – for more information.

Database Trial – Slavery, Abolition and Social Justice

slavery agricultureThis February we’re trialling a historical database exploring the history and social implications of slavery and the slave trade.

Slavery, Abolition and Social Justice is designed as an important portal for slavery and abolition studies, bringing together documents and collections covering an extensive time period, between 1490 and 2007, from libraries and archives across the Atlantic world. Close attention is given to the varieties of slavery, the legacy of slavery, the social-justice perspective and the continued existence of slavery today.

To begin searching please go to: http://www.slavery.amdigital.co.uk/ – access is via IP address and the trial runs to 1st February 2016.

Please note that PDF download options are not available during trials.

We welcome feedback – good or bad – on this trial, please contact Steve Corn with your comments.

Paris Climate Change Conference – Useful Study Resources

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If you’ve been following events at the Paris Climate Conference this week and have an interest – either academically or personally – in climate change or just the state of the weather, Librarian Heather Dawson from the London School of Economics has compiled a very useful list of freely available online resources on her research blog, which you can find via this link:

http://alissresearch.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/paris-climateb-change-conference.html

They range from media outlets to governmental and international resources, as well as links to academic research and analysis. Please note that some of the links apply to resources that are only available through the LSE.

Image by Alan Grinberg, reproduced under CC License from Flickr.

The Landgrabber at LU Arts

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Loughborough University Arts in association with the Royal Geographic Society are hosting a special talk with an environmental theme at the LU Arts Project Space at the Edward Barnsley Building on Tuesday 10th February.

Land is suddenly a scarce resource. African plains, Asian paddy fields and South American jungles are being snapped up. In his lecture, Fred Pearce, journalist, author and environmental consultant at New Scientist, discusses who are the grabbers and who the victims.

Fred Pearce has reported on the environment, popular science and development issues from 64 countries over the past 20 years. He specialises in global environmental issues, including water and climate change, and is the author of popular books including ‘When the rivers run dry: what happens when our water runs out?’ and ‘The landgrabbers: the new fight over who owns the earth’, which will be the topic of his 10 February lecture.

The talk begins at 5.45pm and should be finished by 9.30pm. The event is free, but booking is necessary as space is limited. To do that, visit this link:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/fred-pearce-the-landgrabbers-tickets-14662003447

Follow the Lines in the Ice at the British Library

British_20Library_20LogoA new exhibition with a decidedly wintery theme begins at the British Library this week.

Lines in the Ice examines why Europeans are drawn to explore the Arctic and, in particular, the fabled Northwest Passage. Arctic exploration has influenced our culture, changed the societies of indigenous peoples, and had a powerful effect on the making of the modern world.

The exhibition displays early European maps of the Arctic, Inuit accounts of the coming of the explorers, writings from the search for Franklin, early Arctic photography and much more. It also unearths the history of the North Pole’s most famous resident – Santa!

On display in the British Library entrance hall, the exhibition runs until March 2015 and is free to visit. Further details can be found via the British Library website here.

Adam Matthew Databases on Trial this May

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We have a variety of Adam Matthew archive databases on trial throughout May that may be of great interest to social scientists, geographers, historians and English literature students.

Mass Observation Online (www.massobservation.amdigital.co.uk)

Mass Observation Online provides integrated access to almost 400,000 digital images of material from the Mass Observation Archive (MOA). In addition, it functions as a finding aid for all material held on Adam Matthew Publications microfilm, and in the Mass Observation Archive. The Archive holds all the material generated by Mass Observation (MO) between 1937 and 1949, with a few later additions from the 1950s and 1960s.

Archives Direct (www.archivesdirect.amdigital.co.uk)

Archives Direct is a suite of collections sourced from The National Archives, Kew – the UK government’s official archive. With our new digital facility based at Kew, Adam Matthew Digital will be releasing major new content from this world famous archive of information over the coming years.

Archives Direct titles are self-contained collections, clustered in a portal for ease of cross-searching and browsing. Your search results will include both documents your institution has purchased, and documents available elsewhere within the Archives Direct portal, giving you access to a huge range of documents from the UK government’s archives.

Perdita Manuscripts (www.perditamanuscripts.amdigital.co.uk)

This resource is produced in association with the Perdita Project based at the University of Warwick and Nottingham Trent University. “Perdita” means “lost woman” and the quest of the Perdita Project has been to find early modern women authors who were “lost” because their writing exists only in manuscript form. Thanks to the endeavours of the Perdita Project the valuable work of these “lost” women is being rediscovered

Travel Writing, Spectacle and World History (www.travelwriting.amdigital.co.uk)

This resource brings together hundreds of accounts by women of their travels across the globe from the early 19th century to the late 20th century. Students and researchers will find sources covering a variety of topics including; architecture; art; the British Empire; climate; customs; exploration; family life; housing; industry; language; monuments; mountains; natural history; politics and diplomacy; race; religion; science; shopping; war.  A wide variety of forms of travel writing are included, ranging from unique manuscripts, diaries and correspondence to drawings, guidebooks and photographs. The resource includes a slideshow with hundreds of items of visual material, including postcards, sketches and photographs

London Low Life (www.londonlowlife.amdigital.co.uk)

London Low Life is a full-text searchable resource, containing colour digital images of rare books, ephemera, maps and other materials relating to 18th, 19th and early 20th century London. It is designed for both teaching and study, from undergraduate to research students and beyond.

In addition to the digital documents, London Low Life contains a wealth of secondary resources, including a chronology, interactive maps, essays, online galleries and links to other useful websites.

All these databases are available until 27th May, accessible via the following username & password:

Username: Lu228yt

Password: SC929aMP

Please note that download options are not available during trials.

We welcome feedback – good or bad – on these trials. Please contact Steve Corn s.c.corn@lboro.ac.uk with your comments.

Beautiful Science at the British Library

British_20Library_20LogoA new free exhibition begins at the British Library today on a scientific theme with an artistic twist.

Beautiful Science: Picturing Data, Inspiring Insight explores how our understanding of ourselves and our planet has evolved alongside our ability to represent, graph and map the mass data of the time.

From John Snow’s plotting of the 1854 London cholera infections on a map to colourful depictions of the tree of life, you can discover how picturing scientific data provides new insight into our lives.

The exhibition is running in the Folio Society Gallery until 26th May. For further details visit the British Library website here.

European Union on the Radar

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Radar, the University’s contemporary arts programme, gets the new term under way with a new European-themed project running throughout October which will interest artists and students of European history and politics alike.

‘Welcome to European Union’ is an exhibition of photography, video and works on paper which examines the transformations that have taken place in the newly created borderland areas between Narva in Estonia and Ivangorod in Russia. As new EU lines have been drawn on a map the public spaces ‘inbetween’ the borderlands are contested and new rules and regulations applied, redefining the physical and social boundaries, and reshaping communities. It’s been developed as an interdisciplinary cultural project by the sociologist Alena Pfoser and artist Eva Engelbert, with participation and contributions from the photoclub ‘Narva’, Estonia, and opens tomorrow (Tuesday 8th October) daily between 10AM-4PM  in the LUA Project Space in the Edward Barnsley Building (next to the Cope Auditorium in the campus’s East Park) and runs through until Friday 25th October. Admission is free.

Accompanying the exhibition on Friday 18th October, also at the LUA Project Space, is a day-long symposium of presentations and discussion, European Borderscapes, exploring the reconfiguration of European borders after the fall of the Iron Curtain and Eastern enlargement, and how rather than dissolving, the number of borders has multiplied and become more differentiated. Alena Pfoser has programmed the event in collaboration with the CulCom Research Group and has been financially supported by Radar, the Graduate School Research Culture Fund and Loughborough University’s Department of Social Sciences. This event is also free, but booking is required via this link.

For further information, visit the Loughborough University Arts page here.

Polar Film Festival

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Next week the University’s own Geography Department, in association with the International Glaciological Society-British Branch and the UK Polar Network, will be presenting an evening of films and discussion on the thorny issue of the development of the polar region and its potential effect on the environment.

The Polar Film Festival features four films – Greenland Ice Sheet Research – Life in the Field, Science at 90 South, ASH, ICE, MUD and The BBC’s Frozen Planet – all examining a different aspect of living, working and filming at the North & South Poles, as well as the history and science behind mankind’s first steps towards understanding not only more these beautiful but forbidding regions, but also about how human growth and technological development is effecting it – with catastrophic implications.

Each film will be introduced by a leading polar scientist, all four of whom will chair a discussion panel after the final showing.

The event will be taking place at Holywell Park on Tuesday 3rd September between 6.30-9PM. Admission is free, but you will need to register if you wish to attend, via this link:

https://sites.google.com/a/lboro.ac.uk/igsbb13/home/polar-film-festival