Life on Mars at World Science Festival Brisbane

Friday, 22 March 2024, marked a monumental occasion for the Big Questions Institute as it hosted its first public talk at the World Science Festival in Brisbane. The event centred around the captivating theme of “Life on Mars,” drew a large audience to the Playhouse Theatre at QPAC, all eager to delve into the mysteries of the cosmos.

Led by a distinguished panel of Mars experts, the evening promised a journey through the intricacies of space exploration and astrobiology. BQI advisors Dr Graham Phillips, Professor Tamara Davis, and Professor Martin Van Kranendonk spearheaded the discussion, bringing their extensive knowledge and passion for the red planet to the forefront. They were joined by international experts, Professor Kathleen Campbell from the University of Auckland and Dr Jorge Vago, a key figure in the ExoMars project, adding global perspectives to the local expertise.

The talk ventured into the enigmatic world of dark energy, ancient microbial life, Martian geology, and the tantalising prospects of life beyond Earth. Each subject was tackled with depth and clarity, making the complex topics accessible and engaging for everyone in attendance. The synergy between the panellists was palpable as they shared their insights and hypotheses, fostering a dynamic dialogue that captivated the audience.

The “Life on Mars” event at the World Science Festival Brisbane was more than just a talk; it was a profound exploration of the cosmic questions that have intrigued humanity for centuries. Attendees left with a deeper understanding of our place in the universe and the ongoing endeavours to unlock the secrets of our celestial neighbour, Mars.

BQI’s inaugural public talk at WSFB was a resounding success, setting a high standard for future events. It provided a platform for scientific discourse and ignited the imaginations of all who attended, reminding us of the endless possibilities that space exploration presents.

The ‘Life on Mars’ event at the World Science Festival Brisbane was recorded by ABC, and you can listen to it here.