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Kids at a MATHEROES exhibit

MATHEROES, or how to make materials science appealing, in Material-ES

As scientific developments get more and more complex, the challenge of communicating any innovation increases. Despite the increasing amount of applications of new materials in day to day life, explaining how they work is not an easy task, especially with younger people, who might not see any of the more advanced concepts in their science classes. Anna May Masnou, Head of the Communication Department at the ICMAB, has written an article at the SOCIEMAT magazine Material-ES about the MATHEROES initiative, which personalizes material properties into superheroes.

The MATHEROES initiative is driven by some members of the ICMAB staff (researchers, communication and IT staff) and with help from Esciencia Eventos Científicos, and is based on the creation of five superheroes representing materials for energy (Fotoenergía), oxides and magnetic materials (Magnon), superconducting materials (Superconductor), molecular electronics (Electrowoman), and materials for biomedical applications (Bionanocápsula).

These five character have toured schools, libraries, science fairs and other scientific centers along with different activities, talks, and experiments, in order to make material science more fun and appealing for a young audience. 

Figure: The MATHEROES exhibition during the European Researcher's Night (September 2018) / ICMAB.

One of the initiative creators, Anna May Masnou, has described the reach and characteristics of this project in Material-ES, a quarterly materials science magazine published by the Sociedad Española de Materiales (SOCIEMAT). The magazine was created to communicate and boost any initiatives within the field, with a special interest in helping younger researchers to showcase their work. The MATHEROES article is part of a special issue focused on dissemination initiatives of Materials Science, and is coordinated by guest editior Jordi Díaz-Marcos, from the CCiTUB

“MATHEROES, or how to make material science appealing” is Anna May Masnou’s article on the second issue of the 4th volume of the 2020 publication, and it covers the MATHEROES story, from their creation to the achieved results, with a chronology of all of their public appearances and their reach. 

cover material es matheroes

Figure: Cover of the last issue of the Material-ES magazine (Volume 4, Issue 2, April-June 2020)

You can read the article (in Spanish) on the last volume of MATERIAL-ES, and learn more about the MATHEROES initiative on its website.

Cover Figure: The MATHEROES at the EXPOMINER Science Faire (Fira Barcelona) in November 2018. / ICMAB

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