You can now check air quality – online

The University of Brighton has launched online air quality data so residents can see which times and days were more polluted than others.

The service could help those with respiratory diseases such as asthma avoid outdoor exposure when levels of pollutants are at their highest.

The data is in the form of graphs showing levels of potentially harmful gases over the last 24 hours, seven and 30 days. The graphs can be seen at: https://bit.ly/2QwNHxp

The readings come from the University’s £250,000 Air Environment Research (AER) monitoring station at Falmer, the first of its kind in the UK.

Dr Kevin Wyche, Senior Lecturer in Atmospheric Science and Air Quality Management within the University’s School of Environment and Technology, and co-founder and principal investigator of the AER, said knowing what pollutants are in the air is increasingly vital.

He said: “More than 50,000 people die prematurely each year in the UK from air pollution-related diseases, costing the NHS around 16 per cent of its total budget. Knowing when pollution is at its highest during the day and what days are worse than others could help some people avoid exposure.”

Launched following last week’s World Health Organisation’s conference in Brussels on air quality, it provides five graphs:

* Nitrogen Dioxide NO2 – the main source is burning fossil fuels as in cars and this can irritate lungs and make diseases such as asthma worse. This, in turn, can lead to great risk of infections

* Ozone O3 – concentrations are often highest on hot, still and sunny days, and are a major component of modern ‘smog’

* Sulphur Dioxide SO2 – can be damaging to the environment and acts as a respiratory irritant, causing coughing and shortness of breath

* Formaldehyde HCHO – can cause irritation of the skin, eyes, nose and throat.

* Nitrous Acid HONO – can contribute to the formation of other pollutants

Dr Wyche, who is chairing a forthcoming Public Policy Exchange at an EC and ClientEarth event, said the WHO has reported that outdoor air pollution kills more people worldwide than road traffic accidents, smoking and diabetes combined.

Dr Kirsty Smallbone, Head of the School of Environment and Technology and is co-founder and co-investigator of Air Environment Research, said: “Brighton is exceeding air quality limits set by the government and it is crucial that we enhance our understanding of the relationships that exist between pollutants and health. It is also vital and incumbent upon us to share our knowledge and data with the public.”

The monitoring station is co-funded by the EU’s Interreg IVB NWE programme and the University of Brighton as part of the Joint Air Quality Initiative (JOAQUIN). Graphs and data archives are produced by Jason Bailey, Learning Technologies Adviser at the University.

Urgent action needed to save earth’s biodiversity

Biodiversity – vital for life on earth – is being eroded at an alarming rate and both politicians and the private sector must act now to halt the erosion.

That was the message from the University of Brighton’s Professor Andrew Church, specialist in human-nature relations and the environment, who spoke at a London conference alongside Environment Secretary Michael Gove and TV broadcaster and writer Ben Fogle. Read More

Explore your options through Clearing

Good luck to everyone receiving exam results this week!

If you’ve had a change of heart about what you want do next, or your exams have gone differently from what you expected, Clearing is an opportunity to assess your options and explore the possibilities. 

If you need help navigating your way through the Clearing process, check out our handy guide. Or call us on 01273 644000, we can help. 

You can also book on to our Clearing visit day at Moulsecoomb, where you’ll be studying, on Saturday 18 August and Wednesday 22 August. It’s a chance to look around and consider your next step. There’s a welcome talk and introduction, tour of the campus, advice about accommodation and student support and you will meet some of our academic staff in a Q&A.

Everyone who is looking to study with us in 2018 is welcome to attend. Course availability does change quickly in Clearing so if you’re not holding an offer get in touch first to confirm there is space on the course you are interested in before making travel arrangements.

Find out more and book your place here.

University of Brighton at Paddle Round the Pier

The sun shone and temperatures soared at this years Paddle Round the Pier. And we were there, hosting talks at the event’s University of Brighton lecture theatre.

Dr James Ebdon and Dr Diogo Gomes Da Silva (accompanied by their glamorous assistant Bob the Dog) talked ‘Bug, Beaches and Belly Aches’, presenting microbiology research on water quality, exploring how we monitor bathing water quality, why it’s important, what’s in the water and what it’s like elsewhere in the world.

Read More

Hands-on science for Brighton students

Young people with an interest in science and engineering can learn how to turn their passion into a career at a science fair in Brighton tomorrow (11 July).

Big Bang @ Brighton will take place at the University of Brighton and organisers are promising “an exciting, colourful and noisy event” aimed at encouraging more students to pursue further studies and potential careers in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

Organised by STEM Sussex, the University of Brighton’s STEM outreach department, the event is funded by the Sussex Learning Network’s National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP), a four-year programme aimed at encouraging more young people, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, into higher education.

Big Bang @ Brighton will feature a range of hands-on activities, workshops and shows provided by many local companies, universities and colleges and other organisations, highlighting the STEM-related opportunities available to young people in the area. Read More

See you at Paddle Round the Pier 2018

It looks like it’s going to be a glorious weekend for this year’s Paddle Round the Pier; the largest beach festival in Europe. And our university is proud to be one of the sponsors. 

There’ll be a University of Brighton lecture theatre at the event, hosting a number of talks, including some familiar faces from our school. Come along and see Dr James Ebdon and Dr Diogo Gomes Da Silva at 11am on Saturday who’ll be talking “Bugs, Beaches and Belly Aches – a microbiologists eye-view on recreational water quality”, and Dr Kirsten Jenkins who will be discussing the potential for renewable energy transition in her talk “as strong as the sea: renewable energy potential on the South Coast”.

Come along and join in the fun from water, street and urban sports to live music and more. Paddle Round the Pier 2018 is happening this weekend, 7 and 8 July, on Hove Lawns. See you there!

Exploring Environmental Challenges

Big Bang logo
Young students will be allowed to build water filters, investigate the structure of rocks, measure the quality of the air they breathe and even build their own glacier.

The hands-on experiences are being offered by University of Brighton scientists at the South of England Showground this week.

Read More

Come and visit us this winter

It might be cold outside but don’t let that stop you visiting us this winter!

If you’re considering starting an undergraduate course here in 2018, why not sign up to one of our campus tours taking place during December and January and find out more about what it’s like study at Brighton?

The tours will give you the chance to explore the campus where your course of interest is based, view our facilities and talk to our staff and students.

Find out more and book onto a tour <link to: https://www.brighton.ac.uk/studying-here/visit-us/campus-tours/index.aspx>