Monthly Meetings

All monthly meetings begin at 7:30 promptly and are open to NLO members and general public.

Our 2017 Schedule is

Date Topic Speaker
9th January Forensic Science Dr. John Twibel
13th February Journey to the Dawn of the Solar System Chris Starr
13th March A Little Physics of the Ear Peter Bradley
10th April Sports Car Technology Dr. Matt O’Keefe
8th May Wooden Computer Invented in North Devon by Thomas Fowler Pamela Vass
12th June Having Fun with the Drake Equation and the Search for Extra-terrestrial Intelligence Leigh Edwards

Advances in Sports Car Technology over the Last 20 Years – 10th April

Matthew O’Keefe (CTO, INEX Microtechnology Ltd) will give an overview of advances in sports car technology in the last 20 years. He will use his experience of sports car ownership to discuss how technology has dramatically improved track times for the average driver. He will focus on technology aimed at performance improvements and the benefits these advances bring to the non professional driver. He will conclude with a brief look at future trends in the industry.


The search for our origins and those of the Solar System has advanced greatly over recent decades, thanks to developments in Earth and planetary sciences and through the robotic exploration of our nearest cosmic neighbours by increasingly sophisticated unmanned space probes. This talk looks at our current understanding of the formation and early evolution of the Earth and Solar System some 4.5 billion years ago, and examines the contribution to this of NASA’s current Dawn mission. Dawn is one of the most remarkable accomplishments yet in space exploration, being the only spacecraft to have visited and entered into orbit around two different bodies, asteroid Vesta and dwarf planet Ceres, thanks to its revolutionary ion-propulsion system.

You can read more at Dawn’s rich harvest as Ceres gives up secrets and Exploring the Dawn of the solar system.

Forensic Science – 9th January

A brief look at what constitutes “Forensic Science” and some of the variety of disciplines involved and processes used. A look at how scientific tests are carried out in laboratories and how the results of examinations are interpreted and the strength of evidence is deduced and the peer review checking processes.  The talk is rounded off by some casework examples from the author’s specialisms in fire and electrical investigations.