Hunting the Elements Preview Draws a Crowd at WKAR

Apr 4, 2012

Around one hundred fans of science programming on WKAR joined us Tuesday night (April 3) for our Preview Event featuring NOVA: Hunting the Elements.

The evening kicked off with a sneak peek at the special 2-hour program airing Wednesday, April 4, at 9pm on WKAR TV-HD/23. Guests also had an opportunity to hear direct from some of the researchers who explore questions about how our world works.

The Scientists
Artemis Spyrou, an experimental nuclear physicist at the National Superconducting Cyclotron Lab (NSCL), answered questions about the elements and isotopes, and talked about her work investigating nuclear reactions and the astrophysical processes responsible for the synthesis of all known elements.

Brad Sherrill gave the audience an overview of the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB), the new national research facility currently under construction at MSU. Dr. Sherrill is chief scientist at the NSCL and FRIB.

A Lot of Really Smart Questions
"The turnout surprised me," said Alex Parsons, Communications Manager for the FRIB project. "There seemed to be a lot of people who were curious about, not only the program that was coming up, but the work that happens right here on campus. It was great. They seemed engaged, they asked a lot of really smart questions, and seemed to enjoy learning about elements and isotopes."

WKAR supporter Donna Kopenhafer attended the event with her daughter. "She's very interested in the physics program at MSU. So to hear the professors themselves is a great opportunity for her."

"Having this type of technology in the area, I think we take for granted," said R.J. Benson, another fan of WKAR's science programming.  "But to hear we're a world class institution for this type of science, I think it reinforces some of the things that we're losing track of and that can contribute. I can appreciate the real world benefits that can come from research like this."

The TV Show
NOVA: Hunting the Elements debuted Wednesday (4/4) on WKAR TV-HD/23. Available for online viewing now at