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OU on the BBC: BBC Inside Science - Space weather centre and Ada Lovelace day

Updated Tuesday 14th October 2014

The Met Office's space weather centre, Ada Lovelace day and Ebola are discussed on BBC Inside Science this week. 

In BBC Inside Science, Dr Lucie Green and guests illuminate the mysteries and challenge the controversies behind the science that's changing our world.

On this week's programme:

The Met Office's new space weather centre:

8th October 2014 saw the official opening of the United Kingdom's only dedicated space weather forecast centre. 

The Met Office's Space Weather Operations Centre in Exeter will help detect potential severe weather events that could wreak havoc on the UK's economy and infrastructure. It is key in guarding us against the impact of certain weather. 

Dr. Lucie Green finds out how those employed at the Space Weather Operations Centre make their predictions of weather in space and how it impacts us on Earth. 

Ada Lovelace Creative commons image Icon Wikimedia under Creative-Commons license Ada Lovelace Ada Lovelace day:

14th October 2014 was Ada Lovelace Day, a date used to recognise and celebrate remarkable women who are or were pioneers in the world of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM). 

Born in 1815 as the only legitimate daughter of the poet Lord Byron, Ada went on to be a mathmatical prodigy and worked with the famous Charles Babbage on an 'Analytical Engine' - determined by many as the first premise for a computer program. You can read more about Ada Lovelace's and Charles Babbage's work here.

Lucie speaks to founder Suw Charman-Anderson about why she was such an inspirational lady and whether she really was the first computer programmer. 

Ebola:

Ebola virus disease has been in and out of the news for many years, so why is this particular outbreak being treated so seriously?  Are you worried about this outbreak? Use our comments facility below to share your views.

Professor Jonathan Ball (Nottingham University) explains the science of the Ebola virus and why there has been another outbreak. We also gain some understanding as to why Ebola is so infectious, yet not particularly contagious. There's also discussion around what viral mutations actually mean. 

Want to share your views on any of the topics discussed in the programme? Use the comments function on this page or talk about the programme on Twitter using the #insidescience hashtag. 

Listen to Inside Science

Tune in to BBC Radio 4 on Thursday 16th October at 16:30 to listen to this week's programme. More information and a link to listen again later will be available from the BBC's Inside Science pages.

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