LOGO - Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory LLNL

The popular Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's lecture series for middle and high school students, "Science on Saturday," is going virtual this year with the theme “Combating COVID-19.”

The free, online lectures, featuring leading LLNL researchers joined by Bay Area science teachers, are scheduled for 10 a.m., on four consecutive Saturdays, beginning Feb. 6.

Each of the lectures will address a difference aspect of the scientific effort to combat the coronavirus.

Feb. 6 - “Molecular Diagnostics in the Age of COVID: Designing a Portable Point-of-Care Device.” Presented by LLNL scientists Larry Dugan and Michael Triplett, joined by Tracy High School teacher Erin McKay, the lecture will provide an overview of how viruses infect a host leading to disease, the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic, the laboratory’s previous work in molecular diagnostics, and efforts to develop a point-of-care device for use in a clinical setting.

Feb. 13 - “Engineering Solutions: A Story of Swabs and Ventilators.” Presented by researchers Eric Duoss, Chris Spadaccini, Angela Tooker, Jack Kotovsky and Allison Yorita, joined by retired Alamo Elementary School teacher Stan Hitomi, the lecture will discuss the development of 3D printed swabs for COVID-19 testing and how an LLNL-designed ventilator is helping COVID-19 patients.

Feb. 20 - “Defense by Design: Creating Antibodies against COVID-19.” Presented by LLNL scientists Dan Faissol, Tom Desautels, and Feliza Bourguet, joined by Dougherty Valley High School teacher Katherine Huang, the lecture will discuss how antibodies are being engineered to protect against COVID-19.

Feb. 27 - “Keeping Up with COVID: Staying in Touch and Staying Safe.” Presented by researcher John Chang and Capuchino High School teacher Thi Ngo, the lecture will look at how wireless communications technology is being used to alert the community and reduce the transmission of diseases.

“Science on Saturday” is sponsored by LLNL's Science Education Program. To join the virtual talks, follow the instructions on the “Science on Saturday” website at st.llnl.gov/sci-ed/science-on-saturday.