This hybrid event on microplastic pollution and citizen science took place on Wednesday 20 September 2023, 2.30-3.30pm in UCD James Joyce Library Link 3 and online via Zoom.
The UCD Citizen Science Community of Practice, supported by the Earth Institute and UCD Library, held its
first event of the new academic year in Library Link 3 on Wed 20th September. Niamh Burke and Dr Mark
Pickering (UCD School of Medicine) gave a fascinating talk about how they set about and succeeded in
building (using 3D printing) a low-cost, open-source and easy to build microscope that can measure
microplastics in the sea.
They are now seeking community groups, local libraries, environmental groups and maker spaces to test out and help them refine their EnderScope (this link gives instructions to build your own should you wish!). With data from the communities using the microscope, the team in the Pickering Lab can help address the problem of microplastic pollution in the seas.
About the speakers
Niamh Burke is a PhD student in the Pickering Lab in UCD. During a short internship in the Pickering Lab during her undergraduate degree, Niamh developed a passion for building simple, low-cost, open-source lab tools. Niamh’s PhD now focuses on designing open and accessible tools to measure microplastic pollution in the sea.
Dr Mark Pickering is a scientist, microscopist and maker with extensive experience in developing low cost open source imaging tools. This stems from his passion for making science and discovery open and accessible to all!