Come to Cambridge on Saturday 23rd March 2013 to join in the biennial Cambridge Science Festival Maths Open Day!

Cambridge mathematicians and theoretical physicists work on everything from the Big Bang to number theory, from modelling the shrinking of Arctic sea ice to geometry, quantum information and understanding how the influenza virus evolves.

On Saturday 23rd March the Centre for Mathematical Sciences will be open from 12 noon to 4pm as more than 75 volunteer staff and students from the Faculty of Mathematics will be sharing some of the excitement of the subject through hands-on demonstrations, activities and displays (featuring everything from custard to cosmology!) for visitors of all ages from 8 through to adult. Activities, demonstrations and displays will cover subjects as diverse as prime numbers, high energy physics, relativity and gravitation, astrophysics, topology (or why a teacup and a doughnut look the same to a mathematician), and quantum information. There'll also be activities and mathematical games for younger children too (age 5+) .

The Maths Public Open Day happens only once every two years and last took place in 2011: among other things it's a very rare chance to explore inside the fluids dynamics laboratory hidden beneath the lawn of one of the most beautiful modern buildings in Cambridge. Hands-on fluids displays and demos will explore some of the areas Cambridge applied mathematicians work on, ranging from bacteria to ice dynamics.

At 2pm Professor Tom Körner will be giving a free public talk on 'Maths and Smallpox' (ages 14+). And at 11am our neighbour, the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences, hosts a talk by Dr Colva Roney-Dougal: 'Party Hard! The Maths of Connections'.

There will also be an incredibly rare and exciting opportunity to take a tour round the COSMOS supercomputer, the largest shared-memory computer in Europe, which supports research in cosmology, astrophysics and particle physics. Places for the tours, which will be run at intervals during the afternoon, can only be booked in person on the day (please note numbers will be limited).

The Maths Cafe will be open throughout the afternoon, serving a selection of hot and cold drinks, snacks and light refreshments. Limited parking is available on-site in the Centre for Mathematical Sciences car-park on Wilberforce Road, and there are also other parking options nearby.

The Cambridge Science Festival Maths Open Day takes place on Saturday 23rd March 2013, 12 noon to 4pm, at the Centre for Mathematical Sciences, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge CB3 0WA - see location on University of Cambridge online map. No booking needed - drop in throughout the afternoon.