So you think you can make a super-alloy

You might think that science lacks the raw power of interpretive dance, but worry no more. Dance Your PhD is a yearly competition where scientists get to try a style of communication that’s a bit more active than peer-reviewed journals.

This year’s winner is Peter Liddicoat from the University of Sydney, who explained his PhD thesis on the nanostructure of aluminium alloys by using a circus strongman, a unicyclist, jugglers and clowns.

Now known as Dr Liddicoat, Peter won $1000 and a trip to Belgium for a screening of his dance at TEDxBrussels.

Of course, $1000 doesn’t go very far in scientific research, but Dr Liddicoat and his colleagues are using the publicity to help with their crowd-funding campaign to build an atom microscope for biology. You can find out more about that at

On our show that aired on 22 November 2012, Beth spoke to Dr Liddicoat about his research and his dance – you can listen to that interview on our podcast.


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