Why is 175 so important to the RSC this year?

If you have anything to do with the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) you will have noticed that the number 175 features heavily this year. We have 175 Faces of Chemistry, 175 Minutes of Chemistry and the give-away 175 Anniversary Exhibition. Yes, the oldest chemical society in the world is 175 years old this year.

Water into wine at Port Alfred 2016

Water into wine at Port Alfred 2016

For the anniversary year the RSC has been keen to encourage members to spend 175 minutes (or more) on chemistry. Reading this blog will count to your total, as will a number of other activities. If you have contributed 175 minutes to chemistry, especially if it has been in an interesting or innovative manner, why not share your story with the RSC or simply tweet with the hashtag #time4chem. I shared my story of contributing to Scifest Africa with Kitchen Chemistry: Seconds and was fortunate enough to be chosen to be one of the 175 stories (from 31/3/2017 175 Stories). Take a look at all of the stories on the RSC website (from 31/3/2017 here on the RSC website).

In addition to the #Time4Chem campaign there is a celebration of diversity in chemistry. The 175 faces of chemistry showcases a wide variety of people with connections to chemistry. It is interesting to see the different backgrounds that the faces have been drawn from and also the careers that they followed. I have the privilege to work with two of the “faces” at the moment. See if you can spot them in the gallery.

The anniversary exhibition ran from 22 February to 4 March at Burlington House and showcased the stories and backgrounds of the 175 faces. The opening date of the exhibition was chosen to coincide with official date of the 175th anniversary: 23 February 2016. Read more about the exhibition here.

I hope to emulate some of my colleagues and still be active with chemistry and the RSC when the bicentenary arrives. You never know, I might still be doing Kitchen Chemistry shows – I do hope so.