We came, we saw, we took samples back to Earth!

Join us for a FREE virtual public talk from John Holt, Space Research Centre, University of Leicester.

Talk synopsis:

NASA have been talking about Mars Sample Return (MSR) since the 70’s, but now it is happening for real!

The Perseverance rover is the first stage in MSR and it’s on the way right now; hopefully landing on the 18th Feb 2021. But, Mars may once have supported life and potentially still does, so bringing extra-terrestrial samples back to Earth presents a contamination challenge.

At the University of Leicester, we have been addressing the issues of safe containment by adopting different technologies from sectors like genetics, bio-tech and medicine. Our solution is called the Double Walled Isolator (DWI) and in this session I will talk about what is new, the science behind safe handling of a potential pathogen and how such technology might be spun back to industry.

This public talk is part of Cardiff University School of Medicine’s Science in Health Public Lecture Series 2020-2021. Other talks include Mental Health and the COVID-19 pandemic and Social justice, health equity and COVID-19. The full programme of lectures can be found here.


The highly successful series is now in its eighteenth year and attracts a diverse audience of interested individuals including the public, secondary school pupils and professionals. The lectures are FREE to access. This year the lectures will take place live via Zoom.

Book a place for John Holt’s talk here