Junior detectives learn from CSI Norwich

The British Science Association (BSA) hosted CSI Norwich, opening the doors to the public at the Norwich Science Festival (NSF) at the Forum.

This particular science event was filled with junior detectives investigating a crime scene, with the aim of educating children from key stage two upwards.

A large computer screen in the background presented four murder suspect profiles and used science to deduce who the murderer was. Volunteers dressed in white lab coats performed a series of science experiments, including DNA extraction, scientific fingerprint study and an analysis of mysterious chemicals through chromatography.

Visitors also had the opportunity to examine the suspects’ DNA sequences and deduce who they thought the murderer was.

CSI Norwich also specialised in blood typing, where four suspects blood was tested to see which suspect committed the crime.

The suspect whose blood presented more of a cloudy colour was automatically eliminated from the investigation. The Anti A solution was bound to the A antigens, alongside the B and O solutions that were discovered to have negative results. The suspects who were found to have A antigens in their blood were more likely to be the murderers.

A former food safety researcher, Duncan Gaskin said: “CSI Norwich uses science and logic to eliminate the suspects in a crime scene. This is a model based on real forensic tests.”

Forensic testing was put into place at the various stalls, such as looking at the fabrics with all of the suspects wearing black clothes under the microscopes.

PhD scientist and Chair of BSA, Freya Varden said: “This form of forensic identification is all about science.”

She added: “To get the answers, you have to do the science.”

This particular scenario of examining the fabrics is a great way for the visitors to learn about a CSI investigation and the science and testing involved behind the scenes.



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September 2021
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