CMIH at the Science Fair

Written by Rachel Furner
April 20, 2018

The department of mathematics held an ‘Hands on Maths Fair’ as part of the Cambridge Science Festival, where some of the CMIH affiliated members showcased some of their work.

One of the displays, featured as part of the Cambridge Image Analysis lab at the event showcased projects with the portable ioLight microscope. This exhibit, led by Joana Grah, gave users a chance to view horse faeces through the miniature, portable ioLight microscope and count how many eggs are visible. In real life this can be used by vets, to determine if parasite treatment is needed, generally classed as necessary when there are more than 1 or 2 eggs of a parasite in the sample. Researchers here at maths and in other departments worked on a porject over the summer, demonstrated at the science fair, during which they developed mathematical techniques, including machine learning, to automatically perform these analyses without the microscopist needing specialist knowledge.  More on the work behind this can be found at

Alongside this, the Cambridge Image Analysis lab also featured a return of the Simplified Tomography Demonstrations, first shown at last years Science Festival.  Rob Tovey led this years Tomography demonstration, based on work originally carried out by Emile Okada.  This allowed participants to stand on a revolving platform, with lights set up to cast their shadow onto a sheet as they revolved.  A series of the shadows were captured as images and fed into a computer programme which then reconstructed a 3d structure based on the original participants pose.