ACT Branch News

07/09/2023 | General

ACT Branch celebrated Science Week 2023 with a bang! Multiple rounds of bangs in fact. We had Australian Federal Police (AFP) certified Forensic Firearm Examiner and Ballistics expert Joel Waszczuk deliver an engaging ‘mythbuster’ presentation on “Hollywood Ballistics: Science or Fiction?”. An in-person and online crowd of 60+ were asked to vote on each Hollywood movie scene shown; was the firearm-frenzy, bullet-filled movie scene scientifically viable, or fanciful fiction? Everyone had a blast learning about guns, ammunition, cartridges, and the forensic comparison of striations caused when a bullet is fired. We also learned about the capabilities and limitations of shooting bullets in air, in water (and bending bullets around corners. Spoiler alert: not possible). In turns out, the John Wick movies live up to their hype with fairly accurate gunshot scenes.

National Science Week is Australia’s annual celebration of science and technology. In Canberra, the ACT Branch, sponsored by an ACT Government Science Week grant, held this event as a Public Night allowing not only ANZFSS members, but students, and interested members of the public to join in the fun. There was popcorn (because movie night), #Scienceweek prize pack giveaways, delicious platters of food, and interactive “Science Stations” demonstrating a variety of forensic science disciplines. Our new ANZFSS mousepad and Challenge Coin merchandise was also available.

Running each year in August, Science Week features more than 1,000 events around Australia, including those delivered by universities, schools, research institutions, libraries, museums, science centres and ANZFSS. We have to admit, it’s one of our favourite weeks of the year.

For anyone interested, ANZFSS membership is open to forensic practitioners, other scientists and persons with bona fide interests in forensic science. Apply here, or follow along for news and events of the ACT Branch on Instagram @anzfssactbranch