College of Science & Engineering

Doors Open Day at King's Buildings

Come along and explore The King’s Buildings Campus and discover the science that happens here - Saturday 23 September between 10:00 and 16:00!

Biological Sciences

Ashworth Laboratories

What have scientists recently discovered about the malaria parasite? How do the members of your gut community talk to each other? And what’s so interesting about plant evolution? Join our friendly scientists from School of Biological Sciences to find out what we’ve been investigating this year and make some discoveries of your own using a microscope. We’ll also have tours of the University’s Natural History collections.


Physics and Astronomy

James Clerk Maxwell Building (JCMB)

The Music and Acoustics laboratory facilities include two unusual rooms used for teaching and research: an anechoic chamber, whose walls, ceiling and floor are covered by long foam rubber wedges to eliminate sound reflection and echoes; and a reverberation room, whose hard plastered surfaces and geometrical design result in a reverberation time approaching ten seconds. Visitors will experience the dramatic difference between these two acoustical environments, and hear about how they have been used recently to study a variety of topics including the sound radiated by brass instruments and the absorption of sound by moss-covered paving.  

The Nucleus Building

Come and meet the physicists who work at King's Buildings! You will have the chance to help us build a giant LEGO model, use some virtual-reality headsets and take part in many hands-on activities about bio-physics, a not-so-well-known but fascinating discipline at the intersection between physics and biology.



James Clerk Maxwell Building (JCMB)

How can you construct a self-supporting bridge? Does the height of the British population follow a specific pattern? Can you cross all bridges in a given city without backtracking? To find out how Mathematics can help answer all these diverse questions, come along and chat with members of the Maths Outreach Team. Investigate some mind-blowing optical illusions, and experience the extraordinary 3D zoetrope: watch solid shapes change and animate before your eyes.  




Conceived for cutting-edge academic research into wave and tidal current interactions, the facility is also a tool for commercial developers to ensure their technologies and projects perform ‘right first time’ and are de-risked as much as practical before cutting steel or going offshore. Demonstrations of the 25m circular FloWave test tank, showing the ways in which it can recreate versions of complex ocean conditions, will take place every 15 minutes between 11:00 and 14:00.

The Nucleus Building

Come along to our Nucleus hub to see student societies demonstrating their inspiring work from across all the engineering disciplines. You may see the future of high-speed transportation from HYPED our hyperloop society, or chat to engineers striving to make an impact on current societal and environmental issues with our engineers for change society… you may even see a rocket built by our own student engineers that successfully launched, but wasn’t quite as successful at landing.



The Nucleus

Come and explore chemistry with a range of hands-on activities covering a wide variety of topics. From edible chemical reactions to using computers to discover the chemistry of the future, learn about the chemistry being researched here on The King's Buildings Campus. From child-friendly experiments, talks combining research and music, and scientists discussing their research, stop by the chemistry-themed tables to discover how chemistry is all around us! Activities suitable for all ages and abilities.


Edinburgh Genome Foundry 

The Swann Building

In the Edinburgh Genome Foundry’s automatic factory, robots work tirelessly around the clock assembling large pieces of DNA from smaller parts faster, cheaper and more efficiently than humans. Scientists can now design, and have built, DNA from the ground up – mixing and matching genetic parts to see how they work. They can also build long strands of DNA that combine 1000s of genes in almost unlimited combinations to equip cells or whole organisms with new or improved capabilities.


Student Permaculture Garden

Murchison House (rear)

The King’s Building Permaculture Garden is a student-led project allowing the University and other communities to connect around a growing space at the rear of Murchison House. The design of the garden and the organisation of the social aspects are all inspired by the Permaculture principles, design methods that create sustainable environments. Students will be available between 12:00 and 16:00 at the garden, to give tours and to explain the principles behind the garden’s design.


King's Buildings Campus events

Find examples of architectural developments across the site and discover more through guided tours and information panels. Additionally, there is a variety of interactive activities through which the whole family can explore cutting-edge scientific research into natural history, acoustics, permaculture gardening, advanced transportation, higher dimensions, and much more. Explore our outdoor campus history exhibition, which uses unique aerial images to show the evolution of the campus over a century. Hour-long walking tours of campus history and architecture leave at 10.30, 12:00 and 14:00 from outside the Nucleus Building. For full details of access and activities, collect a Visitors’ Map from our purple-shirted assistants at our main pedestrian entrance at the junction of West Mains and Mayfield Roads.


Other Nucleus Building events

FUSION Art-Science exhibition

A collaboration between researchers in the School of Physics and Astronomy and three final-year students at the Edinburgh College of Art, this is a gallery of new works investigating the science, people and passions behind current research and teaching activities.

Edinburgh Alumnae: a celebration

See our newly installed gallery of notable women who studied or worked at the University of Edinburgh. They represent some of those few women whose talents and determination — and their passion for their subject — led them to success, despite in many cases the circumstances and prejudices of their time.

Find out more about Katie Paterson’s Ideas: a campus-wide art-science installation by one of Scotland’s most celebrated artists. Download the tour app and find the 100 ideas!


Central Campus

Doors Open Day: 60 years of computer science and AI - themed walking tour (School if Informatics)

Bayes Centre tours (Sunday 24th)

EPCC (23rd and 24th)


Doors Open Day 2023 website