Saturday Science Books

“Science, freedom, beauty adventure: what more could you ask of life… …there was science in every curve of an airfoil, in each angle between strut and wire, in the gap of a spark plug or the colour of the exhaust flame” Charles A. Lindbergh, in Spirit of St Louis.

If you like the projects on this website, you might like to know about the many other Saturday Science projects and experiments in books. They are fully written up – with scientific analysis, suggestions for further developments, and even a little science history…

From Princeton University Press, widely available:

The Ultimate Book of Saturday Science: the very best backyard science experiments you can do yourself

Vacuum Bazookas, Electric Rainbow Jelly and 27 Other Saturday Science Projects

Also available from Amazon and Abebooks etc:

Exploding Disk Cannons, Slimemobiles and 32 Other Projects for Saturday Science

Ink Sandwiches, Electric Worms and 37 Other Experiments for Saturday Science

Free E-book: Exploding Disk Cannons

Free Ebook : You can have a free copy of Exploding Disk Cannons ! Below in blue is a link to the ebook version of Exploding Disk Cannons. 295 pages of projects and things from me and countless students you won’t find in text-books or (anywhere else) on the Web. (BTW I have a few hardback copies of the book, and these and paperback edition of 2006 is still widely available.)

Please Copy and Link to itself ! We cordially invite you to add a link to on your website. If you prefer to simply copy parts, either in print or on-line, please feel free to do so, but do include an acknowledgement, if only to allow your readers to access more material.

Copying from Exploding Disk Cannons and Ink Sandwiches. The copyright for these latter two books, Exploding Disks, and Ink Sandwiches, belongs to, and you are welcome to copy anything in them, provided you acknowledge, if only to allow your readers to access more material.

A Short SATURDAY SCIENCE Bibliography

Firstly, there are some great things in magazines, both on and offline. There is the wonderful Physics World, of course, and the broader appealing, more newspaper-level New Scientist. Don’t forget the short but excellent accounts written for businessmen in The Economist.

Wikipedia, is a fountain of knowledge – and one that you can contribute to, if you like. It really is good on anything that is not too controversial. The patent website espacenet is an open publication of tens of millions of inventions – what’s not to like ? The legal language is a little tough sometimes, but there really is gold there.

These are a few of the great books we have enjoyed… more coming soon

  • Jearl Walker, The Flying Circus of Physics, the surprising physics behind a hundred plus natural phenomena from sun-dogs to rainbows
  • Keith Gibbs The resourceful physics teacher, lots of surprising demonstrations !
  • Neil A Downie, Industrial Gases, The technology behind the industry that delivers everything from Helium to Xenon via Nitrogen, Oxygen and Argon and engineering at -200 degrees C
  • Anson Cheung and Mark Warner A Cavendish Quantum Mechanics Primer, great readable introduction, with lots of great but readable math analysis.
  • Charles A Lindbergh, The Spirit of St Louis. A great read, the story of Lindbergh’s epic flight across the Atlantic Ocean, and some of philosophy. A great read with lots of interesting and unusual science from isogonic lines to earth inductor compasses.
  • Walter J. Moore, Physical Chemistry, tucked away in this old standard textbook are lots of fascinating phenomena you won’t have heard of.
  • Horowitz and Hill, The Art of Electronics, the best book ever written on electronics.
  • Edward de Bono, Six Thinking Hats is maybe the place to start on creative thinking. There are short summaries of Six Hats. Lateral Thinking, Creativity Step by Step is the old original from de Bono
  • Simon Singh, The Code Book… all about secret codes – from simple substitutions to coding machines like the famous ‘Enigma’. Fascinating.
  • Philip Steadman, Vermeer’s Camera a scientific detective story
  • Steven Vogel, Cat’s Paws and Catapults, about the physics and engineering inside the world of nature.
  • Mark Denny, Air and Water, more on physics and nature
  • G B S Haldane, On Being the Right Size a nice essay on the importance of scaling and other potent ideas from an Old Master of science
  • Adam Hart-Davis and Paul Bader, Local Heroes one of several very readable books by Hart-Davis looking at the history of science and invention
  • James Burke, Connections, from Burke’s Scientific American column, detailing all the astonishingly connections between science and technology development
  • Douglas Botting, Dr Eckener’s Dream Machine, the amazing saga of round-the-world flight in huge airships, in the days before long-distance airplanes
  • David E H Jones, The Inventions of Daedalus, a Compendium of Plausible Schemes. Classic articles of imaginary inventions from the pages of antediluvian issues of New Scientist magazine.
  • Dava Sobel, Longitude, a classic account of almost single-handed heroic struggle to create super accurate mechanical clocks. These were needed allow accurate navigation across the oceans, and avoid the once common and desperately sad losses of ships and their crews.
  • Nick Thorpe and Peter James, Ancient Inventions. Some things were invented a VERY long time ago – a fascinating romp through the useful physics and engineering through time.
  • T W Koerner, The Pleasures of Counting, a superb account of applying mathematics to the real world.
  • Peter Goodhew, Teaching Engineering, a great account of the work Peter did to use project / problem-based teaching in the University of Liverpool in the UK.