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Hello, I'm Richard Hammond. Welcome to my Blast Lab.
Ah, yes, I forgot about this. I tried to mop that up last night.
But it just sort of melted the mop.
Don't go near it, that's the best thing.
Now we're all gathered into the Blast Lab,
I can activate the perimeter robot guards. If we can switch them on?
There, you see? Just for our own security.
Now, today I have invited
two teams to compete in scientific challenges to win great prizes.
So, without further ado...
-That's one of the lab rats
turning up late for work,
encountering the robot guards. Still, it'll teach him to be late.
Let's look at what's coming up today.
You'll find me here, in my lab, working away at all hours of day,
and night. And that's why being one of my lab security guards
is a pretty stressful job.
At least, that's what my crack SAS commando unit told me this morning,
when they didn't show up for work.
Apparently, it's because of stress that they've all gone
on a health spa holiday, for massages and beauty treatments.
So, in the meantime, I have drafted in a woman whose fighting ability
is matched only by her ability to play Sudoku. It is my Ninja Nan.
Yeah, Ninja Nan, thanks for standing in.
Thank you, thank you. I know she may look a little fragile.
But she is a fully trained ninja.
Yeah. There you go.
Nan, if you'd like to take your place in security, please, Nan. Nan!
Nan! If you'd like to take your place
in security, thank you very much.
There she goes. That's not full speed for her, obviously.
Actually, the army have cloned her DNA
to create a race of bionic fighting machines.
Nan, are you settled in yet? Are you settled in to security? There she is.
See the sort of ninja way she moves her tartan shopping trolley
next to her, and settles in. Oh, out comes the ninja knitting.
Yesterday, in her tea break, she knitted a scarf
that was ten miles long. Should have seen her do it.
Right, let's meet the people who claim to be our teams for today.
-Let's have a look.
Hang on. Hold on there, audience.
There's no point getting all giddy. We don't know who they are yet.
They say they're the Yellow Team. We can't be too careful.
I'm going to ask you to identify yourselves by name.
What are your names, please?
-Ellie, Embla, Kelsey. Yeah, that checks out
with the security file. I'm also going to ask you to demonstrate
a hidden talent, to prove you are who you say you are.
Embla, it says here that you're double-jointed. Are you?
-Prove it, please.
So this is your hands, that you can...
Aargh! Look at that?
Yeah, the whole audience is going, ah-ha! Yeah, you are double-jointed.
You are cleared through security. Come into the Blast Lab.
Kelsey, Embla and Ellie, hello. Welcome. Where are you all from?
ALL: Cornwall, and we are...
the Sassy Sciencettes!
Not today you're not. You're the Yellow Team.
Let's meet the people who claim to be your competitors. The Red Team.
Right, you say you're the Red Team.
Give me your names, please, so that I can check them off. You are?
-Ross, Bruce and Kyle.
Hidden talent - Kyle, it says here you can do Russian martial arts?
That sounds deadly, and very impressive.
But don't make a move right now, please.
Because just behind you, you see, poised like a velociraptor,
is Ninja Nan. If she knows you're even thinking about martial arts,
she'll just tear you apart. So, Lab Rats, make her safe, please?
Contain Ninja Nan.
In they go. For some reason, she's terrified of this tape.
She won't go past it. OK, I think, Kyle, she's safe, she's safe.
You won't get attacked. Demonstrate your Russian martial arts.
Oh, yes. That's sort of a boxing thing going on there.
Now he's turned on his team mates.
It was very casual martial arts, that, Kyle.
I reckon that'll do. You're cleared through security.
Come in to the Blast Lab. Come on.
Kyle, that was kind of..."Oh, all right, martial arts," casually.
-Where have you all come from?
and we are the Secret Science Team.
Not today you're not. You're the Red Team, and that's final.
Right, welcome, both teams, Red and Yellow, to Blast Lab.
You need to go and get ready for Round One.
Let's go and get settled in.
He's cleverer than Stephen Hawking, faster than Isaac Newton
and consumes more petrol than Albert Einstein.
It is my closest pal, Oliver.
Oliver loves nothing more than collecting facts
to put in his high-tech fact-nav system.
Unfortunately, I built it. So, it doesn't always work.
Not all of the facts are correct.
So, I'm going to ask our teams to decide which ones are,
and which ones aren't. Oliver will then tell us, if it's true,
-he'll say this.
And if it's false, he'll say this.
OK, simple enough.
And this of course, teams, is your first chance to earn points.
So, we all settled and ready?
Right, Reds, I'm going to give you a science fact.
You tell me whether it's true or false.
Oliver will tell us if you're right.
The phenomenon known as The Northern Lights
is created by a wind from the sun.
Is that true or false? The Northern Lights. Have you heard
-of The Northern Lights?
Talk about it, while I ask the audience.
Audience, true or false? Let's see what you think. Shout it out.
Oh, about a 50/50 split there in the audience, I think.
But, don't listen to them. What do they know?
Have a good think, team.
-You reckon it's false?
Oliver, is it true or false?
Reds, I'm very sorry.
It's actually named after the Roman goddess of dawn,
Aurora, and the Greek name for north wind, Boreas.
Right, Reds, sorry, no point there.
Yellows, this is your chance to get ahead. Here is your science fact.
A full moon is nine times brighter than a half moon.
Have a talk, have a think, talk it over.
Audience, what do you think... is that true or false?
Again, pretty much a half-and-half split in the audience, I think.
The most important opinions here, of course, the Yellow Team.
Their decision will decide... point or not.
This will put you in the lead if you get it right.
What do you think? Embla, you going to be spokesperson?
-True of false?
You're saying true. Oliver, is it true or false?
-It is true.
The moon is covered in valleys and mountains.
And normally they're all in shadow.
But when it's full, the sun's light reaches into those valleys
and reflects back. So, there's more of the moon to reflect light back.
So, well done. That means one for the Yellows, they are ahead.
Now, the third question.
This is the one that I'm going to ask you as a question.
It's not a science fact. You give me an answer.
Write that answer down on the boards in front of you.
It's not that easy to be exact. So,
I will give a point to the team that gets closest to the real answer, OK?
Here comes your question.
How long would it take Concorde plane to fly around the world?
Have a chat, have a think. Audience, anybody got any idea?
Anybody got a clue?
Right, I'm going to go talk to you. I'm going to use this.
You think it's a boot, but it's actually a microphone.
You can see by their faces they're really, really impressed.
Anybody know how long it would take Concorde to fly round the world?
I think it's nine hours.
Right. Not any...
-Actually, it's 19 hours.
Any advance on 19?
98 hours. This is great, we just keep going back for a bigger number.
98 hours. Any guess is differently, wildly, from that?
-Ten days. OK, OK, we've got quite a range of times.
-About three days.
-About three days.
Fair old range of numbers in there. Let's see what our teams think.
They're competing for points.
I'll put my brilliant invention down there. Look at that.
It even looks good. Reds, have you written down an answer?
Yellows, turn those answers round, so we can all see them.
Turn your answer round, Reds and Yellows.
Right, from the Reds, we've got 20 hours. From the Yellows, five days.
The real time it would take Concorde plane to fly around the world
is 29 hours and 59 minutes. So the Red Team get the point there.
That's an equalising point. Well done, both teams.
That's all to come. But right now it's time for Mini Science.
This is the round where our teams perform elaborate and fabulous
scientific experiments, using boring household items. To help,
I brought my school science teacher back here with a time machine.
But there's been this small problem.
She got younger. As I said, there's been a small problem.
She's small. It is Mini Miss.
-Don't be smart with me, Richard.
-So, what are we going today, Miss?
-today our teams are balloon surfing.
-Brilliant! What's balloon surfing?
One team will start off with five balloons and a surfboard.
They then have to place the surfboard over the balloon,
before all of them stand on it.
They have to stand on it without popping any of the balloons.
If they do that successfully, it goes over to the next team.
-The next team then have to do the same thing
but have to remove at least one of the balloons, or maybe more.
And again, they cannot pop any of the balloons.
If they do that successfully, it goes on to the first team,
and so on, and so on, and so on.
Oh, I see. There's quite a lot of tactics in here, then.
Yes. And, you mustn't forget
that all three team members have to stand on the board, unsupported.
Right. OK. And these are the balloons we're using.
And they're ordinary, everyday balloons.
They are quite strong.
Thank you, Miss, thank you. Sorry for playing around.
Now, because it's a draw, we have to decide now which team goes first.
And, to do that, I'm going to ask you to draw pens.
Right, if you'd like to step forward, volunteer.
If you pull the short pen, the decision goes to the other team.
Get the long one, it's up to you. Good luck.
Oh, it's the short one! Reds, you decide if you go first or second.
Seeing as there's such a lot of tactics to talk about,
I'm going to give you some time to do that, OK?
So, now is your planning time.
Use it wisely. This game is all about pressure.
But pressure isn't just about how much force is applied,
it's about the area it's applied over.
And the easiest way to understand that is,
if you push one hand onto the other, it's fairly comfortable.
But if you put the same amount of force on just your
fingernail, onto your hand...ow!
It digs in. That's because the pressure is increased.
Because it's spread over a tiny, tiny area, instead of a big area.
In this experiment, the balloons, when we apply
the weight from the teams onto them, hopefully, will spread out.
Which means, well, there's more area for the weight to go on to.
So, the pressure is less. They go from that, to that, hopefully.
All we've got to do now is each team decide
how many balloons to use to do this.
Teams, your tactical time is coming to a close. Reds, it's your call.
-Do you want to go first or second?
I think, tactically, that's the wisest choice.
Which means, Yellows, you're going first.
The good thing is you get to go balloon surfing first,
which is possibly great. How many balloons are you going to go for?
-Four. Straightaway, you're getting rid of a balloon.
They're brave, the Yellows. OK, forward to the surfing area.
And let's give it a go.
I'd love to see the thinking going on.
They're not just sticking them on. They're thinking, where?
I think, already the teams are starting to consider
weight, and where it's going.
Weight distribution. We happy, Yellows?
Happy with that balloon sighting?
OK. Right, lab rats will now put the surfboard into position for you.
When you step onto the board, they will hold you until you're steady,
then the lab rats will stand back, and put both arms in the air.
At that moment, we will begin the timer,
and you'll hear that counting down.
You've got to do five seconds for it to count. All right?
So, four balloons holding up three people, hopefully. Here we go.
Step onto the surfboard, please.
You go first. I'll go last.
OK, we have one team member on. Let's get the others on.
Lean forward a bit, Kelsey.
Well, all three...
Oh, Lord! We've had a disaster.
That's one gone. The Reds there are celebrating wildly.
The game's not over yet.
Because for this to count the Reds have actually still got to do it.
They've still got to beat them. That means, Reds, to better that,
-I reckon we'll let you off with four. If you can do four.
OK, Reds, you've seen the drill.
The lab rats will the get the board ready for your surfing.
The lab rats will support you getting on.
Tell them when you're balanced and ready, if you manage.
Then we'll begin the countdown.
Start the timer.
-Down you come!
The point goes to the Reds, which means the scores now...
Well, done, Red team.
So, we had four balloons there,
supporting three scientists. That's pretty impressive.
I wonder how many balloons it would take to support -
oh, I don't know - a car?
For this experiment we need a lot of balloons.
The world's first balloons were made of dried animal bladders.
Not much fun to blow up
and certainly not much fun for the animals.
Luckily, these days, they're made of rubber,
which has led to happier animals and fresher breaths all round.
My lab rats have used all of their puff to make a 200-balloon sandwich.
As we've just seen, balloons can hold a fair bit of weight.
So one lab rat isn't a problem.
But what about seven of them?
As my test zone lab rats clamber aboard, still no popping.
A few have squashed down, but not a problem.
And I'll tell you why.
The reason we can stand on balloons like this is
because the weight of the lab rats is spread out over all the balloons.
The pressure on each balloon is not enough to make them pop.
But, if you increase the weight enough, then, at some point,
the pressure will become too much for the balloons to take.
The Ford Granada...
one and a quarter tonnes of family motoring.
And a load of party balloons.
It's time for the ultimate machine-versus-balloon match-up.
OK, hold the experiment.
Teams, for an extra point, you tell me, does it work?
Can those balloons support that car, without any balloons bursting?
Have a quick think between you, have a quick think.
I'm going to ask you for an answer. Audience, what do we think?
Will it, or won't it? Anybody got any idea?
Hang on, I'll get my microphone boot.
Soon to be available from just down there.
If you want the only one there'll ever be of it. What do you reckon?
-You think not?
-You think not?
-You think yes?
All right. Teams, you've had some time to think.
Your answers, please. You think it will, do you think it won't?
-I think they'll burst.
-You think it won't do it. Yellows?
-I think it will.
-A split like this is good
because there's definitely some points up for grabs.
You think, then, that many balloons can't do it.
At least one will burst.
At least one of will burst. Yellows, you think it'll be OK.
Well, there's a point in it for you. Scores at the moment, two-one.
Need these points. Let have a look at what happens.
Here we go, slowly now.
Balloons are gradually taking the weight.
They look like they're fit to burst.
But, with the crane unhooked,
the full weight of the car is on the balloons
and not a single one has burst.
That is unbelievable!
So, you've got that point back, means equal again, well done.
Sorry, Reds. It worked,
spreading all that weight over all that balloons. They could do it.
Right, the next thing to happen, both teams have got to get changed
into your special protective outfits
because it's messy, messy Mess Test next. Away you go.
While they do that, actually, the whole balloon thing, it was easy.
After we'd done the car, we found we could take things even further.
A family car isn't complete without a family.
And on my family holidays we always packed everything,
including the kitchen sink.
Surely that extra weight will increase the pressure.
Close to two tonnes of force,
and not a single popped balloon to show for it.
My lab rats get a little bit excitable when they go on holiday.
And that's exactly why I never let the lab rats go on holiday.
Right, we must move on. It's time now for the messy, messy Mess Test.
Which, today, is in the septic tank. Yeah, comfortable?
Good. Try and think of all the most horrible, disgusting things you can.
And then times it by a thousand million billion.
And then times that by a gazillion. And you're kind of getting close.
Just try not to get any on you. Too late.
OK, this is the game. Hidden in the tank are discs.
Some of them are like this one... duds.
But the ones you're after are these that my lab rat is holding.
They'll have the colour of your team on them
and the names of prizes.
Lab Rat, hide those and then get out.
Your job, teams, is to get as many of those prize discs as you can
out of the tank, and that unspeakable goo, into these baskets.
There's two. One for the Yellow team, one for the Red team.
Then the team to get the most prize discs into their basket
will take home the prizes written on those discs.
The losing team will blow theirs up.
Now, as it's a draw, thus far, in the game, you both start together.
You've got some time to get as many of those discs as you can
into these baskets.
And that some time starts...now.
Both teams are not afraid to get in amongst the awful waste from my lab.
The Yellows there are dunking two prize discs.
Wait, one of them is red. That won't count.
Now the Reds are at it! Into their net goes a Yellow prize.
Let's quickly see again what went wrong at the start of this match.
In their eagerness to get started,
both Red and Yellow teams put the wrong colour discs in their basket.
Those won't count, when my lab rats add up the scores,
at the end of this extraordinary encounter.
That's better, the Reds are off the mark
with a correctly coloured disc.
This will confuse them even more.
I forgot, again!
By the way, teams, every now and again there'll be a siren
and more horrible, horrible gunge will come down those pipes.
I forgot to tell them. But they do bring more prize discs in as well,
-There it goes again.
And it looks like both teams have taken advantage of the extra discs.
And, look at this, I think Bruce has just realised
what he did wrong earlier. The crowd enjoying this gungy encounter.
It is very close at this point, between the two teams.
-More horrible waste comes down,
and it's going to be crucial that the teams bag the extra discs.
The Yellows have grabbed one and the Reds have to respond.
Which they do.
It's slim pickings in there now, with both teams doing well.
It is too close to call.
-Time is up.
That's it, teams, no more, no more.
Let's find out which team has won.
We've got lab rats in counting frantically.
Lab Rat, the Yellows have got how many?
Five for the Yellows. For the Reds, how many?
Four. That means the Yellows are the winners!
Yellow team, you'll be taking home one each of these prizes.
Let's have a look at what you've won. Ready, Nan?
A disgusting digestion kit,
a flying wind copter,
a lunar eclipse bedroom light
and a white wings glider kit. All those are for the Yellow team.
We'll have all those ready for you.
Now, the slightly tricky bit.
Reds, not looking quite so chirpy.
-It's too late now, the game's over. Let's have a look
at what you would have won. The lunar eclipse bedroom light
would have been there for each of you. Yup, yup, yup.
You'd each have been taking home, oh, a disgusting digestion kit.
And a multimedia player. Yeah,
yeah. Oh, and Toxic Mutants, as it turns out.
But, it's OK, you're not taking them home. You're going to blow them up.
Because it's time for Bidet Goes Bang.
Well, it's that time again. The Yellows, today,
are standing here behind me. Huge mound of presents in a wheelbarrow.
-Happy with our prizes?
-You earned them.
You won, fair and square. Reds, different mood over on this side.
-How we feeling?
-When I said, you're going to blow your prizes up, somebody...
Ross, I think it was you, went, "Yeah!" So, it's not bad.
-I don't want any, anyway.
-Yeah, exactly. I didn't want them.
That's the attitude. Blow them up instead. It's better.
-What went wrong in the game?
-We were too slow.
It's not that easy. You either find them, or you don't.
OK, Reds, well, when it comes to explosions,
every scientist knows that toilets go crash and bathtubs go wallop.
But bidets go bang, as we're about to find out.
Your prizes are in position there. So, if you'd like to step forward.
-Who's going to do the plunger?
-All of us.
You're all going to do it together. Team effort. OK, lift it up.
Hold it there, we're going to give you the countdown.
Are we ready, teams, audience?
Five, four, three, two, one.
There you go! Oh, well, today we've learned about
spreading the force and distribution of weight.
I'm off to distribute my weight on the sofa, and spread the force
of a packet of biscuits across my stomach. See you!
Blast Lab was recorded in front of a live studio audience.
No lab rats were hurt in filming...
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
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