Event Postponed: Enjoy the Holiday Lights with JLab Science

  • JLab's diffraction grating glasses with holiday light spectra visible

12/12/19 Update: Due to impending inclement weather, the ARTech Lights event has been postponed. Newport News anticipates announcing a new date for the event in early 2020. See the links below for more information.

Join Jefferson Lab and other local science and technology institutions at Brooks Crossing on Friday, Dec. 13, as we light the night with free and fun STEM activities

NEWPORT NEWS, VA – Come see holiday light displays in a whole new way! The Department of Energy’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility is bringing science and technology activities to the City of Newport News’ free ARTech Lights event at Brooks Crossing on Friday, Dec. 13.

Come by our booth to try out a “techtivity” that will enhance your holiday lights viewing experience. Learn about the science of light spectra and how we use spectrometers to study the building blocks of matter. Take away your own free spectrum-viewing diffraction grating glasses, which add a whole new dimension to viewing holiday lighting displays, allowing you to easily spot the differences between fluorescent, LED, neon and incandescent lights.

“We strive to support learning in the science, technology, engineering and math fields in our community,” said Lisa Surles-Law, team lead of JLab’s Science Education group. “By participating in the ARTech Lights event, we hope to share our STEM expertise with our neighbors in a fun and engaging way.”

You can also use your glasses to check out a main feature of the event, the dynamic kinetic art piece Double Helix. The piece was designed and constructed by George Neil, a former Jefferson Lab physicist, and Kevin Jordan, a Jefferson Lab engineer and chief engineer at locally owned BNNT, LLC.

The two artists debuted the interactive kinetic sculpture at the Jefferson Lab 2018 Open House event, and it has since been on display at festivals internationally, including Burning Man in Nevada and the Toronto Light Festival in Ontario, Canada. Now, the art piece comes home to the City of Newport News for the ARTech Lights event, where it will be lit and on display through the 2019 holiday season.

The ARTech Lights, a BayPort Credit Union NlightN event, will be held at Brooks Crossing (550 30th Street), on Friday, Dec. 13, 3:30-8 p.m. The event features hands-on “techtivities” from Newport News-based science and technology institutions, a bonfire, a silent disco, fire performers, a DJ and a skating rink. Admission and parking are free, and food and beverage vendors will be onsite providing items for purchase. More information about the event can be found on the Newport News website and Facebook page.

Contact: Kandice Carter, Jefferson Lab Communications Office, 757-269-7263, kcarter@jlab.org


Jefferson Science Associates, LLC, manages and operates the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, or Jefferson Lab, for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. JSA is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Southeastern Universities Research Association, Inc. (SURA).

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://energy.gov/science