A Science Haiku from Down Under

I was happily surprised to hear from Dr. Michael Leach in Australia when he came across The STEAM Hub and sent us his compliments about our site. We rely on the internet so much these days that occasionally we forget how remarkable the technology is and the gifts that it brings. Thank you Dr. Leach for reaching out and sharing your love of STEAM with us. We are glad to meet you!

Dr. Leach is a self-described health researcher, number cruncher, poet and all-around STEAM advocate. It was kind of him to provide one of his science haiku’s to share with our readers.

Dedicated to all those who have worked at or supported science centers, especially the Discovery Science & Technology Centre, in Bendigo, Victoria, Australia, here is Michael’s poem together with photos of a science Lego display from the University of South Australia and the La Trobe Reading Room at the State Library of Victoria.

Enjoy!


chem demonstration
science words blend with light to give
illumination

Science Lego Displayed at the University of South Australia
La Trobe Reading Room at the State Library of Victoria
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Emanuele Fornasier’s Crystal Birth

 

Crystal Birth: A Beautiful Timelapse of Metallic Crystals Forming in Chemical Solutions

Italian chemistry student Emanuele Fornasier also has a knack for photography and spent the last few months documenting the formation of crystals. The result is Crystal Birth, a timelapse of some 18 examples of electrocrystallization, where an electric current is run through a chemical solution, causing metal deposits to form over a period of several hours or days. You can see more of his chemistry and timelapse work on his website.

 

STEM Scholarships to NAU Still Available!

Do you plan to transfer to Northern Arizona University (NAU) into an approved College of Engineering, Forestry & Natural Sciences major Fall 2016?

Do you have a 3.0 or higher GPA in at least 24 transferable credits?

And $2,500 or more in unmet financial need? (2016 FASFA is required)

Then you may qualify for the Transfer-GEMS (Transfers to Graduates in Engineering, Math and Science) Scholarship!

This scholarship is supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 1260138.

SCHOLARSHIPS ARE STILL AVAILABLE FOR THE 2016-2017 ACADEMIC YEAR!

For more information, please contact jen.johnson@nau.edu.

Learn more or Apply now!

 

 

New Gecko-Inspired Adhesive

From The Scientist:  http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/45741/title/New-Gecko-Inspired-Adhesive/

By Jef Akst | April 6, 2016

New Gecko-Inspired Adhesive

Flexible patches of silicone that stick to skin and conduct electricity could serve as the basis for a new, reusable electrode for medical applications.

For years, researchers have recreated the microscopic hair-like pillars on gecko feet that, through atomic forces known as van der Waals’ interactions, allow the animals to scurry up walls and across ceilings. Such gecko-inspired adhesives could have a variety of applications, including medical bandages, but materials scientist Seokwoo Jeon at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and colleagues wanted to apply these materials to create a novel wearable electrode.

Read more of Jef’s article in The Scientist here:

 

Deadly superbugs from hospitals get stronger in the sewers and could end up in the Pacific Ocean

latimes

A worker at L.A.’s Hyperion sewage treatment facility removes trash that has been separated from incoming wastewater. (Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times)

very day Southern California hospitals unleash millions of gallons of raw sewage into municipal sewers.

The malodorous muck flows miles to one of the region’s sewage plants, where it is treated with the rest of the area’s waste and then released as clear water into a stream or directly to the Pacific.

Scientists at the Environmental Protection Agency recently announced they had discovered a lethal superbug — the same one that caused outbreaks at UCLA and two other Los Angeles-area hospitals — in sewage at one of those plants. They declined to name the facility.

EPA scientists did not test treated wastewater flowing out of the plant to determine whether it still contained CRE, or carbapenem-resistant enterobacteriaceae.

NEWSLETTER: Get the day’s top headlines from Times Editor Davan Maharaj >>

But a growing number of studies show sewage plants can’t kill the superbugs. Instead the facilities serve as “a luxury hotel” for drug-resistant bacteria, a place where they thrive and grow stronger, said Pedro Alvarez, a professor of environmental engineering at Rice University, one of the scientists studying the problem.

Alvarez and other researchers say the failure of sewage plants to eliminate the dangerous bacteria is one way they may be spreading from hospitals to the environment.

“Chlorine is just not doing it,” Alvarez said of the treatment used by most plants.

The fear is that healthy people otherwise not at risk from the bacteria — including swimmers at the beach — could be infected.

Already officials are worried about the surprising number of people sickened with CRE who have not recently visited a medical facility: 8%, according to an October study.

Hospitals are not breaking laws by releasing the sewage. Laws regulate the overall level of disease-causing bacteria in the nation’s surface waters, but there is no specific regulation of bacteria resistant to antibiotics.

Deemed the “nightmare bacteria” by federal officials, CRE survives nearly all antibiotics. It kills as many as half its victims.

Government officials, including those at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, say they are monitoring the wastewater studies but have so far made no recommendations to hospitals about the treatment of sewage that may harbor CRE.

“The prevention and control of CRE is an evolving process,” said Melissa Brower, an agency spokeswoman. “CDC will continue to assess the appropriateness of this as new information becomes available.”

Continue to read the full article by clicking on the link : http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-superbug-sewers-20160307-story.html

Food for Thought

“The Dirty Dozen” – (High Risk Produce):

The EWG (Environmental Working Group) has studied and compiled a list of 12 types of produce that are most likely to contain pesticide residue. These are the least safe types of produce to purchase from a grocery store setting (when you don’t know exactly where they came from). If purchased, they must be washed very thoroughly. They are:

1.     Apples

2.     Celery

3.     Cherry tomatoes

4.     Cucumbers

5.     Grapes

6.     Nectarines

7.     Peaches

8.     Potatoes

9.     Snap peas

10.  Spinach

11.  Strawberries

12.  Sweet bell peppers

Also of note: hot peppers and kale/collard greens

“The Clean 15” – (Low Risk Produce):

The EWG has studied and compiled a list of 15 types of produce that are least likely to contain dangerous pesticide residue. As you’ll see, many of these fruits and vegetables are protected by naturally durable and thick outer surfaces. They are as follows:

1.     Asparagus

2.     Avocados

3.     Cabbage

4.     Cantaloupe

5.     Cauliflower

6.     Eggplant

7.     Grapefruit

8.     Kiwi

9.     Mangoes

10.  Onions

11.  Papayas

12.  Pineapples

13.  Sweet Corn

14.  Sweet Peas

15.  Sweet Potatoes

Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2016/02/17/well-culture-organic-101-163455

 

STEAM FESTIVAL & Open House @ GCC

GLENDALE COMMUNITY COLLEGE is Hosting a STEAM FESTIVAL & Open House

MARCH 25th 2016!!

*Health & Wellness Fair

*Campus Vegetarian Potluck

*Guest Speaker Chip Thomas

*Forum on Climate Change

*STEAM Fest & Open House

COME AND JOIN US HERE @ GCC

Glendale Community College · 6000 West Olive Avenue · Glendale Arizona 85302
(623) 845-3245

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Makerspaces and Meetups in Phoenix

Looking for a makerspace or group in the Valley?  Here is a great place to get started finding inspiration and like-minded creative spirits.

http://makerspaces.meetup.com/cities/us/az/phoenix/

The 7th Row is Complete!

ptPhoto ADAPTED FROM IUPAC BY C. SMITH/SCIENCE

FOUR NEW ELEMENTS COMPLETE THE SEVENTH ROW OF THE PERIODIC TABLE

The newcomers are some of the heaviest elements ever discovered, with atomic numbers of 113, 115, 117, and 118. They will be named by the researchers who identified them.

WOW! Element 113 will become the first element to be named in Asia, with credit going to a group of Japanese researchers at the RIKEN Nishina Center for Accelerator-Based Science in Wako.