Archive for December, 2012

Not everyone can be out in space but…

With the renewed interest that our astronauts have created with the final frontier it is to be expected that a whole generation has been inspired to want to head out into space. Unfortunately not everyone can be out in space but for every one astronaut there are at least a hundred people involved with the mission on Earth itself.

To be a part of the supporting staff is just as exciting and challenging as it is to be an astronaut. Not to mention much safer as a career option since you never face the uncertainty and risks of space travel first hand. You still get to be in on the plan to explore the moon, another planet or even other galaxies.

As an astronomer you can help to determine the composition of a planet, its atmosphere, and its moons. You can help figure out if it is likely to support life. You can even have plans of relocating human beings to a hospitable planet and you can get to explain it all to a public audience.

You can be part of the force that protects Earth from collisions with other potential treats. By using sensitive radio telescopes to spot comets and asteroids with the potential to impact Earth, you can give early warning orders that can help deal with the threat. There is more than one interesting science project that you can be part of.

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Use Yeast to Blow up a Balloon

This is an simple science experiment that a young student of science can conduct on his own. The objective of the experiment is to blow up a balloon without using air from your lungs to inflate it. Instead you use the carbon dioxide that is produced by the chemical reaction that you will perform to do the trick.

Here’s a list of things that you will need to conduct the experiment. A small empty bottle made out of plastic. Clean and dry it before the experiment. A small balloon which is able to fit over the neck of the bottle. A packet of dry baker’s yeast, a little warm water and some sugar.

Have everything you need? Then lets get started. Fill up the plastic bottle with one inch of warm water.  Next add the packet of dry yeast and give it a swirl to dissolve it. Its the sugar’s turn to go in next. Again shake it around a bit before you place the balloon snugly over the neck of the bottle.

Leave it alone for about half an hour. When you return you’ll see that the yeast has reacted with the sugar and produced enough carbon dioxide to inflate the balloon. You can then repeat the science experiment with honey in place of the sugar to see how that works out.

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What is an Aquacultural Manager?

Studying science can bring some rather unique career options to your doorstep. One such career is as an aquacultural manager. As the word aqua suggests its to do with water. The word culture in science deals with growing living organisms and of course manager is self explanatory.

So as an aquacultural manager you will be essentially doing fish farming. However it doesn’t end with that. You would be also experimenting to look for environmentally friendly ways of farming fish. Or you could actually be employed by a jewellery trader to look after their oyster beds to provide them with the best quality pearls grown naturally.

As you can see its more than fish. You could end up looking after a resort lake which is stocked with fish that fishermen come to fish at for recreation. Or maybe become a specialist stockist for sea food restaurants who look to purchase top grade, fresh sea food from your company.

You need a bachelor’s degree to get started on this rather unique and strangely full filling career opportunity. Of course it would make a lot more sense if you have a natural love of being in water and a certain amount of mechanical aptitude to take up a career which can be essentially a stream of interesting science projects.

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Turn the Milk Pan Experiment into a Science Project

If you enjoyed creating flashes of color in the milk pan in the last science experiment described on the blog you may like to convert it into a full fledged science project. All you need to do is have a definite question to answer. For instance you could consider a couple of variables and frame questions like – how does the shape of the milk pan affect the experiment.

Here you need to get an assortment of different shaped baking trays together before you begin the experiment. Now follow the same process of creating flashes of color in the pan by pouring the liquids into the different shaped baking trays. See which shape allows the most spectacular display of colors to be seen. Note down your findings.

Another question that you could seek an answer to is how different brands of dish washing liquids affect the experiment. Use the same shape of baking tray or milk pan in this set of experiments, just change the liquid soap brand as you repeat the process with a minimum of three different types of liquid dish washing soap. Record the observations to see which liquid soap works the best in the science project. You could even try to figure out why one works best or if all work the same way.

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Flashes of color in a milk pan

Do you find plain old white milk boring? Well here’s a simple science experiment which will make you see milk with flashes of brilliant colors in it. You’ll never look at your cup of milk the same way again. Here’s a list of things that you will need to perform this experiment.

A baking tray that is long and flat, a cookie tray will do fine. A cup of whole fat milk, please note that low fat milk will not work for this experiment as the milk fat plays a key role in it. Liquid food color in three different shades, ideally red, green and yellow. Dish washing liquid soap, a small bottle fitted with a nozzle that allows you to gently drop the liquid in small amounts.

Okay now we’re ready to begin. Place the baking tray on a flat surface where it can not be jolted. The dining table is a good spot. Pour out just enough milk into the baking tray to cover the base. Now add the three different colors of liquid food color in three different locations inside the tray. About eight to ten drops should be enough.

On top of the food color add about five or six drops of the dish washing liquid. Now sit back and watch the flashes of color displayed in the milk filled pan. The liquid soap tries to break down the fat in the milk and scatters the food color in the process. Talk about a colorful science experiment.


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