Got Peeps?
May16

Got Peeps?

Have some Peeps leftover from Easter and don’t know what to do with them? Peeps — you know, marshmallow gooeyness shaped like pastel chicks and bunnies? ACS member Kathryn Hughes sent me this adorable photo of an IYC-themed Peep diorama that she; her husband Matthew Clarke, and friend Abigail Miller, created for the Washington Post’s fourth annual Peeps diorama contest. They affectionately named their diorama “International Peep of Chemistry.” Note the “Peepriodic Table of Elements” hanging on the back wall. And if you look real close, you can see safety glasses on each Peep — and the gas cylinder is strapped down …. and there’s an eye wash and a fire extinguisher, complete with inspection tags. Even Peeps have to demonstrate prudent practices in the lab! Hughes is a program officer with the National Academy of Sciences’ Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology. Clarke is a chemist at the National Gallery of Art. And Miller is a chemist at American University. “It took all of our chemical know-how to pull it together,” said Hughes. But “sadly, our fabulous chemical creativity was not rewarded by even runner-up status.” Nevertheless, it did bring IYC to the attention of the Washington Post judges. The first place winner of the contest was a diorama depicting the October 2010 rescue of the 33 trapped Chilean miners. Feel free to submit examples of how you are celebrating IYC in your community. By the way, if you’re curious what these peeps are made of, read C&EN’s What’s That Stuff article on the chemistry of...

Read More
Catch Nancy Jackson on National Public Radio
May13

Catch Nancy Jackson on National Public Radio

Tune in to National Public Radio at 8pm EDT on Mon., May 16th, and Mon., May 23, to hear ACS President Nancy Jackson talk about the International Year of Chemistry on the NPR show “The Best of Our Knowledge” with host Glenn Busby. Topics will include the central role that chemistry plays in our modern world, ACS’s chemistry ambassadors, science education, and mentoring in chemistry. “The Best of Our Knowledge” features leading experts whose discoveries shape our ways of thinking and redefine our understanding of today’s knowledge-driven society. The original broadcasts will air on the WAMC NPR network in the Northeastern U.S. The programs will be rebroadcast on WAMC network at 3pm on Fri., May 20, and Fri., May 27. Listeners can also tune in on the web at http://www.wamc.org/prog-tbook.html during these times. NPR affiliate radio stations nationwide will broadcast the segments on Wed., May 18, and Wed., May 25. Check your local NPR affiliate for the program times. After the segments air, podcasts will be posted online at the WAMC website, and CDs can be ordered by calling (800)...

Read More
Seeing IYC 2011 at #acsanaheim
Mar30

Seeing IYC 2011 at #acsanaheim

Signs of the International Year of Chemistry were literally everywhere during this national meeting. They were around the Convention Center … On badges … On jackets … On programs … On shirts … On walls … On floors … On cakes … On bags … On buses … Outside taxi cabs … And even inside of taxi cabs! It’s safe to say that IYC was on everyone’s mind during this national...

Read More
Celebrating Chemistry in the Year of the Rabbit
Feb03

Celebrating Chemistry in the Year of the Rabbit

Happy Chinese New Year! Or Gong Xi Fa Chai (if, like me, you speak Mandarin), or Gong Hey Fat Choy (if you speak Cantonese). People who are born in the Year of the Rabbit are said to be mild and generous, gracious and dignified. They are noted for their compassion and strong sense of sympathy. They are also alert and persevering, making for good work and life companions. According to the Chinese zodiac, the Year of the Rabbit arrives every 12 years: 1831, 1843, 1855, 1867, 1879, 1891, 1903, 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 199, and, of course, 2011. Chemistry Nobel Laureates who were born in the Year of the Rabbit include: Ada E. Yonath (b. 1939) Yonath shared the 2009 Chemistry Nobel with Venkatraman Ramakrishnan and Thomas A. Steitz for their studies of the structure and function of the ribosome. Alan G. MacDiarmid (1927–2007) MacDiarmid shared the 2000 prize with Alan Heeger for their discovery and development of conductive polymers. Sir Harold W. Kroto (b. 1939) Kroto shared the 1996 prize with Robert F. Curl Jr. and Richard E. Smalley for their discovery of fullerenes. F. Sherwood Rowland (b. 1927) Roland shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1995 with Paul J. Crutzen and Mario J. Molina for their work in atmospheric chemistry, particularly concerning the formation and decomposition of ozone. George A. Olah (b. 1927) Olah won the prize in 1994 for his contribution to carbocation chemistry. Sidney Altman (b. 1939) Altman shared the chemistry prize in 1989 with Thomas R. Cech for their discovery of catalytic properties of RNA. Jean-Marie Lehn (b. 1939) Lehn shared the 1987 prize with Donald J. Cram and Charles J. Pedersen for their development and use of molecules with structure-specific interactions of high selectivity. Henry Taube (1915–2005) Taube won the 1983 prize for his work on the mechanisms of electron-transfer reactions, especially in metal complexes. Lars Onsager (1903–1976) Onsager won the prize in 1968 for the discovery of the reciprocal relations bearing his name, which are fundamental for the thermodynamics of irreversible processes. Manfred Eigen (b. 1927) Eigen shared the 1967 prize with Ronald George Wreyford Norrish and George Porter for their studies of extremely fast chemical reactions, effected by disturbing the equilibrium by means of very short pulses of energy. Giulio Natta (1903–1979) Natta shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1963 with Karl Ziegler for their discoveries in the field of the chemistry and technology of high polymers. John H. Northrop (1891–1987) Northrop shared the 1946 prize with James B. Sumner and Wendell M. Stanley for their preparation of enzymes and virus proteins in a pure form....

Read More