Middle Schoolers, we hope that as UQ Science Ambassadors we can convince you to decide to take a science in Senior School, and as for those of us already in Senior science, our work here is done! On a serious note, science is an amazing part of life and we are honoured to help foster your love of everything sciencey.
A neutron walks into a bar. When it asks how much a drink costs, the bartender says… ‘For you, no charge’
As your 2019 UQ Science Ambassadors, we spoke on Assembly about our goal to make science less nerdy, and this is just the first step towards achieving that goal. A small step for man, some may say, but hopefully a giant leap for ATC-kind. We are also planning on running experiments at lunchtime or after school to give you a chance to see the fun and exciting things that we can do with science. There may (or may not) be a secret stash of crazy experiments we are trying to convince the teachers to let us demonstrate….. We will keep you updated.
We hope, workload permitting, that our blogs will be written each fortnight. If its is a busy exam or assessment time for us it may be monthly! You are welcome to take any concerns to Mr Rerden or the other senior science teachers on our behalf, if our delay in delivering our blog is stifling you embracing your inner nerd! You can email Mr Rerden by clicking here!
• A modified US Spy Plane used by NASA is being used to fly up through the Earth’s stratosphere to investigate large storms that may pose a new threat the ozone layer. These storms are suspected by scientists to be lofting water and pollutants through the stratosphere, catalysing ozone destruction.
• The world’s first image of a black hole has been released. This image was captured using data from nine separate satellite dishes located in countries around the world. The black hole itself is named M87, and is 55 million light years, or 500 million trillion kilometres away from our milky way. The image captured shows a bright orange ring which is the result of superheated gas falling into the hole, and the dark centre, which is the black hole itself. The black hole’s immense gravitational pull comes from the huge amount of matter packed into a small area. Nothing, not even light, can escape this pull, which is why the black hole is black in appearance.
• There is a new type of aurora being discovered, called STEVE (Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement). They appear like northern lights, but are more purple than green. Scientists are only recently discovering the cause of these lights, but they believe that they are caused by the friction of charged particles in our atmosphere and their interaction with the Earth’s magnetic field.
- To give some scale to how small an atom is, there are 8 times more atoms in a teaspoon of water, than there are teaspoons of water in the Atlantic ocean.
- Octopuses have three hearts, nine brains, and blue blood. Each of the brains preform separate tasks, and two of the hearts are used solely to move blood from the gills.
- There are more trees on earth than stars in the milky way, even if we only use conservative estimates of trees, and high estimates of stars.
- To continue the teaspoon theme, a teaspoon of a neutron star would weigh over 6 billion tons due to its incredibly dense composition.
- Continental drift happens at about the same rate as our fingernails grow, approximately 2.5cm per year.
Feel free to email either Will or myself if you have any questions about science or if you want someone to geek out with. If you have any science fun facts or science jokes you would like to share with us, please send them through and remember to keep us up-to-date with any fun science activities you hear about around town.
Til next time….Tom and WIll