Member Open House Day 2013 on Flickr.
Dad’s love Design Zone!
This Father’s Day, bring Dad to NYSCI …
Last weekend, elementary students from P.S. 139 in Rego Park, Queens brought their families to visit us as part of the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs CASA – Cultural After School Adventures program. Prior to the visit, NYSCI staff traveled to P.S. 139 to provide a series of three after-school science workshops, where they taught the students about convex and concave lenses, the properties of light, and how electricity is produced. Last weekend’s visit reinforced some of what the kids learned during the after-school workshops, while also exposing them to other science topics as they explored our exhibits. Thanks to the grant from the Department of Cultural Affairs, now in its third year, we’ve been able to offer the CASA program to three Queens schools this year. Tomorrow, I.S. 72 will visit us to cap off their cultural after-school adventure!
Breeding the Nutrition Out of Our Food -
The idea of medicine as food has existed for centuries. But throughout those centuries, the human race has been altering ancient, wild plants for our food consumption. As we have selected for sweeter and larger crops, we have dramatically reduced the cancer-fighting phytonutrients in them. For example, native Peruvian purple potatoes have 28 times more phytonutrients than the common potatoes we consume. The wild ancestors of apples have “a staggering 100 times more phytonutrients than the Golden Delicious” variety.
What does this mean for our food supply and our health? As companies such as Monsanto as well as the US Department of Agriculture develop disease-resistant and quick-growing varieties of our crops, does this mean even more nutrient loss will occur? Time can only tell. In the mean time, be sure to use food as medicine by including more herbs, greens, and colorful vegetables in a varied diet.
Don’t see cicadas? Don’t be surprised
Citizen scientists have helped other scientists track the localized broods.
Calling All Teacher-Tinkerers | TASC -
Teaching STEM the fun way: by tinkering. TASC’s ExpandEd is calling all teacher-tinkerers: make your science-technology-engineering-math curriculum stand out. Workshops will be held at NYSCI this August. Happy tinkering!
Where Are They Now? NanoSatisfi
It’s been almost 12 months since we first wrote about the ArduSat project, when it had just successfully passed its target on crowdfunding website Kickstarter by more than three times. With the aim of making a form of space exploration possible for those without degrees in rocket science – but a little technical know-how – the scheme is focused on an open-source Ardunio-based mini satellite, packed with sensors, that anyone could register to spend some time controlling once launched into the stratosphere. The group behind the ArduSat have lofty ambitions in more ways than one, and has now formed its own company – NanoSatisfi – as a result of the success of their funding campaign. We spoke to CEO Peter Platzer to find out how they’re getting on in making the dream of accessible space exploration a reality. READ MORE…
How to prevent an astronaut bloodbath on Mars
Sometime within the next two decades, a select cadre of men and women will likely embark on a trailblazing adventure: the first manned mission to Mars. Several private organizations, including Dutch nonprofit Mars One and space tourist Dennis Tito’s Inspiration Mars, have already announced plans to send people to the red planet. And NASA is preparing for its own massive undertaking, in the hopes of getting astronauts to Mars by the 2030s.
List of Free Science Books -
Loads of free science books, including books on physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy and mathematics. Enjoy!
Last Saturday, 30 high school students turned into museum educators, helping our visitors understand microbiology, camouflage, skull anatomy, genetic diversity, matter, cellular structure and UV radiation. They provided info, instructions and encouragement to approximately 200 visitors who were trying out various hands-on activities.
The program is part of a partnership between NYSCI and ExpandEd, which is designed to provide high school students with experiences beyond traditional school classrooms. Throughout the Spring, the students participated in a 10-week program at NYSCI where they learned about the scientific method, astronomy, genetics, ecology, evolution, microbiology and other science topics. Saturday’s hands-on activities represented the conclusion of the 10-week program. But you may interact with some of them at our exhibits this summer: Twelve of the students will continue on with summer internships at NYSCI as Junior Explainers.
As meat consumption around the world increases, so do the concerns over the sustainability and efficiency of meat production. Raising livestock is extremely inefficient - think 100 grams of vegetable protein in order to raise 15 grams of meat on average - and uses up valuable agricultural land and water resources while contributing to climate change.
Dutch scientist Mark Post has been working on a new way to grow meat - in a laboratory. He has successfully grown the world’s first “test tube burger” from billions of cow stem cells. While time-consuming and expensive, Post believes the production could eventually be expedited, allowing artificial meat products to become more common.
The test tube burger will be revealed and tasted in the upcoming weeks in London. Could this be the sustainable meat of the future?