23 de xaneiro de 2015

A plastic that recycles itself

Recycling electronic gadgdets is really difficult because it is not easy to separate their plastic components and dangerous to burn them.
Now researchers have invented new plastics which can be degraded exposing them to ultraviolet light. These new plastics dissolve into a clear solution after this exposition. Their small components can be used again to make other plastics, therefore we generate less waste and we reduce raw materials.
Researchers have to check if the use of light influences the properties of plastics, for instance, their strength or durability.

Written by Daniel Vázquez and Santiago Rojas - 3rd ESO (9th grade).

21 de xaneiro de 2015

UNESCO declares 2015 International Year of Light

UNESCO's International Years have been celebrated since 1959 and some are based on science topics, such as Physics, Astronomy or Chemistry.
This year UNESCO is celebrating the International Year of Light because in 2015 there are some anniversaries related to light: the notion of the wave nature of light is 200 years old, the development of electromagnetism is 150 years old and The General Relativity Theory, which includes the speed of light as an essential part, is 100 years old.
Image from http://www.eps.org/
The most significant aspect of this International Year is the fact that light connects many different fields such as Astronomy, Medicine, Arts and Technology.
There will be different events around the world in order to communicate the importance of light in our daily life.

From http://physicsworld.com

Written by Laura Blanco and Tania Conde - 3rd ESO (9th grade).

9 de xaneiro de 2015

Forgotten women scientists (I): Lise Meitner

Lise Meitner is a famous woman physicist who was born in Vienna in 1878. Her parents were Jewish and she had 7 brothers and sisters. As a child she was very good at science and math and she went to University where she studied physics.
Image from wikipedia.org

Meitner lived and worked in Austria, Germany, Sweden and UK. She worked with Otto Hahn for 30 years in Berlin. They both studied radioactivity and discovered the protactinium isotope. Later she became a physics professor at the University of Berlin, where she started her research on nuclear physics, discovering the nuclear fission in 1939. She carried out experiments on nuclear fission together with Hahn. He received the Physics Nobel Prize in 1944 for his scientific research into fission, but Meitner's research and discoveries were not recognised.
However, she received many different scientific awards and honors during her life.
She died in England in 1968 at the age of eighty-nine.
Written by Antía, Andrea and Rosalía - 3rd ESO (9th grade)