Our educators have been experimenting recently with the new product NeverWet at the Museum, and I've been asked a lot of questions about how it works and why it's referred to as a form of nanotechnology.
Water repellent materials such as Scotchguard and Rain-X have been around for a while, but they make use of a different technology to repel liquids. NeverWet's new patent steps it up into the realm of nanotech and gives it a noticeably stronger effect.
This phenomenon actually has a name: The Lotus Effect.
Plants in the lotus family have been known to repel water since ancient times. Their leaves are considered self-cleaning because rainwater quickly sweeps away dirt and dust without sticking to the surface.
It was not until the development of high-power electron microscopes th Keep reading.
Did you know that Discovery Place isn't the only spot around Charlotte where you can meet some pretty en-GROSS-ing creatures?
In addition to the animatronic characters hanging out in Animal Grossology, you can also meet some disgustingly delightful critters at Carolina Raptor Center.
There's Dudley, the Great Horned Owl. He can't digest the bones, teeth, or hair of the animals he eats. So his stomach produces tight wads of this material that he spits out about once a day. Carolina Raptor Center dries and bakes his "pellets" and sells them to students and teachers to study the contents.
Bonsai the Black Vulture relies on his own body fluids to help him fight diseases that he might pick up walking around in his favorite meal, road kill. After a trip to the blacktop buffet, he uses Keep reading.
July 18, 2013
Many of you have already stopped by to take your picture with our farting cow on North Tryon Street.
We're loving the photo submissions on Instagram and Twitter! Click on the slideshow at right to view a sampling of folks who were brave enough to share the frame with a gassy bovine.
Did you that know you can also submit your photos on Facebook? Just use the hashtag #BlownAwayByScience.
Photos also can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Museum admission is not required to take photo or participate. Winners will be notified prior to billboard posting.
We can't wait to choose our next billboard star, so keep those photos coming!
Holy cow! The newest addition to our main entrance at North Tryon Street is a gassy bovine who could be your ticket to fame.
Beckoning visitors to the our special limited engagement exhibition, Animal Grossology, she's also offering a rare opportunity to appear on a Discovery Place billboard.
Take a photo with our farting cow, share it on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #BlownAwayByScience and you could be featured on a billboard in the Charlotte metro area.
Photos also can be emailed to email@example.com (include the hashtag #BlownAwayByScience).
Museum admission is not required to take photo or participate. Winners will be notified prior to billboard posting.
For plenty of fascinating facts on cows and other en-GROSS-ing creatures, check out Animal Grossology, Keep reading.
July 02, 2013
Posted By: Robert Corbin
One of the "Random Acts of Science" that Discovery Place does to accompany Animal Grossology involves asking guests to try chocolate covered bugs.
Frequently the response is unadulterated revulsion. I must admit that I do not want to eat bugs either. I also find mayonnaise repulsive.
At least the scientist in me recognizes that these feelings are irrational.
For example, did you know that avoiding insect parts in your food is next to impossible? According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the acceptable level of insect fragments in chocolate is not more than 60 per 100 grams. And we won't even talk about rodent hairs.
So what's the big deal? If you can't see it, who really cares?
Insects are cheap, found almost everywhere and full of protein.
Would you rather tole Keep reading.
Are you fascinated by anything slimy, sticky and icky? Do you have a passion for writing and a desire to see your name in print? Would you love to win a Museum Membership for your family?
Then we have an extra credit assignment for you - our Animal Grossology Essay Contest!
The contest is free and open to the public. Any student rising in grades K-8 may enter.
One K-2 winner, 3-5 winner and 6-8 winner will be chosen. Winning essays will be featured on the Discovery Place blog. Each winner also will receive a Family Membership to Discovery Place ($100 value) and a chance to meet 'n' greet some of our "gross" animal residents.
Essays should be between 100 and 500 words in length. The topic? Write about a "gross" animal or animal behavior and describe how you have benefited or lea Keep reading.