Science Tips

X-Rays

X-Rays are really quite amazing when you really think about it.  I mean, come on guys, it lets you see right through things!  Image how much fun it would be to have x-ray vision.  When dad left for work you could snicker about his polka-dotted boxer underwear.  At Wal-Mart you could look at closed-up stuff without having to sneak the box open.  Heck, when the kids played 'guess what I'm holding behind my back' you'd win every time! X-Rays are really very similar to light rays except X-Rays can pass through objects that light cannot.  Seems like magic - doesn't it.  Wilhelm C. Roentgen, the mad scientist that discovered x-rays in 1895, was a little stunned too when he first stumbled across the phenomena.  He…
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Science Tips

Science facts about water

Here are a few tidbits about water that we’ll bet you didn’t know. Raindrops are not tear-shaped. Scientists, using high-speed cameras, have discovered that raindrops resemble the shape of a small hamburger bun. About 70% of the human body is water. Life on earth probably originated in water. More than half of the world's animal and plant species live in the water. Almost 75% of the earth is covered in water. The human body needs 2 liters of water a day in our climate; we can last only a few days without water. Most of our food is water: tomatoes (95%), spinach (91%), milk (90%), apples (85%), potatoes (80%), beef (61%), hot dogs (56%). Not sure what's going on here? Check out the instructions here!
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Science Tips

Volcanoes

You may already know that deep inside its stony crust, the Earth's core is made of hot liquid rock (magma). and there's a good reason why geologists believe magma is pretty powerful stuff. After all, it's what causes volcanoes to erupt. Magma results from the extreme heat of the earth's interior. At certain depths, the heat is so great it partly melts the rock inside the earth. When the rock melts, it produces much gas (now, who does that sound like?), which becomes mixed with the magma. Volcanoes are mountains with openings or vents that reach down in the Earth to where magma is found. Sometimes the heat at the Earth's core or center causes bubbles of carbon dioxide gas in magma to get bigger…
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Science Tips

Saturn – the greatest planet (except for Uranus which is easier to work into jokes)

Saturn is Reeko’s favorite planet (although Uranus, which makes great joke material, comes in a close 2nd).  Like Jupiter, Saturn is a large, gaseous planet composed mostly of the gases hydrogen and helium. Saturn has a magnetic field 1,000 times stronger than Earth's but not as strong as Jupiter's. Due to its gaseous nature, Saturn's density is so low that it could float in an ocean of water. It probably has a core similar to that of Jupiter. It is covered with cloud bands, some forming cyclonic patterns like Jupiter's, but the colors appear more subdued than do Jupiter's because of an atmospheric haze that covers the clouds. Saturn is surrounded by a spectacular ring system (see the picture above). Galileo observed these rings in…
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Science Tips

Volcano lava

Lava is molten rock that pours out of volcanoes or from cracks in the earth. It comes from deep in the earth where the heat is great. There, it is called magma. When lava first comes to the surface it is red-hot, reaching temperatures from 7 to 12 times hotter than boiling water. Lands that were once covered with lava often become quite fertile after weathering has broken the lava into fine soil. Some lavas, such as a glassy lava called perlite, are heated in furnaces. They expand into a frothy material used to manufacture lightweight concrete. There are two kinds of lava. One kind, called aa, is viscous (sticky) and moves slowly. The other kind, called pahoehoe, is so fluid that when it first…
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Science Tips

Floatation

There's an old saying that if you are standing in a boat in the middle of a lake and dropped a cannonball into the water, the water level of the lake would actually drop? This seems contradictory to common sense because as we all know, when you drop an object into a body of water the water level rises because of the volume of water that the object displaces. But guess what?  This old saying is really true.  Read For example, if you fill your bathtub with water all the way to the brim and then climb into the tub, the water will spill over the edge of the tub. This happens because of the large amount of water that your body displaces when you…
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Science Tips

The eyes have it

The eye is the organ of sight. It is our most important organ for finding out about the world around us. We use our eyes in almost everything we do--reading, working, watching movies and television, playing games, and countless other activities. Sight is our most precious sense, and many people fear blindness more than any other disability. The human eyeball measures only about 1 inch (25 millimeters) in diameter. Yet the eye can see objects as far away as a star and as tiny as a grain of sand. The eye can quickly adjust its focus between a distant point and a near one. It can be accurately directed toward an object even while the head is moving. The eye does not actually see objects.…
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Science Tips

Earthquakes rock our world

Earthquakes are no laughing matter.  They are the result of vibrations in the Earth's outer crust.  These vibrations are caused when underground rock slips.  The Earth's crust is made of large plates of rock.  Over time these layers of rock slowly move causing the plates to slip against each other.  These tectonic type earthquakes occur in regions where the large plates border each other - the San Andreas Fault in California is a well known fault line. Earthquakes can also be caused by volcanic activity.  These types of earthquakes are usually not as destructive as the earthquakes caused by shifting plates.  In fact, earthquakes caused by volcanic activity can actually be beneficial since they often precede a major volcanic eruption and act as a warning…
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Science Tips

Your brain

The human brain is a grayish-pink, jellylike ball with many ridges and grooves on its surface. A newborn baby's brain weighs less than 1 pound ( kilogram). By the time a person is 6 years old, the brain has reached its full weight of about 3 pounds ( kilograms). Most of the brain's nerve cells are present at birth. The increase in weight comes from growth of nerve cells, development and growth of supporting cells, and development of connections among cells. During this six- year period, a person learns and acquires new behavior patterns at the fastest rate in life. A network of blood vessels supplies the brain with the vast quantities of oxygen and food that it requires. The human brain makes up only…
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Science Tips

Astronauts

Astronaut is a person who pilots a spacecraft or works in space. In Russia and the other former Soviet republics, such people are called cosmonauts. Astronauts and cosmonauts operate spacecraft and space stations, launch and recapture satellites, and conduct engineering, medical, and scientific experiments in space. The word astronaut comes from Greek words that mean sailor among the stars. Cosmonaut means sailor of the universe. Most American astronauts work for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). They live and train at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center in Houston (Reeko's been there!). On July 20, 1969, astronauts Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin, Jr., became the first people to set foot on the moon. They landed the Apollo 11 lunar module Eagle and…
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