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What is tritium paint?

28 Jan 2022

In 1957, Edward Shapiro filed a patent for a novel type of “self-luminous paint.” The concept was not new, luminous paints based on radioactive emissions from radium striking a phosphor such as...

Light, Wavelengths, and Inactivating COVID-19

12 Jun 2020

Maybe you’ve read about specific wavelengths of ultraviolet (UV) light being used to sanitize objects and inactivate the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Or perhaps you’ve seen something about how certain...

Why is the Sky Blue? Or Better Yet, Why is the Ocean Blue?

31 Jan 2020

The sky is blue due to a phenomenon called Raleigh scattering. This scattering refers to the scattering of electromagnetic radiation (of which light is a form) by particles of a much smaller...

Can Darth Vader Improve Your Winter Mood?

27 Sep 2019

If you saw Darth Vader endorse a product, would you feel the desire to buy it?

Looking at the Science of Sunglasses

24 May 2019

The sunglasses at the dollar store feel flimsy, yet I buy a pair. It costs me $1.43. The sticker on one of the lenses states “UV 400 Protection”. I walk over to a fancy sunglasses store and ask the...

No Need to be In the Dark About the Light Bulb

6 Nov 2018

Way back in 1802, Humphrey Davy, one of the most brilliant chemists of all time, became interested in the novel phenomenon of electricity. By this time he had already published a treatise on the...

You Can Still See the Division of East and West Berlin from Space

7 Jun 2018

Berlin might be united now, but evidence of its 40-year history of division still remains. ...

The Stormy Petrel

30 May 2017

The Shetland Islands are famous for sheep and wool.  But did you know that they are also home to the stormy petrel?  This unusual bird, so-named because it was thought to appear before a storm, has...


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