I hope you're enjoying the half term break. I have updated and added some pages on Alkanes, Crude oil and Free radical substitution and you will find them all in the organic chemistry section for AS Chemistry. As always if you enjoy the site please do let your friends and colleagues know, and if you have any ideas for the site, something you want to see or not see, then shoot me an email at email@example.com or leave a comment below!
I recently created a display outside my classroom recognising some of the most famous scientists throughout history, and noticed how few women there were. Sadly history tells us of the hardships women had to earn the right to be recognised as equals and I fully expect a teacher who is creating something similar in a few hundred years will fill up their displays with many more women than myself. It needs to be said however that there were still some incredibly amazing female scientists who even back then, managed to make some wonderful discoveries.
Women such as Marie Curie and Rosalind Franklin are two of the most famous (and did make it onto my display), but there are many others, such as Ada Lovelace (who was celebrated yesterday with her own day!) who helped Charles Babbage with his mathematical engine and is often given the title "first programmer" and Marie-Anna Paulze Lavoisier who was married to the very famous Antoine Lavoisier, but was an amazing chemist in her own right and no doubt should be just as revered as the great man himself.
To finish I will link you to a BBC article about Annie Maunder, who along with her husband Walter Maunder studied the sun in great detail discovering valuable information about the solar corona and sunspots. Their names are used to describe the Maunder Minimum which was an area of very low solar activity in the 1700's as well as a crater on the moon and the book that was published even has the preface written by Walter explaining how the vast majority was in fact Annie's work.
Chasing the Sun: The Woman forgotten by science
I think the title of the article is very telling and could perhaps be applied to many many others.
The Nobel prizes in science are probably the most famous scientific award in the world and have in the past been awarded to some of the most celebrated scientists in human history. Past winners include Ernest Rutherford (discovered atomic nucleus), Albert Einstein (quantum physics) and Sir Alexander Fleming (penicillin). You may not know the scientists that have been awarded them this year, but they really do join an elite company. As science progresses, the prizes are awarded for increasingly incremental gains in scientific knowledge and are very difficult to understand especially when it comes to their uses in today's world.
A wonderful website that I have used in the past Compound Interest creates colourful infographics which help explain some of these scientific concepts. Below are three which go someway to explain what the three newest members to the Nobel Prize winners did.
I hope the start of the new academic year has been treating you well. I was reading an article about James Lind, who was the man who is credited with curing scurvy among seafaring men (and women, though probably not many back then!) Surprisingly it seems he wasn't the first to notice the correlation with lack of citrus fruits and scurvy but he was the first learned man to publish it. If you have some time it is well worth a read.
Lemons and Limeys: The man who helped to cure scurvy
The official Science Skool Blog!