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Why Matter Matters

Look around. You see a magazine, a sofa, your ngers. You might see a glass of water. Perhaps you can spot trees or rocks through a window. You can denitely feel air ll your lungs. These thingsand everything else in the worldare made up of matter. But why is a rock solid, while air is a gas? Why is your ngernail hard, but bendable? Why is water uid? Why is a cloth-covered sofa soft? Answers to these questions and many more lie in the structure of matter. Matter is made up of tiny particles known as atoms and molecules. Depending on which particles they are and how they are connected, they can take different shapes, be stronger or weaker, or be able to transform into something new. Examining these particles, studying how they interact, and using this knowledge to solve problemsthat is chemistry. Whether the goal is to get to the bottom of a crime, develop new plastics and sports fabrics, or answer questions about Earths past, chemists are on the job, doing interesting and important work to meet peoples needs.
r WHEN IT COMES TO atoms and molecules, small takes on a whole new meaning. If you had 18 milliliters of water (a little more than 1 tablespoon), and you could count all the H2O molecules at a rate of 1 million per second, it would take you 190 million centuries to count them all.

l THANKS TO CHEMISTS, WHEN you watch athletes on land or in water, you are probably seeing spandex in action. Spandex (an anagram of expands) is a fabric invented by a chemist in 1959. Chemists have also developed

fabrics that behave like sunscreen. The fabrics are manufactured with chemical particles that absorb ultraviolet rays. Some clothing made from this fabric can block almost 100 percent of these harmful rays.

Crime Scene!
r CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATORS use dusting powder and a soft brush to nd latent, or hidden, ngerprints on glass or plastic. Since glass and plastic are not porous, the oil from a persons skin remains on the surface of these materials. The powder sticks to the oil and reveals the print. To nd prints in porous materials like paper or cloth, investigators use a chemical called ninhydrin (nin-HIdrin). Ninhydrin reacts with molecules in proteins called amino acids found in the tiny drops of sweat on the ridges of a persons ngertip. The chemical reaction results in a purple color to reveal the print.

l INTERESTED IN KNOWING WHAT the air was like when dinosaurs roamed Earth? Ask a chemist. Using a machine called a mass spectrometer, a highly specialized tool for analyzing gas, scientists can study air trapped inside a piece of amber. (Amber is fossilized tree resin, a sticky

liquid that oozes from certain trees and then hardens.) Some studies show that there was over 50 percent more oxygen in the air 80 million years ago than there is today. Why? Is the decrease connected to the downfall of the dinosaurs? No one knows for sure, just yet.


Of the 118 known elements, carbon (the C of CHON) is the key building block of life as we know it. Hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen are others. Together, these four elements make up 96 percent of your body mass.

Carbon atoms are like KNEX. They can join together to form many different struc tures. Each structure results in something different. Think of diamonds, coal, and the graphite lead in your pencil. They are all carbon atoms combined in different ways. Of all the elements, carbon has the highest melting point6332F (3500C). Carbon bonds with itself and other elements to form almost ten million known compounds.



Rust. Rocket fuel. Fire. Water. All have oxygen in common. Iron in steel reacts with oxygen to form rust. Gasoline reacts with oxygen when exposed to a heat source to produce fire. One of the most reactive elements on Earth, oxygen combines with most other elements to form hundreds of thousands of compounds. Oxygen dissolves in water, which enables fish and other water life to breathe. People inhale more than six billion tons of oxygen every year. Oxygen makes up about 20 percent of the air around us.





u Carbon and

oxygen form CO, a gas plants need for photosynthesis.

r Balloons and blimps used to be filled with hydrogen because it is less dense than air, but now helium is used be cause hydrogen is very flammable.



Hydrogen, the most abun dant element in the universe, is the suns fuel. When you feel the warmth of a sunny day, you are feeling the ener gy given off when the suns hydrogen atoms combine in a reaction called fusion. Sci entists are working to pro duce the same process and harness the energy it yields. Hydrogen is the smallest atom. More than 800,000 hydrogen atoms can fit across the width of one strand of hair.

Atoms are the particles that make up all matter. Elements are matter made up of only one type of atom. Carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen are examples of elements. About 90 ele ments exist naturally on Earth. Scientists have created the others. Molecules are made up of two or more atoms. The at oms may be the same type or they may be different. A molecule of oxygen (O) is made up of two oxygen at oms. A molecule of water (HO) is made up of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. Compounds are made up of two or more different atoms. So, HO is a com pound, but O is not. All compounds are molecules, but all molecules are not necessarily compounds. Physical changes in matter take place when the form of matter changes, but the mat ter itself does not change in to something else. Crumpling paper and melting ice are ex amples of physical changes. Chemical changes in matter produce a substance that wasnt there before. Atoms are rearranged to change the identity of the substance. Adding baking powder to flour, sugar, milk, and eggs and baking a cake is an ex ample of a chemical change. Chemical changes also hap pen in your body when you convert food into energy.

u Carbon and hydro

gen form hydrocar bons, which make up plastics, fuels, and some medicines.




u Carbon, nitrogen,
oxygen, hydrogen, and other elements combine to form proteins, which are an essential part of muscles, skin and bones

Nitrogen is a component of DNA, the genetic material of every living thing. Nitrogen also makes up about 80 per cent of the air around us. Nitrogen is one of the primary gases used to rapidly fill airbags when they inflate during a vehicle accident. Nitrogen is the gas put into bags of some pack aged foods, like potato chips, because it prevents chemical changes that cause food to spoil.

Natures Changes
Chemistrythe interaction of atoms and molecules is taking place all the time. In and on your body. Deep beneath Earths surface. Everywhere in nature. Here are a few highlights.
r Adults cAll it spArkling water, but you can think of it as natures soda. It comes from Earths interior. If there is volcanic activity in a region, theres magmamelted rockbelow the surface. Magma and other volcanic gases produce carbon dioxide. Deep under the ground, pressure causes the CO2 to form a solution with water. The water rises to the surface as a naturally fizzy drink. Companies bottle and sell the drink as sparkling water. Soda and other fizzy drinks are manufactured in much the same waycarbon dioxide is dissolved in water under pressure. When you open the can or bottle of a carbonated drink, the CO2 comes out of the solution. First is the whooshing sound when the pressure is released. Then comes the bubbly fizz when the carbon dioxide floats up through the liquid and into the air. u Who hAsnt hAd A scAb that ugly reminder of a fall? Dont pick it! A scab is your natural bandage. It starts to form within ten seconds of a cut or scrape. Special blood cells called platelets rush to the scene and clump together. A protein called fibrin also shows up and starts to build a net over the wound. Platelets, fibrin, and other chemicals then dry out and form a scab. Protected from infection by this tough covering, your body makes new skin underneath. In a week or two, the scab falls off by itself.

Porous limestone, cracked marl, and pure white sand

l A SUNTAN IS THE RESULT OF A chemical reaction. The suns ultraviolet (UV) radiation causes a chemical reaction in your skin that produces more melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color. A sunburn happens when too much UV radiation damages the DNA in your skin cells. Scientists developed sunscreen to protect us from the suns harmful effects.
Water filters through Earths surface

Check It Out!
Why do some people sunburn more easily than others? (answer on back cover)
Steam chamber

Steam chamber

Underground water chamber


l STRAIGHT OR CURLY HAIR IS based on chemistry. Hair is made up mostly of proteins produced in a follicle, or sac, at the base of a strand of hair. Each protein contains atoms of the element sulfur. The sulfur atoms attract one another to bond, or connect. If the atoms are far from each other, the protein bends and the hair curls. If the atoms are close, the protein does not bend and the hair is straight.

r A RIPE BANANA HAS A GOLDEN skin and a sweet avor. The path to ripeness is one marked by chemical change. The process starts when the banana plant begins to produce ethylene (ETH-uh-leen), a compound of hydrogen and carbon. Ethylene signals the cells in the fruit to produce enzymes (EN-zimes), or proteins, that get the ripening process started. The enzymes break starch into sugar and cause the skin to become the familiar yellow color of a ripe banana.

Chemistry Superstars
Among scientists, it goes without saying that each stands upon the shoulders of those who came before. With the help of what is known, each scientist builds, develops, and imagines the future. Here are some of the greatest (and coolest) contributions of fellow chemists.

Robert Boyle 16271691 (Ireland) Boyle discovered that if you keep the temperature of a gas the same but push on it to increase the pressure, the gas will take up less space. The volume decreases. And, if you decrease the pressure, the gas takes up more space. The volume increases. This is known as Boyles law. Scuba divers returning to the surface must be careful as they come up because as pressure decreases, the gases in their blood expand. This can make them sick.

Antoine Lavoisier 17431794 (France) Lavoisier discovered that during a chemical reaction, the amount of matter stays the same, even though its form may change. This is called conservation of matter. Even when something seems to disappear, it doesnt. It turns into something else. When a candle burns, the wax seems to disappear, but chemicals in the wax and oxygen from the air react and make carbon dioxide and water vapor. The original atoms are still there but have changed into something new.

John Dalton 17661844 (England) Curious about what matter was composed of at the smallest level, Dalton measured many different elements and compounds and came up with the idea that matter is made up of atoms. Daltons modern atomic theory includes four key ideas: 1. Elements are made up of atoms. 2. Atoms of the same element have the same weight. 3. Atoms of different elements have different weights. 4. Atoms combine to form compounds.

Amedeo Avogadro 1776 1856 (Italy) Avogadro found that at the same temperature and pressure, equal volumes of different gases have the same number of molecules. Thus, a beach ball full of nitrogen has the same number of molecules as a similarsize beach ball full of oxygen. Avogadros work helped other chemists discover the actual number of atoms or molecules in any given sample.

Robert Bunsen 18111899 (Germany) Bunsen developed a gas burner to heat elements for experiments. The Bunsen burner lets scientists make the ame hotter or cooler by changing how much gas and air the burner uses and is an essential piece of laboratory equipment. Bunsen also developed the spectroscope, an instrument that can identify a substance by the colors of light it emits when heated and glowing.

Check It Out!
What is Avogadros number?
(answer on back cover)

Dmitri Mendeleev 18341907 (Russia) Mendeleev developed the rst Periodic Table of Elements. Based on the results of experiments on elements conducted by others, Mendeleev saw similarities and differences among elements and designed a chart grouping those with similarities into columns. Since Mendeleev, other scientists have discovered more elements. The modern Periodic Table is posted in almost every chemistry classroom in the world.

John Joseph (J. J.) Thomson 1856 1940 (England) Thomson experimented with electricity in a glass tube that had the air removed and pieces of metal (electrodes) at each end. When he put electricity in the tube, a ray of light went from one metal piece to the other. Thomson found that the ray was made of negatively charged particles smaller than atoms, which he called electrons. Three main particles make up atoms: electrons (negative charge), protons (positive charge), and neutrons (no charge). Thomson won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1906.

Marie Curie 18671934 (Poland) As a college student in Paris, France, Curie experimented with uranium, an element that she discovered gave off particles and rays of high energy. She called these effects radioactivity. Curie won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1903. The rst woman to win a Nobel Prize, she is also the rst person to win two Nobels, the second in 1911 in chemistry for discovering the radioactive elements radium and polonium.

Linus Pauling 19011994 (United States) Pauling studied what happens when atoms bond to make molecules. His experiments showed how the bonds in molecules affect their structure and behavior. He won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1954. While experimenting with molecules in living things, Pauling discovered that a disease called sickle cell anemia was caused by a change in a molecules structure.

IYC 2011 was designated by the United Nations as a worldwide celebration of chemistryits achievements and contributions to the wellbeing of all people. In the United States, the American Chemical Society (ACS) is organizing many events, especially for schools. You can learn more at: iyc2011.acs.org. You can also learn more at the international website, hosted by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC): chemistry2011.org.

For a closer look at the Periodic Table, go to http://elements.wlonk.com/Elements_Pics_11x8.5.pdf




BLUE = COPPER GLITTER = ANTIMONY GOLD or YELLOW = SODIUM GREEN = BARIUM RED = LITHIUM SMOKE = ZINC SPARKS = ALUMINUM OR IRON WHITE = MAGNESIUM Pyrotechnic (pie-ro-TEK-nik) chemists, the people who make reworks, are highly trained in the chemistry of light and color and use their knowledge to plan the chemical reactions that achieve dazzling displays for their audiences. Different colors and effects are produced by different chemical elements.


Behind the Scenes

Curious about your world? Interested in how things work? Have ideas for how things can work better? You might be a future chemist! Chemists study how atoms and molecules come together, come apart, and transform into something new. And thats just what happens herebehind the scenes of familiar phenomena.
l YOUVE PROBABLY SEEN THEM trick candles that light over and over again. The trick is in the wick. Regular candlewicks are made of braided cotton, but the wicks of trick candles also contain an element called magnesium. When a candle is blown out, the charred wick is still hot enough to ignite the magnesium. Those are the sparks you see just before the candle relights over and over again.

u YOU CAN PATCH UP A CUT OR scrape with a liquid bandage sprayed or painted right on the injury. The bandage is a colorless polymer material with sticking power. It also covers nerve endings to reduce pain. Liquid bandages are great for wounds on hard-to-bandage places like knuckles and between ngers. The bandage works by sealing off the injured area until it heals. Then the bandage wears off. No pain. r GUM HAS BEEN A FAVORITE sweet for a long time. Originally made from tree sap, todays gum is made from a formula created by chemists. At the heart of the formula are very long molecules called polymers. These long, skinny molecules are very exible and give gum its elasticity. Some of the polymers in bubble gum are also used to make car tires, adhesives, paint, and even the soles of shoes.


d WHEN YOU WATCH TV OR WORK on a computer, you are probably looking at an LCD screen. LCD stands for liquid crystal display. As the words suggest, a liquid crystal is somewhere between a liquid and a solid. Like a solid, the long rod-shaped molecules

of a liquid crystal maintain their orientation. But, like a liquid, they can be rearranged when electricity passes through. When this happens, the molecules change orientation, allowing light to pass through and producing the images we see.

u NO BULB. NO BATTERY. NO plug. Yet a glow stick can give off light for hours. The reason involves two liquids. One is hydrogen peroxide. The other contains a uorescent (or-ESS-ent) dye. Both liquids are in the glow stick tube, but the hydrogen peroxide is in a tube within the For more on the chemistry of LCDs, go to encyclopedia.kids.net.au/page/li/Liquid_crystal_display

tube. When the stick is bent or hit against something hard, the tube of hydrogen peroxide cracks and the two liquids ow together. A chemical reaction takes place that results in light. The color of the light depends on the color of the dye.

l YOU DONT HAVE TO BE AN astronaut to enjoy astronaut ice cream. This space-age dessert is freeze-dried, which means all the water has been taken out. To do so, regular ice cream is frozen in a special lowpressure chamber. There, the water in the ice cream turns to a gas and is removed from the chamber. Whats left is freeze-dried ice cream, which tastes very much like the real thing.


Natures Pharmacy
To you, wasps, snakes, and spiders may be fascinating or freaky. But to a chemist, creatures like these may be the source of powerful medicines. Chemists study substances that bacteria, plants, and animals use for self-defense to see if these same chemicals can be used to treat disease in human beings. Penicillin, the rst antibiotic, is an example. Penicillin is derived from a mold that kills certain bacteria. In the hands of a skilled chemist, it has become a life-saving medicine.
u YOU FEEL PAIN IN YOUR BRAIN not in your nger, your toe, or anywhere else in your body. Feeling pain is the end result of a relay from the part of your body thats injured to your brain. Say you stub your toe. Chemicals in the cells of your toe use a specic protein to send a strong signal through the nerves in your toe to your brain. Ouch! Aspirin works by preventing the production of certain chemicals formed at the site of your injury. This reduces the intensity of the signal that your brain interprets as pain. The injury doesnt go away, but you feel less pain from it.

Phenomenal Pheromones
How do bees coordinate their behavior? Ants nd their way back to food over long distances? Moths attract mates from miles away? The answer is a group of chemicals called pheromones (FER-uh-moans). Pheromones are compounds produced by many animals and some plants. They affect how other members of the species behave nding a mate, grouping up for safety, locating food, and alerting others of danger.

l THIS YEW TREE IS MORE THAN a beautiful evergreen. It is the source of a cancer drug that saves lives every day. Cancer is a disease that causes cells to change and divide much too quickly. Compounds in the leaves and bark of the yew get in the way of that process. But it would take hundreds of thousands of these magnicent trees to treat patients in the United States alone for just one year! Chemists have developed a synthetic (man-made) version of the compound.

d FOR MORE THAN 2,000 YEARS, people used the bark of the white willow tree to reduce pain and fever. In the 19th century, chemists learned that the active ingredient in willow bark is a compound known as salicin (SAL-uh-

sin). Instead of harvesting the bark and killing the tree, scientists gured out how to manufacture the ingredient as acetylsalicylic (uh-SEE-tlsah-luh-si-lik) acid, the active ingredient in aspirin.

u CHEMISTS AND ENVIRONMENTAL scientists are developing ways to use pheromones for pest control. One approach is to use pheromones to create traps that attract pests, such as the pine bark beetle. As the beetles are attracted to the trap, they leave trees aloneand undamaged. d SOME PLANTS GIVE OFF PHEROmones when they are being munched. In response, nearby plants give off tannin, a chemical that makes them less tasty to plant-eaters. u SOME SPECIES OF SPIDERS release a pheromone similar to that released by moths. A moth may follow the pheromone only to nd a sticky web and not a mate at the end of it.


At the Cutting Edge

Whether its new sources of energy, new medicines, new types of medical supplies, or improved foods, chemistry is at the cutting edge of planning for today, tomorrow, and decades to come. Here are a few of the many examples.
u IMAGINE CHARGING YOUR CELL phone just by keeping it in your pocket when you walk. The secret is piezoelectric (pee-ay-zo-uh-LEK-trik) fabric, which is covered with microwires of zinc oxide, a compound of zinc and oxygen. When you walk, your movement causes the microwires to rub together, converting the mechanical energy of motion into electrical energy. d THINK OF THE LAST TIME YOU or someone you know had to get stitches. Changing the bandages and keeping the wound clean were essential for avoiding infection. Now theres extra help from the stitches themselves. The newest thread for stitching up wounds contains an antibiotic.

l JUST BECAUSE YOU CANT SEE blood doesnt mean its not there. Many criminologists use luminol, a powdery mix of chemicals, to discover unseen bloodstains. Investigators spray a solution of luminol, hydrogen peroxide, and other chemicals where they suspect the presence of blood. If their suspicions are right, a light bright enough to be seen in a dark room will glow. The light is given off when the solution reacts with the iron in red blood cells. While luminol was rst manufactured over 100 years ago, chemists continue to make improvements in the duration and brightness of the image it reveals.

Green Chemistry
Green chemistry is an approach to chemistry that prevents waste, uses fewer resources, and saves energy. As a result, products are developed and manufactured so that they are safer and greener. In all cases, green chemistry requires that the processes and products minimize harm to human health and the environment.

Green Chemistry at Work

l IN TROPICAL REGIONS, MOSQUItoes can carry deadly diseases. The pesticide spinosad (SPIN-oh-said), derived from a naturally occurring soildwelling bacterium, works well on land to control the insect. But mosquitoes breed in water. Unfortunately, spinosad dissolves too quickly in water to be effective. Until recently, other pesticides were used to control water-borne mosquitoes,


l NANO- IS A PREFIX. IT MEANS one-billionth. A nanosecond is one-billionth of a second. A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter. It takes about 100,000 nanometers to equal the diameter of a human hair. Now, thats small! Nanoscience is studying nature at the smallest possible scaleatoms and molecules. Working at this small scale helps scientists understand why things happen as they do. Nanotechnology is putting this knowledge to use in solving problems. r IMAGINE CHIPS AND SODA actually being good for you. It could happen. Foods and drinks are being developed with nanoparticles of vitamins and other nutrients. The particles, which dont affect the taste or appearance of the food, pass through the stomach directly into the bloodstream. Which foods would you want to add nanoparticles to? u NO MORE NEEDLES! MAY soon be the cry of children and adults alike. This, thanks to nanocochleates (na-noKO-klee-ates), or tiny sacks shaped like a snails shell. These tiny sacks are able to deliver vaccines and other medicines directly into the bloodstream, where they release the medicine. Traditionally, these medicines are injected, and not taken as pills, because stomach acids would break them down. But change is on the way! Watch for future developments: Preventing the common cold with nanocapsules may be the next step.

For more on nanotechnology, go to nanooze.org

but they were extremely toxic. In 2010, chemists developed a compound of calcium and other elements to surround the spinosad. The spinosad was then able to release slowly and control the mosquito larvae in the water. This development may seem small, but it saves lives and creates healthier waterways.

l AS WE MOVE AWAY FROM petro-plastics (plastics made from petroleum, a nonrenewable resource), chemists are developing ways to manufacture plastic products from plant materialcorn, potatoes, rice, wheat ber, and wood. Bioplastic cups, plates, bags, bedding, carpets, bottles, and cutlery are already here. Chemists continue to work on the environmental

and health challenges that petro-plastics pose. But the ultimate goal is essential: Reduce our use of petroleum-based products. Chemists are on the case.


Find the ten words listed below that have been used in this issue. Words may be written forward, backward, vertically, horizontally, or diagonally. ATOM, CARBON, COMPOUND, ELEMENT, HYDROGEN, MOLECULE, NANOSCIENCE, NITROGEN, OXYGEN, POLYMER

Red cabbage leaves contain a chemical that can change color. Add some substances you have at home and nd out what colors you can make.
1. Tear a couple of leaves from a red cabbage into small pieces and place them in a zip-closing plastic bag. 2. Add 1 cup of water to the bag. Remove as much air as possible and carefully seal the bag.

Use the color ch anges to nd out which of your household subs tances are acids, which ar e bases, and which are ne utral. Purple or pink = Acid Green = Base Blue = Neutral

3. Squish the bag until the water turns a darkish-blue. Then open a corner of the bag and carefully pour only the blue liquid into several clear plastic cups.

4. Add small amounts of different household substances such as lemon juice, vinegar, and laundry detergent to your blue solutions.


More on Chemistry
Use school glue, water, food coloring, and borax, an ingredient in laundry detergent, to make the same sort of slime you can buy in stores.
BOOKS FOR CHILDREN Cynthia Light Brown, Amazing Kitchen Chemistry Projects You Can Build Yourself, Nomad Press, 2008. Dan Green and Simon Basher, Chemistry: Getting a Big Reaction, Kingsher, 2010. Rebecca L. Johnson, Nanotechnology (Cool Science), Lerner Classroom, 2006. Elizabeth MacLeod. Marie Curie, Kids Can Press, 2009. Ann Newmark, Chemistry (DK Eyewitness Book), DK Children, 2005. Joe Rhatigan and Veronika Gunter, Cool Chemistry Concoctions: 50 Formulas that Fizz, Foam, Splatter & Ooze, Lark Books, 2007. BOOKS FOR ADULTS Cathy Cobb and Monty L. Fetterolf, The Joy of Chemistry: The Amazing Science of Familiar Things, Prometheus Books, 2010. Simon Quellen Field, Why Theres Antifreeze in Your Toothpaste: The Chemistry of Household Ingredients, Chicago Review Press, 2007. Sam Kean, The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements, Little, Brown and Company, 2010. Linda Williams and Wade Adams, Nanotechnology Demystied, McGraw-Hill Professional, 2006. 4. Have fun with your new slime! WEBSITES www.acs.org/kids chemistryforkids.net chem4kids.com historyforkids.org/ scienceforkids/chemistry

1. Mix teaspoon of borax into cup of water. (Borax is available at most supermarkets or hardware stores.) Add 1 drop of food coloring and stir until the borax dissolves.

2. In a separate cup, mix 1 tablespoon of school glue and 1 tablespoon of water.

3. While stirring the glue solution, slowly add 1 tablespoon of the borax solution. Watch for any changes. Why does the glue solution clump up when borax is added? School glue contains long skinny molecules that normally slide past each other. Borax connects parts of these long skinny molecules together, causing the solution to clump up and become slime.

Clint Greene

Volume 21, Issue 9, September 2011

ON THE COVER: Girl conducting science experiment:

EDITOR: Jennifer Dixon ART DIRECTION: Hopkins/Baumann DESIGNERS: Will Hopkins, Mary K. Baumann, PHOTO RESEARCH: Crisma Imaging: Mary Teresa

Veer: Blend Images.

PICTURE CREDITS: Corbis: p.9 (Marie Curie); Alex Wild/

Giancoli, Cristian Pea PROOFREADERS: Paula Glatzer, Carolyn Jackson AUTHORS: Marjorie Frank, D. Rachael Bishop

Judith Princz

Danny Collins CONSULTANT: Pace Development Group


Curator, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University, NY


Studio Elementary School, New York, NY

2011 Kids Discover. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.




The year 2011 has been designated by the United Nations as the International Year of Chemistry. Worldwide celebrations of chemistry in our dayto-day life will include a wide array of educational programs, hands-on activities for kids, public lectures and demonstrations. ACS offers a daily calendar of amazing chemistry for 2011 at: www.acs.org/iyc2011. Students can also participate in the rst-ever, global experiment that will test and compare water resources for quality the world over. For more information, visit: http://water.chemistry2011.org. As the central science, chemistry is at the core of all scientic knowledge from biological processes to atmospheric research, from how atoms bond to form compounds to creating medicines to treat diseases. Join us for the International Year of Chemistry 2011 as we honor the myriad of innovations and scientists who have improved peoples lives through the transforming power of chemistry. ANSWERS: PAGE 7: Why do some people sunburn more easily than others? Melanin is your bodys natural sunscreen, protecting your skin from the suns UV radiation. Skin with less melanin has less protection and therefore burns more easily. The redness of a sunburn is actually inammation of the skin. PAGE 8: What is Avogadros number? Avogadros number is 6.02 x 10 23. This is the number of atoms or molecules in one mole of any substance. A mole is the mass, or molecular weight, of a substance expressed in grams. PAGE 18: CHEMISTRY WORD SEARCH r





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Kids Discover (ISSN 1054-2868) is published monthly by Kids Discover, 192 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10016. Phone (212) 677-4457. Periodicals Postage paid at New York, NY, and additional mailing ofces. Printed by RR Donnelley, Glasgow, Kentucky, USA. Subscription Rates: One year $26.95, two years $52.90. Send subscription orders, address changes, and service inquiries to Kids Discover, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235. Or email to kidsdiscover@emailcustomerservice.com POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Kids Discover, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235 (including label from cover of magazine).


Acme Design Company: Sparkling Water Diagram, pp.6 -7. Michael Kline Illustration (dogfoose.com): Cover cartoons; Counting Water Molecules, p.2; CHON Superhero, pp.4-5; Curly vs Straight Hair, p.6; Spider Pheromones, p.15; Electric Shorts, p.16; Chemistry Word Search, Red Cabbage Color-Changer, Time For Slime, pp.18 -19.



This issue is a collaboration between KIDS DISCOVER and the American Chemical Society (ACS). ACS is a nonprot organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. Today, with more than 163,000 members, ACS is the worlds largest scientic society. In addition to publishing academic journals and holding scientic conferences, the Society offers extensive support for students of all ages, teachers at all levels and in various settings, including parents who homeschool. ACS provides hands-on curricular resources, scholarships, internship programs for students, and professional development for teachers. For more information about educational opportunities, visit: www.acs.org/ education.

VU: p.14 (ants); Bettmann: p.8 (Amedeo Avogadro), p.9 (Linus Pauling); Birgid Allig: p.5 (girl with straight hair); Keith Douglas: p.15 (pine bark beetles); Michael A. Keller: p.14 (aspirin); Stefano Bianchetti: p.8 (Robert Boyle; Robert Bunsen); street angel/cultura: p.6 (boy with curly hair); Sung-II Kim: p.4 (ame); the food passionates: p.5 (melting ice cubes), p.6 (carbonated water), p.7 (banana); VU: p.13 (glow sticks); RF: Image Werks: p.7 (banana plant); Ocean: p.4 (coal). Crisma Imaging: Cristian I. Pea: p.13 (girl; astronaut ice cream). Culver Pictures: p.8 (Antoine Lavoisier), p.9 (Dmitri Mendeleev; John Joseph Thomson). Custom Medical Stock Photo: Kevin Beebe: p.16 (nurses removing stitches). Fundamental Photographs: Richard Megna: p.8 (boiling water). Getty Images: Adam Gault: p.15 (caterpillar); Dimitri Vervitsiotis: p.4 (diamond); Dorling Kindersley: p.5 (girl beating sugar and butter), Iconica: p.4 (steel); Martin Ruegner: p.14 (honeybees); Popperfoto: p.5 (Hindenburg); StockFood: p.4 (water); Superstock: p.17 (boy being vaccinated); RF: Martin Diebel: p.17 (potato chip); Photodisc: p.13 (LCD screen); Stockbyte/altrendo images: p.6 (girl with scab); David Bufngton: p.4 (pencil); Fuse: p.3 (forensic investigator); Peter Saloutos: p.2 (spandex); Paul Taylor: pp.2-3 (ngerprint); Jupiter Images: p.4 (rust). istockphoto: p.5 (potato chip bag); Charles Humphries: p.15 (yew trees); mammuth: pp.14-15 (willow tree); Uros Petrovic: p.15 (yew berries). Photo by Linda Wang, reprinted with permission from Chem. Eng. News, August 9, 2010, 88 (32), p.34. Copyright 2010 American Chemical Society: p.12 (trick candle). Minden Pictures: Ingo Arndt: p.16 (mosquito). NASA/GSFC/Solar Dynamics Observatory: p.5 (sun). National Geographic: Brian Gordon Green: pp.10-11 (reworks). Photo Researchers: p.8 (John Dalton); NASA/Science Source: p.4 (space shuttle); Phanie: p.12 (liquid bandage). Photoedit: p.16 (luminol); Tony Freeman: p.8 (scuba diver); Tetra Images: p.12 (bubble gum). Phototake: Tam Nguyen: p.3 (amber); Tery Why: p.17 (nanorobots). Superstock: photononstop: p.7 (sunburn). UNESCO and IUPAC, partners for the International Year of Chemistry 2011: www.chemistry2011.org: p.9: (logo). US Dept of Agriculture: Scott Bauer: p.17 (bioplastic cutlery).