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Slime, gluep and polymer worms featured at Chemfest 2007 at the science center


October 23, 2007

Slime, gluep and polymer worms hold center stage at Carnegie Science Center's ChemFest 2007, Pittsburgh's celebration of National Chemistry Week.

On Friday, Oct. 26 and Saturday, Oct. 27, the Science Center will be full of chemical creations, from invisible ink and molecule tattoos to silly putty and superballs.

Visitors will get up-close-and-personal with some of childhood's beloved chemistry creations - slime, gluep and polymer worms made from simple house-hold kitchen items, all founded on chemistry basics. A wide variety of demonstrations in the Science Center's theaters will highlight everyday chemistry in unusual ways, from using dry ice to make root beer and the chemistry of flambéing fruit to “Reaction in Action!”, an explosive science show presented by PPG Industries, Inc.

In addition to hands-on activities and demonstrations exploring chemistry connections, more than 30 chemistry and engineering organizations, including Carnegie Mellon University's Department of Chemical Engineering, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and Bayer Corporation, will be on-hand to offer insights into the multitude of career opportunities in chemistry-related fields.

Visitors can talk with chemistry students and professionals and see that not every chemist is a wild-eyed mad scientist working in a laboratory filled with bubbling beakers as depicted in the movies. “Chemists serve in a variety of positions with widely ranging job descriptions,” said Joanna Haas, Henry J. Buhl Director of Carnegie Science Center. “One of the missions of ChemFest is to help kids understand that careers in chemistry offer more opportunities than they may realize. Inspiring students to pursue studies in science opens doors to future careers they may not have considered, and many of those career options are right here in the Pittsburgh region.”

More than 1,700 elementary and middle school students from underserved schools will experience ChemFest 2007 on Friday, Oct. 26 thanks to a $10,000 grant from two Pittsburgh organizations. The Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh and the Society of Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh together donated funds that will cover field trip costs for the students to attend ChemFest 2007.

ChemFest 2007 celebrates the 20th anniversary of National Chemistry Week, this year themed “The Many Faces of Chemistry,” to help visitors understand the important role chemistry plays in everyday life and the thousands of chemistry career opportunities. Nearly every object a person comes in contact with during the course of a day was impacted in some way by a chemist, from the plastic alarm clock that wakes them in the morning to the toothpaste they use before going to bed at night.

ChemFest 2007 is presented by Carnegie Science Center in partnership with the Pittsburgh Section of the American Chemical Society and is made possible by the generous support of Bayer Corporation, the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh and the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh.

Carnegie Science Center is located at One Allegheny Avenue on Pittsburgh's North Shore next to Heinz Field. Visit http://www.CarnegieScience or call 412-237-3400 for more information.


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