Sandgrains.com – Microscope Photography

Sandgrains.com – Microscope Photography Art by Gary Greenberg

….found another gem of a website while skimming through the current issue of Science News (September 8, 2012).  Every image is the perfect blend of science and art….just the way I like it!  My favorite among all the beautiful images is the 3D section which makes an already amazing photo even more captivating!  Very cool indeed.

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The Scale of the Universe

The Scale of the Universe 2. <—– click the link.  You have to check this out for yourself!

After studying cells and DNA extensively in my undergrad and watching numerous space documentaries from the History channel and the Discovery channel thereafter, I have become somewhat obsessed with the concept of scale.  I feel like even though we are taught that some things are small (really small) and some things are big (really big)  it’s easy to under-appreciate the incredible range of sizes that exist within our universe.  I found this amazing interactive graphic on the interweb and it does an outstanding job of emphasizing the variation in scale from the quantum world of quarks and neutrinos all the way up to the edge of the visible universe….way cool.

Wandering planets

The galaxy may swarm with billions of wandering planets  <—- click to link to entire article

Neat! This article is about planets in the Milky Way galaxy that are not gravitationally bound to any stars.  The article suggests that there are twice as many free floating planets as there are stars themselves in our galaxy.  Pretty amazing!  This article is an excellent example of the fluid nature of inquiry and how information presented as fact one minute can be altered completely once new information comes to light.

Raindrop Fossils

A meerkat sits on rock covered in fossil impressions of raindrops. (Wlady Altermann/University of Pretoria)

Raindrop Fossils – Science NetLinks. <–link to full article

This article discusses an unlikely record of the earth’s early atmospheric conditions.  Raindrops that fell billions of years ago became fossilized in volcanic ash and help scientists better understand the earth’s early atmospheric composition from over 2.7 billion years ago.   This would be an interesting way to incorporate current real world discoveries/science applications as well as a way to discuss and aid in gaining perspective on the vast the geologic time scale of earth.  Another way to incorporate this article into a lesson might be to use it when discussing the molecular composition of the atmosphere, or even how the earth’s biome in general affects our daily lives.