Solar S'mores: Science at its most delicious!

S'moreS'more

Make a solar s'more oven using a cardboard pizza box, some aluminum foil, and a few other basic materials. If the weather permits, we will go outside, test the oven, then eat some delicious s'mores (no campfire required)! This is science at its most delicious.

Thursday July 2, 2009 | 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm | Pittsfield Branch | Grade 4 thru Adult

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #164

At the heart of Enrique Joven's gripping debut (translated from the Spanish) The Book of God and Physics* is the Voynich Manuscript - a puzzling document that has fascinated generations of cryptologists both amateur and professional with its odd drawings and strange text, as yet undeciphered.

This 500 year-old oddity found its way to the Yale University Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, where a Jesuit physics teacher and two resourceful collaborators try to pierce the mystery, including the possible murder of a well-known scientist. The Church, on the other hand, seems to be going to great lengths to keep the book's meaning hidden.

"Joven's sophisticated perspective indeed opens insights into the current controversy pitting Darwinism against intelligent design. A book to delight lovers of well-crafted fiction and well-anchored fact." ~ Booklist

Debut author Katherine Howe's The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane deals with yet another archival puzzler connected to the most fascinating and disturbing periods in American history - the Salem witch trials. Fan of Matthew Pearl would find themselves two new authors to watch.

* = Starred review

Molecules the Musical

MoleculesMolecules

Encouraging kids to consider careers in science has never been this fun! Check out Molecules the Musical at the Power Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of University of Michigan on June 5, 6, and 7. The show combines music, dance, and multimedia elements to create a one-act show that will inspire students and engage their curiosity about the scientific world.

Self-Portrait with Turtles: a Memoir by David M. Carroll

David Carroll likes to spend long stretches of time in ponds, wetlands, and forests. Turtles are his favorite but he is attentive to the other creatures and plants. He refers to his early nature learning as aboriginal, learning from submerging himself in the ponds he discovers and taking the time for patient observation. Though Carroll can, on occasion, be a little too taken with himself, his memoir is lyrical and lovely. His turtle explorations are mostly in the Northeast. School, home life, art instruction, wife, children, and teaching filter into the story but most is on the turtles and their surroundings.

Space Tourism!?!?!?

SoyuzSoyuz

Never thought you'd live to see the day when space travel become a tourist attraction, did you? Well, you're living it! Russo-Hungarian software developer Charles Simonyi is traveling with two other personnel who'll be relieving Space Station crew members who recently returned to Earth via Discovery shuttle. Simonyi, Gennady Padalka, a Russian air force colonel and Michael Barratt, a flight engineer and space physician, are expected to dock at the International Space Station at 9:14am EST Saturday morning. Simonyi isn't publicizing how much he paid for passage aboard the Soyuz rocket, bound for the ISS. However, the list price is $35 million. This is Simonyi's second trip to space, and he's indicated that the cost of booking a seat on space shuttles has increased for since his first trip.

Martian Water

Pheonix Lander StrutPheonix Lander Strut

This photo shows something that beads up like water on the supporting leg of the Phoenix Mars Lander. The University of Michigan Astronomy and Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences professor Dr. Nilton Renno is a co-investigator on the Phoenix Mission. Dr. Renno et al. submitted "Physical and Thermodynamical Evidence for Liquid Water on Mars" to the Journal of Geophysical Research.

Read more about the bat space program.

Other related materials:
Mars : a warmer, wetter planet
Roving Mars DVD
Aqua. (Teen Graphic Novel) Vol. 1

Michael Flynn's Ferrofluid Magnetoscope

ferrofluid

Try it yourself! Control powerful magnets and levitate a puddle of ferrofluid in this amazing hands-on exhibit in the Downtown Library lobby. The exhibit will be on display for through March 18. To learn more about Michael Flynn's work, visit www.FunExhibits.com.

Library patron Sean Patrick visited a few days ago and made this high quality film of the magnetoscope, set to the music of his local band, In Braille. We love it when our patrons are inspired by the Library!

The Universe As Seen Through The Pioneer High School Argus Planetarium

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Steve Schaffer, longtime Director of the Argus Planetarium, will lead viewers through a compelling presentation inside the oldest known public school planetarium in continuous operation in the US. This event is held in conjunction with The Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Reads 2009, which, this year focuses on the theme The Universe: Yours To Discover. Presentations will be held at 11:00 am and then again at 12:00pm on Saturday, March 14 at Pioneer High School.

A ferrofluid Magnetoscope at the AADL? Come check it out!

MagnetoscopeMagnetoscope

Control powerful magnets and levitate a puddle of ferrofluid in this new hands-on exhibit by inventor, Michael Flynn. Ferrofluid is a nano-engineered oil containing magnetic particles that are only 5 nanometers in diameter. Rapid advancements in nanotechnology are harnessing many other surprising properties from nanoscale physics for use in our normal, full-scale experience. You can learn more about this exhibit at www.FunExhibits.com, and during the month of March you come see it in action at the Downtown AADL!

Learn About Dinosaurs This (and Every) Weekend!

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Head over to the University of Michigan Exhibit Museum of Natural History. The Exhibit Museum offers free docent-led tours of the dinosaur exhibits every Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. for the first 15 people to sign up. You can sign up at the host table in the Rotunda lobby. Sign up is first come, first served. The tours last approximately 30 minutes. As an added bonus, check out a Museum Adventure Pass and receive a 10% discount in the museum store!

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