Win a Flip Video Camera and Improve the Public’s Appreciation for Chemistry.
Chemists know that that there’s more to a plant than green leaves and a hardy root system. However, to the general public, chemistry’s relationship to plant life is not always apparent. Therefore, to improve the public’s understanding of why plants really are green machines, the ACS Network is sponsoring the “Where’s the Chemistry In Plants?” photo contest.
Here’s how the contest works:
Take a photo of plant, an item that is derived from plants, equipment used to study plants, you name it. Then in 250 words or less, describe the photo and its relationship to chemistry. You might choose to detail a plant’s chemical properties, how chemists unlock substances in plants to create new medicines, how plant based materials are used to make environmentally friendly products that we depend on everyday. It’s up to you.
To participate, reply to this thread and post your photo and entry. The deadline for submissions is May 1, 2010. Winners will be determined through the use of an on-line poll on the network. Voting will begin on May 2 and close on May 15.
Is this open to anyone? Can I direct my children's science classes to this competition? Would children not associated with ACS be eligible for the flip video camera? (not mine as children of an ACS employee)
Biodiesel can be used to replace petroleum-based diesel. It is made from vegetable oil, restaurant frying oil, or cooking oil, e.g., it is made from soybeans, rapeseed, or sunflower. There are a few grades of biodiesel: B20 is a mixture of 20% biodiesel, and 80% petrodiesel. Similarly, there is B5 and B100.
Biodiesel gives out less greenhouse gasses than petrodiesel and gasoline. If you use B20 to replace petrodiesel, the emissions of unburned hydrocarbons are reduced by over 20%, carbon monoxide and particulate matter each by over 10%. Biodiesel is also biodegradable and renewable. Fossil fuels are not renewable and might run out some day.
In 2007, San Francisco converted its fleet of diesel vehicles to biodiesel. They started a program called SF Grease: the city collects restaurants’ used oil to recycle into biodiesel. This is brilliant because San Francisco spends 3.5 million dollars each year to unclog the sewer pipes, sometimes clogged by used cooking oil.
Biodiesel is produced by transesterification, where an alcohol is added to vegetable oil to produce biodiesel plus glycerin. A catalyst such as sodium hydroxide or potassium hydroxide is required. Glycerin can be used to make soap. The process was patented by a Belgian in 1937.
This collage consists of pictures taken at the first B100 biodiesel station in San Francisco. Their biodiesel is made from vegetable oil and stored in an 8000-gallon tank. They sell 300 gallons to cars, trucks, and tour busses everyday. They also collect used oil for SF Grease.
Angela, It is to late for them to be included in the contest. But I would love to see your photos and their connection to chemistry anyway. Would you mind sharing?