Dirty Drinking

What do trees, coastlines, and pineapples have in common? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Answer? They’re all FRACTALS, shapes that repeat as you zoom in. Their aesthetically-pleasing geometry inspires artists, writers, and even scientists! Sagar Khare’s team from Rutgers University felt drawn to fractals…

Plastic Protection

Yikes – dropped your smartphone in the toilet… again?!! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying… Wouldn’t it be great if our precious devices were water-proof? Or even better – LIQUID and STAIN proof? Meet Paul Leu and his research team from the University of

Shaken, Not Stirred

Is the key to finding dark matter. . . in your fridge? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Water freezes because impurities act as “seeds” for ice crystals to grow. But, if you put PURE water in the freezer, it can stay liquid – even

Red Planet Blues

Everyone into the pool!…on MARS? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. A long time ago, in a galaxy not at all far away, Mars was super wet. How wet? About twenty-percent covered in liquid! But now our Red Planet is dry and dusty. Where did

Whiskey Rings

To avoid those annoying coffee-rings on your table, try switching to whiskey! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying: Slow down. This study comes to us via engineers Hyoungsoo Kim and Howard Stone at Princeton University. They were inspired by photographer Ernie Button’s portraits of

Antwater Rafting

The ants go rafting one by one. Hoorah! Hoorah! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying: No, ants don’t raft one-by-one. Many types of ants are social, and act as a team . . . or in this case a crew! A team of scientists

Shellfish Sherlock

Shellfish are tasty. But can they illuminate the past? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Professor Pupa Gilbert at the University of Wisconsin-Madison studies pen shells. That’s a large, clam-like shellfish commonly found in Florida. Specifically, she studies their nacre, or mother-of-pearl. It’s that iridescent

Water Wonder

Water treatment that’s effective…and CUTE! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Most treatment facilities purify water by using chemicals that glob onto bad stuff. But this process isn’t perfect… if only someone could lend a hand… or a tentacle?! Introducing the sea anemone Actinia! It

Drip Drop

The sound of insomnia: cue the LEAKY FAUCET! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, on the most annoying sound ever. What causes that DRIP DRIP of a leaky bathtub? It’s not what you think! Anurag Agarwal at the University of Cambridge discovered the cause —

Slip n’ Slide

Hold onto your MARBLES, this ice is slippery! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Ever slip and fall on an ice-skating rink? People often blame this slipperiness on a layer of freshly melted water on top of ice. But recent research by brothers Mischa and