Chemistry

The Devil’s Tramping Ground

The Devil's Tramping Ground is a clearing in the Chatham County woods where nothing has grown for as long as anyone can remember. The mysterious lack of plants in the area has inspired the legend that the Devil comes to that spot in the night and paces in a circle while planning how to tear down the hearts of men, trampling all the plants in the process. Scientists have yet to determine exactly why nothing grows there, including soil scientist Rich Hayes, who has run several tests on the soil chemistry of the site.

Reinventing the Toilet

Some might call it the most important chair in the house but for 2.5 billion people around the world, access to safe and sanitary toilets isn’t an option. Researchers at RTI International are reinventing a toilet that is self-sustaining and doesn’t require plumbing or a regular water source, which will benefit the developing world.

Seven Ideas for a Sciencey Holiday

I am the first to admit that I have never gotten the holidays quite right. Whether I’m late shopping for gifts, mess up my contribution to dinner, do something embarrassing at a holiday party or hang all the decorations crooked, something always seems to go wrong.

Thankfully, there are a few sciencey tricks people like me can bust out around the holidays as a last ditch effort to spread a little holiday cheer... And promptly gather it up again when explaining exactly how it works.

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