Superstars trashing hotel rooms are not confined to modern rock bands – scientists have been there and done that. Davy and Faraday set up a lab in their Parisian hotel room and proceeded to conduct experiments, several resulting in explosions and clouds of noxious gases.
2019 is the International Year of the Periodic Table and STA member, the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI), has been collecting stories from the periodic table to celebrate.
The winner of the first round of the competition was ‘Iodine’ by Professor Brynn Hibbert, which gives a view into the exciting process of discovering a new element.
Faraday writes in his Continental journal on 1st December “when a solution of ammonia is poured on the new substance and left in contact with it for a short time a black powder is formed which when separated, dried and heated, detonates with great force.” “Great force” usually meant the disintegration of the glassware, nearby furniture and occasionally bits of the experimenters.
President of the RACI, Dr Vicki Gardiner, said the competition was a great way to share the joy of discovery and excitement of science with all Australians.
“Storytelling brings people closer together. This project is a way for us to not only bring attention to an important scientific advancement, but to highlight the personal relationships we have to science.”
“We encourage people from all of the science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines to get involved and share their favourite story from the periodic table.”
Round two is now open and submissions close on 31 March.