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Chicken Eggs as Drug Factories
Making the most of a meal
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Spotting the World's Leggiest Animal
Koalas, Up Close and Personal
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Girls are cool for school
The Electric Brain
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Seen on the Science Fair Scene
Fingerprint Evidence
Electronic Paper Turns a Page
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Meet the new dinos
The bug that may have killed a dinosaur
Winged Insects May Go Way Back
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Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
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Slower Growth, Greater Warmth
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Springing forward
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Salt and Early Civilization
Your inner Neandertal
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Great White Shark
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2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
How are students placed after passing the GSAT exam
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GSAT Exam Preparation
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
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Detecting True Art
GSAT Mathematics Quiz, Teaching Math, teaching anxiety
Human Body
Football Scrapes and Nasty Infections
A Fix for Injured Knees
Cell Phone Tattlers
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Cornish Rex
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Primates
Parents
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
Expert report highlights the importance to parents of reading to children!
Physics
The Mirror Universe of Antimatter
Thinner Air, Less Splatter
Speedy stars
Plants
Assembling the Tree of Life
Fastest Plant on Earth
When Fungi and Algae Marry
Reptiles
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Alligators
Space and Astronomy
Saturn's Spongy Moon
Older Stars, New Age for the Universe
Melting Snow on Mars
Technology and Engineering
A Light Delay
Drawing Energy out of Wastewater
Spinach Power for Solar Cells
The Parts of Speech
What is a Verb?
Countable and Uncountable Nouns
Adjectives and Adverbs
Transportation
Morphing a Wing to Save Fuel
Seen on the Science Fair Scene
Middle school science adventures
Weather
Catching Some Rays
The Best Defense Is a Good Snow Fence
Science loses out when ice caps melt
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Supergoo to the rescue

Inside a disposable diaper are tiny crystals of a material called sodium polyacrylate that can absorb hundreds of times their weight in water. Just a small amount of the stuff — sometimes called “Super Slurper” — can sop up a lot of liquid, no matter where it comes from. When the crystals absorb water, they form a thick and sticky goo (which is why a used diaper gets so heavy). Now, scientists at the Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois have found a new use for this goo: cleaning up after a terrorist attack. A dirty bomb is a weapon that uses explosives to create a cloud of radioactive materials. Radioactive materials send off energy in the form of radiation, including a form that’s used to make X-rays of your teeth. But too much radiation can make you sick, and even die. So, if a dirty bomb were ever to go off (which hasn’t happened in the U.S.), particles of radioactive material would be released into the air. Terrorists have talked about making such an explosion to cause confusion and panic. But blown by the wind, the dangerous particles released by such a detonation can stick to building materials like marble or brick. This is where the supergoo comes in. If a dirty bomb were to go off, scientists could spray the sticky gel onto buildings. Afterward, when teams clean up the gel, the radioactive particles would peel off with it. In the laboratory, Argonne engineer Michael Kaminski and his team have shown that one treatment with the thick gel can remove 80 percent of radioactive leftovers on marble. After two treatments, 90 percent of the leftovers were removed. Many of our national monuments are made of marble, so Kaminski’s supergoo would aid cleanup efforts without damaging the monuments themselves. The goo isn’t only successful; it’s also nontoxic. “In fact,” he says, “you could literally eat some of the formulations that we’ve made.” But the goo doesn’t work everywhere. It works so well on marble partly because the polished marble used on most monuments is extremely smooth — there aren’t many holes to shelter radioactive dust. Brick, on the other hand, is rough, so the gel doesn’t work as well. “Removal rates are poor,” Kaminski says. Kaminski started working on the super-cleaning supergoo after the Department of Homeland Security asked scientists to come up with ways to clean up radioactive materials. It’s scary to think about a dirty bomb going off, but it’s more disturbing to think about a dirty bomb going off and not knowing how to respond.

Supergoo to the rescue
Supergoo to the rescue








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