What Are The Four New Elements On The Periodic Table?

DNews briefly explains the latest additions that complete the seventh row of the periodic table. Right now, IUPAC has given them temporary names: Ununtrium, Ununpentium, Ununseptium, and Ununoctium. Yeah, gotta love that impromptu Latin root lesson…Anyway, these new elements will get proper names later on, and hopefully the public will get to learn more about what they can do as well. What a way for the field of Chemistry to kick off 2016!

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Papua Skull Reliquary

Papua Skull Reliquary

A 19th century artifact from the Gulf of Papua, on display at the de Young Museum in San Francisco, California. While some might think it’s creepy, I think it’s an amazing work of art. Also can be viewed here.

Foucault Pendulum

Video

Here’s a little glimpse of something I came across during my recent visit to the California Academy of Sciences. A Foucault pendulum is used to demonstrate the Earth’s rotation. Basically, the pendulum swings evenly, but the trajectory changes as the planet rotates. It may take a while, but eventually all those little blocks in the circle will be knocked down.

A Brief History of Timekeeping

SciShow explains the complicated and fascinating science behind telling time.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Plankton Rainbow

Plankton Rainbow

This week’s challenge is all about forces of nature, so I thought I’d post something about light and its effects of animals. Here’s another Exploratorium exhibit. Basically, zooplankton can distinguish different colors of light. In the ocean, it helps them swim toward the surface, where their food is located. Blue and green lights shine deeper in the water than the other colors, hence why the plankton are attracted to these ones; they think the sun is shining through the water, and that they’re entering the photic zone for a meal. Large version available here.