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Recent Articles

Anatomy of a Bath Bomb

By Julie Medina, Fleet Science Center School Programs Manager

Have you ever tried a bath bomb before? They’re these amazing scented spheres of soap and other components that can make for a colorful and aromatic addition to a regular bath. Kids think they are wild fun to add to the bathtub. Some adults see them as a relaxing and luxurious way to pamper yourself after a long day. To us, the most fascinating aspect of a bath bomb is the science!

Best Show of the Year

Photo by Lucas Ludwig on Unsplash

The bright Perseids are perhaps the most popular meteor shower of the year!

This is a complicated year for watching the Perseid meteor shower, because the evening sky has a roughly close-to-full Moon in it, making it more difficult to catch the faint “shooting stars.” So if you can wait until the Moon sets, you should have better viewing in the pre-dawn darkness. Spectators can expect to see around 10-15 meteors per hour or maybe slightly more on the peak on Monday and Tuesday, August 12-13, according to NASA.

Time Travel and Superpower Inducing Lab Accidents at Comic-Con San Diego

For the fourth year in a row, the Fleet has brought our own special blend of comic book fantasy with science reality to the San Diego Comic-Con. This year is no different, as we're excited to host two panels for the weekend event, featuring a mix of writers and scientists to explore the fiction and reality of science in movies and comic books.  

OSIRIS-REx and a Closer View of Bennu

Credit: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona/Lockheed Martin

By Dr. Lisa Will, Resident Astronomer at the Fleet Science Center

What can scientists hope to learn from one of the oldest asteroids in our solar system? The possibilities are endless, and soon we’ll know a whole lot more as the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft dips to its lowest orbit yet around the asteroid Bennu. It’s already giving us an amazing close-up view, but that’s only the beginning.

Using technology to prevent elephants from destroying crops

Photo by Paola Blašković on Unsplash

by Lindsay Mineo

Elephants are intelligent, emotional and social creatures, but they often get into trouble. Both African elephant populations and human populations are expanding, meaning there is less room for both. When fields are planted along migratory paths, the ripe crops are too tempting for hungry elephants. But a quick snack for a herd of elephants can mean losing an entire year’s income for a small farmer.

Reality vs. Hollywood: Chemistry

by Melissa T. Miller

Picture your favorite crime show’s forensic laboratory or a Bond villain’s secret lair. There are likely to be glass vials of all shapes and sizes that contain a rainbow of colored liquids. Some are probably bubbling, perhaps even smoking. The camera navigates around whiteboards covered in scrawled equations with a boggling combination of letters and numbers. How mysterious—they must be doing (gasp!)…chemistry!

Fleetster Friday: Meet Michelle Powers

It’s Fleetster Friday! This week, meet Mission Valley resident, Michelle Powers. As the Director of Donor Relations, Michelle is responsible for engaging, stewarding, and supporting the Fleet’s donors. Michelle is responsible for growing the Luminary Society, the Fleet’s premier circle of philanthropists and cultivating a culture of philanthropy among donors, members, and friends of the Fleet.

April’s (Meteor) Showers

by Jori Wuerth

 

It’s that time of the year again! Every year in April, the earth moves through the comet trail of C/1861 G1 Thatcher. This comet, sends dust and tiny bits of ice into the atmosphere, leaving a beautiful display of lights dancing across the sky.

The radiant for the Lyrids is near the bright star Vega in the constellation Lyra. This year, the peak viewing hours are expected to take place on Tuesday, April 23, before dawn. The Lyrid meteor shower, which started on April 16, will continue to appear in the sky through Thursday, April 25.

Imaging the Darkness

By Dr. Lisa Will, Resident Astronomer at the Fleet Science Center

 

Red blood cells, large and small!

By Alyson Smith

We can learn a lot about animals by looking at their cells, and red blood cells are no exception. These specialized cells—found in vertebrates and six other groups of animals—travel in blood vessels to transport oxygen and carbon dioxide between the lungs (or gills) and the rest of the body. Red blood cells get their color from heme, an iron-containing molecule that transports oxygen. 

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