Chemistry is an exciting field, and scientists around the world are bringing chemistry to life by conducting live demonstrations, giving public talks, and engaging students in conversations about science. The chemists below are just a few of the experts who are looking forward to meeting you this year!
The Faces of IYC - Katie Hunt, Ph.D.
Catherine "Katie" Hunt is a chemist who doesn't work in a traditional laboratoryshe does chemistry in the lab of real life! As a "collaborative chemist" for Dow, Katie builds teams of scientists from industry, academia and national labs to invent new ways to solve world challenges around clean water, energy and food.
"I love my job because I get the chance to work with all kinds of people from scientists to CEO's, from students to educators, from entrepreneurs to legislators," said Katie. "We work on solving world challenges by breaking them down into a series of questionsbig questionsand then systematically answering them."
One of her favorite big questions is: how can we use our house to make electricity? The answer is through special roof shingles that take sunlight and turn it into electricity using photovoltaic cells, a thin technology that looks like a black coating. When light hits a photovoltaic cell, tiny packets of energy called photons jump and move through a circuit. This creates electricity, so that you can power your home with your home.
Katie is a former president of the American Chemical Society, the largest scientific society in the world. Today, she sits on Mayor Nutter's Sustainability Advisory Board for the City of Philadelphia and is working to make Philadelphia "the greenest city in America." She is very proud of the Retrofit PHILLY Project Team who came together to retrofit a whole city block in Philadelphia with insulation, air sealing and cool roofs!
Katie is based in Spring House, Pennsylvania. In her free time, Katie likes to judge science fairs and work with students. She enjoys yoga, bicycling and spending time with her husband, Wes, and son, James.
The Faces of IYC - Charles "Chuck" Jones, Ph.D.
Every day, Chuck Jones helps create shampoo that washes your hair better, laundry detergent that can dissolve the worst grime from your clothes and sunscreen that blocks dangerous UV rays while appearing clear on your skinno more white noses at the beach!
Chuck is listed as an inventor on 15 U.S. patents, but to some kindergarteners, he is known by another nameDr. Bubbles. Ever wonder how bubble bath creates all those foamy bubbles? Chuck can tell you. Even better, he can show you! Chuck spends time in Philadelphia-area classrooms conducting experiments that demonstrate how soap makes fluffy, foamy bubbles in the tub.
"I've wanted to be a scientist ever since I was a kid," says Chuck. "I had a teacher who showed me how interesting and important chemistry was to the things we do every day. He really inspired me to pursue science as a career. I love working with students because I can share the same excitement that I felt in school."
Chuck is based in Spring House, Pennsylvania. In his free time, Chuck enjoys developing science experiments for kids, including this one:
1. Take two apples and tie a piece of string around each stem.
2. Hang them up about two inches apart and steady them so that they hang still.
3. Blow hard between the apples and try to separate them. Can you do it?
No! Surprisingly the two apples move toward each other, but why? As you blow, you move the air between the apples. The moving air has less pushing power than the air on the outside of the apples, so the pushing power of the air outside the apples makes them move closer together instead of wider apart. That's the power of science!