Brian Wagner, a chemistry professor at the University of Prince Edward Island, works with fluorescent dyes to develop molecular sensors for pesticides and other analytes. Here, he dissolved the fluorescent molecules perylene (top) and fluorescein (bottom) in the immiscible solvents hexane and water, respectively. Shining ultraviolet light on the solutions reveals two distinctly fluorescing layers.

Submitted by Brian Wagner, University of Prince Edward Island

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Video VC2807 (Dissolving A Polystyrene Cup)

A demonstration showing a polystyrene cup dissolving after being filled with acetone, a solvent. 

Acetone is a widely-used solvent in the chemical industry. It is completely miscible with water, but also dissolves a wide range of plastics and other organic compounds.

© Rhys Lewis & Minh Tan Pham / Science Source


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New Quirky & Puntastic Science Inspired Gifts

Newton and the Apple was conceived from a passion of love, knowledge and design. Its artist, “Gemma” holds a PhD in Auditory Neuroscience. Inspired by minimalism, famous scientists, formulas and the overall field of science, she creates stationary gets with a sentimental and clever value. You can find her entire collection of stationery in her Etsy shop.

Check out our favorite picks from Newton and Apple here!

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Poisonous Birds in Papua New Guinea and a Very Baffling Story of Evolution
They secrete batrachotoxin through their feathers, which is one of the world's most deadly poisons.

Secreted from the glands of poison dart frogs in South America, batrachotoxin is fatal at a dosage of just 0.1 milligrams. That’s equivalent to around two grains of table salt. After exposure, the toxin jams open the ion channels in its victim’s nervous system, forcing muscles to fire continuously. In around 10 minutes, the heart and lungs will seize.

Batrachotoxin just about the most potent toxin on the planet. But killing power aside, the most compelling thing about batrachotoxin is how it reveals large holes in our understanding of evolution.

In 1989, a graduate student from the University of Chicago named Jack Dumbacher was studying birds of paradise in Papua New Guinea. He was trying to catch them in nets but kept getting another bird, called a pitohui, instead.

“So I had two or three in a net and was pulling them out, and they scratched my hand,” he recalled over the phone. “I licked my cuts and instantly felt my tongue start to tingle and burn. After a moment it went numb and I thought Hey, maybe I shouldn’t have done that.”…

Please go check (link in the bio). We (Jasmine + Sherry) put a lot of effort into this so I hope you can all check it out and show some support. The website is about igcse. It includes all our personal notes + resources + tips and more!! Hopefully it will help some of you through igcse/gcse!!