Our "Get to Know your Plastics" portable exhibit
April 27, 2019 - FSUCML Open House
This year we returned to the FSU Coastal and Marine Laboratory for their highly attended Open House. With new poster displays and some brief surveys we were able to disseminate a lot of education on polymers. More on the survey results coming soon...
October 28, 2017 - TLH Science Festival
The Tallahassee Science Festival featured 117 different exhibits from all over north Florida all geared towards sharing knowledge about science. We continued our quest to educate the public about the science behind plastics, current societal challenges polymer scientists are working towards, and engaging children in polymer science. Thanks to the students who worked really hard during this event. Children were lining up for 3 hrs to make silly putty!
September 24, 2016 - FSUCML Regatta
Our return to the FSU Coastal and Marine Laboratory Whatever Floats Your Boat Regatta boasted a few new upgrades including reprieve from the sun under our new display tent (it was a hot day). Sadly, the winning boat this year was not made out of plastic...but instead, concrete? Engineers at FSU constructed a boat out of air-filled glass beads within a casting of old concrete mix. Gotta hand it to them.
September 10, 2016 - TLH Science Festival
The Tallahassee Science Festival featured over 90 different exhibits from all over north Florida all geared towards sharing knowledge about science. We continued our quest to educate the public about the science behind plastics, current societal challenges polymer scientists are working towards, and even learned some new things ourselves. Did you know that TLH recycling plants prefer you to leave the polypropylene caps on the polyethylene terephthalate bottles now? Progress... Also our neighbor cooked us up some eggs on their solar oven!
April 16-17, 2016 - LeMoyne Chain of Parks Art Festival
This year the we attended one of the largest art festivals in the southeast in conjuction with their "Going Green in 2016" efforts. Teaming up with Sustainable Tallahassee, we diplayed our exhibit to educate festival attendees on the science of plastics. We also added a "make your own art putty" table for children of all ages to do a little bit of a science and a polymer chemistry experimentation that crosslinks poly(vinyl alcohol) (aka Elmers glue) with sodium borate (Borax). It was a safe and fun way to teach children (and adults) about the effects of macromolecular structure and material properties.
May 5, 2015 - FSUCML Regatta
We inaugurated our "Get to Know your Plastics" portable outreach exhibit at the CSU Coastal Marine Laboratory's annual "Whatever Floats Your Boat" Regatta. The event invites anyone in the local community to build their own boat out of trash or recyclable materials. Contestants race their boats for prizes and all boats are recycled afterward. This was a great event to teach the local community about plastics since most of the "successful" boats were made mostly of them. Attendees asked us about the safety of plastics, why certain plastics can't be recycled, and what makes plastics great for boats. We also educated them about the current challenges in research that our group is undertaking and how it can meet today's challenges in polymer science.