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Nano Bite: February 2014

Welcome to the February Nano Bite, the monthly e-newsletter for the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net).

Upcoming Activities!

NanoDays 2014: March 29 - April 6, 2014 - The Biggest Event for the Smallest Science!
2014 will be the 7th year of nation-wide NanoDays events! Whether this is your first NanoDays or you hosted events previously, the NISE Net is thrilled to have you join our week of public educational activities about nanoscale science and technology at science museums and research centers all across the nation. The 2014 NanoDays physical kits have been shipped and educators around the US are excitedly unwrapping their activities and prepping for their upcoming programs. Didn't receive a physical kit this year? Don't worry because the NanoDays 2014 digital kit includes all the written resources and activity materials lists to host a NanoDays event.

Useful NanoDays Resources

Are You Getting Ready for NanoDays 2014?
Are you new to hosting a NanoDays event, unfamiliar with some of the new 2014 activities, or just looking for a fun refresher? Then consider joining the upcoming spring online brown-bag conversations that cover a wide-range of NanoDays-related topics! We'll be opening up the kits together, exploring the science behind NanoDays activities, going over techniques for engaging visitors in conversations about nano and society, and discussing strategies for delivering programs for multiple-language visitors without speaking their language.

Spring 2014 Online Brown-Bag Conversations - Get Prepared for NanoDays
See full details and RSVP for brown-bags here.

Brown-Bag Recordings Now Available
  • January 9, 2014: Nano for Summer Camps (view recording)
  • January 15, 2014: Hosting a Bilingual NanoDays (view recording)
    • Find NanoDays 2014 activities that are available in Spanish in both the physical and digital kits! 
New in the Catalog
Partner Highlight:
Marbles Kids Museum Exposes Students and Teachers to the Mysteries of the Unseen World
Author credit: Hardin Engelhardt, Marbles Kids Museum

Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh, NC is exposing students to worlds too fast, too slow, too small, too vast and simply invisible through National Geographic’s new documentary Mysteries of the Unseen World 3D. With support from a 2014 NISE Net Mini-grant, Marbles Kids Museum developed a 45-minute hands-on learning lab that expands on the movie’s content and immerses students in the exploration of things invisible to the naked eye.

In the learning lab, students pretend that they have just been hired to work for a technology company that makes invisible worlds visible. Students rotate through four "labs" to explore the electromagnetic spectrum, microscopy, nanoscale science and technology, and product testing and development. The goal of the learning lab is to spark curiosity about STEM content and expose students to STEM career pathways.

Marbles launched the film and learning lab with a teacher preview of Mysteries of the Unseen World and workshop on integrating nanoscale science and technology content across the K-12 curriculum....[read full Partner Highlight].

To find out more about Marbles Kids Museum, please visit, or contact Brad Herring of the Museum of Life and Science, and the Southeast Regional Hub Leader.
What Else?

The iPhone DIY Nano app has recently been updated and now includes all 12 activities with the addition of several other updates, and is now on par with the iPad version. Keep an eye out in March for the release of a newer DIY Nano version and 3 new activities! For DIY Nano updates, click here.

Upcoming conferences and meetings
If you're planning to present at a conference on NISE Net-related projects and want to make the community aware of these activities, please notify Kayla Berry at [email protected]. Upcoming meetings and conferences that include NISE Network participation are indicated with an asterisk.
Nano in the News
Science and Engineering of 2014 Winter Olympic Games. Athletes don't just prepare physically and mentally for the Olympic Games, equipment and weather are also major factors in their success or failure. Consider alpine skiing and how nanotechnology is enhancing skier performance and helping them become faster than ever. The video, Stability and Vibration Damping in Alpine Skiing, which is a part of the "Science of Sports" NBC series, describes how engineers are redesigning skis. A University of Nevada, Reno mechanical engineering associate professor discusses how he and his team are using nanocomposite materials to reduce unwanted vibration in high performance skis.

In addition to equipment, snow is an essential part of the winter Olympic Games. Scientists have been studying snow for centuries; how it's formed and how it reacts. Watch Science of Snow, to learn why contingency efforts of storing snow after two mild winters for use during Sochi's winter games may not stack up to the real thing. 

New Museum of Science Current Science and Technology podcast discusses the use of piezoelectric nano foam that could be used in football helmets to measure forces to the skull and help identify concussions. Listen now!
Nano Throughout the Year
A list of nano activities for use throughout the year is available on the NISE Net’s list of seasonal activities.
*Answers located at bottom of newsletter*

Between 2008 and 2014, the NISE Network has distributed physical kits to over how many different sites across the nation?
a) 200
b) 300
c) 400

Follow the NISE Network on social media to get connected with other members from the community and to stay in the loop with NISE Network news and opportunities!



Read the Nano Bite e-newsletter online at /newsletter/nano-bite-february-2014.

*Trivia answers:
Between 2008 and 2014, the NISE Network has distributed physical kits to over how many different sites across the nation? Answer: 400