The Compound Interest Newsletter

By Andy @ Compound Interest

Ci Newsletter #20: Ice cream science and creasing clothes

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Andy @ Compound Interest
Andy @ Compound Interest
Welcome to the latest Ci newsletter, in which we look at the polymers that make up your clothes (and what makes them crease), the science behind the ice creams keeping us cool during heatwaves, and more!

Creasing cotton & shrinking wool
Click to view and download on the C&EN site
Click to view and download on the C&EN site
Why do shirts get creased? And why do wool jumpers shrink in the wash?The latest edition of Periodic Graphics has the answers, taking a look at the various polymers that are used to make our clothes.
Ice cream science
Click to view and download this graphic on the Ci site
Click to view and download this graphic on the Ci site
We’re in the middle of a heatwave in the UK at the moment, so it’s pretty apt that Ice Cream Day is this coming Sunday when the heat is meant to peak. As well as this graphic, which looks at the structure of ice cream and its components, there’s also this edition of Periodic Graphics which looks at how different frozen desserts compare.
Whoosh bottle: What happens at different temperatures?
Image © Tom Kuntzleman
Image © Tom Kuntzleman
The whoosh bottle is a classic chemistry demonstration, but what happens when you carry it out at different temperatures? That’s what Tom Kuntzleman wondered, and his subsequent blog post is an interesting exploration of the effects with some unexpected conclusions.
Fruity national days
There are a couple of fruit-themed national days coming up, with cherries on Saturday and mangos next Friday. Of course, there are graphics for that! This graphic on cherries explores their colour and why their pits are poisonous, while this one on mangos looks at what they have in common with poison ivy.
The periodic table in blackwork patterns
Image © Clare Wilkes
Image © Clare Wilkes
At the end of the International Year of the Periodic Table in 2019, Clare Wilkes decided to embark on a project to make a monochrome periodic table formed from individual blackwork patterns for each element. Two and a half years later, her project is complete, and you can view the full table, as well as the individual patterns for each element, on her website. It’s fun to browse through and see if you can work out what’s depicted for each element – and why!
Chemistry news and features
A lightning burst of chemistry
Colour-changing ice cream
That’s all for this fortnight. You may have noticed (or maybe you didn’t!) that I took an accidental fortnight off two weeks ago, as I just had too much stuff going on. Normal service should now resume! As always, get in touch if you’ve got any feedback or suggestions.
Thanks for reading,
Andy
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Andy @ Compound Interest
Andy @ Compound Interest @compoundchem

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