In this series of talks presented by York University’s Faculty of Science in partnership with the Toronto Public Library, we look at where elements are found, how they work and how they affect us.
Elements are in the inks used for tattoos, in the air we breath, the beer we drink, in the scent of a pine tree, and in the reaction that makes hand warmers warm.
Learn about the surprising importance of chemical elements and how they affect all aspects of our lives.
The Chemistry Behind Tattoos
Thursday, Sept. 26 at 6:30 pm, at Runnymede branch
Although tattoos have been around for millennia, their popularity has only recently skyrocketed. Now nearly 25 per cent of all Canadians have at least one tattoo. What makes the colours so vibrant and stay in your skin forever? As new technologies develop, it raises the question – do tattoos have to be permanent? Professor Christopher Caputo will discuss the science behind tattoos to illuminate answers to these questions.
Every Breath you Take: The Chemistry of Air
Wednesday, Oct. 2 at 6:30 pm, at Eatonville branch
Air is usually invisible, so it’s easy to assume it’s simple. Yet it’s composed of a wide diversity of tiny molecules – not merely oxygen – some of which could be harmful and travel great distances. How do we know what’s in our air? Professor Cora Young will tell us this and how it influences air quality, climate, and our health.
The Periodic Table of the Elements: 150 Years Young and Still Growing
Thursday, Nov. 7 at 7 pm, at Runnymede branch
In answering these questions, Professor Pierre Potvin will highlight the surprising importance of chemical elements in all aspects of our lives.
The Science of Beer-Making: More than Barley, Water, Hops, and Yeast
Wednesday, Nov. 13 at 7 pm, at Don Mills branch
From its inception in ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia to the resurgence of the craft beer phenomenon, beer making applies chemistry to everyday life. Be it mass-produced or home-brewed, it follows the same process. Professor Hovig Kouyoumdjian discusses the science of beer and highlights the chemistry behind it.
The Five Senses of Holiday Chemistry
Monday, Nov. 18, at 7 pm, at Bloor/Gladstone branch
With the holiday season approaching, our senses become bombarded with all sorts of seasonal stimuli. Professor Derek Jackson will present a thematic overview of the chemistry behind the scent of a pine tree, the popping sounds of a Christmas cracker, how hand warmers work, and more!