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Skyscraper-length Model Will Block Campus Traffic Prior To Display at HMNS
Massive Rice Nanotube Makes Guinness World Records
April 14, 2005
WHAT: Dozens of Rice students are teaming up this Earth Day to build one of the largest chemistry models ever constructed. At 1,000 feet horizontally, the bright blue model of a carbon nanotube will be as long as Houston’s tallest skyscraper, downtown’s JPMorganChase Tower. It will take 70-plus students four hours to build, and it’s so long it will spill across the campus’s main thoroughfare, forcing a traffic detour. Guinness World Records will certify it as the world’s largest nanotube model. Following assembly, 400 feet of the model will be carried to the Houston Museum of Natural Science (HMNS) for display.
DATE: Friday, April 22
WHEN / WHERE:
Rice University academic quad 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m., 6100 Main Street.
Houston Museum of Natural Science 4-6:30 p.m., One Herman Circle Drive.
WHO: Rice’s Center for Nanoscale Science & Technology
WHY: Rice is home to the world’s premier nanotube research lab, and Houston is poised to be a major player in the production and use of nanotubes.
Carbon nanotubes are molecules of pure carbon with unique and wondrous properties. They are 100 times stronger than steel, but weigh one-sixth as much. They can be metals or semiconductors, and scientists hope to use them in everything from spacecraft and microchips to body armor and medical scanners.
The Earth Day event also celebrates the environmental benefits of nanotubes, particularly in the area of sustainable energy supplies. Nanotubes are expected to revolutionize energy production, storage and transport, and they are already being studied for use in ultraefficient power cables, advanced fuel cells and affordable, efficient solar cells.
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