The Disappearing Spoon
And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World From the Periodic Table of the ElementsBook - 2010
Why did Gandhi hate iodine (I, 53)? How did radium (Ra, 88) nearly ruin Marie Curie's reputation? And why is gallium (Ga, 31) the go-to element for laboratory pranksters?*
The Periodic Table is a crowning scientific achievement, but it's also a treasure trove of adventure, betrayal, and obsession. These fascinating tales follow every element on the table as they play out their parts in human history, and in the lives of the (frequently) mad scientists who discovered them. THE DISAPPEARING SPOON masterfully fuses science with the classic lore of invention, investigation, and discovery--from the Big Bang through the end of time.
*Though solid at room temperature, gallium is a moldable metal that melts at 84 degrees Fahrenheit. A classic science prank is to mold gallium spoons, serve them with tea, and watch guests recoil as their utensils disappear.
From Library Staff
A must read for all history and science buffs. This books walks you through each element of the periodic table by sharing an interesting story about its discovery and uses, like why did Lewis and Clark swallow mercury capsules? and why was Godzilla killed with a cadmium missile? - Katie
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He absolutely deserved one of the great scientific compliments ever paid, when a colleague said Pauling proved "that chemistry could be understood rather than being memorized"
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