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UCSB to Host ‘NanoDays’ at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History

The smallest science gets a big reception when UC Santa Barbara presents NanoDays 2013, inviting visitors into the miniscule world of atoms, molecules and nanoscale forces.

Hosted by the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, the science fair is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 16, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 17.

The events will be held at the museum, 2559 Puesta del Sol Road in Santa Barbara, and all festival activities are included in the price of general admission to the museum. On March 16, admission is free for children under 3; $6 for children ages 3 to 12; $7 for teens and senior citizens; and $10 for adults. There is no charge for members of the museum. On March 17, admission is free.

Participants will discover how 3D images are made, investigate new nano products and materials, and imagine what the world might look like if we could build an elevator to space. Activities include crafting bracelets that change color in the sun; making thin films of shimmery iridescent colors; and exploring properties such as invisibility, static electricity and gravity.

NanoDays at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History are part of a nationwide festival of educational programs centered on nanoscale science and engineering. Led by the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net), it is the largest public outreach effort of its kind.

Putting scientists and science educators together to create learning experiences for both children and adults, NanoDays celebrations combine hands-on activities with presentations of current research. It’s all meant to demonstrate the special and unexpected properties found at the nanoscale, examine tools used by nanoscientists, showcase promising nano materials, and invite discussion of technology and society.

The local event is organized by the UCSB Nanofabrication Facility, and sponsored by the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network and the California NanoSystems Institute.

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