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Science Cafes 2015

The Library is pleased to partner with Cornerstones of Science to offer monthly Science Cafes on a wide range of issues and topics of interest to our community.

  • January 15 featured Sam Saltonstall, who will talk about Peaks Island’s efforts to help residents save money on their energy bills through a variety of initiatives including weatherization weeks, heat pump purchase groups, “let’s do it ourselves” projects, home energy inventories, and community builds of storm window inserts.  Learn how you could help start a similar initiative in your mainland community.  Sam recently returned from a trip to Denmark’s Samsø Island sponsored by the Fund for Maine Islands.  His volunteer work on Peaks is supported by the Island Institute and the Peaks Environmental Action Team.
  • February 19 had Sarah Lakeman, the Sustainability Director at the Natural Resources Council of Maine, who will discuss how our choices impact our environment and quality of life and describe what it means to live in a sustainable community.
  • March 18 hosts Dr. Eva Szillery, as she talks about  the mathematics behind Modular Origami. She will facilitate this learning by doing activity. Participants can watch how each fold leads to a more advanced one and how together they all progress to create a life-like pliable material, which the students, duplicate or use their creativity to form a new one on their own. Dr. Szillery shows how Origami is a method of “active research” and hands on science. Please visit Dr. Szillery’s related Enrichment Mathematics programs in Falmouth and in Cape Elizabeth to get your student more involved with this subject. You can also visit the Maine Mathematics Science & Engineering Talent Search page for more information about her statewide programs.
  • March 19 will feature a second cafe in the month of March, with a scientist from Bigelow Labs. Dr. Jarrod Scott, a post-doctoral researcher at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences will talk about exploring marine microbiomes–from whale poop to hydrothermal vents to much in-between, featuring be an interactive discussion and presentation.
  • April 16th will be an opportunity to learn about the cool tools to borrow at a new community resource– the Maine Tool Library. Organizers will be present to answer questions, sign up new members, and demonstrate a few of the tools available to borrow.
  • May 21st features a presentation by Sarah Long, a Meteorologist from Portland’s channel 8.  She will discuss the science behind weather forecasting and how Maine’s weather is affected from different geological points around the country. Come check out the gear and props used by scientists to understand weather patterns, and more!
  • June 18th has Captain David Petruccelli from the Portland Fire Department. He will present on fire prevention & safety, and we will discuss the science of fire behavior. Participants will witness a fire extinguisher demonstration, and learn about how various types of extinguishers conquer flames.
Upcoming Events:
May21
Meteorology From Mountain Top to Sea Level: Living and working on top of Mt. Washington & forecasting Portland’s weather
12:00pm - 1:00pm
Location: Main Library, Atrium Audience: Adults, Teens, Seniors Come learn about the science behind weather forecasting from Meteorologist Sarah Long. Come check out the gear and props used by scientists to understand weather patterns, and more!
Jun18
Fire Science and Safety
12:00pm - 1:00pm
Location: Main Library, Atrium Audience: Adults, Teens, Seniors Captain Petruccelli from PFD will present on fire prevention & safety, we will discuss the science of fire behavior. Participants will witness a fire extinguisher demonstration, and learn about how various types of extinguishers conquer flames.