Science & Technology
The Library offers many tools for Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) literacy for all ages. Portland Public Library strives to engage the community with a fascination for science, the wonders of the natural world, and the possibilities of technology. Through explorations of all kinds – information services, hands-on learning, digital experiences, and public programming – the Science & Technology team aims to stimulate understanding, exploration, and creativity with the sciences and present the fun, the useful, and the very interesting.
Monthly Science Cafés are presented on wide ranging topics, designed to introduce non-scientists to important issues affecting our community. For more information on these events, please read below.
This series is co-presented with the University of New England, and is intended to highlight the remarkable gathering of world leaders in Portland for the Arctic Council meeting. Please join us to learn more about this important topic.
Sustainability (from sustain and ability) is the endurance of systems and processes through time. The Portland Sustainability Series will present a diversity of speakers to share different aspects of the work moving Maine to greater endurance and sustainability. Please join the Portland Public Library and the Southern Maine Conservation Collaborative as we engage in these important issues and conversations.
Read on to find out about the current varieties of seeds available to borrowers, and some growing tips. Check out is at the Main Library Reference desk.
Greet the summer with an eye for exploring the world– check out one of the five Family Science Backpacks. Available to borrow for one week, see the staff at the Children’s Desk in the main library for more information!
Seeds are a plentiful resource in the world, but learning how to grow and cultivate plants takes a little practice and skill. That is why we are starting a seed lending program. The basic idea is that you plant seeds that you “borrow” from the library, let some of the plants go to seed, then return some of these next generation seeds for others to borrow.
You’ll never have a fine for not returning seeds, and returning seeds is not a requirement. In fact, we won’t be accepting seeds in return until the Spring of 2017 when Phase II gets underway. Read more about how the program will work.
Resources, events, and local organizations for Maine makers! Check here for new ways to inspire creativity, creation, and collaboration in our community.
Digital materials are available to all PPL cardholders through Overdrive and Hoopla. Click here to see PPL’s easy-to-use guides for all types of devices & materials.
Our 3D printer is officially named Turing, after Alan Turing, a pioneer in the field of computer science.
Congratulations to the patron who came up with this name!
Did you know Legos are not just toys? They’re STEM learning tools. Please join us each week for Lego clubs, and join your neighbors to build in suggested themes and activities.
The Technology Center has added a Maker Bot Replicator to our services. Currently, this exciting new technology is available by appointment on Wednesdays from 10am to 4pm, or via email. Please read the guidelines to make your appointment, or to learn how to submit your file via email for printing. No experience with 3D printing is required, you can select a test print or have a staff member help you select a design from one of the many free libraries of 3D designs on the web.
Up Next at the Library:
From the PPL blog:
With your Library card - you can now take the internet with your wherever you go! More »
An update on the energy model developed with PEAT as part of the Peaks renovation project. More »