Sinikka is working on dissolved organic matter and looks at it “from all sides” for #scicommchall

Sinikka took on December’s #scicommchall to look at her subject from all sides. She writes:

New position, new topic: I am now studying carbon-containing molecules
in the ocean (“dissolved organic matter” or “DOM”). The December Scicomm
challenge comes handy to get to know my new topic from all sides.

For an observer at the beach, DOM might change the color of the water,
as it contains many molecules that absorb light.

For bacteria, it is a tasty meal.

Slightly larger (and much larger!) animals in the ocean excrete DOM.

For me as a scientist, it is an astonishing mixture of hundreds of
thousands of different molecules (and we’re still wondering why there is
so much DOM, when bacteria could just eat it all).

For the atmosphere, it is a great way to store carbon from fossil fuel
burning, so the carbon isn’t present as the greenhouse gas CO2 in the air.

For the climate, it is an important carbon reservoir, which potentially
was responsible for warm (little carbon stored in the ocean) and cold
(much carbon stored in the ocean) periods in the history of our planet.

December’s #scicommchall: Nena is looking at forests “from all sides”!

Nena shows us the different sides of a forest and writes:

It’s more than just a forest, …

…it’s a place to live for several thousands of species, …

…it’s also a place to live for us as human beings, …

…it’s also a place of destruction and too much consumption, …

…it’s also a place to have best times with old friends, …

…and it’s the biggest playground on earth! …

… Be careful with our forest, they so much more than just trees next to each other!



Looking at it from all sides. December’s #scicommchall!

We’ve got such a fun #scicommchall for you for December!

Every coin has two sides, but every research topic has definitely more than just two! So in order to discuss it properly, it sometimes helps to force yourself look at it from different, and maybe unusual, angles.

And here is how we are going to do that: By making a cube and thinking about what the topic might look like from different angles! As an easy example, think of the story of the elephant that is being described by people who can just touch it, not see it. Someone touching the trunk might think that they are dealing with an enormous snake. Someone touching the tail might think it’s a paint brush. Someone touching a leg might think it’s a pillar.

And this is what this might look like on a cube:

And here is how you would build this cube (and the template below includes the tabs to close the cube completely that are clearly missing in the picture above).


Cute, right?

And as a sneak peek in the background: My “wave” cube that I’ll present soon.

Let’s get started then! Below you find a template that you can use to print to make your own cube. Have fun, and don’t forget to share with us! 🙂