IBBL educates children about the science of freezing

IBBL (Integrated BioBank of Luxembourg) staff participated in this year’s Science Festival with workshop of three activities revolving around different forms of ice and methods of freezing, as employed in a biobank.

Surprised faces, laughter and even some dropping jaws; especially for children, the Science Festival 2013 delivered not only education but also fun and entertainment. As every other year the Musée National d’Histoire Naturelle (MNHN) and the Fonds National de le Recherche (FNR) organised their popular Science Festival at the Abbaye Neumünster. From the 7th to 10th of November the festival opened its doors to both school classes and the general public to draw them into the weird and wonderful world of science. This year’s edition of the festival was again hugely successful with over 12.000 visitors, of which 4.200 school children.

A key part of IBBL’s mission has been to increase the public’s knowledge about biomedical research in Luxembourg and to teach and inspire the next generation of scientists. That is why IBBL staff have participated again in this year’s Science Festival with a workshop entitled “It’s freezing!”. It featured 3 activities, designed to teach people about the different types of “ice” used in a biobank, all the while not forgetting to have fun with it. First visitors were shown how liquid nitrogen, used for the preservation of cells and tissues, instantly freezes everything that is dipped into it.  The second and third activities were an especially big hit with the younger visitors. Here, the children made smoke-filled bubbles with evaporating dry ice and “hot ice” sculptures, which effectively illustrates the process of crystallisation.

Photos from the event are available on our Facebook page

If you are curious about the properties and effects of liquid nitrogen, dry ice or “hot ice” watch our videos (in English or French) from the Science Festival on: