Science-at-home: Spirulina under the scope

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Date(s) - Saturday, May 2, 2020
2:00 pm - 6:00 pm

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Join us for a hands-on online science workshop. Kits containing what you need to grow and observe spirulina will be mailed in advance.

Hello NYC! In these times where we must limit our risk and reduce person to person contact it may feel like the circle of our daily life is getting cramped. Would it comfort you to know that the universe is a big place? A study in 2016 proposed there on the order of 10^11 galaxies in the observable universe. But did you know that, based on another study in 2016, the number of microbial species on earth is also on the order of 10^11? While we are indoors, let’s explore some of that expanse!

Join us for a special online workshop where we will walk through the use of a foldscope. This is an amazing piece of engineering which brings extremely low-cost microscopes to the world. Our subject for the scope will be spirulina, a micro-algae that you can easily grow in your own home. We will learn the basics of microscopy and spirulina culture and connect these concepts to the the practice of biotechnology. Many elements in our lives are impacted by biotechnology and we hope this workshop will give you some insight into these elements as well as provide a fun platform to tinker with at home.

We will mail our kits at least 1 week before the online session to locations in NYC. If you sign up later than that there is no guarantee we will be able to get these materials to you in time. You may contact us if you are willing to pay for expedited or longer distance shipping.

Hope to see you all online 😀



Instructor Danny Chan received his MSc in microbiology during the course of his PhD candidacy at the University of Chicago studying the interaction of methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) with lab-grown skin in an a department focused on infectious disease. He has been a research technician for many years in multiple fields including cellulostic ethanol production, protein crystallography, prefrontal cortex development and heat shock proteins. He seeks to apply his skills and knowledge of science in order to foster new institutions of research and learning. Currently, he makes his living fact checking pharmaceutical ads in an agency while trying to defend his time to pursue independent research centered around protocol development for the DIY science community and teaching. You can follow his activities online or find him in person around NYC.