STEAM to Fuel Your Weekend: May 27

Between school, homework, practice and spending time with loved ones, it’s easy to miss out on the latest in science, technology, engineering, art and math. But don’t worry, Thinkery’s got you covered. Here are some of our favorite STEAM discoveries from the previous week. It’s fuel for your weekend.

Photo credit: Starry Night Software.

Photo credit: Starry Night Software.

It’s been a busy week for Mars! On Sunday, May 22, Mars reached opposition with the sun, meaning Mars and the sun were on opposite sides of Earth. And that’s not all. Mars Close Approach—the point in the planet’s orbit when it comes closest to Earthis Monday, May 30. On Monday evening at 4:35 pm CST, Mars will be closer to Earth than it has been since 2005. (A distance of 46,762,695 miles, if you were wondering.) The best part of this astronomical occurrence? Mars will remain a bright fixture in the night sky until June 3. Be on the lookout!

If you accidentally miss this year’s close approach, don’t worry. Earth and Mars will be even closer on July 31, 2018, when the planets are a mere 35.8 million miles apart. Mark your calendars!

STEAM to Fuel Your Weekend - Motoi Yamamoto
Photo credit: Motoi Yamamoto.

Motoi Yamamoto sculpts large-scale installations from tiny, intricately arranged lines of salt—yes, salt. In the artist’s latest exhibition, “Univer’sel,” Yamamoto transformed a 13th-century medieval French castle into a salt-coated oasis. We’re obsessed. (We also love his way with words—sel is salt in French.) Take a look at his out-of-this-world creations here. Like what you see? There are plenty of “saltworks” for you to enjoy!

STEAM to Fuel Your Weekend - Honey Bees

What is the waggle dance? And why do honeybees do it?

It all boils down to nectar, a sugar-rich liquid produced by plants and flowers. Nectar is also an incredibly important energy resource for honeybees—they search high and low for the most productive flowers. When honeybees stumble across a significant source of nectar, they head back to the hive and spill the beans. The waggle dance is a remarkably accurate way for a honeybee to describe, in detail, the flower’s precise location. Since these waggle dances are so effective, colony workers are able to visit up to 500 million flowers in a season. Un-bee-lievable!

STEAM to Fuel Your Weekend - 3D Printed Building
Photo credit: Government of Dubai.

Well, it happened. Someone 3D printed an entire building. (Technically, that “someone” was the Government of Dubai.) The world’s first 3D printed office building, Museum of the Future, is 2,700-square-feet, cost $140,000 and took 17 days to print.

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