Chemistry Carnival: Science.Art.Wonder

Also showcased during the Chemistry Carnival was the collaboration of Gokul with an artist in Puerto Rico to illustrate some of his science. Over the course of a few months, Gokul worked with Raisa Rodriguez Maldonado, from the University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez to bring to life his work with influenza viral infection. Her paintings highlight his study of the dynamics of hemagglutinin/receptor protein/protein interactions that permit cell entry, and ultimately, viral infection.

Gokul and Raisa (via Skype) interacting with the crowd at the Carnival
Artist Raisa Rodriguez Maldonado








Science.Art.Wonder is sponsored by the Atlanta Science Festival and hopes to continue to be an integral interdisciplinary component of the annual festival.

Another piece by Raisa, titled “Host-Cell Invasion” inspired by Gokul’s work on influenza viral infection
Scientist Gokul (Right) and artist Raisa (Left, via Skype) in front of one of her pieces for Science Art Wonder.



Chemistry Carnival: ASF in Atwood Atrium!

On Friday, March 23, Emory’s Chemistry Department hosted the second annual “Chemistry Carnival” in conjunction with the Atlanta Science Festival. The event, which takes place in the Science Commons, Atrium, and courtyard fills the building with interactive demonstrations and games relevant to the research going on in the department. The Dyer lab participated with two different booths this year, Brooke and Monica at the “Electron Transfer Ring Toss” and Alexia at the “Laser Maze” in conjunction with Heaven Lab members. 

The Electron Transfer Ring Toss demonstrates the basic principle of converting solar energy, where a photoexcited electron (or in this case, a glow bracelet taken from a big glittery sun) needs to be transferred somewhere else to successfully make electricity. Unfortunately, that transfer process is riddled with pitfalls, and is only about 20% efficient for most commercially available solar panels- most game participants scored even less than that when trying to ring the glowing Erlenmeyer flasks!

Carnival attendees trying their luck at the Electron Transfer Ring Toss

The Laser Maze used a safe red laser beam and several moveable mirrors to demonstrate the basics of manipulating light for experiments, relevant to so much of the research we do as a biophysical chemistry lab. Participants got firsthand experience with trying to control light through the maze, and witnessed some of the challenges of optical processes. 

Close up shot of the laser maze, PC: Helen

Check out more photos from the event! And a big thanks to Helen for taking some great pictures 🙂