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STEM Connect Virtual Event

Looking at Atoms through the World’s Biggest Microscope

Author: Dr. Ian Anderson

Presented by Dr. Ian Anderson of Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Wednesday, March 21, 2012, 1pm ET

For Classrooms (high school focus)

Everything around us is made up of atoms. Even we are. But if we look around us all the materials we see and use in our everyday lives are different. Some are hard like diamonds, some are liquids like water. Some are dark, some are transparent. What’s more, those properties can change if we heat or cool the materials – water turns to ice or steam; or if we put them under pressure – graphite turns to diamond!  So graphite and diamond are really the same material? Yes – but they have completely different properties. They are both made up only of atoms of Carbon, but just arranged differently. So if we want to understand the properties of materials we have to look inside and see how the atoms are organized. The question is how do we do that?  We need a special microscope.

In this webinar Dr. Ian Anderson of Oak Ridge National Laboratory will introduce the idea of using beams of neutrons to study not only where atoms are, deep inside materials, but also how they move.  Dr. Anderson will give some examples of the kind of information we can get and how it is used to develop new and better materials. He will also talk about the how you produce beams of neutrons to do this work, and try give the students a wow feeling of the size, and technology of some of the facilities that exist to do this kind of research.

Learn More about Dr. Anderson: Download his bio from the Classroom Connections box to the right.  Watch Dr. Anderson on the news  here to see some of the interesting work he’s doing at Oak Ridge National Laboratory:  You can contact him at

Learn More about the Spallation Neutron Source:

DOWNLOAD THE ARCHIVED RECORDING from the Classroom Connections box on the right. Click the right and left arrows at the bottom of the box to find the files you need.  Please make sure you have registered for to download files.  There you will also find the three videos to download and play during the webinar, as well as the corresponding lesson plan.

Subjects:  ScienceTechnologyEngineering
Grade Level:  9101112

Seth says:
22-Mar-12 02:15 PM

Third post in a row (don't mean to be a bother). I downloaded the archived video and it all appears to work except there is no sound during Dr. Anderson's pre-recorded, inserted videos. Any ideas on how to fix this? Thank you.

Seth says:
22-Mar-12 02:13 PM

Sorry, I think I just found it in the Classroom Connections box by clicking on the arrows! Thank you.

Seth says:
22-Mar-12 02:10 PM

I am excited to share this webinar with other students who were unable to view the live show. When will this webinar be archived and posted in the Classroom Connections box on this page? Thank you!

Erin says:
22-Mar-12 09:47 AM

When will this program be posted in Classroom Connections? Thanks!

Ragini Singhal says:
22-Mar-12 06:35 AM

Though it is too advanced for my grade 6 students the activities in the lesson will be useful.

Candace Craven says:
20-Mar-12 04:48 PM

DItto and ditto--watch later? We are also on break so my students will lose out. Thanks

Siemens STEM Academy says:
20-Mar-12 09:39 AM

This webinar will be archived and posted in the Classroom Connections box on this page. Thanks!

Christine says:
20-Mar-12 09:11 AM

I see that the webinar will be recorded for viewing at a later time. How will we gain access to the recorded webinar? Do we have to register for the original webinar in order to watch the recorded version of it AND have access to the lesson plans? Thanks for your help.

Ann Collins says:
20-Mar-12 06:23 AM

I would like to know if this webinar could be viewed at a later time.

Terry Ryan says:
19-Mar-12 09:45 PM

Please send info on how to access at another time. We can't do it this week. Thanks.

Roger Onions says:
19-Mar-12 07:16 PM

This is during our Spring break but would like to show this at another time.

Ann Feist says:
19-Mar-12 10:00 AM

I also would be interesed in viewing the webinar at a different time and the lesson plan to follow.

Dee Casqueiro says:
19-Mar-12 09:03 AM

I am interested in the webinar. Would like to view and lesson plans. Thanks.

margaret cominelli says:
16-Mar-12 07:21 PM

Sounds great!

Barbara McNally says:
15-Mar-12 07:22 PM

I too would like info for access the recording at another time and a lesson plan thanks

Siemens STEM Academy says:
15-Mar-12 12:25 PM

This webinar will recorded and available for later viewing. Thanks for your interest!

Carolyn Pettey says:
15-Mar-12 12:19 PM

I too am interested in accessing this as a recording as the time does not fit my schedule.

Phil Mason says:
15-Mar-12 09:32 AM

I would like to have a recording and lesson plans too.

Robyne Lindsay says:
15-Mar-12 09:12 AM

I'm interested in seeing a recording of this webinar. Is there any possible way to get the recording and lesson plans? I teach special education students and a live webinar is hard for us to watch because I have to pause it several times to provide an explanation at a lower level.

Art Blanchet says:
15-Mar-12 08:42 AM

Looking forward to the seminar - and the recording. Thanks!

RuthMary Higgins says:
15-Mar-12 08:22 AM

If I miss the webinar today, is it taped so that the webinar can be accessed later?

S Robinette says:
14-Mar-12 09:19 PM

This webinar sounds fascinating, however, it is during our Spring Break. If it is available as a recording to show at a later date, please let me know.

Janis Mabry says:
14-Mar-12 06:29 PM

I would also like a recording of this webinar with any study materials for my AP and pre- AP chemistry classes. These classes meet in the morning.

Pam Nau says:
14-Mar-12 03:01 PM

I would also like a recording if possible.

Pam Nau says:
14-Mar-12 03:01 PM

I would also like a recording if possible.

Siemens STEM Academy says:
14-Mar-12 01:50 PM

@Sonia, we will post the corresponding lesson plan for this webinar by Monday. Thanks for your interest!

Sonia Laureni says:
14-Mar-12 01:24 PM

Is there a study guide for the webinar? I would like to give my students questions to help them stay on task.

Leigh Brown says:
14-Mar-12 01:24 PM

I would love to show a recording of this to my classes as well. Please let me know if that's possible.

Mona Teitelbaum says:
14-Mar-12 12:55 PM

Will you be recording this webinar for later use? The timing is off for my class. I would love to show the lesson.Thanks.

Chris Kallies says:
14-Mar-12 12:32 PM

I also do not have my students at your scheduled time and would love to show them.

Cherri Bates says:
14-Mar-12 12:19 PM

Also would like to have a copy. This is lunch time and I won't have a class during that time.

Joan Bechtel says:
14-Mar-12 12:02 PM

I also am VERY interested in seeing this webinar but the time is off for my teaching schedule. Is there some way I (and my classes) could see a recording of this? Thanks. Joan

Hazel Whittaker says:
08-Feb-12 01:08 PM

Will you be recording this webinar for later use? The timing is off for my physics class. I would love to show the lesson.

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