Archives of Ask A Scientist!
About "Ask A Scientist!"
On September 17th, 1998 the Ithaca Journal ran its first "Ask A Scientist!" article in which Professor Neil Ashcroft , who was then the director of CCMR, answered the question "What is Jupiter made of?" Since then, we have received over 1,000 questions from students and adults from all over the world. Select questions are answered weekly and published in the Ithaca Journal and on our web site. "Ask A Scientist!" reaches more than 21,000 Central New York residents through the Ithaca Journal and countless others around the world throught the "Ask a Scientist!" web site.
Across disciplines and across the state, from Nobel Prize winning scientist David Lee to notable science education advocate Bill Nye, researchers and scientists have been called on to respond to these questions. For more than seven years, kids - and a few adults - have been submitting their queries to find out the answer to life's everyday questions.
Movement of the inner ear's fluid leads to bending of the tiny hairs on the hair cells. This bending excites the hair cells, and causes them to send electrical signals to your brain through a nerve called the "auditory nerve". Your brain interprets the electrical signals from the auditory nerve as sound. The ringing sound of tinnitus is often a high squeal, like the sound of a computer monitor, but it can also be a low roar, and it can affect one or both ears. Usually your ears ring for a brief time after youve been exposed to loud noise, but for about 44 million Americans, ringing in the ears is a constant and annoying problem. It most often happens because people expose themselves to damaging levels of sound over long periods of time and dont protect their ears. You can tell a sound is too loud for safety if you have to shout to make yourself heard over it. Other causes of tinnitus can be an ear canal plugged with ear wax, abnormal blood pressure, allergies, ear infections, medications, and even specific kinds of food! If you have persistent tinnitus, you should tell your doctor about it.
- Why do we have fingernails?
- What is it about the human eye that limits the types of wavelengths in the electromagnetic spectrum that can be seen as visible light? Why are other animals capable of interpreting infrared waves as well?
- Why do men grow hair on their face, while most women don't?
- How do eye glasses improve a persons sight?
- How does Aspirin work?
- Why do your cheeks turn red when you get embarrassed? How come when we get nervous our heart feels like it's beating faster?
- Does sugar make you hyper if you eat a lot of it?
- Is a horse's leg bone bigger than a human leg bone? If so, when a horse's bone breaks why is it so much harder to heal?
- Why don't you see two things if you have two eyes?
- Can one of the professors write about some of the bacteria that are becoming immune to antibiotics? We are concerned when they are putting antibiotics in some meats now, and talking about antibacterial soaps having an effect on the immunity.