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.
Pores (called stomata) on the leaves, which are too small to see with the naked eye, enable carbon dioxide to enter the leaves, where it is used to make sugars by the process of photosynthesis. These pores also allow water vapor to escape (a process referred to as transpiration) so that plants need a continual water supply. Woody twigs also contain pores called lenticels, which look like brown dots on the surface of the young twigs. These enable oxygen to get into the inner tissues for respiration.
Tiny spores, or stomata, in the surface layer of a leaf (magnified about 1000 times).
A vertical section through a bud (yes, it's a Boston lettuce!)
This series of photos (left to right, top to bottom) shows the buds at the tip of a branch of a Horse Chesnut tree (Aesculius hippocastanum) as they open in spring.
- Does sugar make you hyper if you eat a lot of it?
- How efficient is photosynthesis compared to the amount of light energy delivered to the earth?
- What would the result be if the acid in your stomach turned into a base? What effect would it have on your body?
- How does a firefly make its light?
- How do you clone plants?
- How do you find dinosaur bones?
- Why do dogs have padded feet?
- What if you had no white blood cells?
- How do polar bears get water in the Artic? I thought all the fresh water was frozen in the ice caps?
- Why do your ears ring?