Get Ready To Celebrate Chemistry All Year Long

It's finally here -- the International Year of Chemistry (IYC) 2011. I've been waiting for this celebration for a year-and-a-half – well, at least that's how long ago it was when I blogged about the announcement (see Celebrating Achievements In Chemistry).

The Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF), a Philadelphia-based nonprofit organization that maintains major collections of instruments, fine art, photographs, papers, and books, is getting in on the celebration. The CHF hosts conferences and lectures, supports research, offers fellowships, and produces educational materials. Its museum and public programs explore subjects ranging from alchemy to nanotechnology.

The U.S. launch of the celebration starts Feb. 1 with a panel discussion on Global Challenges/Chemistry Solutions at the CHF headquarters. You can attend this free four-hour event in person or tune in to the webcast (click here for more information). According to the website, due to demand, those attending in person will be seated in the overflow area – seems like I'm not the only one who is excited for IYC.

Other CHF events include:
February 2: Discover a unique theory about why our noses work the way they do when the inaugural meeting of the IYC Book Club features The Emperor of Scent by Chandler Burr. Click here for more information.

February 4: Experience the elements that surround us in unexpected ways at the exhibit-opening celebration of Elemental Matters: Artists Imagine Chemistry. Click here for more information.

February 14: Chat with the author of what the New York Times calls "a nonstop parade of lively science stories" in this installment of Science on Tap, featuring Sam Kean, author of The Disappearing Spoon And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements. Click here for more information.

You must be 21 to attend this event – the "on tap" part appears to mean alcohol is involved – yet another reason to celebrate! And also note that I blogged about Kean's book last year in my post Summer Reading Takes Aim At The Periodic Table.
Here's to a year's worth of celebration. Let me know how you plan to commemorate the International Year of Chemistry.

Traci Purdum
Senior Digitial Editor