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  #661  
Old 15.05.2008, 13:10
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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The stingers work when you brush against the hair like trigger mechanism - if you grip a nettle leaf firmly you actually destroy the trigger. You could have kept on breathing as long as you grabbed the nettle firmly.
We have quite a crop of nettles that I would like to make soup out of. Will you come and demonstrate the technique please?
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  #662  
Old 15.05.2008, 13:18
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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You should ask these guys at the 2007 Nettle eating championship in Dorset!
Can one get a buzz from it?
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  #663  
Old 15.05.2008, 13:18
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Re: Ask a Scientist

So glad i found this thread , i make homemade soda ,(i use 1.5 liter pet bottles) and adjust the recipe here - http://www.cutoutandkeep.net/projects/homemade_soda

usually everything goes well and it certainly is delicious.

BUT sometimes the first time i open the bottle there is quite an explosion and i have to spend alot of time cleaning the kitchen and myself (and i lose a 1/5 of the soda).
have heard that tapping a soda can before opening will make it less explosive. is there anything i can do ?
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  #664  
Old 15.05.2008, 13:18
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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We have quite a crop of nettles that I would like to make soup out of. Will you come and demonstrate the technique please?
Yes, I was telling the boss that you were letting the place go to rack and ruin - as for nettles, try them raw - they are yummy, honest (moohahaha).
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  #665  
Old 15.05.2008, 14:20
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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Grandpa showed us that if one holds one's breath, the leaves can be grabbed without any stinging effect. We were amazed. We even tried it ourselves. Now how did that work?
There are less stingy hairs on the leaves than on the stipe.

This nettle eating contest takes it too far, and I'm a vegetarian.
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  #666  
Old 15.05.2008, 17:55
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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Hi I would really like to know why you I never get electric shocks in the rain? I frequently get a shock when locking my car, but never when it rain. Is it anything to do with the transfer of hydrogen ions from the water equallizing the imbalance of ions about your person?
On a semi-related subject, how come I never get electric shocks when using electric-powered public transport (eg trams, trains)? The power seems to run directly from the overhead wires to the ground - how come it also doesn't run through boarding/disembarking passengers?

I guess the answer is probably as simple as there being an insulated cable running from the pantograph to the rolling stock...
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  #667  
Old 16.05.2008, 13:51
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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On a semi-related subject, how come I never get electric shocks when using electric-powered public transport (eg trams, trains)? The power seems to run directly from the overhead wires to the ground - how come it also doesn't run through boarding/disembarking passengers?

I guess the answer is probably as simple as there being an insulated cable running from the pantograph to the rolling stock...
Look again, you should see two wires. The power is running from one cable, through the motor, and back out the other cable. The body of the tram/train should be isolated completely from the electrical power.
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  #668  
Old 16.05.2008, 14:29
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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...i make homemade soda, (i use 1.5 liter pet bottles) and adjust the recipe here - http://www.cutoutandkeep.net/projects/homemade_soda
Thanks for sharing that link! Suspicious of the abundant use of "high fructose corn syrup" in U.S. commercial soft drinks (has it found its way into Swiss beverages, or is sugar still used?), my wife and I have had several bottles of cola extract sitting in our cupboard, waiting for just such a simple recipe.

I've also heard the bit about tapping the container (it was an aluminum beer can in the explanations I heard, if that makes a difference — and since beer was involved, there's no telling whether I heard correctly ), but I have no idea how much difference tapping really makes. In the absence of a forthcoming explanation here, maybe an experiment is in order.

Cheers,
Tim
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  #669  
Old 16.05.2008, 16:14
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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Look again, you should see two wires. The power is running from one cable, through the motor, and back out the other cable. The body of the tram/train should be isolated completely from the electrical power.
I just had a poke around (on wikipedia ) ...
It says, in part: The electric transmission system for modern electric rail systems consists of an upper load carrying wire (known as a catenary) from which is suspended a contact wire. The pantograph is spring loaded and pushes a contact shoe up against the contact wire to draw the electricity needed to run the train. The steel rails on the tracks act as the electrical return.

... no sign of a second wire...
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  #670  
Old 16.05.2008, 16:26
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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I just had a poke around (on wikipedia ) ...
It says, in part: The electric transmission system for modern electric rail systems consists of an upper load carrying wire (known as a catenary) from which is suspended a contact wire. The pantograph is spring loaded and pushes a contact shoe up against the contact wire to draw the electricity needed to run the train. The steel rails on the tracks act as the electrical return.

... no sign of a second wire...
I'll have a go....but I'm not a scientist so my answer probably doesn't count.

If the live overhead cable is the high potential, and the rails are the low potential, then your feet are at the same potential as the rails.

If you were really tall and could touch the overhead cable then the current would flow through you from the high potential to the low potential and you would certainly feel it (but not for long).

The key thing with the train system is that the high potential is insulated from the rest of the train (and so from you) and the potential difference is across the train's motors and other electrical circuits.

Most of the train is at the same potential as you and the rails. Only the live bit isn't and you can't touch that.
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  #671  
Old 17.05.2008, 00:58
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Re: Ask a Scientist

[quote=Texaner; is sugar still used?),
Yes , pretty sure soda here is made with sugar ,i think corn syrup is an american thing , would be interesting to know if its used elsewhere


my wife and I have had several bottles of cola extract sitting in our cupboard, waiting for just such a simple recipe

Yeah i wanted to get the wife to stop drinking cola , they use "phosphorus somethingorother" instead of actuall Cola nuts for flavoring (not good for bones) - my ginger ale worked like a charm

I've also heard the bit about tapping the container (it was an aluminum beer can in the explanations I heard, if that makes a difference — and since beer was involved, there's no telling whether I heard correctly ), but I have no idea how much difference tapping really makes. In the absence of a forthcoming explanation here, maybe an experiment is in order

seems that tapping the 2 bottles i opened today (reg and diet) seemed to slow down the explosivness a little.
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  #672  
Old 17.05.2008, 06:24
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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Yes, pretty sure soda here is made with sugar, i think corn syrup is an american thing...
I think it should stay that way. U.S. farm special interests and government "watchdogs" (read: unaccountable, taxpayer-funded advocates for farm special interests) have been foisting genetically modified "high fructose corn syrup" on the American public for years. It's cheap to produce, and generates high profits — with no official concern for the effect on the population.

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i wanted to get the wife to stop drinking cola ... my ginger ale worked like a charm
Kudos! (At least you know what went into your homemade beverage.)

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seems that tapping the 2 bottles i opened today (reg and diet) seemed to slow down the explosivness a little.
So it's not just for beer! Good to know...
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  #673  
Old 17.05.2008, 06:47
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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If you eat pasta and antipasta at the same time, what will happen?
you will be receiving a visit & smothered by noodly appendages
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  #674  
Old 19.05.2008, 13:25
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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I just had a poke around (on wikipedia ) ...
It says, in part: The electric transmission system for modern electric rail systems consists of an upper load carrying wire (known as a catenary) from which is suspended a contact wire. The pantograph is spring loaded and pushes a contact shoe up against the contact wire to draw the electricity needed to run the train. The steel rails on the tracks act as the electrical return.

... no sign of a second wire...
Doh! I was thinking of our buses in Neuchâtel. They use a two-wire system since they are running on rubber wheels, and normal roads. No way to run the power through the ground.

You are right on the trams and trains they are using the track as the return.
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  #675  
Old 01.06.2008, 22:50
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Re: Ask a Scientist

Any other uni types going to the SCS fall meeting?
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  #676  
Old 02.06.2008, 00:59
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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Any other uni types going to the SCS fall meeting?
I guess so. I'm at UZH, the host institution, so I doubt I'll get out of it.
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  #677  
Old 03.06.2008, 19:01
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Re: Ask a Scientist

Utterly unrelated question... why does (commercial) yoghurt contain so many ingredients?

I would have thought it would require only milk + culture. However, the example N*stle pottle of yoghurt on my desk lists these ingredients: full milk, sugar, skimmed milk, fruit juice, milk protein, culture, carrot extract, aroma. Why so many different milk things?
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  #678  
Old 03.06.2008, 19:11
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Re: Ask a Scientist

Skimmed milk is cheaper, milk protein is probably marketing, and carrot extract is a colorant.
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  #679  
Old 03.06.2008, 20:36
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Re: Ask a Scientist

Why does my head hurt when I have a fan pointing directly at me?
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  #680  
Old 03.06.2008, 20:38
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Re: Ask a Scientist

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Utterly unrelated question... why does (commercial) yoghurt contain so many ingredients?

I would have thought it would require only milk + culture. However, the example N*stle pottle of yoghurt on my desk lists these ingredients: full milk, sugar, skimmed milk, fruit juice, milk protein, culture, carrot extract, aroma. Why so many different milk things?
Cheaper...

No gum? I thought they used that to help the yoghurt survive through the miles of pipes in the big factory...

Gum: http://thedynamicspine.wordpress.com.../31/yoghurt-2/

Last edited by gbn; 03.06.2008 at 20:42. Reason: Link added
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