For gummy bear chem/physics enthusiasts

Gummy bears figure prominently in two recent studies:

Drying Gummy Bears Reduce Anti-Matter Lifetime,” Christoph Hugenschmidt und Hubert Ceeh. (Thanks to Jan Kuriplach for bringing this to our attention.) The authors are at Technische Universität München, Germany. They write:

“The exotic atom consisting of an electron and its antiparticle, the positron, is a bound state called positronium. Such positronium atoms can be formed by bombarding gummy bears with positrons. In our experiment, we could clearly observe an increased annihilation rate of positronium with increasing degree of drying of the used gelatin-glucose compound. We succeeded in not only measuring the reduced lifetime of positrons in dried jelly baby, but also in quantifying the mean size of the nanoscale pores in the biopolymer, where positronium annihilates.”



Water into Wine,” Benedict Irwin, Peter Hicks, Hannah Lerman, Journal of Physics Special Topics, vol. 12, no. 1,,November 13, 2013, P5_11. The authors, at the University of Leicester, write:

“In the Gospel of John, Jesus turns a substantial quantity of water into wine. We investigate the change in enthalpy across a candidate reaction and determine it to be 1255kJmol-1 indicating an endothermic reaction. We then find the change in entropy to be 4.21kJmol-1 K -1 and calculate the energy required for the whole reaction to be 0.25-0.37GJ.”

Chemical and Engineering News looked into the water/wine study.