A Look at the Looooooooong-Almost-Dripping, Ig Nobel Prize-winning Pitch Drop Experiment

The folks at Today I Found Out take a look at the Ig Nobel Prize-winning Pitch Drop Experiment: The 2005 Ig Nobel Prize for Physics was awarded to John Mainstone and the late Thomas Parnell of the University of Queensland, Australia, for patiently conducting an experiment that began in the year 1927 — in which a glob of congealed black tar […]

The drop dropped in the Ig Nobel-winning pitch drop experiment

Big little news from Queensland, as reported by Celeste Biever and Lisa Grossman for New Scientist magazine: Longest experiment sees pitch drop after 84-year wait The pitch has dropped – again. This time, the glimpse of a falling blob of tar, also called pitch, represents the first result for the world’s longest-running experiment…. Up-and-running since 1930, the experiment […]

Economics experiment finds people volunteer for economics experiments largely to make money

What does one learn from reading about economics experiments? This: “Self-Selection into Economics Experiments Is Driven by Monetary Rewards,” Johannes Abeler [University of Oxford, IZA and CESifo] and Daniele Nosenzo [University of Nottingham], IZA [Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit / Institute for the Study of Labor] DP No. 7374, April 2013. The researchers explain: “Laboratory […]

The slow pitch of excitement

Robin McKie, in The Observer, chronicles the slowly, slowly, slowly mounting excitement about the Ig Nobel Prize-winning [physics prize, 2005] Australian pitch-drop experiment: In terms of output, Queensland University’s pitch drop study – the world’s oldest laboratory experiment – has been stunningly low. Only eight drops have emerged from the lump of pitch installed in the university’s physics building […]

Nature looks, briefly, at the long-running pitch drop experiment

Nature takes a quick look at the now-86-year-long pitch drop experiment, and at several other long-running experiments. The people who started and tend the pitch drop experiment were awarded the 2005 Ig Nobel Prize in physics. Nature says, in part: The pitch-drop experiment started when Thomas Parnell, the university’s first professor of physics, set up […]

Hamburgers, and nothing but, in a man in the 1930s

The Minnesota Medical foundation described, a while ago, a hamburgers-and-human experiment that took place a good while before that. Their blog in 2008 called it “an unusual hamburger experiment” done in the 1930s by Jesse McClendon [pictured here] of the University of Minnesota’s Department of Physiological Chemistry. Some details: He planned to feed a single experimental […]