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Pig Parts are in Bullets, Artificial Hearts, and Cigarettes

Christien Meindertsma followed an individual pig through its life and death, to see where all the parts of the pig ended up. This pig did not have a name per se, but it did have a number: Pig 05049. And Meindertsma found that this pig's parts made their way into a remarkable array of modern products and devices (including bullets -- no kidding).

Among the places bits of Pig 05049 ended up: soap, toothpaste, bread, low-fat butter, concrete, German train brakes, fine bone china, paint, sandpaper, cigarettes, and even...meat. (And we're not just talking about pork.) There are lots more, and I don't want to ruin the talk -- you'll just have to watch.

This TED Talk is under ten minutes long, and it's well worth a look. It's brief, because Meindertsma is a first-time TED speaker -- but it's packed with interesting bits of information. For more on her work, check out her book Pig 05049 (check out the video on that page for a look at EVERY PAGE in the book).

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Belly Flop Physics 101: The Science Behind the Sting
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Belly flops are the least-dignified—yet most painful—way of making a serious splash at the pool. Rarely do they result in serious physical injury, but if you’re wondering why an elegant swan dive feels better for your body than falling stomach-first into the water, you can learn the laws of physics that turn your soft torso a tender pink by watching the SciShow’s video below.

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What's the Saltiest Water in the World?
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Saltwater is common around the world—indeed, salty oceans cover more than two-thirds of the globe. Typical saltwater found in our oceans is about 3.5% salt by weight. But in some areas, we find naturally occurring saltwater that's far saltier. The saltiest water yet discovered is more than 12 times saltier than typical seawater.

Gaet’ale is a pond in Ethiopia which currently holds the record as the most saline water body on Earth. The water in that pond is 43.3% dissolved solids by weight—most of that being salt. This kind of water is called hypersaline for its extreme salt concentration.

In the video below, Professor Martyn Poliakoff explains this natural phenomenon—why it's so salty, how the temperature of the pond affects its salinity, and even why this particular saltwater has a yellow tint. Enjoy:

For the paper Poliakoff describes, check out this abstract.

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