How do you remove impurities from wastewater, or identify additives in the foods that you eat? Starting Saturday, April 2, children can learn how chemistry relates to the world around us and provides answers to these questions and many others at Kids’ Lab, an exciting new program at the Detroit Science Center and provided by BASF Corp.
During each Kids’ Lab program, Science Center educators and docents will lead participants through a variety of fun, hands-on chemistry experiments. In addition to learning the important role that chemistry plays in everyday life, each participant will receive a BASF lab apron, prize pack and certificate of participation.
“BASF has a strong focus on science education realizing that today’s students will be the thinkers, innovators, discoverers and leaders of the future,” said Robin Rotenberg, Vice President and Chief Communications Officer at BASF. “Through our Kids’ Lab program, we hope that children will gain a better appreciation and interest for the dynamic world of science, while at the same time having fun.”
Kids’ Lab programs are designed for children ages 6-12 and will be offered twice daily every other Saturday starting April 2, and during select school break dates, through March 2012 (please visit www.detroitsciencecenter.org for a complete list of dates). The program is free with general museum admission and is open to all visitors on a first-come, first-served basis. Each program is limited to 25 participants.
In addition to the Kids’ Lab program, BASF is also supporting the creation of chemistry exhibits for the Science Center’s upcoming Marathon Future Fuels Gallery. The two-story, 7,000 square-foot gallery will be one of the museum’s largest exhibit areas and the Midwest’s only public educational display of oil and gas engineering and technology.
BASF is partnering with Marathon Petroleum Corporation and others to give the public an up-close look into the complex world of petroleum-based energy from the exploration and production of crude oil through the refining and marketing of products that consumers use every day.
BASF will be the named sponsor of the Fluid Catalytic Cracking unit exhibit in the planned interactive refinery area of the Gallery. This exhibit will illustrate the chemical and mechanical aspects of the process, and demonstrate how BASF’s catalysts are used to break down complex hydrocarbons into a variety of lighter, more desirable products such as gasoline, propylene and light cycle oil. The experience will allow museum visitors to understand how catalysts are used to help refiners optimize production output and maximize specific product yields, and the vital roles that chemistry and engineering play in the conversion of crude oil into transportation fuels.
Through hands-on, interactive exhibits and simulations, the overall message of the gallery will promote the advanced engineering and science behind the oil industry, and emphasize the need for math and science graduates to pursue careers that will fill the industry’s future workforce needs and continue their efforts to protect the environment.
BASF Corp., headquartered in Florham Park, N.J., is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has approximately 16,400 employees in North America, and had sales of $17.7 billion in 2010. For more information about BASF’s North American operations, visit www.basf.us.