Project M - 1000 samples, 100 schools, one great big experiment
100 schools are taking part in Project M - a novel and exciting research project. In order to help us understand calcium carbonate, each school has made 10 samples, using specially selected additives. The samples have been sent back to us to analyse using our laboratory . We will analyse all samples returned in a 24 hour period. You can see the experiment running live on the 26th April 2017 on the LiveView page. This experiment will be used to produce a giant set of results which we hope (fingers crossed) will produce a scientific publication – this research has never been done before. You can also see some of the data being tweeted as it is collected on the @DLSProjectMLive twitter account. We will also be live tweeting our experience @DLSProjectM throughout the day.
- 100 schools will be selected to receive a kit
- Each school will make a specific set of 10 samples (week 1)
- The samples will be loaded into a capillary by the students (week 2) and sent back to Diamond.
- Each sample will be tested in a 24 hour experiment in April!
- The students will be able to analyse their data online!
Calcium carbonate has three main forms or ‘polymorphs’: vaterite, calcite and aragonite. We are trying to find out which of the polymorphs form for each of the additives. Some of these additives are amino acids, the building blocks which create proteins in the body. We know how to identify the different polymorphs using Diamond – they each have a specific chemical fingerprint which we can detect using X-rays.