This is the fourth and final article covering the 1963 to 1973 eruptions in the Westmann Island group of the south coast of Iceland. Previous commentaries have mentioned Surtsey (WAT ON EARTH, Spring issue 1997), the start of the eruption on Heimaey (WAT ON EARTH, Fall issue 1997) and the closing stages of the Eldfell eruption (WAT ON EARTH, Spring issue 1998).
A new Earth science centre to open on Vancouver Island, BC
Plans are underway to build a new 7000 square foot science centre on the waterfront in the town of Sidney-by-the-Sea, close to Victoria, BC. The facility, which will be housed in a new 16,000 square foot retail development, will be breaking new ground in a variety of ways.
Quartz is our most common mineral. Quartz is made of the two most abundant chemical elements on Earth: oxygen and silicon. Atoms of oxygen and silicon join together as tetrahedrons (three sided pyramids). These stack together to build crystals. Billions of tetrahedrons are needed to build even a small crystal. Quartz is an almost pure chemical compound with constant physical properties.
... or reasonable facsimile of the beast that once roamed southern Ontario. Colby Morat, 4, visiting from Florida this summer, toured the Waterloo Earth Sciences Museum with the Waterloo YMCA Adventure Days camp, gingerly coming face to face with the newest acquisition, a replica of a mastodon skull. Nearly two metres long, the cast was purchased with the help from the Waterloo Science Equipment Fund, generated by undergraduates to assist the purchase of teaching tools.
The lacy blanket of the cedars casts shadows and timeless sunbeams on the river bed. And, where the sun reaches the bottom, the stones are golden and liquid in the crystalline blanket that dances its way to infinity. I am struck by the moment. My thoughts are fast and fleeting, but they leave me with a feeling of nostalgia.