linkurl:"Molecules That Matter,"; a traveling exhibit that opened to the public at the newly renovated linkurl:Chemical Heritage Foundation; in Philadelphia earlier this month, ties the history of the 20th century to a handful of the most influential molecules of the period. The goal of the exhibit is simple: to help the public, who typically cringes at memories from high school chemistry classes, to connect chemical discoveries to the products they use everyday. And connect it does. Brightly colored models of penicillin G, DDT, and Prozac molecules -- each spanning more than seven feet wide and weighing more than 75 pounds -- hover above visitors from the exhibit ceiling. Contemporary art and artifacts -- including marble sculptures of genetically-modified rats and a 1960 magazine cover addressing the controversy surrounding "the pill" -- mingle in the museum. A display case of consumer products born out of the 20th century chemical discoveries, like...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to more than 35 years of archives, as well as TS Digest, digital editions of The Scientist, feature stories, and much more!