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Scientific Methodology

Identify a problem, gather data, hypothesize, conduct experiments, evaluate results

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A New Form of Water

A New Form of Water

Credit: NASA
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/5182695972/
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

Polywater, considered to be the polymerized form of water created a huge controversy during the 1960s. This new hypothetical form became so popular that it was in several newspapers and television shows causing it to become a hot topic in the scientific community.

Why It Matters

  • License: CC BY-NC 3.0

    Polywater was known to have a viscosity similar to syrup [Figure2]

  • The polywater phenomenon is one of the best known examples of pathological science. Polywater was believed to have been a form of water that had a higher boiling point, lower freezing point and a viscosity similar to syrup. 
  • Even though the discovery of polywater was eventually determined to be a result of contamination; it proved to be a vital lesson for future scientists demonstrating the importance of the scientific method.
  • You can learn more about the amazing story of polywater and the history of the scientific method at the following links:

Can You Apply It?

Using the information provided above, answer the following questions.

  1. The scientific method is a blueprint for investigating new phenomenon. What is each of the steps in the scientific process?
  2. Why is it important that your experiment is repeatable?
  3. How can someone ensure that their experiment is repeatable?

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Image Attributions

  1. [1]^ Credit: NASA; Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/5182695972/; License: CC BY-NC 3.0
  2. [2]^ License: CC BY-NC 3.0

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