Tag Archives: engineering notebook

The Late Trailblazer of Science: Trudy Dickinson

Despite the fact that she lived in a male-dominated world, Trudy Dickinson managed to successfully integrate herself in both the worlds of business and science. Dickinson, alongside Jean Thomas, founded Pentex Incorporated, a manufacturing company that was heavily invested in the production of blood proteins. Her company was single-handedly responsible for filling laboratory notebooks with development and research into blood proteins and their application within the healthcare industry.

Originally founded in 1953, Pentex remained an active player in the industry until 1998, when it was purchased by Serological Proteins, Inc. Despite the fact that Dickinson was successful for nearly 40 years, she was an incredibly humble, science-focused woman. Sadly, this remarkable woman passed away in late October 2016, at the age of 93.

Trailblazer of Science

Trudy Dickinson’s Life

Dickinson led an incredible life, and not just within the scope of her business. A true lover of innovation, she often pushed for her employees to think outside the box. Although she was a formidable businesswoman, she was a scientist first and foremost, and she never overlooked that fact. Born in June 1923 in Texas, she graduated from high school after spending most of her teenage years picking cotton. Not satisfied with the job, she chose to attend North Texas State University. Dickinson went on to earn a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science, majoring in chemistry, biology, and physics, all at the same time, with little more than a trusty lab notebook at her side.

This is an incredible course load for most people, even in today’s world, but, for Dickinson, it is a special accomplishment simply because of the time period in which she graduated. In 1944’s rough political climate, most women were focusing on administrative work, writing, and other female-dominated tasks, rather than seeking out multiple degrees. She also completed a degree in the midst of WWII—a time when most people were focused on the devastation of war.

After serving in a variety of positions within both the healthcare industry and educational industry, including one where she was responsible for achieving an ISO 9002 Certificate of Compliance for the plant at which she worked, Dickinson became a patent librarian for Standard Oil Company. From there she moved to Cook County Hospital, where she served as Director of Biochemistry. It was here that she became inspired to open Pentex Incorporated.

Awards and Achievements

Dickinson didn’t retire until late 1995, after an illustrious career in science that spanned nearly 50 years. Within that timeframe, she was granted a long list of commendable rewards. Some of her best awards include:

  • An Athena Award
  • Chamber of Commerce Business Woman of the Year
  • Honoree in the Harvard Business School Publication: The Women MBA
  • Honorary Doctor of Business Administration at North Central College
  • The Olivet Nazarene University Lifetime Achievement
  • Reed Institute for Advanced Study of Leadership
  • Kankakee Community College 2016 Foundation Visionary Award

In addition to these achievements, she also remained a fixed and steadfast role model for other women who wanted to break into science or business, a constant reminder of what was possible and why women were just as capable as their male counterparts.

Are you a woman in science who looks up to Trudy Dickinson, too? Having the right tools at your side can greatly benefit your research. Visit Scientific Notebook Company for scientific notebooks and other equipment to help make your life’s research much easier.

Pioneer of Science

The Greatest Minds of All Time Used Scientific Notebooks

Long before there were computers, the greatest minds of all time relied upon scientific notebooks to record their theories, hypotheses, data, tests, and other findings. By hand writing the information in their own personal notebooks, they were able to create a library of works that have been used by other scientists, philosophers, mathematicians, and thinkers to further build upon the original concepts and ideas developed by these outstanding people.

Marie Curie

Marie Curie worked alongside her husband Pierre Curie to discover radium and polonium. After the death of her husband, Mrs. Curie continued her research, and she was responsible for creating the term “radioactivity.” Today, her notebooks, along with numerous items she had in her home, are considered too radioactive to handle without proper protection.

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein

One of the most well-known scientists of our time, Albert Einstein is probably best recognized by the development of his Theory of Relativity. Mr. Einstein avidly wrote in his notebooks, which he later referenced as he made new discoveries. In fact, the first documentation of the Theory of Relativity can be found in his notebooks dating back to 1912 and 1913.

Max Planck

Best known for the development of Quantum Theory, Max Planck did not initially set out to make this discovery. He accidently discovered energy and how it behaves largely, in part, from reviewing data he had collected and recorded in his notebooks.

Robert Goddard

Robert Goddard was well ahead of his time. He invented and built the first rockets using liquid fuel. He also successfully launched the first one in 1926. While many of his colleagues ridiculed him for his belief that one day man could use a rocket to travel to the moon, and quite possibly Mars, his discoveries helped pave the way for the space program and creation of NASA.

Sigmund Freud

Sigmund Freud developed the concept of psychoanalysis and helped further the fields of psychology and psychiatry. Dr. Freud made it a habit of recording his concepts in notebooks as he attempted to understand the unconscious mind. While, today, many of his original theories are no longer practiced, they did initially change the way in which people viewed themselves.

Niels Bohr

Niels Bohr is credited with advancing the study of atoms and their structures. It was his work that helped lead to the creation of the Atomic Bomb, and this would not have been possible if he had not documented his theories in notebooks.

Atomic Bomb

Enrico Fermi

Another physicist, Enrico Fermi, started his career by reading two books on physics and documenting changes to many mathematical errors he found. Later, he conducted experiments with neutrons and developed the concept of splitting atoms. He even conceptualized how to create a nuclear reaction. Ultimately his efforts contributed greatly to the development of the Atomic Bomb.

Scientific Notebook Company has hoped you enjoyed learning more about the great minds of all time. For all of your scientific, lab, and engineering notebook needs, please feel to contact us at 800.537.3028 today!



Benefits of a Music and Science Partnership

Music and science are a bit like bread and butter; delicious on their own, but incredible once they come together and things start to heat up. Research is proving yet again what scientists from several decades ago always suspected. Music training and enjoyment of any kind can, in fact, make us smarter and more capable of understanding complex scientific concepts later in life.

We can attribute the fact that we know this to the dedicated researchers who spent countless hours huddled over a lab notebook, dissecting information to identify patterns found in testing. What exactly is it about this magical music that makes it so absolutely enchanting and so healthy for the brain? It has to do with the neurology of the brain.

Benefits of a Music and Science

How Music Influences the Brain

It’s not really news to anyone that music can be enjoyable. Crank up your favorite tunes and dance it out or play some soothing classical, and you can feel the difference in your mood. In some ways, listening to music is just another form of altered consciousness – albeit one without any real negative effects, unless you happen to listen a bit too loud.

It can motivate you and tell your brain to release adrenaline and endorphins, relax you when you’re a bit too wired up, and may even cause a select group of individuals with a condition called synesthesia to perceive colors, shapes, or numbers associated with it.

If music were a drug, we’d call it a potent psychoactive, but, unlike medications, music also has the ability to make us wiser because of the way the brain processes it.

Why Music Makes You Wiser

The first step in understanding why music is so influential is to understand that the same neurological activity and areas of the brain are used in memorization, memory recall, and even language. These are the areas that help us recall faces, study for exams, or even memorize test results when engaging in research. The difference is that music has both a logical formulaic function and an emotional tie, and this can persuade your brain that the information it is taking in is more important and should be held for later use.

This fact also explains why it’s easier for us to remember song lyrics than, say, a telephone number or the name of someone we’ve only just met. It also explains why taking study topics and turning them into songs allows the brain to more easily retain that information.

Long-Term Benefits to Scientists

Simply listening to music while you work, whether you’re studying or writing up reports on your cleanroom notebook or engaging in an incredibly delicate test, can help you to stay focused and in tune with what you’re doing, and may even help you to retain any new theories you discover as you go.

The benefits don’t stop once you turn the music off; a study by the University of Kansas is illustrating the fact that musical training of any kind has long-term cognitive benefits to the brain. They tested participants on their cognitive ability after sorting them into groups representing how much musical experience they had. The result? The more musical experience a participant had, the better they did on the test.

Interested in learning more about other scientific discoveries? Be sure to follow our blog where we’re constantly posting compelling blogs that will keep you entertained and amazed with the many wonders of science.

Music Influences the Brain

Studying Tips for Engineering Students

Pursuing an education in engineering can be a rewarding goal and lead to a successful career. However, the time, effort, and amount of dedication required to obtain your degree and land your dream job means you will have to develop proficient studying tips and learn how to balance these into an active university lifestyle.

  1. Stock Up on Engineering Notebooks – You will want to take good notes and keep them in engineering and research notebooks. Most students keep their notebooks and rely upon them throughout their college coursework, as well as later, after starting their career.

Engineering Students

  1. Prepare Ahead of Time for Classes – Preview and read any assignments before attending class. You should take notes on the material and make notations of any topics or other questions you want to ask your professors.
  2. Develop Relationships with Professors – Your professors are vital resources you should not discard. Take the time to build relationships with them, as you just might need them as a reference later when you start applying for internships and jobs.
  3. Manage Your Time Wisely –It is vital to keep your long term goals in mind and manage your time correctly. Get in the habit of starting homework assignments when they are assigned and not waiting until the night before they are due. This way, you will have time for some fun later, while everyone else is cramming to get their work done.
  4. Start a Study Group – If you are finding it difficult to study on your own, start a study group with other students. Studying in a group allows you to openly discuss and solve problems together, as well as provides a great support system for those times you feel overwhelmed or frustrated.
  5. Attempt to Solve Problems Before Seeking Help – Your professors are there to help, but are not going to do your homework for you. Take the time to attempt to answer questions and problem solve, as this shows you are willing to do the work, but are seeking their help to get you back on track. Be prepared to discuss what you have tried, and what you have already done, too.
  6. Take Non-Engineering Classes – From art classes to business and communication classes, you will want to pursue coursework outside core engineering ones to further enhance your overall learning experience and improve your skills.
  7. Enroll in Appropriate Classes to Maintain Your GPA – It can be tempting to enroll in honors classes to have this on your resume. However, with engineering, your GPA is critical in finding a job and starting your career. If you are struggling with honors classes, consider dropping them and taking the non-honors classes instead, so you can maintain a higher GPA.

Engineering Notebook

For all of your high quality engineering, lab, research, and student notebooks, order online today from SNCO or call us directly at 800.537.3028 for further assistance.

Hubo – The Disaster Relief Robot

Robotics is a field that has benefitted tremendously from advances in technology. Leonardo Da Vinci may have been the original trailblazer in robotics and engineering. His engineering notebook has been a coveted piece of scientific history as well as a resource. The once clumsy robotic arm has now given rise to robots that can perform detailed, careful movements. These robots can perform surgeries and, with the advent of Hubo and robots like it, they are saving lives. Robotics is coming to the forefront as a way to go where no human can go. Engineering notebook What Is Hubo? Hubo is the winner of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) robotics challenge developed by the Korean Advanced Institute for Science and Technology (KAIST). The challenge has been ongoing since its inception after the 2011 nuclear disaster in Japan. The idea of the challenge is to build semi-autonomous robots able to go into dangerous situations and perform complex tasks. Hubo is a human-like robot with electromechanical and computer systems that enable it to move, communicate with people, and interact with the world around it. This robot is over five feet tall, made from aluminum, and weighs close to 176 pounds. It has three cameras and has the ability to see in 3D. It has arms that can perform lifting, twisting, and turning, all aided by its seven motors and motor drivers. Hubo Symbolizes the Future Hubo and its predecessors are just a few of the many life-saving robots yet to come spurred on by the challenge, advances in technology, and human imagination. Some imagine a future where robots take over the world in an I, Robot-style doomsday scenario, but others see a world where the possibilities are endless. Details of the Challenge This multi-leg, multi-year challenge had exceedingly difficult requirements. The challenge required the robots to drive a vehicle at the site. It had to get out of the vehicle in a rubble-strewn area. Then it had to remove debris from an entryway. It also needed to open a door and go into a building. Once the robot did this, it was required to climb a ladder and cross an industrial walkway. As if those steps weren’t challenging enough, it then had to use a tool to break through a concrete panel. Next, it had to find and close a valve near a leaking pipe. Lastly, it had to connect a fire hose to a standpipe and turn on the valve. Hubo robot Sound challenging? Surely it is. It took teams of some of the world’s brightest scientists to come up with these disaster relief “heroes,” and there’s still room for improvement! It Started as an Idea It all started with an idea that someone likely wrote down in a scientific notebook. It could have been a sentence, a drawing, or an observation. Inspiration doesn’t always become invention, but, when it does, it’s like a seed that has blossomed into a beautiful flower. Hubo is the amazing realization of a team of hardworking scientists. To learn more about scientific notebooks for every use from cleanrooms to classrooms, contact us at 1-800-537-3028.

Sustainable Bricks Made from Plastic Bottles

In a time when people are making every effort to conserve energy and still live comfortably, the scientific notebook that holds the information to make sustainable bricks from plastic bottles is most welcome. As convenient as plastic is, it is a menace to the oceans and the wildlife that lives there. Even on land, it fills the landfills endlessly. The very idea that it might possibly be used to build homes or other structures is enough to rouse interest.

Plastic Replaces Sand

Plastic Replaces Sand

When bricks are made, sand is used as their filler. Combined with cement and water, the sand makes a durable material with which to build homes that are structurally low maintenance. Rosana Gaggino and the National Council of Scientific and Technological Research came up with a process that allows the bricks to be built by combining polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic with cement, rather than sand. If the plastic particles were not put to a specific use, it would take around 500 years for them to decompose.

Benefits of Using Plastic in Bricks

Other than the benefit to the planet, the information found in the engineering notebooks offers faster, more direct benefits to people in general. While this method recycles plastic bottles to the tune of 20 bottles for every brick, it also provides better insulation for homes than the traditional bricks that are used to create structures for humans to live in. In fact, they hold heat up to five times more effectively than bricks built with sand.

The ripple effect is overwhelming. Not only does the plastic get reused and kept out of the landfills, but erosion from the use of sand and dirt is also reduced. At the same time, it will take less energy to heat the homes that rely on these “ecological” bricks for their construction. On top of that, a concept not yet addressed in the engineering notebooks is that the plastic may even hold up longer than the sand, meaning that less maintenance is necessary even in the long run. Of course, the only way to test that theory is over time, but, given the decomposition rate of the plastic, it would seem sound enough.

Other Uses for Plastic

Considering that the government has already approved the use of these ecological bricks in government-owned homes, it would seem likely that they will be more inclined now to approve the allocation of funds for more research into other areas where plastic might be useful.

It is unclear how the expense of the ecological bricks compares to the expense of traditional bricks when it comes to the purchase price. Yet now is the time to think about more than just today and, instead, start thinking about the future. If methods like this are not used in large quantities very soon, survival itself may become a struggle, and there won’t be any time or people to fill those notebooks with new ideas. Reusing plastic can’t stop at pens made out of recycled plastic when there are so many benefits to bigger projects, like homes made out of ecological bricks.

Airplane Safety System Proposes Escape Capsule for Civil Aircraft

Of all the things to come out of an engineering notebook, the escape capsule designed for civil aircraft may be the one that’s getting the most attention lately. Although there aren’t any aircraft that use this design yet, it may be the first of its kind to be a feasible solution to the problem of people dying in airplane crashes. The idea is ridiculously simple, as most great inventions are. However, the logistics of it may mean more expense than aircraft companies want to put into the safety of their passengers.

Airplane Safety System

Escape Capsule Premise

Essentially, the concept is that, with the push of a button, all passengers could be ejected from the plane at one time and never even leave their seats. The capsule itself is the seating area, and it is attached to one or more parachutes that prevent the capsule from crashing to the ground. There are also floatation devices involved, just in case the passengers have to land in a large body of water. Of course, all of this is proven in theory, but could be costly for airlines, because the engineering notebook that holds the designs makes it clear that the planes have to be built around the capsule, rather than modifying existing planes. In other words, the capsule itself is the bulk of the plane, with the area outside of it holding the engines and serving as a sort of protective shell while in flight.

Materials and Weight

The idea of using a capsule or some sort of escape pod isn’t all that new. The problem has always been finding material that could be used to create the design in a real life scenario. Airplanes are already designed to account for the weight of the passengers and fuel, and adding more weight means adjusting the overall design or even flying at lower heights. However, there has been some success with carbon-fiber, a lightweight material that could carry the passengers to safety without adding more weight to the plane than is realistic.

Burden of Expense

With all of the airplane crashes that have happened in the past decade, one would think that this would be the perfect solution for any airline that wants to promote safety. The problem is that it means not just buying new planes, but using new designs and materials, as well as reducing the amount of passengers the plane can carry. This is because the capsule takes up more space than is currently used inside of airplanes. Should airlines decide to take this route, the expense would most likely be passed on to the consumer in an already stressed economy.

Sadly, the capsule may have to stay in the engineering notebooks for now, but at least there is a potential for it to become a reality. Even airplanes have to be replaced, every now and then. Who says they can’t be replaced with a freshly designed model when the time comes? Consumers might be more willing to pay higher prices if they know there is very little risk of harm during flight.

Burden of Expense

Five Halloween Costume Ideas for Science Lovers

Dressing up as a famous scientist, like Albert Einstein, or Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory, might seem like a great costume idea. Unfortunately, your other science-loving friends may have the same idea. Who really wants to be at a Halloween party where there are numerous clones of the same person? If you want to really stand out and put some “Bazinga!” into your costume this year, then consider the following Halloween costume ideas to get your thought processes flowing.

  1. Schrodinger’s Cat: It is easy to recreate the popular thought experiment by thinking outside the box. All you need is a cardboard box, some face makeup, and an empty bottle. Cut holes at top and bottom of box to slide box over your body. Fashion cat ears from the cut out cardboard of the box. Apply the face makeup to make yourself look like a cat. Last, apply a label to the bottle and write “XXX” on it, or a skull and crossbones to signify poison.
  2. Dark Matter: No one really knows what dark matter looks like. This costume idea gives you the flexibility to dress up pretty much any way you want. You could wear different colored socks, shorts with a dress shirt, and a straw hat. If you want to take the easy way out, simply write “Dark Matter” on a “Hello My Name Is …” name tag and stick it on your shirt.
  3. Phytoplankton: Get some blow-up pool toys and slide these around your body. Decorate the toys using permanent markers or paint in the desired colors, and you are pretty much set. Just remember to dress in the same color as the toys.
  4. Black Hole: Dress in all black and use black face makeup to paint your face. If you want to put a little something more into the costume, use a blow up inner tube and paint in varying shades of oranges, reds, and yellows to create an acceleration disk you can wear around your waist.
  5. Marie Curie: For female science lovers, dress as one of the most famous women scientists of the early 20th Century. All you need is a basic dress that reflects the style worn during this time period, a white lab coat, a scientific notebook, glow sticks, and glow-in-the-dark nail polish and face markup. Put the glow sticks in your pockets and on other areas of the costume to simulate glowing radiation. The glow-in-the-dark nail polish and makeup add the perfect finishing touches. You can even use the nail polish to paint splotches of radioactive isotopes on the outside of the notebook.

Hopefully these Halloween costume ideas have sparked your creative and theoretical thought processes. Feel free to modify these ideas or come up with your own fun and exciting science-inspired costume. If you need a scientific or laboratory notebook to put the finishing touches on your costume, contact Scientific Notebook Company today at 800-537-3028.

Halloween Pumpkin (Clip Path)

Demand for Engineers and Scientists Continues to Increase

As technology continues to evolve, so does the demand for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) workers. Currently, there is a shortage of qualified and educated people with these skills, leading to a higher demand in job markets, not just here in the United States, but globally throughout the world. Part of the job shortage is largely due to the amount of commitment and time needed to pursue a degree in a STEM field. Students studying STEM subjects have to spend between one-third and one-half more time to review materials, and to complete projects and other course work, compared to those studying non-STEM subjects. In addition, students are expected to learn how to properly utilize cleanroom notebooks, scientific notebooks, laboratory research notebooks, and engineering notebooks.

Over the next several years, STEM jobs are expected to be one of the fastest growing job segments, following just behind the number one expanding job segment: healthcare. Previously, STEM workers only accounted for about five percent of jobs, with careers in computer programming, engineering, and research and development. However, technology has expanded far beyond these types of career fields and into sales, marketing, manufacturing, transportation, management, and so on. Demand is starting to grow, and is expected to continue to expand into the foreseeable future, for well-educated people with degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math.

Companies are now starting to realize the challenges of doing business in a global economy. Many foreign firms have already started to adapt by hiring STEM workers to fill positions in non-traditional areas within their organizations. For instance, one company recruits engineers to work in their sales department to sell their products to engineering and manufacturing firms. The reason they want engineers in sales positions is because it is easier for one engineer to sell products to another engineer.

What Educational Courses Should Someone Concentrate On at a University?

In the past, university students could find many opportunities by taking liberal arts courses. Today, that is no longer the case. Students who want the most job opportunities after graduation need to take science, technology, engineering, and math courses, and related degree programs. However, employers also desire students with interpersonal and literary skills. Minors or general educational coursework should focus on literature, communication, grammar, and interpersonal relationships. One of the biggest complaints by companies about STEM workers, in the past, is their not being able to effectively communicate with others, their poor interpersonal relationship skills, and their not being able to properly write corporate communications, emails, or memos, or to effective convey their message with those outside of STEM fields.

How Well Do STEM Careers Pay Compared to Other Jobs?

STEM careers pay higher starting salaries compared to other jobs. In many cases, those holding a degree in a related science, technology, engineering, or math field are paid much higher than another person with a higher degree. For instance, a person who has an associate of science degree for a STEM field typically earns around sixty percent more than a person who has a bachelor degree in a non-STEM subject. A student pursuing a bachelor degree of science in a STEM career will earn around sixty-five percent more than someone with a master’s degree in a non-STEM subject.

Whether you are a university student or instructor, or starting your career in a STEM-related job, you can obtain all of the scientific, engineering, and lab notebooks you require by contacting Scientific Notebook Company at 800-537-3028 today.

Cleanroom Notebooks

Studying Tips for Engineering Students

Being a successful engineering student starts by forming proper studying habits. There is a higher learning expectation at the university level, compared to what you were used to in high school. Engineering students often find they must spend more time studying in order to successfully pass their engineering classes and complete course work on time. Part of successful studying is ensuring you have the right materials and supplies before you even set foot inside a classroom, such as pens, pencils, calculators, and engineering notebooks. A materials and supplies list can be obtained either from your college’s academic office or your academic advisor.

General Engineering Studying Tips

  • Never Miss Class: Missing a class could put you far behind your peers. If you have to miss due to illness, make sure to ask a fellow classmate for notes, and make an appointment with the instructor or their teaching assistant to cover any questions you might have about the material.
  • Get to Know Your Instructors: Take the time to learn your instructors’ office hours, whether they have teaching assistants, and the teaching assistants’ office hours. Developing relationships with your instructors not only makes it easier for you to approach them whenever you require help, but also gives you suitable references to use later on when you apply for internships and jobs.
  • Participate in Study Groups: Everyone has their own methods for problem solving. Being part of a study group greatly helps expand your problem-solving skills, especially in situations where you are stuck on a problem or not entirely sure whether you are approaching the problem correctly. In addition, it allows you to develop relationships with your classmates should you miss class and need class notes or help catching up on assignments.
  • Take Notes: Notes should be taken during class lectures and problem demonstrations, as well as while you are completing reading assignments. It is better to use engineering notebooks and hand write notes rather than rely upon laptop computers or tablet devices. However, it is beneficial to use the microphone in these devices and record lectures for review later.
  • Review Materials Several Times: Review reading assignments, notes, and other materials more than once. Preview the assigned reading before reading through the chapter, and then read the entire chapter before the next class. Remember, as you are reading, to take notes on important concepts and topics you can utilize in class to help answer questions.
  • Avoid Working: If at all possible, avoid working if you have a full class load. Your engineering courses are going to take more time out of your schedule to study and complete assignments. If you do have to work, try to limit your work schedule to no more than fifteen hours per week, or, if you must work full time, take no more than one engineering course and one general education course per semester.

By following these engineering studying tips, you are on your way to developing prospering studying techniques and successfully passing your engineering courses. You can obtain professional engineering notebooks and student notebooks directly from Scientific Notebook Company by calling 800-537-3028.

Engineering Notebook