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Streaming video

Title Catalyst: Arsenic Toenails/Space Suit/Nancy Mills/Fatherhood Survey
Published Australia : ABC, 2010
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource (streaming video file) (26 min. 37 sec.) ; 161055043 bytes
Summary Is arsenic tarnishing the glitter of our golden prosperity?; the latest in spacesuits - fit for a trip to Mars; meet the legendary Professor Nancy Millis; and calling all dads and dads-to-be.Arsenic ToenailsThe gold rushes of the nineteenth century made a great impact on the Australian economy and our development as a nation. Today Australia is ranked second in the world among gold-producing nations and reserves of the precious metal are far from exhausted. But is the glittering prosperity being tarnished by the ill effects that the extraction of gold has on the environment? Dr Paul Willis meets up with researchers from the University of Ballarat who are collecting children's toenails and utilising a particle accelerator, Melbourne's Synchrotron, to ascertain how much arsenic they contain. Space SuitImages of astronauts drifting gracefully around in space may give the impression that their job is pretty cushy, but the reality is a spacewalk is no cakewalk! The spacesuits they are required to wear to survive in zero atmospheric pressure are bulky, hard to manoeuvre and can leave them at risk of developing serious health problems such as osteoporosis, and can even cause the loss of fingernails. Current spacesuits do little to counteract the effects of weightlessness that can cause muscles to atrophy and bones to crumble. To address these problems, Australian scientist James Waldie has been hard at work, at MIT Boston, developing the next generation of cosmic attire, including a prototype of a Gravity-Loading suit. Jonica Newby travels to Boston to try on some of the kit and to find out what would happen to her body in space if she were to swap one of James's suits for her birthday suit. Nancy MillisOctogenarian, Emeritus Professor Nancy Millis still travels into her office at Melbourne University almost every day. She started her career as a fermentation scientist giving her a keen interest in growing huge amounts of bacteria. But, when the world of genetic engineering exploded in the 60s and 70s her background gave her the opportunity to make the greatest contribution of her scientific career. With her knowledge of GM techniques, but with no particular axe to grind, she was perfectly placed to chair the watchdog committee set up to keep their eye on GM scientists. Nancy shares her thoughts about her career and her views on world issues - as Catalyst profiles this charming Australian legend.Fatherhood Survey Last year Catalyst launched an online survey about fatherhood. Now Catalyst invites new dads or dads-to-be to share their thoughts and experiences by sending in video diaries that will be viewable at the Catalyst website. Some diaries will make it into a special episode to be broadcast later in the year. The dedicated half-hour program will reveal the results of the survey and some surprising new science about the changes that occur in men when they become fathers
Notes Closed captioning in English
Event Broadcast 2010-03-11 at 20:00:00
Notes Classification: G
Subject Arsenic -- Measurement.
Extraction (Chemistry) -- Research.
Gold mines and mining -- Environmental aspects.
Osteoporosis -- Prevention.
Space suits -- Testing.
Form Streaming video
Author Dowling, Kim, contributor
Gerson, Andrea, contributor
Hoffman, Jeffrey, contributor
Millis, Nancy, contributor
Nettelbeck, Jonathan, contributor
Newby, Jonica, reporter
Pearce, Dora, contributor
Phillips, Graham, host
Waldie, James, contributor
Willis, Paul, reporter