Happy Earth Day! I was surprised this morning to log into my iGoogle page and see that of the science sites I'm following, "Earth Day" wasn't in the headlines. At Twitter, I saw much more hubbub about Earth Day, in a wide range of categories. Today is the third in our series of Science Buddies science fair project ideas hand-picked to help you celebrate Earth Day week with your students and in your classrooms.
From Trash to Gas: Biomass Energy
Using biomass for energy isn't a new idea, but it's certainly one worth talking about. As you consider the benefits of renewable energy -- or as you take in the smells on a drive out in the country -- the applications of biomass are worth a deeper look.
In this science fair project idea, empty soda bottles, balloons, and different types of biomass give you the tools you need to measure the amounts of biogas created by varying types of biomass. Things could get smelly, but the results will be right easy to observe -- a perfect starting point for understanding important energy concepts.
Science Buddies difficulty level: 4-6
Duration: a couple of weeks