ice sculpting

You’d think it’d be frustrating to have to wake up for work every Sunday morning for your part time job, but when the place you work is the Ontario Science Centre, it’s hard to not have fun. Case in pictures:
Upon arriving at work one fine Sunday morning, my colleagues and I happened upon a massive pile of ice. And not just normal ice, but ice whose chunks were as large, or larger, than cinder blocks. It seems a private event at the OSC the night before had decided to discard their large block of ice to melt near a storm drain. Not to let such a icy opportunity go to waste, my co-workers and I set to building.

After playing around a bit, and decided on something to build, we started putting together an Inukshuk.* Here’s me putting the first horizontal piece in.
An almost finished product, just putting some decorative ice chunks in a circle around it.
Some of the ice was really wild to look at.
A fully completed ice inukshuk.
Group shot.
Of course, our actions attracted visitors, and questions about ice, melting, phases of matter, etc. started flying. We decided to set up a simple experiment to see the effects of different chemicals on the speed at which ice melts. In the above picture there are four chunks of ice covered in different chemicals. From the left: sodium chloride (salt), control chunk (nothing), sugar, and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). The salt definitely made the ice melt quicker, but the sugar and baking soda also had a different effect. The control chunk melted the slowest.


* I also made another inukshuk on my trip out to Prince Edward Island this summer, that covered in the local news paper.