Today in History – November 14, 1985 – Fullerenes were first introduced in the journal Nature,. Earlier in September during 11 days of collaborative research, Robert F. Curl, Jr., Richard Smalley and Sir Harold W. Kroto discovered the first fullerene, C60, a spherical cluster of carbon atoms. The discovery was coined buckminsterfullerenes or buckyballs after famed architect Buckminster Fuller and his geodesic domes and molecularly-inspired architectural design concepts. Fullerenes opened a new branch of chemistry and all three men were awarded the 1996 Nobel Prize for Chemistry for their work. for their work. See the Engineering Pathway’s related engineering education resources in fullerenes and buckyballs.
For more on related curricular programs and educational resources visit the Biomolecular and Chemical Engineering Education or the Materials Engineering Education community sites. Or visit our resources on See the Engineering Pathway’s related engineering education resources on Buckminster Fuller an the Architectural Engineering Education community site.
Also on this date in 1896, the power plant at Niagara Falls joins long distance electric power grid. See related resources in hydroelectric power, electric power grids, as well as dam design, construction and safety.