Illinois Science Council (“ISC”) is an independent 501c3 organization that engages, educates, and entertains the public about science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in our everyday lives. ISC serves as the adult complement to student-focused science efforts, and the science & tech counterpart to the region’s arts & culture offerings by raising STEM understanding and appreciation.

ISC explores a wide variety of topics with a fun, non-stuffy approach. We create engaging programs (aimed at adults and accessible to teens) such as: hands-on chemistry (Chemistry of… Beer, Chocolate, Whiskey, Coffee, Honey, etc.); panel discussions on science subjects in the news (Your Brain on Happiness, on Creativity, on Addiction, on Exercise, etc.); author talks (Lisa Randall, Mary Roach, Randall Munroe of XKCD); film screenings (“The Atom Smashers”), plus the Chicago Science Festival; and more.

Carl Sagan observed:

“We live in a society exquisitely dependent upon science and technology in which hardly anyone understands anything about science and technology.”

ISC is certainly working to change that.

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Featured Events

Here are upcoming and most recent ISC events. Or visit our main event calendar below for lots of science events happening citywide. Full Event Calendar

Chemistry of Beer

Metropolitan Brewing Tap Room, 3057 N Rockwell St, Chicago, IL 60618

Chemistry of The Cocktail

Koval Distillery, 5121 N Ravenswood Ave, Chicago, IL 60640

Science Cocktail Party 2018

DIRTT Environmental Solutions, 325 N. Wells St., Chicago, IL 60654

Tree ID Walk & Talk

Beermiscuous, 2812 N. Lincoln Av., Chicago, IL 60657

Science Unsealed

A blog about the science of everyday life...and some from out of this world. View More

The Secret in Your Veins: The History of Blood Transfusion

Blood transfusions are an essential component of modern-day medicine, saving lives in a variety of situations, ranging from genetic diseases like sickle cell anemia to road accidents. But, the history of blood transfusion is a rocky one. For instance, did you know that a German physician founded the world’s first blood transfusion institute in 1926 because he believed blood transfusions led to immortality?

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Blue Sky at Night, Martian’s Delight: The Atmosphere of Mars

Imagine you’re standing on the rocky, rust-pink surface of Mars. You’ve just finished a hard day’s work helping to build the first human base on another planet, so you decide to take a break and watch the sunset. As you gaze west across the Martian desert, a small, wan sun sinks through the hazy, orange-brown sky. The light wanes, and the temperature drops from a balmy daytime high of -15° F to an evening chill of -120° F (good thing you’re wearing your spacesuit). The weak wind that has been kicking up dust devils all day drops away, leaving you in a silence deeper than any quiet on Earth.

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The Art and Science of Sound in The Sea

 On a muggy day in June of 2018, after two and a half weeks at sea, the Research Vessel Endeavor’s crew, the science team, and I pulled into our last study site off the coast of Virginia. The weather was warm and overcast; the sea was calm. Dr. Miksis-Olds had just given the word to “pop the lander,” which meant to release the equipment anchored on the ocean floor. All us scanned the immediate vicinity, looking for the orange floats attached to the underwater microphones and other equipment. The equipment’s 20-minute journey to the surface was a waiting game we had performed successfully six other times: finding and retrieving the equipment, downloading the data it collected, and plunging the equipment back to the ocean floor to continue collecting data.  

Continue reading “The Art and Science of Sound in The Sea”