A grain of salt took first prize in Swansea University’s 2012 Research as Art competition. This close-up look came from a laboratory study of the salts that form on jet turbines in midflight.
By Stephanie Pappas
updated 6/21/2012 3:17:08 PM ET
A close-up look at a grain of salt, a blue glacier against a pink sky and a map of sea-turtle tracks are among the winners of the 2012 Research as Art competition.
The competition, organized by Swansea University in Wales, is open to all Swansea researchers in any field who have a cool image to share. This year’s entries included more than 100 images, from which judges picked 15 winners.
The overall winner was submitted by Hollie Rosier of Swansea University, who came across a grain of sodium sulfate and sodium chloride (salt) while researching jet turbine safety. Jet turbines become very hot when in use and are also exposed to the atmosphere. This combination can lead to compounds such as salt encrusting the turbines. Rosier and her colleagues reproduced and photographed one such salt grain in the laboratory.