THE MIND MUSEUM, in partnership with the country’s leading chemical supplier BASF Philippines Inc., launched the first virtual chemistry table in the Philippines.
The installation of the virtual chemistry table is aimed at providing a new experience for science education.
“In 2050, we will be more than 9 billion people. You can just imagine our challenges we have right now at 7 billion. We all know that our resources are finite. There will be pressure on energy, food production, and quality of life,” BASF Philippines managing director Ronald P. Mercado told BusinessWorld at the launch on Aug. 16, citing a United Nations report about global challenges.
“We need the children now. They are the ones who will find solutions. The earlier we engage them in science and technology, the chance of getting more solutions is higher,” he added.
According to BASF Philippines corporate affairs manager Michelle Santos, the company continuously finds ways to promote science education through their social engagement programs.
“We want them (children) to see that science is fun and engaging,” Ms. Santos said.
Developed by South African company Formula D Interactive, the virtual chemistry table gives children and guests the chance to explore various chemical reactions without the risk of dangers in the laboratory.
“When we do it in the lab, there are many other precautions that we have to think about such as proper equipment and safety,” Mikee Estorga, education officer at The Mind Museum, told BusinessWorld.
The virtual chemistry table located at the museum’s Atom gallery is equipped with circular disks labeled with substances. When the disks are placed on the table, descriptions about the substance will appear on the screen. When two disks are placed on the table, the two substances virtually combine to create and show the corresponding reaction.
“It was designed to have disks with patterns at the bottom. The patterns are being read by infrared camera. It interprets and displays the content of the specific card that was put on the table. When the cards are mixed together, it can also display the reaction and show what could happen to the two substances,” Ms. Estorga said. “The new experience of it is what we give our audience, but the learning is the same.”
BASF Philippines Inc. has also extended efforts for science education outside Manila by sponsoring 400 kids to witness educational shows and workshops in the Mind Mobile which is currently stationed in Cebu.
The Mind Museum is located at JY Campos Park, 3rd Ave, Ta- guig city. It is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. — Michelle Anne P. Soliman