Bentonite, the name given to a group of industrially useful clays containing the mineral montmorillonite. Bentonite clays are primarily aluminum silicates, mixed with varying amounts of sodium, calcium, or magnesium. A major use of bentonite clays is in oil-well drilling mud, a mixture of water, bentonite, and chemicals used to cool the drilling bit and carry away cuttings from the well. Certain types of bentonite expand to several times their original volume when mixed with water; they are used as sealants in dams and concrete-lined canals.
He was born exactly 300 years after Galileo died. He has yet to be awarded a Nobel Prize, although he was awarded a guest spot on “The Simpsons.” What else do you know (or not know) about this acclaimed physicist?
Chinook, the American name for a warm, dry wind that blows down a mountainside.