The scientists at Australia’s Flinders University, who became famous for figuring out how to un-boil an egg, have been awarded the prestigious Ig Nobel prize. Using a machine called the Vortex Fluidic Device, Professor Colin Raston and his team were able to return some of the egg whites back to their fluidic state. The feat of kitchen science could mean big things for the pharmaceutical industry, and nabbed the scientist the award- given for science that makes people “laugh, and then think.”
Un-boiling an egg may seem like a breakfast experiment, but Raston’s findings could make serious waves in other industries. With the Vortex Fluidic Device, the scientists were able to isolate and unravel the egg’s congealed proteins, returning them to their original state (the runny clear portion of an uncooked egg).
Separating proteins- and rendering them to their original state, could makes leaps and bounds for the $160 billion pharmaceutical industry. Proteins play a large factor in cancer treatment, and Raston’s experiment could make them more effective. The VFD process could also help revolutionize the fuel industry by helping scientists develop better biofuels, as well as be invaluable to food industries.
The Ig Nobel is given for quirky, unusual, yet innovative science, medicine and technology. Raston received the award for his eggs-periment in a ceremony judged by actual Nobel Laureates, which took place at Harvard.
Images ©Flinders University and ©Andrew Toskin