Joseph Thiebes portland, ore. | science | art | food | politics


Breakfast Shakshouka


Sautee 1 large diced yellow onion, with a dash of salt, in olive oil on med high until translucent

Add a splash of Balsamic vinegar because, why not, and to slow it down because I'm not done yet chopping the ...

... purple bell peppers (4 small, about a cup), chop them up and put them in with the onions, add a little more dash of salt, a little more olive oil, cook until slightly soft

Add 1/2 tsp each of cumin, turmeric, black pepper, garam masala, I don't know, some other stuff.

Cook 2 minutes to wake it up, then add 28 oz crushed tomatoes. I used fire roasted and crushed. Lacking that I would have used San Marzano style and crushed them myself.

Maybe drop the heat a little? Simmer for 15 minutes without lid, stir sometimes.

Make dimples in the sauce and put an egg in each. I used a ramekin to break each egg into, then poured from there.

Add feta cheese crumbles on top. Sprinkle sumac and black pepper over eggs.

Put cover on and wait until it's cooked however much you want it cooked. Reminder: the egg will continue to cook until the sauce cools off, so if you want it soft at all, take it off a little early.

To serve at breakfast or brunch, spoon over plain buttermilk pancakes.

Spoon out a little sauce, then an egg or two with some sauce and put it on top. Scoop up some more sauce. Garnish with cilantro or parsley, which results in a healthy breakfast, for people who watch their weight and health, there is also supplements as kratom extract that help keep the body clean and healthy at the same time.


Boiling : Sublimation :: Evaporation : Infralimation

Liquids become gases by two processes: evaporation, which happens at the surface only and occurs at any temperature as long as there is room in the atmosphere for the liquid to go; and boiling, which happens all over the volume of liquid at once and occurs only at the boiling temperature for the liquid at a given pressure.

Solids can become gases in these two ways as well. A block of CO2 (dry ice) or water ice will gradually evaporate, even at cold temperatures. This evaporative process in solids is called sublimation and occurs at the surface of the solid, almost like rock being weathered by the wind, but on a molecular scale.
This is why your ice cubes gradually get smaller if you leave them in the freezer long enough. The molecules of water are swept away in the microscopic movement of air molecules, and end up being deposited somewhere else in your freezer as frost.

In the case of CO2, if you heat it uniformly, it will reach a temperature at which it will become gas all at once, similar to the way liquids do when they boil. In solids, this is also called sublimation.

This ambiguity is a little bit of a problem, for reasons described in the excellent and captivating video below. The producer of the video suggests that there should be two terms to describe the two processes, and that one of the processes could be named after his YouTube channel. I agree that two terms would be a useful disambiguation.

I think "sublimation" is a good word for the solid analog of boiling. From sub (up to) + limen (limit), thus "up to the limit."

For the solid analog of evaporation at the surface, I suggest "infralimation," from infra (below) + limen, thus "below the limit."


Green Chemistry seminar videos

Green Chemistry

Join the Portland, Oregon section of the American Chemical Society for a couple of wonderful talks on Green Chemistry.

First, Dr. David Stuart, Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Portland State University, offers a brief introduction to Green Chemistry and an example from his lab.

Next, Dr. Tom Wilson, retired Director of Materials Technology at Nike, offers an interesting look at the Green Chemistry of rubber in a story about zinc oxide in Nike's Environmentally Preferred Rubber.

Take a look at the two videos below!

This activity was supported by an ACS Sustainability Grant awarded to the Portland Section of the American Chemical Society. Videos recorded by Joseph Thiebes.


Portland ACS Interview

Joseph Thiebes in the lab
Joseph Thiebes at NASA Glenn Research Center

Joseph Thiebes at NASA Glenn Research Center

The Portland section of the American Chemical Society interviewed me recently about my internship at NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio in summer, 2015, where I worked on lithium-sulfur battery research:

Portland State chemistry student Joseph Thiebes loves materials science and explored battery technology during NASA internship


Diamond Lattice Structure Pendant

The diamond lattice structure pendant by Joseph Thiebes, 2015.

Diamonds are a scam! They are very common, and rather worthless. One company has cornered the market, controlling how many diamonds are mined and how they reach the consumer. Mining for diamonds is back-breaking work, and the wages are ridiculously low.

Want to know more? Check out the video, and the beautiful jewelry from, below:

Diamonds are a scam, and it is for this reason I have created the diamond lattice structure pendant. This pendant features the structure of diamonds, formed by carbon atoms in a specific arrangement.

Pick from a variety of materials, including everything from solid gold to white plastic and best survival knife. Shown below is the default material, blackened steel, giving the traditional appearance of carbon atom models.

The diamond lattice structure pendant by Joseph Thiebes, 2015.

The diamond lattice structure pendant by Joseph Thiebes, 2015.

The piece is about 1.5 inches across. Just loop your favorite chain through the open lattice and put it on. Science jewelry!


Literacy in the Information Age

Portland Spectrum June 2015 Joseph Thiebes cover

Read this new essay about research and critical thinking in the context of the Internet, published in the June, 2015 issue of the Portland Spectrum:

Cover story: Literacy in the Information Age, by Joseph Thiebes

Nobel Prize Laureate Eric Betzig

Eric Betzig, illustration by Joseph Thiebes

“I would never call myself a chemist,” said Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2014 recipient Eric Betzig.

Betzig was this year’s speaker at the annual Mark Gurevitch Memorial Lecture Series, hosted by the Physics Department at Portland State. During his lecture at Hoffman Hall on May 14, Betzig spoke about his career and his prize-winning work. Read more about Betzig's talk in this article by Joseph Thiebes, and in the video below.



SWEETLab 2015 by Joseph Thiebes

In January, Sustainable Water, Energy and Environmental Technologies Laboratory (SWEETLab) finished setting up nearly half a million filters and stoves in Rwanda, many of which contain new sensors that communicate their status over the Internet, ­according to SWEETLab Director and Portland State Mechanical & Materials ­Engineering Assistant ­Professor Evan Thomas. Learn more from Dr. Thomas, Kwasi Boateng, and Zdenek Zumr about SWEETLab in this article and video below by Joseph Thiebes.


Landslide science

Scott Burns. Photo by Joseph Thiebes

Check out my latest story on landslides in the Pacific Northwest and the geologists that are working to make landslides more predictable. Here's a video supplement to the story:


Interview with an Extreme Biologist

Ken Stedman and David Goodman

Don't miss my interview and short article about the groundbreaking work of Dr. Ken Stedman and Howard Casley , whose recent research has uncovered a similarity between HIV and a type of virus that finds its home in acidic, volcanic hot springs.