MAGNA is in Rotherham which is essentially Sheffield and a very easy 45 minute drive to the north. Sheffield, like other cities in the area, played a key part in the Industrial Revolution particularly when it comes to steel. Many steel mills (or steel works as they are called here) were in the area. The MAGNA site was a former steel works that recycled scrap steel back to usable steel.
First, a geeky aside on steel from Wikipedia:
Steel is an alloy that consists mostly of iron and has a carbon content between 0.2% and 2.1% by weight, depending on the grade. Carbon is the most common alloying material for iron, ... and acts as a hardening agent. Varying the amount of alloying elements and the form of their presence in the steel controls qualities such as the hardness, ductility, and tensile strength of the resulting steel.
we tried to huddle around for a little heat as well
interested in this one obviously -- steel marbles used to demonstrate the whirlpool/funnel effect
. . . and an actual funnel cloud -- perhaps a little timely given the recent weather back home. This was neat in that you could blow (hard) on the funnel to break it up. Something I learned by accident in my graduate Fluids class . . . not that I remember any of the math associated with it (nor do I need to!)
too cool (glad we saw the wimpy air-only one first)
the kids were interested too
water cannon -- tough to beat
We also went to the Earth exhibit but I didn't take any pictures. They had some big front loaders that Alex enjoyed using.
happy kids (trust me)
All in all, it was a pretty good day. I would have liked to have seen them tie in the science of steel making a little more closely with the exhibits. But, the kids had fun and they might have accidently learned something. There were some similarities to the excellent Indianapolis Children's Museum but it was plenty unique (including fire!).
There was a tour that we took at the end for a little history of the place. Some good info, but he overran by 30 minutes or so and we were ready to go by then.
We have a return of Nicole's meal of the week. This was chicken chow mein though it didn't have the crunchy noodles. More of a stir fry with noodles. Good stuff.
Have a good week.