Barium (pronounced bear-ee-um) is a silvery coloured metal, but it feels soft to touch!
Because barium has a different make-up to other chemicals in the body, it is sometimes used in hospitals when X-rays are being taken. When the X-ray shines through the body, it doesn’t pass through the barium as easily as it does through everything else. So if there is barium in the intestines, the doctor will be able to see the them much better on the X-ray.
This is just one use though, barium has plenty of others, including being used in fireworks to make them green.
The Barium Zone is a General Science Zone for Primary School students; the five scientists in this zone research five different areas. There is a scientist working on bacteria that eat other bacteria, as well as one looking at how cells move inside a fly egg. There is also one scientist trying to find out how the ground moves during earthquakes. There is someone researching the DNA of nasty bacteria, and another trying to stop a bright green bird called the Echo Parakeet becoming extinct!
You can find out more about the scientists in this zone, and what they work on by reading their profiles. Click on their names at the top of this page to find out more!