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Whither that Foam?



Reading Mike Kelly's Foam Club in the Feb. 23 issue of the NCJ brought back memories of my days in graduate school at the University of Minnesota in the 1970s.

The Minneapolis campus is divided into two parts by the Mississippi River with a pedestrian bridge connecting them. Springtime annually, what appeared to be soap suds would float by under the bridge. This would lead people to speculate that there must have been an industrial leak upstream.

Invariably, there would then be an article in the university newspaper explaining that the foam was actually due to natural organic matter that had been agitated as it was swept into the river by snow melt. This process is analogous to the formation of sea foam by the surf as Kelly explained in his article.

Sherman Schapiro, Eureka

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