Science: Doubts about Polywater

As he often does on an easy afternoon, Bell Labs Chemist Dennis Rousseau drove to some nearby handball courts last June and played a vigorous game. But this time his purpose was strictly scientific. After returning to work, Rousseau wrung out his sweaty T shirt, collected the perspiration in a flask, evaporated it to a gummy residue, and then carefully analyzed it with an infra-red spectrometer. He found exactly what he was looking for: his sweat exhibited spectral characteristics similar to those of the mysterious and highly controversial substance called polywater.

Ever since...

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