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The Secret of the Stuffed Animal

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Famke Alberts

on 4 May 2014

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Transcript of The Secret of the Stuffed Animal

Stuffed Animals
130 years ago, toy makers in Germany were creating stuffed animals. In 1894, they started to make the iconic bear, though it was not named the teddy bear till 7 years later. It was 1903, and Theodore Roosevelt was president.Theodore, also known as Teddy, was on a hunting voyage when he refused to shoot a bear cub. This got international attention, and the stuffed bears became known as the teddy bear.
Whether it's a purple elephant, a polka dotted puppy, or the common teddy bear, stuffed animals all have three common components. They have a pair of eyes, fur and stuffing. One thing all these "body" parts have in common is that they're all made of non renewable resources.

To make the actual glass eye they take sand and combine with the four other ingredients,soda ash, limestone,dolomite and gypsum. Soda Ash and Limestone help to lower the melting point of the sand. Then, they heat the mixture to a sweltering 3000 degrees. When the mixture melts, it is then cooled down and formed.

You use sand to build sand castles, but you also use sand to make glass. The top sand producing countries are the USA, and Italy.
Soda ash is a mineral that both occurs naturally and can be man made. The United States provides the most natural soda ash in the world. It can be found in dried up lakes in California, and there are large deposits of it in Wyoming. In all types of production, including factory production, China is the leading producer of soda ash(Chart in next slide). To obtain natural soda ash, it has to be mined. Mining soda ash creates potentially less pollution then artificially making it, and it's also cheaper.The first natural deposit of soda ash was discovered in 1938 in the area of Green River, Wyoming. Synthetic soda ash, which is referred to as alkali, is made in a process where salt, ammonia, and Slat is combined. As I mentioned before, this process creates more waste and is less cost efficient. This method of soda ash production was invented in 1860 by Ernest Solvay near Brussels. Though 49 percent of soda ash is used for glass, they also use soda ash in other products such as soap and detergent, chemicals, pulp and paper, flue gas desulfurization and distributors.
Soda Ash
Limestone is a naturally occurring mineral that can be mined. Scientists refer to it as a carbonate rock, meaning more then half of it is made of carbon. The top producer in the world is China (to see a full list of producers go to the next slide). In two slides, you'll see how they mine limestone. It is setup much like any other quarry. There are many concerns while mining Limestone which include the dust that may come from the quarry, which could contaminate underground water, the excessive noise and vibration from the explosions used to get the stone.
Limestone has been used as a building material for a long time, and the use of limestone dates century's back.
Dolomite is a mineral that ranges in color and is often used as a decorative stone. Dolomite is often found in limestone and marble. Pure dolomite is an important part in the production of glass, but the world production of dolomite is not available. Some areas that have dolomite mining are the USA, Italy, Germany, and Switzerland. This mineral was discovered in 1798 by french geologist Déodat(Dieudonné) Guy Silvain Tancrède Gratet de Dolomieu while on a expedition to Egypt with Napoleon Bonaparte.
Gypsum is a mineral which comes in a variety of colors ranging from white to red. As we can see on the map in the next slide, the top ten gypsum producing companies are as follows; China, Iran, Spain, United States, Thailand, Japan, Mexico, Italy, Canada, and Australia. There are also many more gypsum producing countries. They mine gypsum like they would most quarry stones. Gypsum is a very common mineral and is used in a wide variety of products including cement, and of course, glass. The first visible signs of the use of gypsum dates back 5000 years ago, where they used gypsum as a building material for the pyramids of Egypt.
The beady lifeless eyes of plush toys used to be made of glass, but are now made of plastic for health reasons. When they were made of glass, they would combine sand, soda ash, limestone, dolomite, and gypsum to make the eyes.

Believe or not, the fur of stuffed animals is also made of plastic. Since we already know how plastic is produced, here's a plastic fact.
One of the many adjectives to describe the stuffed animal is huggable .The reason the stuffed animal is so huggable is no secret, it's actually in its name. It's stuffed, with a plush squishy material called stuffing. There are many different types of stuffing, but we're going to look at one common sort called synthetic fiber. Other materials commonly used are cotton, wood wool and plastic pellets.
Synthetic fiber is made out of plastic. This gives it some advantages- it's hypoallergenic and it's cheaper then other stuffing. It's made the same way the plastic eye is made, but when you form the plastic it's just a bit different.

Worldwide soda Ash production as of 2012
Theodore Roosevelt
Plastic eyes
Glass eyes
You see them everywhere in stores, at carnivals, and they're a perfect accessory for any bedroom. They're a child's best friend, comforting them when they're sick or helping to scare the monsters under the bed away. Last year, one company made over one million. It's the stuffed animal.
By:Famke Alberts
The non-renewable resources used in stuffed animals are not only used for stuffed animals, but also many other things in our lives. Whether they are providing us with shelter or medical devices, we could not survive without them. If you got rid of all the non-renewable resources, we would have poor shelter that would be insufficient to protect us. We would not have many of the electronic devices we have, and we would not have the machinery used to make them. We would not have some life saving medications or materials to get to underground sources of water, and that's only the beginning. My point is that people do not realize how many non-renewable resources we actually use and how vital they are to our everyday life. I choose a simple stuffed animal to show that even the simplest things we use need non-renewable resources, and its not just big fancy things like cars that are made out of them. In conclusion, you can see how many non-renewable resources just one stuffed animal uses. You may say "well its only a little bit" but now multiply that little by more then a million stuffed animals made a year. Suddenly it turns to a lot.

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The process of limestone mining.
Production of gypsum in the world
Glass Eyes

Step 1: Raw Materials
To make plastic, you have to combine multiple materials, called raw materials. The raw materials used are coal, natural gas, minerals, crude oil and plants. The first four materials listed are non renewable. Minerals are a solid, naturally occurring inorganic substance that come in many forms, colors and sizes and are used for a variety of reasons.
Finally you end up with your end result-plastic.
Though plastic is almost essential to everyday living we must remember Plastic is a man made material that does not break down easily. It causes a lot of pollution and affects the earth and the creatures that share the earth with us. So make sure to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle your plastic.
Coal is a non-renewable energy source and stone. It is the second most used method of energy production. The top ten producers of coal are China, USA, India, Indonesia, Australia, Russia, South Africa, Germany, Poland and Kazakhstan. There are two ways to get coal, both of which are a method of mining. They are called surface or 'opencast' mining, and underground or 'deep' mining. Coal was first discovered 3000 years ago, but the first recorded discovery was in 1679 by french explorers near the Illinois river.
You can't smell it, you can't see it and you can't taste it; it's natural gas. There are many types of natural gas, each unique in its chemical makeup but all having the same characteristics mentioned above. Natural gas is also a fossil fuel. The top producer of this Fossil Fuel is the USA (the top ten countries and the amount they produced while be shown in the next slide). Natural gas was discovered in 1000 BC in ancient Greece, when a Goat herder came across it on Mount Parnassus, but it was not until 1626 when people truly began to understand what it was, when french explorers came across it in America.
Natural Gas
Crude oil is a type of oil. The top 10 crude oil producing countries in order are Russia, Saudi Arabia, United States, Iran, China, Canada, Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Mexico and Kuwait. To the left you'll see the machine that they use to pump the oil out of the ground. Crude oil was actually discovered in 1901 and had everyone very excited when it was discovered.
Crude Oil
Step 2: Heating
The plastic is heated to a very high temperature so that it melts. To the right, you'll see an example of melted plastic.
Step 3: Molding
Using extreme pressures and molds, the plastic is formed to whatever shape is wanted. To the right is an example of a mold.
Step 4: Cooling
Now using water, you cool your mold to get a firm plastic.
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