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Students learn chemistry via beer-testing lab

(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A college professor is using beer to inspire chemistry students.

University of Southern Maine professor Lucille Benedict told the Portland Press Herald it can be challenging to keep students engaged in chemistry, so she started using beer as a testing medium.

Benedict oversees the school's new Quality Assurance/Quality Control and Research Laboratory.

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In a partnership with the Maine Brewers Guild, the lab will provide testing and training for breweries and brewmasters.

Students say the beer-testing lab allows them to use science to solve real-world problems. Students will focus on how a flawed brewing process can contaminate or ruin beer.

Classes for brewers begin in the fall.

Brewers can also send samples to the lab for testing. The lab charges $25 for basic testing.