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How do oysters make pearls? - Rob Ulrich

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TEDEd Animation

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Despite their iridescent colors and smooth shapes, pearls are actually made of the exact same material as the craggy shell that surrounds them. Pearls, urchin spines, the shells of mussels, snails and clams, even coral— all these structures are made out of the same chemical compound: calcium carbonate. So how does this single ingredient form such a vast array of materials? Rob Ulrich investigates.

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Meet The Creators

  • Educator Rob Ulrich
  • Director Ivana Bošnjak
  • Narrator Jack Cutmore-Scott
  • Art Director Ivana Bošnjak
  • Storyboard Artist Ivana Bošnjak
  • Animator Ivana Bošnjak, Thomas Johnson Volda
  • Music Salil Bhayani, cAMP Studio
  • Sound Designer Amanda P.H. Bennett, cAMP Studio
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Senior Producer Anna Bechtol
  • Associate Producer Sazia Afrin
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Editorial Producer Dan Kwartler
  • Script Editor Emma Bryce
  • Fact-Checker Charles Wallace

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