Science-Technology

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How chemistry can improve bargain hot cocoa (video)

WASHINGTON— Nobody really likes bargain hot cocoa powder. It’s lumpy, it’s too thin and it leaves scummy residue behind. But premium hot cocoa mix is too expensive for some imbibers. Fortunately, Reactions is here with some easy kitchen chemistry hacks to turn cheap cocoa mix into a satisfying cold weather pick-me-up:



By American Chemical Society - Wednesday, February 21, 2018 - Full Story

On the Fly

Are you waiting for delivery – of your EV, electric vehicle, SPACEX
Sorry to have to disappoint you (again). As the main-stream media reported everywhere, the top Roadster model, modified, and complete with a mannequin behind the wheel together with its miniature relative, was just sent into a circum-solar trajectory – never to be seen again by potential eager buyers on this planet. But it is really fast, travelling at a speed of 6,864 miles/hour!



By Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser - Saturday, February 17, 2018 - Full Story

Thermal blankets melt snow quickly

Thermal blankets melt snow quickly
Removing snow piled high in parking lots and along roadsides could soon be a far less tedious task. In a study appearing in ACS’ journal Langmuir, scientists report that they have tested sunlight-absorbing thermal blankets capable of melting snow three times faster than it would on its own. They say the blankets could slash snow-removal costs and reduce the risk of environmental contamination caused by soot and other products used to melt the white stuff.

By American Chemical Society - Friday, February 16, 2018 - Full Story

Replay software suite lets you replay, record, re-use audio and video from the Web

Applian Technology's Replay Capture Suite
What happens when you watch a particularly hot - or controversial - video on YouTube and just have to have it for yourself, forever? Or what happens when you want to listen to your favourite streaming talk show but have to be away from the computer while it’s on?

That’s the rationale behind Applian Technology’s Replay Capture Suite, a series of interacting apps that will do all that and much more. It’s a pretty impressive set of tools and it appears to work well.

The $79USD suite, individual modules of which are also available separately, includes tools for capturing video or music from any website, as well as conversion and editing tools you can use to file the serial numbers off your purloined programming. And that still isn’t all the suite can let you do!

By Jim Bray - Sunday, February 11, 2018 - Full Story

Chemtrails vs. contrails (video)

WASHINGTON, Feb. 6, 2018 — It’s easy to look at the white trail behind a jet aircraft and imagine all manner of chemicals raining down from above. However, airplane contrails are simply what happens when jet engines burn fuel. In this video, Reactions explains the straightforward chemistry of contrails: https://youtu.be/ZonPvpgcBc0.



By American Chemical Society - Tuesday, February 6, 2018 - Full Story

Getting ready for the summer sun with ‘green’ sunscreens

Getting ready for the summer sun with 'green' sunscreens
Although it’s been a tough winter for many people in the U.S., summer is coming. And that means backyard barbeques, fun on the beach and, of course, slathering on sunscreen. But one particular environmentally friendly sunscreen ingredient has been difficult to obtain — that ingredient, shinorine, could only be harvested from nature. Scientists now report in ACS Synthetic Biology the laboratory production of that compound.

By American Chemical Society - Monday, February 5, 2018 - Full Story

Skin-inspired coating that’s as hard as teeth and can heal itself

Skin-inspired coating that's as hard as teeth and can heal itself
Self-healing smart coatings could someday make scratches on cell phones a thing of the past. But researchers often have to compromise between strength and the ability to self-repair when developing these materials. Now, one group reports in ACS Nano the development of a smart coating that is as hard as tooth enamel on the outside but can heal itself like skin can.

By American Chemical Society - Monday, February 5, 2018 - Full Story

The science behind the fizz: How the bubbles make the beverage

The science behind the fizz: How the bubbles make the beverage
From popping a bottle of champagne for a celebration to cracking open a soda while watching the Super Bowl, everyone is familiar with fizz. But little is known about the chemistry behind the bubbles. Now, one group sheds some light on how carbonation can affect the creaminess and smoothness of beverages, as reported in ACS’ The Journal of Physical Chemistry B.

By American Chemical Society - Monday, February 5, 2018 - Full Story

Whiskey’s Complex Chemistry

Whiskey's Complex Chemistry
Whiskeys contain hundreds of compounds, including fatty acids, esters, alcohols and aldehydes, in a wide range of concentrations. The most important flavors in a whiskey come from the raw materials, the distillation process, and the maturation. 1

Chemist Thomas Collins and his team have identified about 4,000 unique compounds in 70 American whiskeys. 2

Whiskeys come in different variants (scotch, bourbon, rye, and so on) but are all essentially produced with just three simple ingredients; water, grain, and yeast. As part of the process, distillate is transferred into charred oak barrels for aging, where flavors such as vanilla, coconut and butterscotch are extracted into the whiskey. 3

By Jack Dini - Sunday, February 4, 2018 - Full Story

Algorithm identifies vulnerable people during natural disasters

Algorithm identifies vulnerable people during natural disasters
A new algorithm developed at the University of Waterloo will help first responders and home care providers better help the elderly during natural disasters.

According to the World Health Organization, older adults who live at home face disproportionally high fatality rates during natural disasters as evidenced by Hurricane Katrina where 71 per cent of the deaths resulting from that disaster involved people over 60 years of age.

By Waterloo - Saturday, February 3, 2018 - Full Story

New technique can capture images of ultrafast energy-time entangled photon pairs

Jean-Phillipe MacLean works in his lab
Scientists at the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo have captured the first images of ultrafast photons that are energy-time entangled.

The new technique will have direct applications for quantum cryptography and communication protocols, including the possibility for establishing highly secure communication channels over long distances.

By Waterloo - Thursday, February 1, 2018 - Full Story

Gallium and the history of the periodic table (video)

WASHINGTON — Some chemists might see the periodic table of elements as a holy testament to the power of science. However, when it first debuted, it was a different kind of holey, and its journey to classroom walls everywhere had a whole lot of bumps. Watch as Reactions digs into the history of the periodic table with the help of a vanishing spoon, a man named after a rooster, and a bearded Russian



By American Chemical Society - Tuesday, January 30, 2018 - Full Story

Lab-grown horns and tusks could stop poaching — or not

Lab-grown horns and tusks could stop poaching — or not
Scientists are making mimics of rhino horns and elephant tusks, hoping to drive down the prices of these items on the black market and discourage poaching. But many conservation groups argue that it could have the opposite effect, according to an article in Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the weekly newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society.

By American Chemical Society - Thursday, January 25, 2018 - Full Story

Pearly material for bendable heating elements (video)

The iridescent shimmer of a string of pearls may one day be more than pretty adornment. Scientists now report in ACS Applied Nano Materials a hybrid material consisting of imitation pearl combined with silver nanowires that works as a heater, with the added benefit of high flexibility, suggesting a potential role in wearable devices.

By American Chemical Society - Thursday, January 25, 2018 - Full Story

A step toward ridding register receipts of BPA


Although the U.S and other countries have banned or restricted the use of bisphenol A (BPA) because of environmental and health concerns, it is still used in thermally printed receipts and labels. Now researchers report in a study in the ACS journal Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research that they have developed potentially safer polymers that could replace BPA for printed papers.

By American Chemical Society - Friday, January 19, 2018 - Full Story

Scaling to new heights with gecko-inspired adhesive

Scaling to new heights with gecko-inspired adhesive
Some animals, such as geckos, can easily climb up walls and across ceilings. But currently, no material exists that allows everyday people to scale walls or transverse ceilings as effortlessly. Now, scientists report in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces a dry adhesive that could someday make it easier to defy gravity.

By American Chemical Society - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 - Full Story

Watch: How to spot fake metals with acids

WASHINGTON — Acids are reactive, with even weak acids like vinegar interacting with other materials to wow students. But strong acids can really put on a show. For example, aqua regia, or royal water, is a mixture of two strong acids—hydrochloric and nitric acids – that can dissolve gold, a noble metal. This reaction can be put to use.

Watch as Reactions employs some acid know-how to explain a chemistry detective story to sort real gold from its imposters:

By American Chemical Society - Thursday, December 21, 2017 - Full Story

Creating surfaces that repel water and control its flow (video)

Creating surfaces that repel water and control its flow
To prevent water and ice from making our shoes soggy, frosting our car windows and weighing down power lines with icicles, scientists have been exploring new coatings that can repel water. Now one team has developed a way to direct where the water goes when it’s pushed away. Their report appears in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces.

By American Chemical Society - Thursday, December 21, 2017 - Full Story

Bringing ‘Avatar’-like glowing plants to the real world

Nanobionic-Light Emitting Plant
The 2009 film “Avatar” created a lush imaginary world, illuminated by magical, glowing plants. Now researchers are starting to bring this spellbinding vision to life to help reduce our dependence on artificial lighting. They report in ACS’ journal Nano Letters a way to infuse plants with the luminescence of fireflies.

By American Chemical Society - Thursday, December 21, 2017 - Full Story

Meet Roku’s new entry level unit - and a high tech backpack that can charge your phone

Roku Express, Lifepack Solar Powered & Anti-Theft Backpack
Cord cutter wannabes,  also known as folks who want to pull the plug on conventional television delivery systems such as cable and satellite, have a new low cost reason to make that move thanks to Roku’s new entry level Express.

This $40 CAD unit is the latest in the Roku line of streaming devices that all offer similar programming but with different capabilities - from "entry level" HD to 4K with HDR.

And if you’re using your cord cutting experience as a way to get out into the supposedly great outdoors, Lifepack has created a backpack that not only carries your stuff, it helps keep your tunes close and charges your electronics at the same time.

But let’s talk about the Roku first, because I need to screw up my courage to actually go outdoors to use the Lifepack before I can write about  it.

By Jim Bray - Thursday, December 21, 2017 - Full Story