Artificial ‘power plants’ harness energy from wind and rain

From American Chemical Society 20/01/24 Fake plants are moving into the 21st century! Researchers developed literal “power plants” — tiny, leaf-shaped generators that create electricity from a blowing breeze or falling raindrops — and described them in ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering. The team tested the energy harvesters by incorporating them into artificial plants. Electrical […]

Discovery of structural regularity hidden in silica glass

From Tohoku University 30/11/23 Glass is a fundamental material used in insulation and in the screens of computers and smartphones. Despite its long history, the disordered atomic structure of glass is still not fully understood by scientists. This lack of understanding makes it difficult to control glass’s structural properties and design efficient materials. A research […]

Density matters for better battery material performance, researchers find

From Tsinghua University Press 28/11/23 Zinc — cheap, abundant, environmentally friendly — may be the answer to better batteries, but there’s a major problem: Aqueous zinc ion batteries (AZIBs) cannot match lithium-ion batteries in terms of power output. To test what electrode material composition might be able to bring AZIBs up to par, a research […]

Device ‘smells’ seawater to discover, detect novel molecules

From American Chemical Society 21/11/23 Under the ocean’s surface, marine organisms are constantly releasing invisible molecules. Some of the chemical clues reveal which creatures are nearby, while others could be used someday as medications. Now, researchers in ACS Central Science report a proof-of-concept device that “sniffs” seawater, trapping dissolved compounds for analyses. The team showed […]

Novel catalyst for green production of fine chemicals and pharmaceuticals

From National University of Singapore 01/11/23 A team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) led by Associate Professor Lu Jiong from the Department of Chemistry under the NUS Faculty of Science, together with their international collaborators, have developed a new class of catalysts – known as heterogeneous geminal atom catalysts (GACs) – […]

Mimicking ‘plant power’ through artificial photosynthesis

From American Chemical Society 18/10/23 Solar panels are an increasingly popular way to generate electricity from the sun’s energy. Although humans are still figuring out how to reliably turn that energy into fuel, plants have been doing it for eons through photosynthesis. Now, a team reporting in ACS Engineering Au has mimicked the process to […]

Can you feel the carbon in the air tonight? Carbon capture method plucks CO2 straight from the air

CO2 in the blue sky in the shape of the symbols.

From Northwestern University 06/10/23 Even as the world slowly begins to decarbonize industrial processes, achieving lower concentrations of atmospheric carbon requires technologies that remove existing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere — rather than just prevent the creation of it. Typical carbon capture catches CO2 directly from the source of a carbon-intensive process. Ambient carbon capture, […]

Crumb chronicles: The latest in bread innovations

From American Chemical Society 21/09/23 Whether light and fluffy or thin and flexible, bread holds an important place in many cultures and cuisines. And despite millennia of baking experience, scientists are still striving to improve this staple food. Below are some recent papers published in ACS journals that report insights into the quality, healthfulness, and […]