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Nature Inspires More Efficient Water Splitting

July 1, 2014 12:00 pm | by RIKEN | News | Comments

Nature's water-splitting catalysts, based on manganese, are incredibly efficient, and scientists have long been studying why this is and how we can mimic the natural system. Now, researchers have discovered a mineral-based catalyst that can efficiently split water into oxygen and hydrogen ions at neutral pH.

Strawberries Can Be Sweeter Without Adding Calories

July 1, 2014 12:00 pm | by The Conversation, Michael Schwieterman | News | Comments

Strawberries are appreciated worldwide for their oh-so-sweet flavor. Researchers have studied more than 30 varieties of strawberries and found that what makes them so sweet is not just sugar.

Silver Doesn’t Wash Away

June 30, 2014 12:00 pm | by Empa | News | Comments

The antibacterial properties of silver-coated textiles are popular in the fields of sport and medicine. Now, a team has investigated how different silver coatings behave in the washing machine, and they have discovered something important: textiles with nanocoatings release fewer nanoparticles into the washing water than those with normal coatings.

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Marine Bacteria are Natural Fire Retardants

June 30, 2014 7:00 am | by UC San Diego School of Medicine | News | Comments

Researchers have discovered a widely distributed group of marine bacteria that produce compounds nearly identical to toxic man-made fire retardants.

Pressure May Be Better than Chemistry for Making Nanostructures

June 30, 2014 7:00 am | by Sandia National Laboratories | News | Comments

You wouldn’t think that mechanical force— the simple kind used to eject unruly patrons from bars, shoe a horse or emboss the raised numerals on credit cards— could process nanoparticles more subtly than the most advanced chemistry. Yet, researchers appear to have achieved a start toward that end.

Tech Enables Quick, Easy Cortisol Testing

June 27, 2014 12:00 pm | by The Endocrine Society | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a method for measuring cortisol in saliva using a smartphone and a disposable test strip. This innovation enables anyone with a smartphone to measure their salivary cortisol level quickly, accurately and affordably.

Palladium-gold Catalyst Converts Waste to Chemicals

June 27, 2014 12:00 pm | by Rice Univ. | News | Comments

Researchers have discovered a palladium-gold nanocatalyst that is faster— about 10 times faster— at converting glycerol into high-value products than catalysts of either metal alone.

Chemists Develop Magnetically Responsive Liquid Crystals

June 27, 2014 7:00 am | by UC Riverside | News | Comments

Chemists have constructed liquid crystals with optical properties that can be instantly and reversibly controlled by an external magnetic field. The research paves the way for display applications relying on the instantaneous and contactless nature of magnetic manipulation— such as signage, posters, writing tablets and billboards.

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Newly Found Chemical Aids Drug Manufacturing

June 27, 2014 7:00 am | by Queen Mary Univ. of London | News | Comments

Chemists have discovered a new chemical to aid drug manufacturing processes, making it more environmentally friendly and easier to scale up for industry.

Samples from 1950s Finally Analyzed

June 27, 2014 7:00 am | by Georgia Institute of Technology | News | Comments

Stanley Miller, the chemist whose landmark experiment showed how some of the molecules of life could have formed on a young Earth, left behind boxes of experimental samples that he never analyzed. The first-ever analysis of some of Miller’s old samples has revealed another way that important molecules could have formed on early Earth.

Particle-sorting Method Breaks Speed Records

June 27, 2014 7:00 am | by MIT, David Chandler | News | Comments

A new way of processing biological fluid samples could make such detections possible in real time. The technique could allow cells to be sorted while hurtling through the channels of a microfluidic device at speeds faster than those of race cars— at least 100 times faster than any existing system.

Research Yields Result for Organic Reactions in Water

June 27, 2014 7:00 am | by McGill Univ. | News | Comments

Green-chemistry researchers have discovered a way to use water as a solvent in one of the reactions most widely used to synthesize chemical products and pharmaceuticals.

Scientists Create Mythical God's Capsules

June 27, 2014 7:00 am | by Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences | News | Comments

Theoreticians have long been able to design models of Janus capsules— miniature, hollow structures, in different fragments composed of different micro- and nanoparticles. But the challenge was to produce them. Now, researchers have found that Janus capsules can be produced easily and at low cost.

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Battery is Cheap, Rechargeable, Organic

June 26, 2014 12:00 pm | by Univ. of Southern California | News | Comments

Scientists have developed a water-based organic battery that is long lasting and built from cheap, eco-friendly components. The new battery, which uses no metals or toxic materials, is intended for use in power plants, where it can make the energy grid more resilient and efficient.

Neanderthals Ate Their Veggies

June 26, 2014 12:00 pm | by MIT, Jennifer Chu | News | Comments

The popular conception of the Neanderthal as a club-wielding carnivore is, well, rather primitive, according to a new study. Instead, our prehistoric cousin may have had a more varied diet that, while heavy on meat, also included plant tissues, such as tubers and nuts.

Tofu Ingredient Could Aid Solar Panels

June 26, 2014 12:00 pm | by Univ. of Liverpool | News | Comments

A chemical used to make tofu and bath salts could also replace a highly toxic and expensive substance used to make solar cells. Safe and at a fraction of the cost– $0.001 per gram compared to $0.3– it has also been shown to be as effective as the expensive and toxic alternative.

Food Oder is Based on Only a Few Volatile Compounds

June 26, 2014 7:00 am | by Angewandte Chemie | News | Comments

The flavor of a food is experienced through our sense of smell rather than with our tongue. However, of the large number of volatile compounds in foods, only about 230 are involved in the scent.

USDA OKs Pig Virus Vaccine

June 26, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

The federal government has given conditional approval to the first vaccine licensed to fight a deadly pig virus.

Yoplait Light to Change Sweeteners

June 26, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press, Candice Choi | News | Comments

The maker of Yoplait Light is hoping a sweetener change can help bring back customers. General Mills Inc. says it plans to remove aspartame from its popular reduced-calorie yogurt in favor of another artificial sweetener, sucralose.

Animal Testing Inaccurate for Some Chemicals

June 25, 2014 12:00 pm | by Univ. of Massachusetts Amherst | News | Comments

Challenging risk assessment methods used for decades by toxicologists, a new review of the literature suggests that oral gavage, the most widely accepted method of dosing lab animals to test chemical toxicity, does not accurately mimic how humans are exposed to chemicals in everyday life.

FDA Outlines Policy for Nanotechnology

June 25, 2014 12:00 pm | by Associated Press, Matthew Perrone | News | Comments

The FDA issued final recommendations this week for companies using nanotechnology in products regulated by the government, which can include medical therapies, food and cosmetics.

Sky's the Limit: Research Aims for Wooden Skyscrapers

June 25, 2014 12:00 pm | by Univ. of Cambridge | News | Comments

Wood is one of the oldest building materials but its use is limited by its properties. With new funding, researchers aim to stretch these properties to an unprecedented degree, creating the means to build a skyscraper out of plants.

Diet Sweetener Can Be Made from Straw

June 25, 2014 7:00 am | by Vienna Univ. of Technology | News | Comments

The calorie-free sweetener erythritol is widely used in Asia and is gaining popularity in Europe and America. Now, a new cheap method has been developed to produce erythritol from straw with the help of mold fungi.

Scientists Work to Diminish, Mask Bitter Tastes in Foods

June 25, 2014 7:00 am | by Institute of Food Technologists | News | Comments

Food scientists are working to block, mask and/or distract from bitter tastes in foods to make them more palatable to consumers, many of whom are genetically sensitive to bitter tastes.

Structure Improves Cobalt Oxide’s Chemical Activity

June 24, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Cambridge | News | Comments

A new video shows individual particles of cobalt oxide that have been engineered to form a superlattice, or 3-D mesh structure, to improve their chemical activity.

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