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Friday, 28 October 2016

Dogs Have Ability to Figure Out Diabetes in Humans | Isoprene Chemical Helps Them

Do you ever think, can a sniffer dog can able to spot the patients with specific disease?
Once you read this question, as an immidiate reaction in your mind one question will araise within no matter of time and you will be start thinking.... 
How it is possible?
How it can able to spot?
All this ability came to sniffer dogs by a chemical found in your breath, that could provide a indication to warn of dangerously low blood sugar levels in patients.
What is meant by low blood sugar levels?
The glucose levels less than 70 mg/dl is considered to be as low blood sugar or hypoglycemia. Usually low blood sugar can happen in people with diabetes who take medicines every now and then, for a small things which indirectly effect on insulin hormone levels in the body. Other reasons for low blood sugar or hypoglycemia conditions are skipping meals, eating less than normal (this condition you will see in case of some people who are thinking to start dieting), or exercising more than usual timings. All of these can lead to low blood sugar for these individuals.
A team from the University of Cambridge has came with a new idea.! The scientists had conducted a test in volunteers, by lowering blood sugar levels under controlled conditions.
The researchers found that levels of the one particular chemical rose significantly at hypoglycaemia.
The scientists believe that dogs may be sensitive to the presence of this chemicals, and suggested that it may be possible to develop new detectors that can identify elevated levels of this chemical in patients at risk.
This chemical is nothing but Isoprene.
Isoprene (2-methyl-1,3-butadiene) is a colourless, volatile liquid hydrocarbon obtained in processing petroleum or coal tar and used as a chemical raw material. Isoprene is produced and emitted by many species of trees and plants. Plants and trees will emit isoprene, to get rid of internal heat stress. This action of isoprene much similar to our regular antioxidants in foods. 
Isoprene is used in the manufacture of rubbers and plastics, such as medical equipment, toys, tires, paint resins, inner tubes, elastic films and threads for golf balls, shoe soles and some rubber adhesives. It is also used in the manufacture of some cosmetics.
Isoprene is also used in can sealants for food containers, corks used in bottles and coatings for plastic packaging; however, good manufacturing practices (GMP) exist where there is any contact with food.
Now at this situation one question will comes to your mind. How only dogs can spot the diabetes why not humans
For this scientists had given an explanation
“Humans aren’t sensitive to the presence of isoprene, but sniffer dogs with their incredible sense of smell, find it easy to identify and can be trained to alert their owners about dangerously low blood sugar levels. It provides a ‘scent’ that could help us develop new tests for detecting hypoglycaemia and reducing the risk of potentially life-threatening complications for patients living with diabetes.”
Once should agree, this is a very interesting capability of sniffer dog!

BASF details about the explosion in Ludwigshafen, Germany

LUDWIGSHAFEN, GERMANY: BASF SE gives a detailed information on the explosion that happened on 17 October at the North Harbor in Ludwigshafen, Germany.
“We mourn for the death of 3 people in the fire. Our deepest compassion is with their families and friends. Many people were injured, we hope that they are on the way to recovery,” said Dr Kurt Bock, chairman of the board of executive directors of BASF.
As of now the following data is known about the mishap:
Casualties: Two workers of the BASF fire department and a representative of a tanker which anchored in the harbour died in the mischance. Eight people were extremely injured; 22 others were faintly injured. One of the seriously injured has been discharged from the hospital.
The course of events: The event course is yet being inspected by the public prosecutor’s office of Frankenthal. The site of the incident is still closed. A couple of days prior to the incident, a specific pipeline construction company began to conduct assembly works on a collapsed and secured ethylene pipeline route. The aim of the assembly works was to exchange several parts of the pipeline as a preventive maintenance measure.
A fire started at 11:30 am near the assembly works. Forces of the BASF fire department, emergency service and environment protection arrived a few minutes later at the incident area and immediately started emergency operations. During the operations, an explosion, most likely at the ethylene pipeline, occurred. The explosion led to subsequent fires at various points along the pipeline trench, damaging further product and supply pipelines. Additional emergency forces immediately began rescue measures as well as extinguishing and cooling measures.
The fire brigade performed controlled burning of the leaking  products in accordance with the fire-fighting concept for compressed gases. The pipelines that burned included those used for ethylene, propylene, a butylene product mix (raffinate), pyrolysis gasoline and ethylhexanol. And around 9.30 pm the fire was extinguished.
Ecological effect: Following the begin of the fire, thorough air estimations were conducted at the site gate and in areas surrounding the site in Ludwigshafen and Mannheim. This showed no high levels of hazardous substances, as confirmed by the environmental ministry of Rheinland-Pfalz and the city of Ludwigshafen.
In addition, measurements conducted by the cities of Speyer, Worms and Frankenthal showed no elevated levels. Raised levels measured locally were restricted to the immediate area of the incident. Water samples also showed no high levels of hazardous substances. A contamination of the ground at the incident site is likely.
Safety at the site: Safety is the first priority on the Ludwigshafen site as well as globally at BASF. Environmental protection, health and safety are important components of the corporate values and objectives. BASF acts responsibly and always gives priority to safety when operating existing plants or planning and constructing new plants.
Confirmed by inspections conducted by various relevant authorities as well as internal audits, the plants on-site are in consistent condition. The inspections resulted in no technical or organizational deficiencies.
Financial impacts: Due to the fire, the raw material supply of the steamcrackers was stopped; also other Verbund plants, especially in the ethylene and propylene value chains, the manufacture was decreased. Some of the plants were able to continue producing using existing raw material inventory. Meanwhile, several plants, like the steamcrackers, started production. In the coming weeks, the remaining plants will be slowly resumed.
The situation of the Logistic: The North Harbor is presently not operational. The riverside harbour, the harbour on Friesenheim Island and the tank farms are functional. Fluids can be handled at the harbour on Friesenheim Island. At the river harbour, fluids and solids can be handled.
However, the registration for trucks will be taken care via the parking space of the sewage plant of BASF for the next few days. The intermodal transport terminal is still closed. The facility is not damaged and preparations are being done to reopen it in the upcoming week. The railway system was also not damaged by the incident. The train service on-site is available. 
The company is estimating several measures to minimise the effect on customer deliveries and informing them about the current availability of products.

AkzoNobel presents 109,617 carbon credits to Italian shipping company

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS: AkzoNobel’s marine coatings business presents a total number of 109,617 carbon credits to a private shipping company, Grimaldi Group in Italy. This was awarded during a programme that rewards ship owners for converting to sustainable hull coatings.
Carbon credit is a tradable certificate or a permit which allows a country or organization to emit a certain amount of carbon dioxide (one tonne) or another greenhouse gas, and which can be traded if the full allowance is not used.
Each carbon credit represents the avoidance of one tonne of CO2 being emitted to the atmosphere. The credits can either be sold on the carbon markets – where they are valued in excess of $500,000 based on current prices – or can be used to offset emissions from other parts of an organization. 
AkzoNobel’s carbon credits methodology which was developed over a number of years in conjunction with The Gold Standard Foundation and Fremco Group. Launched in 2014, it is the first initiative of its kind that financially rewards ship owners for investing in sustainable hull coatings that improve operational efficiencies and reduce emissions.
Fourteen Grimaldi Group vessels were validated and verified within the carbon credits program. Each vessel was converted from a biocidal antifouling system to a premium, biocide-free advanced hull coating technology from International’s Intersleek range of coatings, which are proven to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions on average by 9 percent.
“The shipping industry is under significant pressure to improve operational and environmental efficiencies and AkzoNobel’s carbon credits program is an initiative that can play a significant role in helping achieve this,” said Paul Kyprianou, external relations manager, Grimaldi Group.
“Our carbon credits program proves that by making the investment, ship owners can benefit from both increased efficiency gains and lower fuel costs. They also reap the additional financial benefits of the credits, based on the amount of carbon that is reduced. Grimaldi has shown that through championing sustainable shipping, it is creating a more competitive, efficient and successful company that will continue to pioneer the industry for many generations to come,” added Andre Veneman, director of sustainability, AkzoNobel.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

New antioxidants, antiozonants from Lanxess protects rubber from ageing

COLOGNE, GERMANY: Lanxess’s business unit advanced industrial intermediates (AII) keeping in mind that the rubber articles in sealing, damping, cushioning and insulating materials requires protection against ageing, it has introduced a number of staining and non-staining antioxidants/antiozonants for the rubber industry.
Depending on their chemical structure, antioxidants and antiozonants respond to one or more ageing processes. Each antioxidant/antiozonant has a typical efficiency spectrum with regard to the various types of ageing.
With its Vulkanox, Vulkacit, Vulkazon and Renacit brands, Lanxess is one of the few producers to offer the perfect additive for every step in the rubber manufacturing process from a single source.
Vibrant to individuals – injurious to rubber
Ageing processes, which are primarily caused by the effects of oxygen, ozone and heat, change the properties of vulcanizates and can lead to their partial or total destruction over time. The resistance of rubber items mostly depends on the elastomer on which the compound is based and on the chemicals added to retard the destructive process.
NR (natural rubber), which is used to make items such as truck tires, absorbs far more oxygen than SBR (styrene-butadiene rubber), NBR (nitrile-butadiene rubber) or IIR (butyl rubber) over the same period. Unsaturated groups (such as carbon-carbon double bond content) in the rubber molecule react with oxygen and ozone. This can result in toughening, embrittlement, crazing effects and fatigue. Thus, rubber article is finally demolished.
Lanxess’s Vulkanox antioxidants and Vulkazon antiozonants significantly increase the lifespan of elastomers. AII has developed a highly effective peptizing agent in the form of wax granules called Renacit 11/WG that makes natural rubber easier to process by breaking down the molecular chains.
"We give worldwide support to the rubber processing industry with a far-reaching determination of items and demonstrated technical expertise. With many years of experience, we have the vital know-how to prescribe proper elastic chemicals for our clients' preparing operations," said Dr Jens-Hendrik Fischer, head of AII’s antioxidants and accelerators (AXX) unit.
“Lanxess offers these items as granules for simple, sheltered and low-tidy metering and incorporation. The important thing, though, is that they can be combined to further enhance a particular additive’s specific efficacy spectrum,” added Melanie Wiedemeier-Jarad, technical service manager in the AXX unit.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Tackling Major Oil Spills with Sponge

In an interview Dr Justin Weibel, a research assistant professor; Dr Xuemei Chen, a post-doctoral research associate and Dr Suresh Garimella, a Goodson distinguished professor, all at the school of mechanical engineering and Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University, West Lafayette, US with Chemical Today magazine talks about the simple solution they found for the hazardous problem (oil spills) which is endangering the world. 
Explain the dynamics of your research.
Nature is an important source of inspiration for developing advanced materials. One area of our group’s current research focuses on bio-inspired micro/nano-structured superhydrophobic surfaces that enable fundamental investigation of interfacial wetting phenomenon, as well as the development of new material technologies that exploit these characteristics. These surfaces can be applied in drop wise condensation, water harvesting/reclamation, anti-icing, anti-fouling, biomedical and other various applications. We have most recently used these techniques to develop a functionalized sponge material that can collect large amounts of oil while preventing any water from being absorbed; the material has great potential for cleanup of oil spills and oil-water separation.
Elaborate on the advanced materials and technology that gave shape to your research.
Only two materials comprise this new technology, namely, melamine sponge and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). The melamine sponge acts as a skeleton material with a highly porous structure (over 99 percent open volume) onto which the PDMS is coated. The intrinsic hydrophobic nature of the PDMS, in combination with the microporous structure of the melamine sponge, renders the material super hydrophobic (robustly repels water). During the one-step solution-immersion fabrication process, hexane is used as a solvent to dissolve PDMS, but is not retained in the final material.
In what ways is this tech­nology different from other similar research work?
We present a simple solution-immersion method for the fabrication of superhydrophobic and superoleophilic PDMS-functionalized melamine sponges. In order to functionalize the sponge, it is immersed in a homogeneous solution of PDMS and hexane. The sponge is removed from the solution, wrung out, and dried in an oven at an elevated temperature. This process leaves a thin layer of PDMS coated onto the underlying sponge microstructure. Previous functionalized polymer sponges (for oil-water separation) typically include both a nanostructured hydrophobic coating material and a separate adhesion medium for binding, which require more complex fabrication processes and limits their reusability. In the new technology that we developed, the melamine sponge does not need any secondary treatment, and only a single low-cost material (PDMS) is used as the coating. In combination with the simple fabrication process, these features make the final oil-water separation product cost-effective and scalable.
How will your research help in case of environment and industrial chemical leaks?
The as-fabricated functionalized sponge material exhibits robust superhydrophobic and superoleophilic properties, meaning it can strongly repel water while easily absorbing oils. The commercially available raw materials and scalable fabrication process ensure that this material can be adopted for the cleanup of oil spills and industrial chemical leaks of low-surface-tension contaminants that are immiscible with water.
What is the economic viability of this technology on a larger commercial scale?
The raw materials used in the technology are quite common: melamine sponges are found as household cleaning sponges; PDMS is a polymer commonly used for the fabrication of microfluidic devices, and hexane is used in a variety of industrial cleaning and degreasing processes. These materials can be readily obtained from large chemical suppliers. Also, to fabricate the oil-absorbent product, only a small amount of PMDS coating material is needed. Due to the facile fabrication approach and low-cost materials, we are certain that the material can be readily fabricated on a large scale.
Give us a sense of the longevity and re-usability properties of the material?
We have demonstrated in the laboratory that the sponges retain their properties after absorbing in oil and squeezing out oil tens of times for a single sample, without any degradation in performance. We have no reason to suspect that the coating would degrade over much more such operations. The coating is chemically stable and would not require retreatment, but can be cleaned to remove any residual oils left in the sponge.
What are the challenges you faced while carrying out your research?
Due to the excellent selectivity for absorption of oil by the sponge (and not water), during our oil-water separation experiments, it was quite difficult to quantify the infinitesimal amount of water that unintentionally captured along with the oil. Using a coulometer (a device that measures the water content in oils), the purity of the collected oils was over 99.98 percent, a near-perfect separation efficiency within the measurement accuracy.
Are you in talks with the in­dustry for commercialising your technology?
We have applied for a patent on this material technology, which is receiving much attention and interest from potential industrial users. We are excited to see this product adopted for eventual use in large-scale systems.

Revolutionizing Ink Technology for Electronics

In an interview Roy BjorlinDirector, global commercial & strategic initiatives, electronics materials, Sun Chemical with Chemical Today magazine talks about the various aspects that are driving the growth of the electronic chemicals business.
By Shivani Mody
Discuss about the company’s electronic chemical business.
Sun Chemical advanced materials delivers a wide range of materials for printed electronics and printed circuit boards. Our printed electronics technologies are optimised for advanced photovoltaics, including HIT, SE, and IBC processes. Other applications include printed antennae, membrane touch switches, sensors, lighting and displays.
Explain the trends that are driving the electronic chemical industry.
Today, trends remain focused on achieving finer lines and higher conductivity metallization. However, new applications are emerging in smart packaging and we are increasingly supporting our brand and converter partners in the packaging market.
Smart packaging is a major focus around the world. Asian markets, especially China, have also made large investments in advanced solar cell process and designs.
For our advanced materials division, there is significant growth potential in smart labels, printed sensors, printed antennae and 3D printing.
What is the latest development in the electronic inks industry?
Nanosilver ink is considered a very strategic material and is an innovative part of advanced materials’ technology portfolio. In the coming years, nanosilver ink will become very popular as it enables 3D designs for printed antennae.
What is the advancement in copper and nano-inks for electronic segment?
The advanced materials division has developed and continues to develop both nanosilver and copper inks. In the market, copper inks remain in the early development stages whereas nanosilver is a new yet trusted technology.
Give us an idea about T+Sun’s latest innovations.
By combining the capabilities of T+Ink and Sun Chemical, T+Sun has made significant progress in developing smart packaging solutions through the use of Touch Code. We have also begun promoting a full package of in-mould electronic inks, including graphic inks as well as conductive, dielectric and resistor inks.
Tell us about your focus on R&D and innovation.
We continue to match R&D capabilities with our target markets in order to provide our customers with tailor-made solutions. In particular, advanced materials ensure that customers can achieve highly advanced designs in a wide range of electronics.

Ceramics Industry is Showing Healthy Growth Across Segments

In an interview Abdallah MassaadChief Executive Officer of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Ceramics with Chemical Today magazine talks at length about the ways in which fashion conscious global consumers are forcing the ceramics industry to think out of the box. From emulating nature on the walls to glowing tiles on the floor, home decor is completely a new ball game with the new range of tiles and ceramics available today.
By Shivani Mody
Tell us about the journey of RAK ceramics.
RAK Ceramics was established in 1989 by H H Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah and UAE’s Supreme Council Member. Now under the vision and leadership of Sheikh Khalid Bin Saud Al Qasimi, Chairman of RAK Ceramics, the company has enjoyed rapid growth becoming an industry leader in just 20 years.
One of the largest ceramics’ manufacturers in the world, RAK Ceramics specialises in high-quality ceramic and gres-porcelain wall and floor tiles, sanitary ware, tableware and faucets. From a single factory in Ras Al Khaimah, the company has grown to become a global player and has 16 plants including 10 tiles, two sanitary ware and one tableware plants in the UAE and one plant each in India, Bangladesh and Iran. The company has a global annual production capacity of 110 million square metres of tiles, 5 million pieces of sanitary ware, 24 million pieces of tableware and 600,000 pieces of faucets.
What is the future growth and strategy plans of RAK Ceramics?
RAK Ceramics’ vision is to be the leading ceramics lifestyle solutions provider in the world and in 2014 a ‘Value Creation Plan’ was implemented to support this vision. The value creation plan is aimed at streamlining the business by investing in core businesses and exiting from non-core businesses.
Continued implementation of the value creation plan is the immediate focus for 2016, with a strong emphasis on revenue growth,
capacity expansions and ongoing acquisitions in core businesses. In 2015 the company acquired 100 percent of its subsidiaries in the UK, Germany, Iran and India. These acquisitions will strengthen the RAK Ceramics brand and give the company greater control over its global operations.
What are the recent trends in the ceramics market?
Textures that emulate natural materials are very popular such as our collections that resemble natural stone, marble or wood.
We are also seeing increased demand for extra-large slabs, which make spaces appear bigger and brighter. RAK Ceramics was the first manufacturer in the GCC to introduce Maximus Mega Slab. This giant sized 135x305 cm slab can be used on walls, floors and facades or to create kitchen or bathroom surfaces. The large size of Maximus reduces the need for grout lines giving a seamless look to spaces. Maximus Mega Slab is RAK Ceramics’ most versatile product yet and is opening up new markets for us, replacing traditional granite and stone.
Brief us about the key market drivers for the ceramics industry
The building industry and in particular, new project development is one of the key drivers for growth in the sector. But we are also seeing an increase in refurbishments. Ceramics is now a design-orientated, fashion-led product, with trends changing constantly and fashion conscious customers no longer want to wait 5-10 years to replace their tiles or sanitary ware, but change them more regularly to keep their interiors and exteriors looking fresh and modern.
It is important for ceramics’ manufacturers to follow closely what is in fashion, which styles are on trend and ensure we meet market demands. Ceramics are now used creatively both indoors and outdoors in many different ways, not just on walls or floors. People are using ceramics outdoors to create facades, for cladding, and decoration and indoors to replace counter tops such as kitchen and bathroom surfaces. It is a very exciting time for the industry.
Shed some light on the various sectors, which are seeing growth for ceramics?
The ceramics industry is showing healthy growth across segments, thanks to increased efficiency in the manufacturing process and renewable energy efficiency. Forecasts from WinterGreen Research indicate that ceramics markets valued at $296.2 billion in 2014 will reach $502.8 billion by 2020. As a multinational manufacturer with distributors across the globe, RAK Ceramics is encouraged by these forecasts particularly in our high-value markets of the Gulf region, Europe and Asia. One of the fastest growing segments in the industry is tiles. This is especially true in the Gulf region, where the UAE and Saudi Arabia are its largest markets globally.
The Gulf market will continue to be a high-growth market for RAK Ceramics for the foreseeable future. According to market analysts Frost & Sullivan, the tiles market in the GCC is predicted to grow at a robust 12 percent year-on-year from 2013 to 2018.
The tiling segment is also performing well around the world, and is expected to reach a value of $125.32 billion by 2020 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.5 percent, according to Frost & Sullivan. In emerging markets such as India and Bangladesh, demand for tiles is growing due to government-led spending on infrastructure improvements and RAK Ceramics is well positioned to benefit from this expected growth.
RAK Porcelain is also performing very strongly and the tableware industry is seeing steady growth particularly in Asia-Pacific, where Global Industry Analysts Inc saw a CAGR of 5.4 percent between 2007 and 2013.
What is RAK’s focus on innovation in ceramics products?
Technology and innovation are at the heart of RAK Ceramics’ philosophy and the company has continuously led the way in terms of product innovation. Its manufacturing plants are equipped with state-of-the-art technology and it is this continued investment into the latest technologies which ensures the company remains at the cutting edge of ceramics’ production globally.
RAK Ceramics is the first manufacturer in the GCC to introduce Continua+ technology enabling it to manufacture large format porcelain surfaces such as Maximus Mega Slab. Other innovations include Luminous, a range of tiles that glow in the dark – a technology which unlocks the potential for a wide range of applications; and Antimicrobial, a hygienic
easy to clean tile especially suited for use in schools, healthcare facilities or the hospitality industry.
What is the current advancement in Nanocomposite materials for ceramics?
The development of nanocomposite material is very exciting for the ceramics business, because it allows manufacturers to bring products to scale.
There are many advantages to nanocomposite organic and inorganic materials including improved mechanical properties, such as strength, modulus and dimensional stability. It is also less permeable to gases, water and hydrocarbons. It is stable under high heat, and heat-distorting temperatures, is more flame retardant, has higher chemical resistance and it has higher electrical conductivity.
Ceramic nanocomposite material is a fast-growing area of research and is currently undergoing trials. We hope that in the near future, nanocomposite materials will be able to reduce the wear and tear of our kilns and with the ability to withstand high temperatures and pressure, they will offer customers improved lifespan for their ceramics.
With the growing importance of 3D printing technology, how is RAK incorporating this technology in ceramics business?
RAK Ceramics prints 3D designs onto the surface of our tiles. Our manufacturing plants are equipped with the latest state-of-the-art HDD (High Definition Digital) and DDD (Digital Define Definition) printers which enable us to print highly intricate and detailed 3D designs directly onto flat, curved or textured surfaces, some great examples of this include collections such as our Wood Art or Stone Art where the technology can be used to produce tiles which look and feel like real wood or stone.
What are the recent trends in the ceramic raw materials?
RAK Ceramics mostly uses traditional materials such as kaolin clay, quartz and feldspar and our business was built on the limestone, clay and sand of Ras Al Khaimah. For our manufacturing processes, 80 percent of raw materials are now imported from around the world from countries including: Italy, Spain, Germany, Thailand, Malaysia, China and India.
Our suppliers in the Gulf region, Europe, and Asia often maintain their own mines and processing plants or manufacturing materials, which allows us to source raw materials, while taking into account product quality, pricing and timely delivery. Our research and development team is always looking at new ways to improve our products, including the use of new raw materials or technology in our manufacturing processes.
What are the challenges faced in the ceramics market pertaining to chemical raw material supply?
The balance of trade deficit drives freight prices higher, which increases the price of raw materials and at RAK Ceramics we work hard to stay abreast of every change, from regulations to exchange rates.
Additionally, as sophisticated printing techniques become more common place and the demand for more intricate tile designs grows, we are required to source specialist printer inks from Europe in order to meet this demand. The shelf life of these inks and pigments can be short, causing us to lose 30 percent during the 40 days of transit from Europe to the UAE.
What are your expectations from chemical manufacturers supplying products for the ceramics industry?
As a business that sources raw materials from all over the world, in practical terms, developing chemicals with a longer shelf life and ensuring that all products are shipped with the required documentation would make every shipment more economical. This will in turn contribute to the continued development of the ceramics industry.

Researchers Use a Unique Catalyst to Convert Water to Hydrogen and Oxygen

PULLMAN, US: Scientist from Washington State University (WSU) have figured out a better method to efficiently generate hydrogen from water- an important key to making renewable energy production and storage feasible.
Professors Yuehe Lin and Scott Beckman in the School of mechanical and materials engineering led the research. They developed a catalyst from low-cost materials. It performs well as or better than catalysts made from precious metals that are used for the process.
The research is published in the journal Advanced Energy Materials.
Storing clean energy
Energy conversion is a key to the clean energy economy. Because solar and wind sources produce power irregularly, there is a critical need for ways to store and save the electricity they create.
One of the most encouraging ideas for storing renewable energy is to use the extra electricity produced from renewables to split water into oxygen and hydrogen; the hydrogen can then be fed into fuel cell vehicles.
“Hydrogen production by electrolysis of water is the greenest way to convert electricity to chemical fuel,” said Junhua Song, a WSU PhD student who synthesised the catalyst and performed most of the experimental work.
Energy, materials too expensive
Industries rarely use the water splitting process, however, because of the prohibitive cost of the precious metal catalysts that are required – usually platinum or ruthenium.
Many of the methods to split water also require too much energy or the required materials break down too quickly. Instead, industries generally use a fossil-fuel based process to produce hydrogen for fuel cells, which generates harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
For their catalyst, the WSU research team added nanoparticles of relatively inexpensive copper to a cobalt-based framework. The new catalyst was able to conduct electricity better than the commonly used precious metal catalysts. It produced oxygen better than existing commercial catalysts and produced hydrogen at a comparable rate.
Catalyst showing, experimentation employed
The researchers used both theoretical modelling and experimental assessments to demonstrate and fine-tune their catalyst’s effectiveness.
“The modelling helped the researchers gain understanding at the atomic level of how the copper atoms improve the catalyst, which helped in precisely choosing and tuning the elements to enhance performance,” said Beckman.
“The research team has provided a new perspective in designing and improving non-precious metal-based catalysts for hydrogen production,” said Lin. “This catalyst will pave the way for the development of high-performance, electrolysis-based hydrogen production applications.”
The researchers are looking for external funding to scale up their work. They hope to improve the catalyst’s stability and efficiency.
The work is in keeping with WSU’s Grand Challenges, a suite of research initiatives aimed at large societal issues. It is particularly relevant to the challenge of sustainable resources and its theme of meeting energy needs while protecting the environment.

How to Use Isopropyl Alcohol for Electronics Cleaning?

Most of our households cabinets are having Antiseptic, Astringent medicines etc. and some of those are composed of isopropyl alcohol as one of their ingredient. We are taking these medicines without even realizing its chemical composition.
In fact, isopropyl alcohol can be used for cleaning purpose, disinfactants, paint thinners, inks, general-purpose cleaners and windshield thawing agents.While it is a great sanitizing agent it also cuts grease, therefore there are infinite uses for it around the house.Most of us would be amazed! by knowing all these amazing household uses for isopropyl alcohol chemical.
What is isopropyl alcohol?
It is a colorless, flammable chemical compound with a strong odor.Isopropyl alcohol in particular is popular for pharmaceutical applications.Isopropyl alcohol may be converted to acetone. It is also used as a gasoline additive.
Why isopropyl alcohol is used in electronics?
Isopropyl alcohol is the best compound, to use on computers, laptops or any other electronic devices. The reason behind why you want to use it to get rid of smoke smells on electronics is that it dries very quickly.
If you are using water to clean the electonic devices, it would lead to you destroying the product because water and electricity are deadliest combination. On the other hand since isopropyl alcohol dries quickly, it is selected as preferred method to cleaning electronics.
The very first thing that you need to keep in mind, before you start cleaning electronic devices with isopropyl alcohol is to unplug or remove the batteries from the electronic device.
Second formost important factor, that you must consider temperature of the devices. Isopropyl alcohol works best when the room is above 60 degrees Fahrenheit, so that it completes it work and it can evaporate soon on the surfaces of the devices. If you are applying this chemical without considering temperature factor, it costs you more.
Now a days, current generation kids are fond of games, in specific video games and they will be using game consoles, controllers hours together. Once they will finish the game, it will be neglect these gaming peripherals. As a result dust will be deposited on these devices. In these case also we can apply isopropyl alcohol as a cleaning agent.
Other electronic devices like printed circuit board’s (PCB), Tvs, Headphones, Smartphones and any other small electronics can be sanitize and keep them clear of dirty finger prints and smudges.

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