“What are the ramifications of water contamination?”
Water is one of the most fundamental resources for human life. However, if there is any Water Contamination present, whether it be from runoff chemicals or an infectious bacteria, there could be dire ramifications. Humans can be harmed by unsafe chemicals in drinking water while mechanical processes can be harmed through corrosion.
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“What happens when water has a super-high concentration of salt?”
It is hard for humans to digest water with salt mixed in. So when water has an ultra-high concentration of salt, it takes on interesting properties. The salinity of this Brine can be used for food-processing, de-icing roads and structures, and as a refrigeration fluid. Brine is one of the myriads of chemicals that allows our modern world to work.
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Brine from Desalination
“Why is Brine created from desalination?”
Desalination is one of the lifelines for many water-poor countries, whether it be in the Middle-East, South Asia, or Western North America. However, during the process of creating more drinkable water, a portion of brine is also created as a byproduct. One of the most pressing challenges for policy-makers, scientists, and engineers is to find out what to do with this Brine from Desalination.
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Why the Oceans Are Becoming More Acidic
“How are CO2 emissions changing our oceans?”
Every second of every minute of every hour more and more carbon dioxide is being pumped into our atmosphere. Since the carbon intensity in the air will increase, the ocean will absorb more CO2. This larger amounts of this element will react with the H2O in water to form Carbonic Acid (H2CO3) and Hydrogen ions (H+). With a higher volumetric makeup of the latter elements, the oceans will become more acidic, threatening the stability of sea-life. This is Why the Oceans Becoming More Acidic.
Why Liquid Hydrogen in Vehicles Can Be Very Dangerous
“What are the dangers of liquid hydrogen fuel in vehicles?”
Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are a very hot research topic. However, liquid hydrogen vehicles present some strong dangers. Although sealed hydrogen is relatively safe, exposed hydrogen has some factors which can make it less so. First of all, hydrogen can catch fire really easily as it only requires 1/10th of the energy to combust compared to gas. Hydrogen flames are also nearly invisible and can displace oxygen in human lungs, making it a very silent killer. This is Why Liquid Hydrogen in Vehicles Can Be Very Dangerous.
“How can we remove and store carbon dioxide from the atmosphere?”
Climate change is one of the most if not THE most dangerous event happening right now. And much of this is driven by the increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. While most efforts are currently concentrated on limiting further emissions, there are currently efforts underway to actually remove carbon from the atmosphere. Known as Carbon Sequestration, this can be accomplished through a variety of methods such as increasing plant biomass or having large-scale fans suck up great amounts of CO2. If things become very drastic, then we may have to significantly increase the scale of carbon sequestration.
“How can we heat organic matter into a fuel without combustion?”
When heated to a high enough temperature, organic matter will burn. However, if there is no oxygen present, then combustion cannot occur. So what happens instead? Well, the organic material will decompose into combustible gasses and charcoal, the former of which can be turned into a combustible liquid. This Pyrolysis process can be used to create carbon emission neutral fuel sources such as biochar.
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