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.
High-level Nuclear Waste
“What is the highest level of nuclear waste?”
During nuclear power generation, the energy in the fuel rods will become used up. Although it will no longer be effective in creating electricity, it will still be extremely radioactive. The most dangerous form of this is known as High-level Nuclear Waste. High-level nuclear waste must be carefully isolated in strong containers such as water entrapment systems to prevent any form of leakage.
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Quantum Dots for Solar Panels
“Why are quantum dots for solar panels so useful?”
Quantum dots are bringing a revolution into the world of semiconductors. And since semiconductors are the backbones of solar panels, things will be greatly changed for them as well. The extra emissivity offered by quantum dots means that two and possibly three electrons can be generated for every photon received, vastly increasing its potential! Quantum dot solar panels can achieve as much as 65% efficiency, nearly double of the theoretical limit of normal panels. This is why Quantum Dots for Solar Panels are so exciting.
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“What is the next big revolution in semiconductors?”
Semiconductors technology is going through a revolution. Nanosize semiconductor materials known as Quantum Dots which can give off light when illuminated are starting to be developed. Their small size allows them to be much more efficient than typical semiconductors and can give off a broader range of lights.
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The Works of Marie M. Daly
“Why is the work of Marie M. Daly (the first Black American Woman to receive a Ph.D. in Chemistry in the United States) so important?”
During her lifetime, Marie M. Daly was a prolific scientist. Trained as a Biochemist from Columbia University, she sought to understand the fundamental workings of the human body. During her career, she uncovered many of its secrets such as methods for the fractionalization of nuclear material to separate the essentials of a cell into its various components, The role of ribonucleoprotein in protein synthesis (which was later used in Watson and Crick’s discoveries of DNA structure), as well as work on cholesterol, hypertension, and creatine. In short, The Works of Marie M. Daly are paramount to our collective understanding of human biochemistry.
Image credit Balis, M. E., Samarth, K. D., Hamilton, M. G., & Petermann, M. L. (1958). Role of the ribonucleoprotein particle in protein synthesis and the effects of growth hormone. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 233(5), 1152-1155.
Hydrogen Production through Electrolysis
“How can we produce hydrogen using electricity?”
Hydrogen is an amazing material. However, extracting it can be quite difficult. One way to do it is to take an anode and a cathode separated by an electrolyte and a membrane. The water will react at the anode to produce oxygen and positively charged hydrogen ions. The electrons will flow through the circuit and the hydrogen ions will move across the membrane to the cathode side. They will then meet and recombine to form hydrogen molecules. This way, we can Produce Hydrogen using Electrolysis. Since the only thing that needs to be added to the system is electricity, if our grid is powered by renewables then we can have a carbon neutral method of hydrogen production!
Image credit Department of Energy