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Chemistry History Physical Chemistry

Today in Chemistry History – Ernest Rutherford’s Birthday

Today, 30 August, marks the birthday of Ernest Rutherford. Rutherford is primarily considered a physicist, but his contribution to our understanding of the atom is also important to chemistry. He was also a chemistry Nobel Prize winner, for his work on radioactivity. This graphic looks in detail at one of his most famous experiments, the […]

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Physical Chemistry

30 Years Since Chernobyl – How Nuclear Reactors Work

Early in the morning on 26 April 1986, a safety system test at the Chernobyl power plant in Pripyat, now part of Northern Ukraine, ended in a nuclear disaster with catastrophic consequences for both those working at the plant and those living in the surrounding area. The narrative seems to be a classic cautionary tale […]

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Chemistry in the News

The Periodic Table’s Four New Elements

If you take even the slightest interest in chemistry news, you’ll probably already have heard about the official confirmation of the discovery of four new elements, which even achieved widespread coverage in mainstream news outlets. IUPAC (the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) sneaked out the news just before New Year’s Eve without much prior […]

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Materials Chemistry

The Chemistry of an Electric Guitar

Electric guitars, on the face of it, might not seem to have much to do with chemistry. However, the materials that make them up are carefully chosen for their chemical properties, without which they simply wouldn’t function. In this graphic, we take a look at some of these materials, and their typical compositions.

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Physical Chemistry

A Guide to the Different Types of Radiation

We’re venturing tentatively into the border region between chemistry & physics today, with a look at some of the different types of nuclear radiation. These types vary in their composition, characteristics, and uses, but here’s an attempt to sum up the most common in one succinct graphic.

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Materials Chemistry

Graphene: The Carbon-Based ‘Wonder Material’

You may not have been aware, but this week is Graphene Week 2015, which marks a yearly week-long conference at the University of Manchester based around the emerging science and technological applications of graphene. This seemed as good a time as any to take a look at graphene: what it is, why some scientists are excited […]