Categories
Food Chemistry

International Coffee Day: Arabica vs robusta

October 1 marks International Coffee Day. We’ve looked at various aspects of coffee chemistry on the site previously, but haven’t yet looked at the key divide between coffee beans: arabica and robusta. This graphic looks at the two types of coffee beans and some of their chemical differences.

Categories
Food Chemistry

How is decaffeinated coffee made? The chemistry of coffee decaffeination

Caffeine is a stimulant, and the world’s most widely consumed psychoactive drug. Many of us need our morning coffee to be functional, but others prefer to avoid caffeine due to its effects on sleep, restlessness, or pregnancy. Handily, chemists have come up with several ways for us to enjoy coffee without the caffeine. Here, we […]

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C&EN Medicinal Chemistry

40 years of platinum drugs for cancer – in C&EN

2018 marks 40 years since the FDA first approved cisplatin, a platinum-containing drug to treat cancer. This month’s edition of Periodic Graphics in Chemical & Engineering News looks at how it works and some of the other platinum-containing drugs that followed. Click through to see the full version of the graphic on the C&EN site.

Categories
Materials Chemistry

What are wedding rings made of, and how do their properties vary?

I’m currently at that age where my Facebook news feed is an endless stream of either wedding or baby photos. Most recently, one of my best friends was shopping for wedding rings in advance of their marriage next year, which got me thinking about different wedding ring metals. What elements are they composed of, and […]

Categories
ChemMonthly

#ChemMonthly August 2018: Hearing proteins, an organic solar cell record, and a planet with a titanium and iron atmosphere

Here’s the monthly summary of chemistry stories that have hit the news. This month features news on the identification of proteins that help us hear, an exoplanet with an atmosphere of titanium and iron, and more! Larger summary images for each item are provided below, along with links to articles and studies for all the […]

Categories
Materials Chemistry

The chemistry of condom materials – from sheep guts to synthetic rubber

Today, we take contraception for granted to a certain extent. It’s easy to forget that, less than 200 years ago, the only condom available was one made from a length of sheep gut that you had to wash and re-use. Today, they’re made from a handful of different materials. This post looks at their recent […]