Chemists are usually asked to invent a solution, but without considering hazardous by-products. Green chemists now are doing both with success, but will it take regulations to enforce the approach broadly?
A Mad Science Room activity from Crazy Aunt Lindsey
Many of the most profound scientific questions—and some of humanity's most urgent problems—pertain to the science of atoms and molecules
Gas, liquid or solid, radioactive or stable, reactive or inert, toxic or innocuous, see what makes your favorite element unique
Credit: IStockphoto I knew I wasn't like the other kids. Oh sure, I collected baseball cards and model airplanes, but not with the passion that I saved for my real obsession—collecting each and every element of the periodic table.This was just part of my chemical romance, which also involved (but was not limited to): watching phenolphthalein solution in test tubes change color, launching sodium carbonate/acetic acid (vinegar)–powered rockets, generating the sulfurous odor of rotten eggs and making a smoke bomb that accidentally detonated in the basement, and eventually graduating to electrolysis and various combustibles that fortunately resulted only in singed eyebrows, but no loss of digits or eyesight.Outside of explosives, however, lay the Holy Grail—a complete set of the fundamental building blocks of the universe.
Exposure to the chemicals in everyday objects poses a hidden health threat
Congress needs to give federal agencies greater authority to test and regulate chemicals
So-called rare earths are not rare, but with no current domestic source the essential trace elements can be harder to come by than U.S. makers of wind turbines, hybrid cars, weapon systems and other technology would prefer
The government knows just about as much as you do about what you're putting on your skin—that is to say, not much
Listen to the announcement of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, to Daniel Shechtman of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. Then hear comments from the president of the American Chemical Society, Nancy Jackson, of Sandia National Laboratories
This year is the International Year of Chemistry.This week, many chemists are gathered in Puerto Rico for the World Chemistry Congress.And here, at the Scientific American Blog Network, today is the Chemistry Day.
Toxic chemicals created by human activity reach unusual concentrations in the Arctic, among other places
A screening of hundreds of metabolites in the blood plasma of people at rest and after exercise paints a newly detailed picture of changes within the body--and reinforces links with metabolic and cardiovascular diseases
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Deborah Blum talks about her new work, The Poisoner's Handbook, a look at how easy it used to be to kill someone with poison and the researchers who made poisoning much harder to get away with. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include blog.deborahblum.com
A tiny molecule harvested from a soil bacterium on Easter Island that evolved billions of years ago for no obvious purposes should have nothing to do with human beings.
If it stinks, it's chemistry—that's one memory trick some smart-aleck high-school students might recommend to identify the core sciences. But chemistry goes far beyond noxious fumes.
Buying chemical weapons material through the mail is quick and easy
The Food and Drug Administration and other federal health agencies now share a growing concern about bisphenol A--and are undertaking more research
One drinking-water bottle could provide enough energy for an entire household in the developing world if Dan Nocera has his way. A chemist from M.I.T.
From liquid coal to biofuels, military and commercial aviators are searching for domestically sourced, cost-effective and clean alternatives to petroleum-derived jet fuel
What happens to nuclear reactors like those at Fukushima after they melt down or reach the end of their useful lives?
Ten years later, what exactly residents and rescue workers were exposed to remains at least a partial mystery
Although we are usually unaware of it, we communicate through chemical signals just as much as birds and bees do
ARPA-e funds potential breakthrough work to make energy-dense batteries that enable long distance travel
2011 is the International Year of Chemistry—a well-deserved celebration of that science's profound power