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General Science

Triacetone Triperoxide- the Elusive Explosive

20 Mar 2017

We have become familiar with the routine at airports. Your carry-on bags are passed through an x-ray machine after which an officer will often wipe your bag with a piece of fabric which is then...

Social Tonics

20 Mar 2017

If it isn’t illegal, it must be legal. That’s why benzylpiperazine pills, under names such as Purepillz, Peaq, The Good Stuff, Frenzy and Pure Rush can be sold in Canada. And what are these pills? ...

What element derives its name from the Latin word for “flow?”

20 Mar 2017

Fluere is the Latin word for flow and provides the root for the name of the element we know as fluorine. One of the common naturally occurring sources of fluorine is the mineral calcium fluoride,...

Why Black Hair Dye Became Popular in 1930s Detroit

20 Mar 2017

Well, because Henry Ford decided that younger men could work more productively on his automobile assembly line and so began to fire older workers and higher younger ones. This prompted some of the...

Chemistry at the Vatican

20 Mar 2017

The new Pope, Francis, we now learn, has a degree in Chemistry. He received a Master’s from the University of Buenos Aires.  It is interesting then to note that his selection was signaled through...

Cathodic Protection

20 Mar 2017

You use cathodic protection to prevent iron from rusting. The rusting of iron is an expensive process. It is estimated that the deterioration of iron due to corrosion costs billions of dollars a...

The Case of "Saltair Sally"

20 Mar 2017

In October 2000, while walking along the shores of the "Great Salt Lake" near Salt Lake City, two hunters made a gruesome discovery. In a plastic bag, they found a white sock, a shirt, a few bones...

Getting Antsy

20 Mar 2017

We are having some major issues here in the Office for Science & Society. The issue? Ants. That’s right. Those itsy bitsy teeny weeny insects that somehow make their way through every nook,...

Mirror Image Insecticides

20 Mar 2017

Everything in the world, except perhaps a vampire, has a mirror image. But mirror images are curious things. Imagine that you place a ping-pong ball in front of a mirror. If you could somehow pick...


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