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What is this "isobutylene" I keep hearing pop up in the news?

5 Apr 2019

An explosion and fire at a Texas chemical plant fuelled by the extremely flammable gas isobutylene has killed one employee and left the public wondering why such a dangerously flammable gas is...

Squeezing Science out of Squishies

18 Jan 2019

Originally squeezing balls made of polyurethane foam was supposed to counter stress. Feeling anxious? For relief, just compress a “stress ball” and then watch it slowly expand back to its original...

Book Review: Living in the Chemical Age

31 May 2018

I once attended a presentation on the wonders of raw food and sous-vide cooking at a spa resort. What was fascinating was seeing the gradual reaction of my fellow attendees as the presenter piled...

Nervous about “nerve agents”

13 Mar 2018

It was back in 1939, that German chemist Gerhard Schrader was searching for better methods to control insects when he chanced upon a substance that had greater insecticidal activity than anything...

The Hindenburg Crash

21 Mar 2017

What was the greatest dirigible tragedy in history? I bet just about everyone thought of the Hindenburg which crashed and burned in a spectacular fashion when coming in for a landing at Lakehurst,...

Chemistry lesson for The Food Babe… and everyone else #14: No, silly putty is not hiding in our food

21 Mar 2017

“You Won’t Believe Where Silly Putty Is Hiding In Your Food.” So begins one of the Food Babe’s attempts to shock us about how the food industry is poisoning us. This time the target of the wild...

Are environmental chemicals making us fat?

20 Mar 2017

We are getting fatter.  The World Health Organization estimates that a seventh of the world’s population is overweight and about 300 million people can now be classified as obese.  What’s going on?...