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Shaking a Champagne Bottle

17 Dec 2019

People readily understand that solids can dissolve in a liquid. Salt or sugar dissolve in water and the warmer the water, the faster the rate of dissolution. We learn this in elementary school. But...

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...

You Don’t Need to Burp Babies

29 Mar 2019

It’s a commonplace occurrence: When a baby is done eating, their mom or dad places them over their shoulder and pats their back to get them to burp....

It's Time to BBQ!

12 Jul 2018

The word “barbecue” derives from the ancient Caribbean tradition of supporting food over a fire with a scaffolding made from green wood which in Spanish was called "barbacoa." The technique itself...

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...

It’s Thanksgiving and time to talk..turkey

9 Oct 2017

Eventually we will run out of oil.  There is no doubt about that.  The earth is of a fixed size, and the amount of oil stored in the ground is not infinite.  We take it out of the ground and do not...

Excimer Lasers

2 Jun 2017

During the 1970’s in Moscow, Russia excimer lasers were first developed, consisting of both reactive and inert gases. When excited electrically, the mixture of these gases produces a dimer. Thus ...

Mints for Gas

21 May 2017

Restaurants often offer mints to their patrons after a meal. This is an old tradition geared to reducing the chance of untoward gaseous emissions. Gas builds up in the intestine in various ways....

Letting the Fizz Out of the Fizz Keeper

20 Mar 2017

A little pump called the “Fizz Keeper” is available in kitchen supply stores to pressurize previously opened soft drink bottles and prevent loss of carbonation. The idea appears to make sense, but...


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