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InnoCentive Challenges: Chemistry

Saturday, 5 December 2015

Super-repellent coating ready in seconds from Chemistry World and University of Massachusetts_Beating Macintosh.

THE CHALLENGE

"In recent years, several strategies have been attempted to prepare omniphobic surfaces that repel both polar and apolar liquids. However, they are complex owing to the challenge of creating surfaces with ultra-low contact angle hysteresis, which is what causes liquids to bead and easily slide off a surface. One method is to covalently attach flexible groups onto smooth surfaces to create a slippery liquid-like layer. But this approach is usually time-consuming and involves complicated synthetic chemistry." writes James Urquhart in Chemistry World, house journal of the RSC The Royal Chemical Society,UK.

THE SOLUTION
Now Liming Wang and Thomas McCarthy at the University of Massachusetts, US, have devised a way to create such smooth and slippery coatings without complex synthetic chemistry and long reaction times. Their method so simple it involves just one step and takes minutes to achieve at room temperature.


Super-repellent coating ready in seconds | Chemistry World

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Penn News | Penn Research Simplifies Recycling of Rare-earth Magnets

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have now pioneered a process that could enable the efficient recycling of two of these metals, neodymium and dysprosium. These elements comprise the small, powerful magnets that are found in many high-tech devices.
In contrast to the massive and energy-intensive industrial process currently used to separate rare earths, the Penn team’s method works nearly instantaneously at room temperature and uses standard laboratory equipment.
Sourcing neodymium and dysprosium from used electronics rather than the ground would increase their supply at a fraction of the financial, human and environment cost.
The research was lead by Eric J. Schelter, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry in Penn’s School of Arts & Sciences, and graduate student Justin Bogart. Connor A. Lippincott, an undergraduate student in the Vagelos Integrated Program in Energy Research, and Patrick J. Carroll, director of the University of Pennsylvania X-Ray Crystallography Facility, also contributed to the study.
Neodymium magnets can’t be beat in terms of their properties,” Schelter said. “They give you the strongest amount of magnetism for the smallest amount of stuff and can perform at a range of temperatures.”

Penn News | Penn Research Simplifies Recycling of Rare-earth Magnets:



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Thursday, 16 April 2015

New materials repel oil underwater, could better clean up oil spills by David Lynn,The University of Wisconsin-Madison

New materials repel oil underwater, could better clean up oil spills

This work brought back to memory past "Innovation Challenges" whereby improved oil spill lean up solutions were sought. Envronmental disasters are always a recurrent problem. Solvers are much sought after. I usually blog such issues in my related blog Conversations-on-Innovations
University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers have announced a significant step forward in the development of materials that can ward off oil — a discovery that could lead to new protective coatings and better approaches to cleaning up oil spills.
In a new paper in the journal Advanced Functional Materials, professor of chemical and biological engineering David Lynn and assistant scientist Uttam Manna describe new coatings that are extremely oil-repellant (or "superoleophobic") in underwater environments.
Looking forward to learning of full size application in order to respond sucessfully to any oil spills. Of course preventive action is preferable. Worldwide Pollution whatever the nature and its human source remains an issue which world leaders cannot be proud of!











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