Discover – Carbon dioxide, the bane of climate change, can serve a positive role to boost geothermal energy output.
Nature – Chemists hope to break China’s monopoly on rare-earth elements by finding cheap, efficient ways to extract them from ore.
Science – Researchers have made solar cells in several colors that still perform efficiently.
Science – Researchers have created a new cloth that warms up with just a bit of electricity and traps body heat more efficiently than standard cotton fabric.
Science – Scientists are reporting a combination of six chemicals that lure and trap bedbugs by mimicking a pheromone.
Science – A newly designed polarizer with much higher energy efficiency could help to extend devices’ battery lives.
Science – Researchers report that they have designed new plastics that break down upon exposure to light.
Boston University News Service – “Take your pen, do this.” Nicole Noll said as she reached into her backpack for a pen, and placed it horizontally between her teeth. “Don’t let your lips touch it.”
I did as she demonstrated. Noll and I were in the Harvard Science Center, sitting in the first-floor hallway. As we held our pens in our teeth, two men passed by and gave us puzzled looks.
Boston University News Service – Love your smartphone that delivers clear sound and bright colors but still fits in your pocket? Give thanks to neodymium, a rare earth element that makes the magnets in your phone so powerful that it can be as small as it is. Wind turbines and electric cars need the unique magnetic properties of dysprosium, another rare earth element. Virtually every form of clean energy technology today needs rare earth elements to function. But the rare earth elements come with an unavoidable by-product: thorium.