Monthly Archives: May 2014

Robot Crocodile and Hippos
Remote sensing is a common method to gather data in areas too dangerous for humans. Scientists at Carnegie Mellon University wanted to measure water quality in hippo pools in Kenya’s Mara River. During times of low flow rates, fish die downriver due to low oxygen levels in the water. The […]

Robot Crocodiles Monitor Hippo Dung

PHA Producing Bacteria
Researchers from Stanford University are making biodegradable plastic from waste methane. PHA or PolyHydroxyAlkanoate is a group of biodegradable polymers produced by bacteria. These bacteria convert carbon from sugar via fermentation into PHA. The bacteria are harvested, dried and the pellets of PHA removed to be molded into plastic. One problem with this process is the use […]

Biodegradable Plastic From Waste Methane

Global Selfie Mosiac
On Earth Day, NASA asked people to take a ‘selfie’ photograph showing “Where are you on Earth right now?”. This event, dubbed GlobalSelfie, asked everyone to share their pictures to a variety of social websites. Selfies began to appear from 113 different countries ranging from Antarctica to Greenland. By the end of […]

NASA’s GlobalSelfie Mosaic

The oxidation state tells how many valence electrons an atom accepts (negative number) or donates (positive number) to form a chemical bond. The most stable oxidation state is one that fills or half-fills an atom’s electron shell. Remember, shells don’t neatly stack on top of each other, so valence (and […]

Table of Oxidation States of the Elements

Waste heat is the excess heat energy produced by industrial processes and power generation. This heat is considered waste because it is often just released into the environment as a useless byproduct. Scientists and engineers have tried many different methods to harvest this excess energy and convert it to a […]

New Method to Convert Waste Heat to Electricity