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Everything flows, but only the macromolecules are worth the time.

Most recent posts

"Plastics are forever" is a common catch phrase of the anti-plastic movement, but as with all catch phrases, it's simplicity misses much of the truth. Plastics ARE NOT forever, and museum curators will correctly tell you this. The Victoria and Albert Museum's...
Just a quick, semi-serious question to ponder: The word "plastic" means that something is moldable, that it can undergo a permanent change in shape. (This applies not just to polymers, but to metals and other materials as well. Blacksmiths specialized in the...
The current fracking boom in the US has had a positive impact on the plastics industry, reducing the cost of many resins and leading to the construction of new facilities for their manufacture. But it has also placed an immense strain on the railroads. Because...

Most popular posts

Crystalline polypropylene (PP) has always been one of the more interesting polymers because it is polymorphic - there are multiple crystalline phases that can form. Without any special processing, the α- phase dominates. This is the one that melts at...
A novel family of polymers is featured in Science today. The polymers have an interesting range of properties, but as you might expect, they have been hyped far beyond recognition. The research paper is a mess. There is way too much material jammed into a small...
My wife and I were able to use our chemical knowledge this past week to solve a perplexing problem. I'll post first what we observed and then let you try and figure it out. We have a gas cooktop in our house here in Minnesota. A couple of weeks ago, the flames...

Latest posts linking here

Derek Lowe has a link to a rather amusing inadvertent addition to a paper, John Spevacek has noted an equally amazing admission, but one that's on purpose. (2nd page, first paragraph)Tien Nguyen has written a really nice "successful assistant professor candidates...
The New York Times has a great opening for its story on IBM's new polymer discovery that has been published in Science: As a research chemist at an IBM laboratory, Jeannette M. Garcia spends her days mixing and heating chemicals in pursuit of stronger...
Hope everyone enjoyed the Christmas break. We're mostly back to work here:I thought this gift of 3-D printed molecules was nice. A fascinating chemical mystery from John Spevacek. (That's a very educated household, btw.)C&EN's year-end issue, lots...