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Recycled plastic proves effective in killing drug-resistant fungi

New uses for recycled plastic — PET in this case — are beginning to emerge. See the following press announcement. Researchers at Singapore’s Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) and California’s IBM Research – Almaden (IBM) have discovered a new, potentially life-saving application for polyethylene terephthalate (PET), which is widely used to make plastic bottles. […]

December 10th

Rice Scientists ID New Catalyst for Cleanup of Nitrites

Gold-palladium nanocatalysts set new mark for breakdown and cleanup of nitrites Chemical engineers at Rice University have found a new catalyst that can rapidly break down nitrites, a common and harmful contaminant in drinking water that often results from overuse of agricultural fertilizers. Nitrites and their more abundant cousins, nitrates, are inorganic compounds that are […]

November 26th

FilterWatch: Your Energy Efficiency Lookout

Paying the unneeded cost of heating a home in winter is never a welcome expense, especially if it’s a matter of clogged air filters affecting your home’s energy efficiency.  Fortunately, this is a problem that can be addressed with a cost-effective solution called FilterWatch. Let’s start with this straightforward benefit: “A simple, effective energy efficiency […]

November 11th

Biochar Quiets Microbes & Some Plant Pathogens

Synthetic biologists at Rice probe biochar’s impact on microbial signaling In the first study of its kind, Rice University scientists have used synthetic biology to study how a popular soil amendment called “biochar” can interfere with the chemical signals that some microbes use to communicate. The class of compounds studied includes those used by some […]

October 1st

E-Waste Report

The following news report concerning the ineffectiveness of e-waste bans is disturbing. The challenge of understanding and safely managing e-waste worldwide is something that need to be responsibly addressed by everybody who is part of the supply chain, from designers to manufacturers and consumers. State e-waste disposal bans have been largely ineffective INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 10, […]

September 11th

First Uses of New Solar Energy Technology: Killing Germs on Medical and Dental Instruments

Prototypes of the devices, which need no electricity or fuel, were the topic of one of the keynote addresses at the opening of the 246th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society. The meeting, which features almost 7,000 reports on new advances in science and other topics, continues through Thursday in the Indiana Convention Center and downtown hotels.

September 9th

Green Cleaning in Action: Dry Ice Blasting and Environmentally Friendly Mold Removal

Over the past few years we have a long list of companies, technologies, or products that are worth knowing about. Unfortunately, they sometimes get buried too deeply in our archives so we provide fresh information for readers.

Our current technology of interest is dry ice blasting, a method for removing mold and preventing potential health-related illnesses. Carl Bennett provided this post last February.

August 13th

Off-Grid Sterilization with Rice U.’s ‘Solar Steam’

Rice University nanotechnology researchers have unveiled a solar-powered sterilization system that could be a boon for more than 2.5 billion people who lack adequate sanitation. The “solar steam” sterilization system uses nanomaterials to convert as much as 80 percent of the energy in sunlight into germ-killing heat.

July 24th

Extraordinary Solar Light Now Available for Off-Grid Victims of Energy Poverty

This is a low-priced ($39.00) and sustainable light that some 25 percent of the world’s population – living off the grid – needs. Why? So dangerous kerosene lamps can be relegated to museums only. The following mission statement comes from WakaWaka designers and manufacturer of what the company contends is the “most efficient solar lamp in the world.” The solar-powered light can provide 16 hours of light from a single day of sunlight.

July 5th

Sustainable Innovations: Cranfield Experts Help Develop Solar Cooker

The development of sustainable tools that utilize renewable energy is critical as we advance into the 21st century. We still need to meet the challenges of providing clean energy. Read the following story from Cranfield University about a solar stove developed by COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Islamabad. A solar cooker able to harness the sun’s […]

June 20th

Papaya-Clay Combo Could Cut Water Purification Costs in Developing Countries

Emmanuel Unuabonah and colleagues explain that almost 1 billion people in developing countries lack access to reliable supplies of clean water for drinking, cooking and other key uses. One health problem resulting from that shortage involves exposure to heavy metals such as lead, cadmium and mercury, released from industrial sources into the water. Technology exists for removing those metals from drinking water, but often is too costly in developing countries. So these scientists looked for a more affordable and sustainable water treatment adsorbent.

June 13th

Simple Methods May Help Bring Clean Water To Developing Countries

Inadequate waste disposal methods, contaminated water sources and the lack of awareness about proper hand-washing all contribute to the spread of waterborne disease. The pervasive threats in developing countries are bacteria and organisms that are commonly found in human or animal waste, which can contaminate water supplies when waste disposal areas are too close to drinking water sources. People who have ingested water contaminated with harmful organisms usually experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration – and in extreme cases, or in the very young – death.

May 7th