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Use of yogurt bacteria as a model surrogate to compare household cleaning solutions

Shukla et al. | May 07, 2023

Use of yogurt bacteria as a model surrogate to compare household cleaning solutions
Image credit: CDC

While resources on the safety of household cleaning products are plentiful, measures of efficacy of these cleaning chemicals against bacteria and viruses remain without standardization in the consumer market. The COVID pandemic has exasperated this knowledge gap, stoking the growth of misinformation and misuse surrounding household cleaning chemicals. Arriving at a time dire for sanitization standardization, the authors of this paper have created a quantifying framework for consumers by comparing a wide range of household cleaning products in their efficacy against bacteria generated by a safe and easily replicable yogurt model.

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From trash to treasure: A sustainable approach to oil spill clean-up

Kathir et al. | Aug 02, 2023

From trash to treasure: A sustainable approach to oil spill clean-up

In this study the authors looked at sustainable ways to clean up oil spills that harm marine life. Using water spangle leaves and milk week the authors looked at the ability to recovery oil from both fresh and salt water and the ability to reuse the organic material to clean up spills. Their results show promise to help find a sustainable, eco-friendly way to clean up oil spills and protect marine life and habitats.

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Access to public parks, drinking fountains, and clean public drinking water in the Bay Area is not driven by income

Zaroff et al. | Jul 15, 2021

Access to public parks, drinking fountains, and clean public drinking water in the Bay Area is not driven by income

Access to green space—an area of grass, trees, or other vegetation set apart for recreational or aesthetic purposes in an urban environment—and clean drinking water can be unequally distributed in urban spaces, which are often associated with income inequality. Little is known about public drinking water and green space inequities in the Bay Area. For our study, we sought to understand how public park access, drinking fountain access, and the quality of public drinking water differ across income brackets in the Bay Area. Though we observed smaller-scale instances of inequalities, in the park distribution in the Bay Area as a whole, and in the Southern Bay’s water quality and park distribution, our results indicate that other factors could be influencing water quality, and park and fountain access in the Bay Area.

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Quantitative definition of chemical synthetic pathway complexity of organic compounds

Baranwal et al. | Jun 19, 2023

Quantitative definition of chemical synthetic pathway complexity of organic compounds

Irrespective of the final application of a molecule, synthetic accessibility is the rate-determining step in discovering and developing novel entities. However, synthetic complexity is challenging to quantify as a single metric, since it is a composite of several measurable metrics, some of which include cost, safety, and availability. Moreover, defining a single synthetic accessibility metric for both natural products and non-natural products poses yet another challenge given the structural distinctions between these two classes of compounds. Here, we propose a model for synthetic accessibility of all chemical compounds, inspired by the Central Limit Theorem, and devise a novel synthetic accessibility metric assessing the overall feasibility of making chemical compounds that has been fitted to a Gaussian distribution.

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Defying chemical tagging: inhomogeneities in the wide binary system HIP 34407/HIP 34426

Còdol et al. | Oct 05, 2023

Defying chemical tagging: inhomogeneities in the wide binary system HIP 34407/HIP 34426
Image credit: Pixabay

This assessed the hypothesis that stars in wide binary systems are chemically homogeneous because of their shared origin. Abundances of the HIP 34407/HIP 34426 binary were obtained by analyzing high-resolution spectra of the system. Discrepancies found in the system’s elemental abundances might be an indicator of the presence of rocky planets around this star. Thus, the differences found in chemical composition might demonstrate limitations in the assumptions of chemical tagging.

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Hybrid Quantum-Classical Generative Adversarial Network for synthesizing chemically feasible molecules

Sikdar et al. | Jan 10, 2023

Hybrid Quantum-Classical Generative Adversarial Network for synthesizing chemically feasible molecules

Current drug discovery processes can cost billions of dollars and usually take five to ten years. People have been researching and implementing various computational approaches to search for molecules and compounds from the chemical space, which can be on the order of 1060 molecules. One solution involves deep generative models, which are artificial intelligence models that learn from nonlinear data by modeling the probability distribution of chemical structures and creating similar data points from the trends it identifies. Aiming for faster runtime and greater robustness when analyzing high-dimensional data, we designed and implemented a Hybrid Quantum-Classical Generative Adversarial Network (QGAN) to synthesize molecules.

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Evaluation of Microplastics in Japanese Fish Using Visual and Chemical Dissections

Srebnik et al. | Jan 20, 2021

Evaluation of Microplastics in Japanese Fish Using Visual and Chemical Dissections

Does the overuse of plastic in Japan poses an ecological risk to marine species and their consumers? Using visual and chemical dissection, all fish in this study were found to have microplastics present in their gastrointestinal tract, including two species that are typically eaten whole in Japan. Overall, these results are concerning as previous studies have found that microplastics can carry persistent organic pollutants. It is presumed that the increasing consumption of microplastics will have negative implications on organ systems such as the liver, gut, and hormones.

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Cleaning up the world’s oceans with underwater laser imaging

Gurbuz et al. | Jul 07, 2023

Cleaning up the world’s oceans with underwater laser imaging
Image credit: Naja Bertolt Jensen

Here recognizing the growing amount of plastic waste in the oceans, the authors sought to develop and test laser imaging for the identification of waste in water. They found that while possible, limitations such as increasing depth and water turbidity result in increasing blurriness in laser images. While their image processing methods were somewhat insufficient they identified recent methods to use deep learning-based techniques as a potential avenue to viability for this method.

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