THEOFYLLINE

The molecule of this week is theofylline, a methylxanthine that can be naturally found in cocoa beans. This molecule has a very similar chemical structure to other xanthines like caffeine or theobromine. However, it has pharmacological applications as it is used to treat asthma and other respiratory diseases.
Read more about theofylline here!

CHEMISTRY IN YOUR KITCHEN

You probably heard before that doing chemistry is like cooking……BookCover

Well…It is also true that you can find some chemistry in your kitchen! To know more, read this interesting book by Matthew Hartings, who will explain you basic chemistry principles through simple recipes!
Read more here!

MISSING WINTER? FAKE SNOW IS WHAT YOU WANT!

UnknownWinter has now passed, but some of you might still miss cold and snow…No problem! We have what you are looking for.

You can make some fake snow at home in few seconds. The only things you need are:

  • a superabsorbent polymer (e.g. sodium polyacrylate, which can be obtained by cutting a nappy)
  • water.

Wondering about how to do it? Have a look at this video!

The sensing robots

Engineers from the University of Minnesota have developed 3D printed stretchable electronic fabric that could enable robots to feel their environment.

atelier-toucher-robots-decuple.jpgThis innovative bionic skin will not only help robots to interact with each other, but could also be used in minimal invasive surgery procedures: by putting this material on surgical robots, surgeons (the human type!) will be able to feel the procedure, so they wouldn’t have to rely only on cameras anymore.

You can find out more potential applications of this 3D printed bionic skin in this article!

Guess the scientist #2

New week, new quote from a famous scientist! Who said:

“Science can’t solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are a part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”

Options:

  1. Stephen Hawking
  2. Max Planck
  3. Albert Einstein

Comment here with your guess or take part to our game on Twitter, and remember, don’t cheat! 😉

Happiness made in the kitchen

It is commonly known that serotonin is the neurotransmitter responsible for the maintenance of mood balance, and that its deficit leads to depression. Serotonin is normally produced by our brain and intestines, but we can also help increase its levels by eating certain foods!

0997220b848afd487199d77c58fdb5b9_healthy-food-clipart-black-and-black-and-white-cartoon-food-clip-art_1123-548.jpeg

I always suspected that food can make you happy… and now I know it is true, in a literal sense! However, if you think chocolate will help your mood… sorry you will be disappointed.

Want to know what food can increase your serotonin levels? Find it out here.

Learn more about serotonin here.

NEW 3D PRINTING INK CAN BE ERASED

UnknownErasing 3D printed structures is now possible by using a special ink developed by researchers at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. The microstructures can be created using a laser and then erased by simple immersion in an organic solvent.

The most interesting part of this research is that erasable structures can be incorporated into non-erasable structures, making this ink very promising for a wide range of applications.

Curious to know which ones? Read this article!