We know the basic photosynthesis occurs in nature where sunlight converting the CO2 and H2O into fuels. Scientists have been trying to mimic this process of photosynthesis in a lab from a very long time. Now, a cheap chemical catalyst has carried out part of this process by supplying electricity from a solar cell to split Carbondioxice (CO2) into energy rich Carbonmonoxide (CO) and Oxygen (O2) with a record efficiency. Though this process isn't efficient enough to compete with the fossil fuels like gasoline but scientists are hoping that it could one day lead to methods of making of liquid fuels using Sunlight from CO2, H2O which are the major culprits in global warming.

Saying about it John Turner, a renewable fuels expert from National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Colarado... 
The transformation begins when CO2 is broken down into oxygen and CO, the latter of which can be combined with hydrogen to make a variety of hydrocarbon fuels. Adding four hydrogen atoms, for example, creates methanol, a liquid fuel that can power cars. 
Over the last 2 decades, researchers have discovered a number of catalysts that enable that first step and split CO2 when the gas is bubbled up through water in the presence of an electric current. One of the best studied is a cheap, plentiful mix of copper and oxygen called copper oxide. The trouble is that the catalyst splits more water than it does CO2, making molecular hydrogen (H2), a less energy-rich compound, says Michael Graetzel, a chemist at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, whose group has long studied these CO2-splitting catalysts.

Last year, Marcel Schreier, one of Graetzel’s graduate students, was looking into the details of how copper oxide catalysts work. He put a layer of them on a tin oxide–based electrode, which fed electrons to a beaker containing water and dissolved CO2. Instead of splitting mostly water—like the copper oxide catalyst—the new catalyst generated almost pure CO. “It was a discovery made by serendipity,” Graetzel says.
(Coutesy by sciencemag.org)

The tin layer seems to deactivate the catalytic hot spots that helps to split the water molecule. As a result, almost all electric current went into making the more desirable CO. To speedup this process, Graetzel’s team remade their electrode from copper oxide nano wires which have high surface area for carrying out the CO2-breaking reaction, and topped them with a single atom thick layer of tin as the team reports this week in Nature Energy, the strategy worked out. converting 90% of the CO2 molecules into CO, with hydrogen and other byproducts making up the rest. They also hooked their setup to a solar cell and showed that a record 13.4% of the energy in the captured sunlight was converted into the CO’s chemical bonds. That’s far better than plants, which store energy with about 1% efficiency, and even tops recent hybrid approaches that combine catalysts with microbes to generate fuel.

The above experiments indicating that we are in making progress that not only show us a way in generation of greener fuels, but also helps in a way to reduce atmospheric pollution and also could lead to other methods for the generation non-conventional energy resources and also pave a way to solve the problems such as the storage of energy and other climate related problems.

As we keep pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, more of it is dissolving in the oceans, leading to drastic changes in the water's chemistry. Triona McGrath researches this process, known as ocean acidification, and in this talk she takes us for a dive into an oceanographer's world. Learn more about how the "evil twin of climate change" is impacting the ocean — and the life that depends on it.









Interactive Script:



Real Time view of Air-Pollution on Earth



Day by day the air pollution levels are increasing as there is increase in technology based knowledge which are utilizing many non-renewable energy resources. This creating a chaos world wide especially in countries like India and China. China is producing more amount of toxic gases in to the atmosphere and it alone contributes some 1.6 million premature deaths each year. Concerned about how such pollution was affecting his family, Beijing-based data scientist Yann Boquillod founded AirVisual Earth, an online air pollution map that uses data from satellites and more than 8000 monitoring stations to display global air pollution in real time. The Air Visual Earth interactive maps prevailing wind patterns and shows color-coded concentrations of PM 2.5—airborne particulate matter less than 2.5 microns in diameter that can penetrate deep into the lungs. Users can zoom in, tilt, and spin the globe for better viewing. The air pollution visualization was crafted “so people really understand how bad it is,” says Boquillod, who hopes an informed citizenry will pressure governments and communities to clear the air. AirVisual also delivers 3-day air pollution forecasts for 6000 cities to smartphones, and it recently began selling low-cost monitors people can use to track indoor and outdoor air pollution. “People want to share that data,” Boquillod says.

If we observe the real time earth, even developing countries like India and Brazil also contributing more air pollution. The PM ranging from 30 microgram per cubic meters to some 100 micrograms per cubic meters in some areas. Though the government taking precautions to reduce pollution levels, it is ultimately failing at ground level like educating people and to propagate severe judicious laws to control more pollution producing industries.

(Courtesy by: Sciencemag.org)

Using two diamonds, scientists squeezed hydrogen to pressures above those in Earth's core -
(Sang-Heon Shim, Arizona State University) (Courtesy from www.sciencemag.org)
Scientists have already made liquid Hydrogen metal, the substance thought to form the interior of giant planets like Jupiter—by ramping up pressure at higher temperatures.But Isaac Silvera and his colleagues from Harvard University wanted to work at low temperatures and transform hydrogen into something still more exotic; a solid metal.

At cryogenic temperatures, hydrogen is a liquid. As the pressure rises, the liquid quickly becomes a nonmetallic solid (see diagram, left). In 1935, Princeton University physicists Eugene Wigner and Hillard Bell Huntington predicted that beyond 25 GPa, the nonconductive solid hydrogen would become metallic. But experimentalists passed that threshold decades ago with no sign of a solid metal.

Silvera and Dias claim they've pushed their cell into an unexplored realm of low temperature and extreme pressure, succeeding in part because they avoided continuous high-intensity laser monitoring that they say can also cause an anvil's diamonds to fail. Eventually, as they neared 500 GPa, the black sample became shiny and reddish. A low-intensity infrared laser—one that wouldn't risk stressing the diamonds—revealed a strong spike in the sample's reflectance, as expected from a metal. Only then did the Harvard pair use a different laser, in a procedure called Raman spectroscopy, to verify the peak pressure in the diamond cell.


1. Metallic Hydrogen acts as "SuperConductor" at room temperature which can save a lot of money and energy. Most of the current superconductors work at as low as -269 Degree Celsius.

Superconductor exhibiting magnetic levitation. (Image Credit: Department of Theoretical Physics at Ural University)
2. It can be used as a rocket propellant at a very low cost.


3. It can be used as a material in MRI Scanning to make it cheap. 

4. It can also be used in power cable and price of electricity could be dragged down. 

and more probably there is an entire chance of new greener technology could be implemented, especially in the area of renewable energy resources... this could be a "Holy Grail".


(Video Courtesy by: TechInsideUK)



X-Ray Crystallography might seem like an obscure, even unheard of field of research; however structural analysis has played a part in almost every major scientific field since its discovery 100 years ago by William Henry, and William Lawrence Bragg.

In this Friday Evening Discourse at the Royal Institution, Professor Stephen Curry charts the discovery and development of this extraordinary technique, starting with a simple explanation of diffraction, moving through the integral work of the Braggs, and ending with the cutting edge uses that X-Ray Crystallography has found in the modern world.

This film is part of the Crystallography Collection: a series of short films produced by the Ri Channel, with the support of the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), celebrating the 100th anniversary of the discovery of X-Ray Crystallography by the Braggs: http://richannel.org/collections/2013/crystallography

Video Talk:





Tomas Lindahl - Francis Crick Institute and Clare Hall Laboratory, Hertfordshire, UK

Tomas Lindahl

Paul ModrichHoward Hughes Medical Institute and Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, USA
Paul Modrich
Aziz Sancar - University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, USA

“for mechanistic studies of DNA repair"

The cells’ toolbox for DNA repair

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2015 is awarded to Tomas Lindahl, Paul Modrich and Aziz Sancar for having mapped, at a molecular level, how cells repair damaged DNA and safeguard the genetic information. Their work has provided fundamental knowledge of how a living cell functions and is, for instance, used for the development of new cancer treatments.
Each day our DNA is damaged by UV radiation, free radicals and other carcinogenic substances, but even without such external attacks, a DNA molecule is inherently unstable. Thousands of spontaneous changes to a cell’s genome occur on a daily basis. Furthermore, defects can also arise when DNA is copied during cell division, a process that occurs several million times every day in the human body.

The reason our genetic material does not disintegrate into complete chemical chaos is that a host of molecular systems continuously monitor and repair DNA. The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2015 awards three pioneering scientists who have mapped how several of these repair systems function at a detailed molecular level.

In the early 1970s, scientists believed that DNA was an extremely stable molecule, but Tomas Lindahl demonstrated that DNA decays at a rate that ought to have made the development of life on Earth impossible. This insight led him to discover a molecular machinery, base excision repair, which constantly counteracts the collapse of our DNA.

Aziz Sancar has mapped nucleotide excision repair, the mechanism that cells use to repair UV damage to DNA. People born with defects in this repair system will develop skin cancer if they are exposed to sunlight. The cell also utilises nucleotide excision repair to correct defects caused by mutagenic substances, among other things.

Paul Modrich has demonstrated how the cell corrects errors that occur when DNA is replicated during cell division. This mechanism, mismatch repair, reduces the error frequency during DNA replication by about a thousandfold. Congenital defects in mismatch repair are known, for example, to cause a hereditary variant of colon cancer.

The Nobel Laureates in Chemistry 2015 have provided fundamental insights into how cells function, knowledge that can be used, for instance, in the development of new cancer treatments.



Courtesy by www.nobelprize.org


Penicillin changed everything. Infections that had previously killed were suddenly quickly curable. Yet as Maryn McKenna shares in this sobering talk, we've squandered the advantages afforded us by that and later antibiotics. Drug-resistant bacteria mean we're entering a post-antibiotic world — and it won't be pretty. There are, however, things we can do ... if we start right now.


In mid-march, a village called Sarmin, in Northwestern Syria was attacked by bombers from a helicopter. There is no explosion, no fire but it was the most worst form of attack where the civilians did not injured by physical wounds. But their struggle started after a few minutes who rushed to the nearest hospitals as they suffered from various ailments such as severe coughing, burning sensation in eyes and throat and most of them were unable to breathe. 

“There was a very strong chlorine smell there,” Muhammad Yazan, a local activist, told Human Rights Watch. Yazan went to the impact site in Sarmin, as well as to another village that was attacked in Idlib province. “One of our team members passed out due to the smell. It was horrible. My eyes were burning. I wanted to throw up. My skin felt like I had rashes.”

Photo: Bryce Vickmark
Dr. Sangeeta Bhatia     
20th Heinz Award for Technology,the Economy and Employment

Dr. Sangeeta Bhatia, bioengineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is recognized for her seminal work in tissue engineering and disease detection, including the cultivation of functional liver cells outside the human body.

As a graduate student at MIT, Dr. Bhatia was assigned the task of cultivating living liver cells in a petri dish, an endeavor that had been attempted for many years. A visit to a microfabrication facility — where students laid circuits out on silicon chips — inspired her to see if the same technology could be used to “print” tiny liver cells on plastic. The result was the first “microliver,” a miniature model organ now widely used to test drug reactions efficiently and predictively.

Dr. Bhatia’s team has also made singular strides in developing simple, affordable cancer screening tools. One uses tiny particles or nanoparticles to create biomarkers for cancer in urine samples on paper strips; the other is a “cancer-detecting yogurt,” containing engineered probiotic bacteria.

The United States went to war in Iraq expecting to destroy an active weapons of mass destruction program. Instead, it found only remnants of chemical arms built in close collaboration with the West.


Manu Prakash - An Assistant Professor of bio engineering at Stanford University, who made a fold-able microscope which he is calling it as "Foldscope". In the words of this IIT Kanpur student, the world need it and every coming generation child should carry a pocket microscope and those children should know what actually they are dealing with "microscopically".


Royal Society of Chemistry conducting a "Chemistry World Science Communication Competition-2014" and the topic is Chemistry and Art. The participants should write an article using around 800 words and the selected topics will be published in Chemistry World.


Forget stitches — there's a better way to close wounds. In this talk, TED Fellow Joe Landolina talks about his invention — a medical gel that can instantly stop traumatic bleeding without the need to apply pressure.