Yes, in 1866, while John Ellis was trying (unsuccessfully) to find a medicinal purpose for the crude that was bubblin’ up in Pennsylvania, he noticed how slippery it was and reckoned it might serve as an improvement over the animal- and vegetable-based oils that were then used to lubricate steam engines. He renamed his company Valvoline in 1873, and the company has since pioneered all-climate motor oils, racing oils, synthetic blends, and high-mileage engine oils.
Meet nihonium (Nh), moscovium (Mc), tennessine (Ts) and oganesson (Og), the newest elements on the periodic table to receive names. But don't get too attached to the nomenclature for these elements, formerly known by their respective atomic numbers 113, 115, 117 and 118. The names are on a five-month probation before things are made official.
All the large food producers say they’re trying to reduce their financial dependence on sugar. In fleeing the storm, they’ve darted for varying types of cover. Coca-Cola has shrunk soda cans; Mondelēz International, the maker of Oreos, has become a power in the gluten-free movement; PepsiCo has tried shifting toward healthy-ish snacks such as hummus.
Nestlé has chosen a radically different path. It wants to invent and sell medicine. The products Nestlé wants to create would be based on ingredients derived from food and delivered as an appealing snack, not a pill, drawing on the company’s expertise in the dark arts of engineering food for looks, taste, and texture. Some would require a prescription, some would be over-the-counter, and some are already on store shelves today.
A California start-up called View, which has raised a whopping $500 million from investors including Corning, General Electric and Khosla Ventures, is making high-tech windows that have the potential to bring to buildings what high-resolution touchscreens did for smartphones.
View’s windows eliminate glare, change hue, moderate internal temperature — and at some point, could show entirely different views of the outside world — via a process that uses a pane of glass sprayed with electrochromic material, which alters light transmission.
The result is smart glass that increases energy efficiency and promises better worker productivity, via technology accessed through an app.
Pair the paint with related tech like infrared-reflecting windows, and the effects are amplified. When the DOE tested a Cadillac STS with infrared-reflective glass (offered by automakers including Mercedes, Volkswagen, and Volvo) and solar reflective paint, it found the car’s cooling demands dropped by 30 percent (from 5.7 to 4.0 kW).
To combat icy buildup, researchers at the University of Michigan developed a spray-on ice repellent coating that can be applied to equipment, aircraft and car windshields to make removing the frozen stuff a breeze. In fact, the team of engineers say all it takes to clear off a treated surface is the force of gravity or a light breeze thanks "iceophobic" material.
The team says the rubber-based coating could also lead to more efficient household and industrial freezers. The substance will not only help a freezer stay frost-free, but can make them 20 percent more energy efficient as well. In fact, the research effort has already developed hundreds of ice-repelling formulas for a variety of uses. So, what's expected to be the first application for the material? Frozen food packaging.
The Minnesota Vikings and the Seattle Seahawks both wore gear from WSI Sports in the wildcard game today where the high temp was 0 degree F!
The heating action comes from a proprietary, hyper hollow fiber that is knitted into the fabric. As the heat and moisture from the body energy interact with this patented HEATR® fabric, the strands of fiber expand and generate heat.
Ok, sounds low tech compared to mobile and social advertising, but pretty effective in terms of reach per $ of investment
“The message cannot be shut off, as many forms of advertising can, and the message is displayed at all hours of the day and night, depending on where the vehicle is driven and parked. With a vehicle wrap, companies find they reach more than 95 percent of drivers in their geographical region, as most people spend time on the roadways.”
And before you call it low-tech see what this Popular Mechanics slide show says about the advanced chemistry which makes it possible
“Modem adhesive reaches its most sticky state after 24 hours, making it repositionable. The vinyl itself, a highly formable ‘cast” vinyl, has channels to allow air to escape, eliminating bubbles. A factory laminate coating can make the vinyl wrap last up to 10 years. Finally, vinyl called supercast can stretch up to 40 percent, so it can be molded around curves and sharp bumper edges.”
I recently interviewed Dr. Steven Wheeler at Texas A&M for my research on how automation is affecting various professions. He talked about “Computational Chemistry” and applications of massive computing to better understand quantum mechanics of complex molecular structures. Fascinating automation helping R&D in pharma, chemical, consumer products and many other sectors.
May be because of that conversation, and the recent merger talks between DuPont and Dow, I have become much more aware of how much innovation in chemical science is showing up in our daily lives.
On a flight last week I sat next to a “food scientist” from Red Arrow (which has recently been acquired by Kerry, the Irish dairy and other consumer foods company). He described how they produce “liquid smoke” - natural flavorings from sawdust from lumber companies. What was once a waste product is making our food tastier and according to him richer in flavor and cleaner of tar and other carcinogen residue.
Our new dish washer has introduced us to Cascade ActionPacs. P&G says “they contain a higher concentration of detergents than powders and gels, plus built-in rinse and shine ingredients” and “specially designed chelant and polymer system helps prevent hard-water film build-up on your dishes, glasses and even the interior walls of your dishwasher”. Just as importantly the package presents well and is less messy to handle.
Our car wash guy asked us if he could polish out the oxidization on the headlights. I said sure, and did not realize the multiple materials that go into the process. No wonder 3M calls it a “restoration system”
My wife send me with some wood chippings to Home Depot to see if they could match the paint. I thought it was a fool’s errand, but the paint department there said their sensor and the Behr paint software needed an even smaller sample to come “close enough”. Sure enough it did.