Worth its salt?

NUCLEAR CHEMISTRY

Last month, David Leblanc made a kind of pilgrimage to Oak Ridge, Tenn. to celebrate the 50th anniversary of a very special moment in nuclear history. From 1965 until 1969, the United States Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Laboratory was home to the world’s only functioning molten salt nuclear reactor (MSR). Based on an experimental...

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Quantum Leaps

COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS

Axel Becke has a lot in common with Albert Einstein. Just like the famous physicist, Becke was born in Germany and made his greatest scientific contributions...

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Entrepreneurship 101

ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Early November drizzle falls outside the MaRS Centre in downtown Toronto but inside the atmosphere is warm and buzzing. Excited chatter echoes off the brick walls and glass ceiling of the four-storey atrium — part of a restored heritage building that artfully preserves the 100-year-old College Wing of Toronto General Hospital — and the floor...

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Culture shift

RESEARCH

Last May, the National Research Council (NRC) announced that it was “open for business” and would “work with Canadian industries to bridge...

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Phosphorus recovery­ plant opens in Saskatoon

INDUSTRY

This summer, Vancouver-based Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies Inc. opened its first Canadian commercial-scale nutrient recovery facility in Saskatoon. The plant will remove phosphorus and nitrogen from wastewater, turning them into commercially valuable fertilizer. Ostara’s technology, licensed from the University of British Columbia in 2005, revolves around magnesium ammonium phosphate (NH4MgPO4•6H2O) also known as struvite. This...

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Human urine teeming with chemicals

BIOCHEMISTRY

A team at the University of Alberta has published the human urine metabolome, a list of more than 3,000 chemicals detectable in the urine of an average, healthy person. The database will help everyone from environmental toxicologists to doctors...

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Deadly Dust

MATERIALS

In January 2012, an explosion at the Babine Forest Products sawmill in Burns Lake, B.C. killed two workers and injured 19. Three months later a second explosion, this one at the Lakeland Mills sawmill in Prince George, B.C., killed two people and injured 22. In both cases, combustible dust from mountain pine beetle-killed wood was...

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