Meeting a critical need in a supercritical way

It has been almost a decade since Gisele Azimi was pursuing post-doctoral work at MIT, where she realized just how dependent our technology was becoming on rare earth elements, which pose significant environmental and economic challenges as they are being processed into components for everything from cell phone sensors to wind turbine generators. “We are...

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Engaging in elemental exploration

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As the official administrators of the Periodic Table, the good people at IUPAC are pleased to share their intimate knowledge of its most arcane history and structural details, such as why plutonium’s symbol is Pu rather than Pl, or where you might be able to find some of the synthetic radioactive element americium at home....

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Stepping out of science and into something less comfortable

Patience is an undeniable virtue in science, and not just in matters confined to the laboratory. Alison Thompson, MCIC and winner of the 2020 Clara Benson Award, recently offered an intimate account of the instrumental role patience has played throughout her career. Thompson, who is a member of Dalhousie University’s Department of Chemistry, was the...

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Innovating along a linear path

It has been a decade since the world grappled with the challenge posed by Canada’s aging nuclear reactor, the NRU, which at one point was producing almost half of the global supply of Molybdenum 99, an isotope used in millions of medical scans every year. The reactor was finally retired in 2018, but a concerted...

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Celebrating the rainbow

The indefatigable scientist Richard Feynman once defended the subjectivity of beauty by pointing out that if our eyes were receptive to a different part of the electromagnetic spectrum, the only description of a rainbow would be found in dry research papers, devoid of all the romance we associate with this phenomenon. On the other hand,...

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On-line teaching – by the book

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Join us at 12 pm Wednesday 17 June 2020 for CIC Talks, featuring University of Ottawa Chemistry Professor Alison Flynn. Go to CIC Virtual to attend this event on Zoom. When the next university semester begins this fall, there may be some classrooms on campus that actually contain people. But these will be in the...

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