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  • GlasPort Bio Ltd - overall Rushlight Award winners, reduce gas & add value to manure Awards & Standards
    GlasPort Bio Ltd - overall Rushlight Award winners, reduce gas & add value to manure

    Animal manure has long been recognised as a valuable fertiliser and a source of renewable energy. It is also a major source of pollution, with emissions from stored manure accounting for approximately 15% of all agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and more than 70% of all ammonia emissions in Europe.

  • Ion Science - new protection against VOCs Health & safety
    Ion Science - new protection against VOCs

    Offering a new level of enhanced, reliable protection against VOCs with the first 11.7 Cub personal solution from ION Science.

    In a 2018 report from the UN, it was revealed that a worker dies every 30 seconds due to exposure to toxic gases in the workplace. That such statistics still exist today is one of the reasons ION Science is working hard to create protective technologies for workers against VOC exposure. The new 11.7 eV Cub personal solution is the first of its kind and promises to be a game-changer for protection against exposure.

    ion science VOC sensorThe Cub 11.7 eV personal device is the latest addition to ION Science's world-leadingrange of gas and leak detection products. Using their 30 years of industry experienceand their extensive knowledge of both volatile organic compounds (VOCs) andphotoionisation detection (PID), ION Science continue to deliver excellence in protection for workers.

    The 11.7 eV sensor lamp is a notoriously difficult lamp to manufacture. Due to its highly sensitive nature, 11.7 eV devices in the past have been temperamental, require frequent lamp changes and ultimately end up with increased environmental exposure, affecting performance of the device.

    ION Science has tackled this issue and developed a refined manufacturing method that eliminates some of the sensitivities and issues previously associated with 11.7 eV detection.

    As the first 11.7 personal detection solution from ION Science, the Cub 11.7 offers all the features a customer would expect from the market leader.

    This includes resistance to humidity and moisture, operational in temperatures from 0-55 degrees, and intrinsically safe even in explosive environments. Its lightweight design at only 111g makes it comfortable for wearers and the small size doesn't impede movement or work.

    Unrivalled Gas Detection.
    ionscience.com

  • CORE (UK) Ltd - Supply chain pioneers win Queens Award Awards & Standards
    CORE (UK) Ltd - Supply chain pioneers win Queens Award

    Supply chain pioneers, CORE (UK) Ltd, win The Queen's Award for Enterprise for International Trade

    CORE (UK) Ltd, leaders in digital supply chain management software have been awarded the prestigious Queen's Award for Enterprise for International Trade for outstanding growth and commercial success in international trade.

  • Enviva - Sustainable Benefits of the Wood Pellet Industry Energy & Resource Management
    Enviva - Sustainable Benefits of the Wood Pellet Industry

    Sustainable Benefits of the Wood Pellet Industry - by Dr. Jennifer Jenkins, Chief Sustainability Officer at Enviva

    Healthy, growing forests remain one of the most critical tools in the fight to mitigate climate change, and sustainable forest management is part of every plan outlined by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (the "IPCC") to limit global warming to less than 1.5 degrees Celsius.

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Monday, 27 March 2017 11:13

Molecule maps could speed up pollution control and energy technologies

University science researchers have developed a new method they say has the potential to revolutionise the search for, design and production of new materials.

The researchers, at the University of Southampton working with colleagues at the University of Liverpool, used sophisticated computer modelling to map how molecules assemble and crystallise to form new materials – each molecule leading to a myriad of possible structures, each with different properties and possible applications.

This new approach, published in the journal Nature, could accelerate the discovery of materials for key applications in energy, pollution control, pharmaceuticals and a host of other fields.

molecules uni southampton copyProfessor Andrew Cooper, Director of the Materials Innovation Factory at the University of Liverpool, explains: "Each molecule has an associated energy surface, which you can think of as being like the map of a desert island. Some islands contain treasure in the form of useful new materials, but most don't. There is an almost limitless number of molecules that we could, in principle, make – this new method tells us which islands to search and what to look for."

Graeme Day, a Professor of Chemical Modelling at the University of Southampton, continues: "When an engineer builds a dam or an aeroplane, the structure is first designed using computers. This is extremely difficult at the size scale of molecules or atoms, which often assemble in non-intuitive ways.

"It is difficult to design at the atomic scale from scratch and the failure rate in new materials discovery is high. As chemists and physicists trying to discover new materials, we often feel like explorers without reliable maps."

Unlike engineers, chemists are not truly free to make any structure that they want: they are limited to discovering structures that correspond to the optimised positions of atoms—known as local minima—on a highly complex energy surface. This surface can only be fully represented in many dimensions, so cannot be easily conceptualised.

However, the UK team has combined methods that predict how molecules will form crystal structures, with computer simulations that predict the properties of these structures. The result is relatively simple colour-coded maps which can be used, by researchers without a computational background, to locate the best materials for specific applications. For example, a researcher trying to create a highly porous material to store a particular gas might use the map to identify the best molecules that optimise this property.

In the simulations highlighted in their paper, the researchers applied this new approach to a series of known and hypothetical molecules, which led to the discovery and synthesis of materials with large methane storage capacities, which has ramifications for natural-gas-powered vehicles. The research also led to the synthesis of the least dense molecular crystal that has ever been created, showing how computational methods can be used to discover unprecedented properties.

The project was funded by the European Research Council and the Engineering and Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC). The work was carried out in the UK, but the team included researchers from Spain, China, Poland, Canada and America.

LINK
Functional materials discovery using energy–structure–function maps