Energy

Elements necessary for humans

At present there are 118 elements listed in the periodic table. Some of these elements are commonly found on the earth in the form of ores. Some are radioactive and have very short half lives. Many such elements have been synthesized in the laboratory and live for a very short time. Human body like other things existing is made of compounds which are made from the elements. Out of these 118 only some elements are connected with the human body. Although elements as such don’t make up the body it is the combined form that is molecules constitute the human… Read More »Elements necessary for humans

1905: Annus Mirabilis of Albert Einstein 

Annus mirabilis is a Latin phrase that means “wonderful year”, “miraculous year” or “amazing year”. This term was originally used to refer to the year 1666, and today is used to refer to several years during which events of major importance are remembered. Albert Einstein singlehandedly added 1905 as another Annus Mirabilis. In this year, his creativity peaked and he made the revolutionary scientific discoveries. He was just 26 years old. During that year he did: { March: Proved that the light consists of photons thus proving the quantum nature of the light. May: Proved the existence of the atom. June: Special Theory… Read More »1905: Annus Mirabilis of Albert Einstein 

Concept of pH in Chemistry

Although the pH of a lake or polluted stream is seldom reported in the media, the people who are monitoring the health of the lake water record it daily religiously. But pH is quite an important physical property of water. pH of a stream gives an indication about the salts and other soluble matter present in the water. These soluble salts affect the organisms living in the water. Also changing pH in a stream can be an indicator of increasing pollution or some other environmental factor. As we know life on our planet is based on the water. Water is… Read More »Concept of pH in Chemistry

Is there life on Mars? Again Microbes hold the key

Earliest life of single cell evolved into 3 branches having distinct traits. The branches further subdivide into more branches on the evolutionary tree of life called Phylogenetic tree of life. The first three branches are called Bacteria, archaea and Eucaryota. As we can see in this tree, there is a member of archaea family with the name Methanogen. This microbe holds the answer for presence of vast quantities of methane which is trapped inside the ice cages called methane hydrates. These hydrates are found on Earth in the permafrost regions having very low temperatures or under the deep sea floor.… Read More »Is there life on Mars? Again Microbes hold the key

Simply Mind Boggling

Scientists speculate that all the fundamental particles were created from the energy immediately after the Big Bang event in which Universe was formed. Then these atoms combined in different permutations and combinations and molecules were born. Context of immediately in the cosmic events is not similar to the usual terms with which define our world. It may be millions of years. Earth was formed but its climate was not like the present day. There was no life except one algae namely “Blue Algae” known in the scientific language as “Cyanobacteria” where “Cyano” stands for blue color. It thrived in the… Read More »Simply Mind Boggling

Chemistry by Nature

Nature is a great chemist. It synthesizes millions of compounds every moment ranging from simple molecules like methane to very complex molecules like carbohydrates, cellulose and proteins. Most of these compounds are synthesized by plants. From the plants they are passed on to animals because the animals cannot synthesize their food by themselves. But there are many chemical reactions occurring inside the cells like breaking down the complex molecules and unlocking the energy which is stored in them. Where does all the energy locked inside the different molecules come from? Most of it is derived from the Sun light. In… Read More »Chemistry by Nature

By any means tenable or Untenable

Thermodynamics is the most important branch of the science dealing with the energy, work and conversions of one form of energy into other forms. It cuts across many branches of the courses like physics, chemistry and engineering. All the students in these streams have to come face to face with this subject. Its laws have become so perfect that they can be bound into mathematical equations. First law of thermodynamics is concerning the conservation of energy.  Suppose there are two systems which are having energies A & B. If they are connected, then the energy of the resultant system shall… Read More »By any means tenable or Untenable

Entropy: A negative form of Information?

Entropy is the measure of degree of randomness in a system. More the randomness more is the system stable. Any reaction which results in the creation of more number of particles or when matter in the solid state goes to liquid state and from liquid state to gaseous state results in increase of entropy. Entropy is related to the heat energy which is the form of energy all other energies when used tend to change into. Heat causes the increase in the randomness of the motion of the particles in the matter. The entropy thus is connected with chaos. It… Read More »Entropy: A negative form of Information?

Cyclohexane: A Chemical Chair

Cyclohexane belongs to the category of hydrocarbons called naphthenes. It has a chemical formula of C6H12. Naphthenes are found in crude oil. Most abundant are mono ring compounds of which cyclohexane is the perfect example. In fact, the poly ring naphthenes are found in the high boiling fractions of naphtha and the name seems to have been derived from naphtha. The term Naphthene has become almost redundant except in petroleum industry.The other fractions present in the crude oil are paraffins which are long chain alkanes  with formula CnH2n+1. For example, when n=6, then we have hexane with formula C6H14. High… Read More »Cyclohexane: A Chemical Chair

By the Sea

We have gone to picnic by the sea beach. It was on the Konkan Coast of India. At the time of our arrival at the beach, there was a low tide and sand on the beach was exposed a great deal. It was just flat with very gentle slope towards the sea. Water nearer was muddy and khaki colored. Far off it looked greenish. There were boats looking like specks and seagulls were hovering over them. I enjoyed a lot inside the water. I would go deeper and deeper inside till I was not able to stand on my feet… Read More »By the Sea