Category → Uncategorized
I’m out of town today, folks, so I scheduled a roundup for everything we had as of overlord press time.
Tweet of the Week:
No, no, no *closes think geek* I can’t have ALL the things.
— Jamie Gallagher (@JamieBGall) May 9, 2013
And now, to the network:
Cleantech Chemistry: No Magic In China’s Solar Industry
TWO tweets of the week to make up for none on Monday:
Something I have learned: you only complete one project by ignoring a whole bunch of other projects for a while.
— Kate Clancy (@KateClancy) April 26, 2013
— Eric Popczun (@ePopczun) April 22, 2013
To the network:
Cleantech Chemistry: Solar Boom in Japan, with Battery to Match
Grand CENtral: Guest Re-post: “In defense of chemphobia” by Andrew Bissette
Terra Sigillata: The Cinnamon Challenge: On Being Charged with #Chemophobia
Tweet of the week:
— CHEMIST HULK (@ChemistHulk) April 10, 2013
I know, I know. There were a plethora of #ACSnola gems to choose from. But I wouldn’t want to make CHEMIST HULK angry…
To the network:
Tweet of the week:
Thumbs down to the death of Roger Ebert, Thumbs up for his life and his career. Although we all have different taste, you saved us from duds
— Daily Brew (@D_B_Connect) April 5, 2013
I’m baaaaack! Many thanks to Carmen for both overlording in my absence and agreeing to co-overlord in my return. Today we’re mourning the loss of film critic Roger Ebert, but we’re also celebrating the birthday of Terra Sig owner and ubermensch, David Kroll!
To the network:
Grand CENtral: C&EN Picks for ACS New Orleans #ACSNOLA
Just Another Electron Pusher: Why some women may choose not to enter STEM careers and ACS Webinar: Chemists at U.S. Customs and Border Protection
The Haystack: Liveblogging First-Time Disclosures of Drug Structures from #ACSNOLA (bookmark this link for next week)
The Safety Zone: Chemical and laboratory safety at #ACSNOLA
My apologies for a few weeks hiatus over here at Artful Science.
Last summer I got married and we are finally off on our honeymoon to Uzbekistan (aka the honeystan) where we will explore some awesome Silk Road architecture.
Given that we’ll be looking at a lot of mosaics, I thought I’d point you to this post on the conservation of tile art and the 2011 Nobel Prize in chemistry.
See you at the end of April…
Gold gilding, ancient amber and a mysterious hidden sculpture: A new cultural heritage journal launches!
There’s beautiful gold gilding at Reales Alcazares royal palace in Seville, Spain.
Yet it turns out that the pretty gold gilding you see in the image on the left is not precisely original.
The World Heritage Site was originally built in 914 AD, and then expanded from the 14th to the 16th century.
Recently, Spanish researchers found a layer of paint lying below the gold gilding that contains lead chromate, a pigment that wasn’t used until the 19th century. So the gold lying above must have been added afterwards.
Yellow lead chromate pigment is responsible for the bright color of many old school buses, and it was even used as a colorant for yellow candy before falling out of favor because both lead and chromate are extremely toxic.
Spanish researchers report that the lead chromate layer was added sometime after 1818 above a deteriorated layer gold gilding, probably as part of a 19th century restoration project.
The lead chromate may have been painted on as false gold to keep up appearances before new gold gilding could be applied.
Or it’s possible that the lead chromate was painted on just before the new gold gilding: The paint may have acted as a foundation layer to help the new gold gilding adhere.
This conundrum is reported in the inaugural issue of Heritage Science, the first peer-reviewed journal to focus entirely on cultural heritage science. (Welcome!!)
There’s a variety of interesting topics reported in the journal’s first edition, including a way to determine the geographical origin of amber which provides clues about early trading roots of the fossilized tree resin.
The issue also contains a cool paper about a sculpture accidentally discovered behind a wall of St Petersburg’s Winter Palace in 2010.
The sculpture, called Fugitive Slave and made by the Russian artist Vladimir Beklemishev, was inspired by the anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin. It was initially exhibited at the World’s Fair in Chicago in 1893, and then sent to Russia before being hidden in the palace wall after the sculpture suffered heavy damage during World War Two.
The sculpture was made to look like bronze, even though it is definitely not bronze.
That’s why the scientists are keen to study its make-up: The pseudo bronze involves creative use of gypsum, iron, copper and arsenic.
Brereton does not mince words about the devastating effect of 20th century progress on cultural heritage. He begins with his hometown of Bristol, where “post-war planners destroyed more of Bristol than [World War 2] bombs” and goes on to decry lost heritage in other parts of Europe, Asia and the Americas.
“Capitalists, aristocrats, democrats and communists were all at it in the twentieth century, destroying a heritage that had evolved very slowly for centuries. In the past there had been waves of localized destruction, for example in Rome, the Popes raided marble from the Coliseum in order to construct new churches, and in Latin America, the Spanish conquistadors organised a mass destruction of Inca, Aztec and many other cultural artefacts – for example there are only fragments of Aztec written texts available due to the enthusiastic destruction of material by priests. But the twentieth century appears unique for a mass international desecration of our global historic heritage. Most governments were dependent on some sort of political support, even tyrants have to feed their armies, and people wanted hot water in the homes and good food on the table and washing machines and televisions rather than fine paintings and important buildings.”
Here’s to reading more in Heritage Science about how 21st century science can inform efforts to conserve what’s not been destroyed in the 20th century.
How can chemists mitigate the effects of natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina? What are the latest chemistry mobile apps? And how are emulsions making a difference in medical imaging? Sessions at next week’s ACS National Meeting in New Orleans will be covering those timely topics. Watch all of our picks below. If you’ll be in New Orleans, you can also see these videos in the convention center.