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Nanomembranes with pore molecules for efficient filtration

Method offers the promise of many possible applications across the chemical and pharmaceutical industries

05-Sep-2022

A team from Bielefeld University, Queen Mary University of London, Imperial College London (both United Kingdom) and Northwestern University in Evanston (USA) have produced a new breed of polymer nanomembranes with aligned supramolecular macrocycle molecules. These new nanomembranes demonstrate ...

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Photosynthesis-inspired process makes commodity chemicals

New strategy is less expensive, less energy intensive than current industrial processes

14-Jun-2022

Northwestern University chemists have taken inspiration from plants to revolutionize the way an important industrial chemical is made. In a first for the field, the Northwestern team used light and water to convert acetylene into ethylene, a widely used, highly valuable chemical that is a key ...

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Step toward a Circular Economy?

Catalytic deconstruction of PET with zirconium metal–organic framework

11-May-2022

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is one of the most common plastics. Discarded PET most often ends up in landfills or in the environment because the rate of recycling remains low. In the journal Angewandte Chemie, a research team has now reported a zirconium-based metal–organic framework material ...

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Method efficiently breaks down plastic bottles into component parts

Researchers first to demonstrate use of metal-organic frameworks to degrade plastics

14-Apr-2022

What if the life cycle of the plastic bottle was circular? Where a used plastic bottle was returned to its original components, ready to be made into a new plastic bottle instead of possibly ending up in a landfill. A Northwestern University research team is the first to demonstrate that a ...

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Methane-eating bacteria convert greenhouse gas to fuel

State-of-the-art method reveals never-before-seen atomic structures controlling the process

21-Mar-2022

Methanotrophic bacteria consume 30 million metric tons of methane per year and have captivated researchers for their natural ability to convert the potent greenhouse gas into usable fuel. Yet we know very little about how the complex reaction occurs, limiting our ability to use the double benefit ...

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Bacteria upcycle carbon waste into valuable chemicals

Engineered bacteria convert captured carbon dioxide into chemicals for fuels, fabric and cosmetics

23-Feb-2022

Bacteria are known for breaking down lactose to make yogurt and sugar to make beer. Now researchersled by Northwestern University and LanzaTech have harnessed bacteria to break down waste carbon dioxide (CO2) to make valuable industrial chemicals. In a new pilot study, the researchers selected, ...

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A rare feat: Material protects against both biological and chemical threats

Versatile fabric is effective against virus that causes COVID-19

12-Oct-2021

A Northwestern University research team has developed a versatile composite fabric that can deactivate both biological threats, such as the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19, and chemical threats, such as those used in chemical warfare. A material that is effective against both classes of ...

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Using yeast to create alternative petrochemical processes

Integrating cellular engineering with cell-free biosynthesis could lead to efficient ways to power the earth

30-Aug-2021

As climate change continues to do more damage to our planet, scientists are working to find more efficient and cleaner ways to power the earth. One appealing alternative to common petrochemical processes that generate significant greenhouse gases and other waste products could come from ...

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Engineers create double layer of borophene for first time

New material maintains borophene’s electronic properties, offers new advantages

30-Aug-2021

For the first time, Northwestern University engineers have created a double layer of atomically flat borophene, a feat that defies the natural tendency of boron to form non-planar clusters beyond the single-atomic-layer limit. Although known for its promising electronic properties, borophene — a ...

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New 'Swiss Army knife' cleans up water pollution

First used to soak up oil in water, new sponge sequesters excess phosphate from water

02-Jun-2021

Phosphate pollution in rivers, lakes and other waterways has reached dangerous levels, causing algae blooms that starve fish and aquatic plants of oxygen. Meanwhile, farmers worldwide are coming to terms with a dwindling reserve of phosphate fertilizers that feed half the world's food ...

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