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Posts Tagged "chemday"

Lab Rat

Speeding up reactions: biological vs. chemical catalysts

The process of catalysis. X and Y are reactants (input) while Z is the final product. C is the catalyst.

Most chemical reactions go pretty slowly at room temperature. This is good news most of the time, otherwise random parts of the environment would be exploding at regular intervals, but bad news for industrial processes which need reactions to occur. In order to speed them up, catalysts are used. A catalyst is any substance that [...]

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Lab Rat

Happy New Year – the blog retrospective

HNY-funky

Last year, my New Year’s Resolution was to try for a child with my husband. As I’m currently typing while trying to entertain a three month old baby I think I can safely claim that as one of the most successful New Year’s Resolutions I’ve ever made. I’ve been blogging at Scientific American for well [...]

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Lab Rat

Holding elements together: Ionic bonds

ionic bond electron transfer

A while ago, I wrote a couple of posts describing some intra-molecular forces, forces that hold atoms and molecules together. I enjoyed writing them, and people come back to read them quite frequently, so I thought I’d continue and write about a couple more. The previous posts covered van der Waals forces and hydrogen bonds (and dipoles!) [...]

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Lab Rat

Holding molecules together – van der Waals forces

iodine

A while back, I did a post for Chemistry week about hydrogen bonds. In it, I mentioned why I find intramolecular forces so fascinating; they are interactions on such a tiny scale that hold together everything from small molecules like water to massive molecules like the enzymes and multi-enzyme complexes that I study. The hydrogen-bond [...]

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Lab Rat

Hydrogen bonds: why life needs water

Had to check the spelling of

Water is everywhere on our planet. In the air, in our bodies, in our food and in our breath. Without it life as we know it would not be possible. Water is vital for the survival of all living things, yet as a molecule it has some pretty odd behaviour. Water molecules stick to each [...]

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