Category Archives: Chemistry

For centuries, metals were employed in optical applications only as mirrors and gratings. New vistas opened up in the late 1970s and early 1980s with the discovery of surface-enhanced Raman scattering and the use of surface plasmon (collective electronic oscillations […]

Over geologic time scales, seawater transforms the basalt of the ocean floor by chemical attack. At the end of this alteration process, the basalt turns partly into clays and partly into dissolved salts in sea water. Lithium, a chemical element […]

The idea that certain natural products such as rubber are composed of giant molecules, or polymers, consisting of many repeating units linked by covalent bonds arose largely from the work of the German chemist Hermann Staudinger (1881–1965) in the early […]

Antimicrobial resistance is a complex problem that contributes to health and economic losses worldwide. Resistance to antimicrobial therapies reduces the effectiveness of current drugs, leading to increased morbidity, mortality, and health care expenditure. Because globalization increases the vulnerability of any […]

Worldwide research efforts on plasmons and metamaterials have been growing exponentially for the past ten years. Now, Antonio I. Fernández-Domínguez (IFIMAC), Francisco J. García-Vidal (IFIMAC & DIPC), and Luis Martín-Moreno (ICMA) discuss new directions for the future, such as the […]

Imagine there exist a material in which an electron could be split into two quasiparticles. These two quasiparticles both would carry electric charge, move in opposite directions but could not move backwards. Furthermore these quasiparticles would be massless. And we […]

Graphene nanoribbons (GNRs), are strips of graphene with ultra-thin width (
GNRs are very interesting structures, partly due to their attractive electronic properties. Those properties vary dramatically with changes in the nanoribbon’s atomic structure in terms of width, crystallographic […]

During World War II the Germans relied on their strong chemical knowledge to overcome the limited access to critical raw materials that the circumstances of the war itself imposed. One of these raw materials was Chilean saltpeter (sodium nitrate), which […]

Gold is the quintessential noble metal. Its lack of chemical reactivity, particularly to acids and atmospheric corrosion, together with is rarity and malleability make it the precious metal it is since ancient times.
Today, if we go for a description […]

When autumn arrives to temperate climate forests, deciduous trees lose their characteristic green tonalities and start showing a wide spectrum of new colours: yellow, brown, orange, red… Chlorophyll reabsorption takes place in the leaves and carotenoids, present in a lower […]