Tag Archives: potassium

Monitoring concrete

UD professors study microbes as potential biomarkers for damaged concrete

Concrete is the most widely used construction material in the world. However, many concrete roadways and bridges crack due to internal chemical reactions, temperature fluctuations or external chemical and physical stresses.

One internal chemical reaction is the Alkali-Silica Reaction (ASR) that destroys the concrete from within.  (more…)

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JILA Physicists Achieve Elusive ‘Evaporative Cooling’ of Molecules

Achieving a goal considered nearly impossible, JILA physicists have chilled a gas of molecules to very low temperatures by adapting the familiar process by which a hot cup of coffee cools.

JILA is a joint institute of the University of Colorado Boulder and the National Institute of Standards and Technology located on the CU-Boulder campus. (more…)

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Search for Life Suggests Solar Systems More Habitable than Ours

SAN FRANCISCO — Scattered around the Milky Way are stars that resemble our own sun—but a new study is finding that any planets orbiting those stars may very well be hotter and more dynamic than Earth.

That’s because the interiors of any terrestrial planets in these systems are likely warmer than Earth—up to 25 percent warmer, which would make them more geologically active and more likely to retain enough liquid water to support life, at least in its microbial form.

The preliminary finding comes from geologists and astronomers at Ohio State University who have teamed up to search for alien life in a new way. (more…)

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Blood Samples Show Deadly Frog Fungus at Work in the Wild

Pathogen leads to dehydration, other ill effects

The fungal infection that killed a record number of amphibians worldwide leads to deadly dehydration in frogs in the wild, according to results of a new study.

High levels of an aquatic, chytrid fungus called Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) disrupt fluid and electrolyte balance in wild frogs, the scientists say, severely depleting the frogs’ sodium and potassium levels and causing cardiac arrest and death. (more…)

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Where the Earth’s Heat Comes From

*Berkeley Lab scientists join their KamLAND colleagues to measure the radioactive sources of Earth’s heat flow*

What spreads the sea floors and moves the continents? What melts iron in the outer core and enables the Earth’s magnetic field? Heat. Geologists have used temperature measurements from more than 20,000 boreholes around the world to estimate that some 44 terawatts (44 trillion watts) of heat continually flow from Earth’s interior into space. Where does it come from?

Radioactive decay of uranium, thorium, and potassium in Earth’s crust and mantle is a principal source, and in 2005 scientists in the KamLAND collaboration, based in Japan, first showed that there was a way to measure the contribution directly. The trick was to catch what KamLAND dubbed geoneutrinos – more precisely, geo-antineutrinos – emitted when radioactive isotopes decay. (KamLAND stands for Kamioka Liquid-scintillator Antineutrino Detector.) (more…)

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Fireworks Produce High Levels of Toxic Particles

Fireworks. Downtown Miami on July 4, 2007. Image credit: Marc Averette. Source: Wikipedia

Fireworks can be spectacular. However, the gas and smoke produced by the colorful explosions carry extremely high levels of toxic particles, according to a study by Audrey Smargiassi, a professor at the Université de Montreal Department of Environmental and Occupational Health.

Smargiassi conducted one of the first studies examining the composition of the emitted gases and the concentration of the particles. In addition, her study is unique as she collected her data below the fireworks display where spectators usually stand. Previous studies usually collected data from nearby rooftops.

The study was conducted in 2007 during nine separate shows presented at La Ronde amusement park where 5.7 million spectators attend an international fireworks competition every summer. (more…)

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Walnuts: Its Amazing Health Benefits

Health benefits of walnuts have been known since time immemorial. Hippocrates and Avicenna mentioned them in the treatment of various diseases. In addition, the ancients thought that they stimulate mental activity. Anna Protsenko, a nutritionist, told MedPulse.ru.  

Walnuts contain a great deal of minerals,” the expert explains. “They include iron, copper, cobalt, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, and iodine. Many of them are antioxidants.

(more…)

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