Chemistry in its Element

  • Old photo of a man making guncotton
    Podcast

    Guncotton or nitrocellulose

    28 October 2015

    From an apron aflame to a popular propellant, Michael Freemantle tracks the history of guncotton

  • Pot of Marmite
    Podcast

    Thiamine or vitamin B

    22 October 2015

    Brian Clegg introduces an essential nutrient, and the first to hold the name ‘vitamin’: Thiamine or vitamin B

  • vials of cephalosporin
    Podcast

    Cephalosporins

    15 October 2015

    A story which starts knee-deep in sewage and ends with the spread of drug resistant infections like MRSA

  • War poster about lewisite
    Podcast

    Lewisite

    7 October 2015

    Wouldn’t it be great to have a molecule named after you? But perhaps not this week’s compound, the chemical weapon lewisite

  • Argonne National Laboratory
    Podcast

    Xenon hexafluoroplatinate

    30 September 2015

    Hayley Birch discovers the compound that opened up a wing of the periodic table for reactions: Xenon hexafluoroplatinate

  • Iced tea
    Podcast

    Sodium azide

    23 September 2015

    Raychelle Burks finds out how Potbelly’s patrons became poisoning patients, in the mystery of the sodium azide-laced iced tea

  • Gelsemium sempervirens flowers
    Podcast

    Gelsemine

    21 September 2015

    In this week’s podcast, Matt Gunther reveals the toxic history of gelsemine

  • Wintergreen plant
    Podcast

    Methyl salicylate

    15 September 2015

    In this week’s podcast, Raychelle Burks tells us of the cool but warming effects of methyl salicylate, better known as oil of wintergreen.

  • A very old edition of Tyrocinium Chymicum
    Podcast

    Antimony sulfide

    2 September 2015

    It’s at the heart of the first chemical equation, and makes Hayley Birch think of quiche. This week’s compound is antimony sulfide

  • Blue Ridge mountains
    Podcast

    Isoprene

    26 August 2015

    Why do the Blue Ridged Mountains inspire so many songs? Maybe it’s because of the Isoprene that gives them their blue hue…