Brian Clegg's articles

  • Aluminium chloride AlCl3 anhydrous (yellow) with some AlCl3x6H2O (hexahydrate) white.
    Podcast

    Aluminium chloride

    7 December 2017

    Brian Clegg becomes a sleuth to investigate the uses of a deceptively simple Lewis acid

  • Test launch of Bumper 8: a two-stage rocket that topped a V-2 missile base with a WAC Corporal rocket
    Podcast

    Tetranitromethane

    16 November 2017

    Brian Clegg introduces a failed rocket fuel oxidiser with a very tricky structure

  • A photograph of orange peel and a bottle of essential oil
    Podcast

    Citral

    26 October 2017

    A compound known for its citrusy zing, and which also helps honey bees find their way home

  • News stories about 'Ginger Jake', the spirit that caused paralysis known as 'Jake walk' during prohibition
    Podcast

    Phosphorus chlorides

    22 September 2017

    A hugely useful group of compounds that have a distinct dual personality

  • Wooden floorboards
    Podcast

    Lignin

    27 July 2017

    Wood has been vital in the development of human civilisation. Brian Clegg looks at the compound at its heart

  • A rustic cheeseboard
    Podcast

    Chymosin

    6 July 2017

    The enzyme that helps us turn milk into cheese is also responsible for the biggest commercial success story of any genetically modified organism

  • An image of a powder with a faint blue glow
    Podcast

    Caesium chloride

    14 June 2017

    A compound found in mineral water that is also used in medical treatments and solar cells

  • A single layer of molybdenum disulfide
    Podcast

    Molybdenum disulfide

    1 March 2017

    Brian Clegg discovers the compound that makes the world’s smallest transistors

  • A bag of freshly donated blood
    Podcast

    Porphyrins

    8 February 2017

    Brian Clegg examines the colourful compounds that no red-blooded creature can do without: Porphyrins

  • Ball and stick structure of adamantane
    Podcast

    Adamantane

    26 January 2017

    Brian Clegg introduces a crystalline hydrocarbon that isn’t as tough as it sounds, but is the basis of a wide range of medicines