All articles by Brian Clegg

  • Zeolite powder
    Podcast

    Zeolites

    2019-11-22T11:37:00Z

    Brian Clegg introduces the class of materials where the holes are more important than the whole – the super-porous zeolites

  • Self-portrait of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover
    Podcast

    Gallium arsenide

    2019-11-01T09:30:00Z

    Brian Clegg introduces gallium arsenide – the supercar of the semiconductor scene

  • Zircon jewellery on a white background
    Podcast

    Zircon

    2019-07-12T09:00:00Z

    The versatile gemstones that give scientists insights into the chemistry of the early Earth, introduced by Brian Clegg

  • Photographic dark room in red light
    Podcast

    Silver iodide

    2019-06-14T09:30:00Z

    How the compound that ushered in a photographic revolution has taken to the skies to try to control the weather

  • Computer chip
    Podcast

    Beryllium oxide

    2019-05-17T13:27:00Z

    Brian Clegg examines the duality that makes beryllium oxide so valuable to the electronics industry

  • Plume of talcum powder
    Podcast

    Talc: Magnesium silicate

    2019-04-05T10:30:00Z

    Coating your naked body with powdered magnesium silicate may sound strange, but it's an important part of many bathtime rituals

  • Funeral mask of the Pharoah Tutankhamun
    Podcast

    Lazurite

    2019-02-15T12:09:00Z

    A brilliant rich blue rock, prized in antiquity as a gemstone and a prominent pigment, lazurite is the basis of lapis lazuli, the original ultramarine paint and – as Brian Clegg finds – it even adorns Tutankhamun's death mask

  • Tin cans
    Podcast

    Tin chlorides

    2018-11-29T15:19:00Z

    The compounds that put the 'tin' in tin cans and help you to reflect on your appearance

  • Coloured epoxy resin on wood
    Podcast

    Epoxies

    2018-11-16T14:25:00Z

    Epoxies – including hard-wearing resins and strong adhesives – can be found almost everywhere, from your household white goods to the Large Hadron Collider

  • A bowl of almonds
    Podcast

    Benzaldehyde

    2018-08-23T16:59:00Z

    Brian Clegg on the almond flavour compound that gives your taste buds a treat and may help rescue survivors from a disaster

  • NPK fertiliser
    Podcast

    Potassium sulfate

    2018-07-05T16:52:00Z

    Brian Clegg on a compound that keeps us well fed and looking radiant

  • Iron pyrite (fool's gold)
    Podcast

    Iron sulfides

    2018-06-14T16:50:00Z

    One mineral form may look like gold, but Brian Clegg isn't fooled by the value of iron sulfides

  • Early to mid 20th century product tins most visibly one from Folger's Golden Gate Cream Tartar, Edmonds Historical Museum, Edmonds, Washington, USA.
    Podcast

    Potassium bitartrate

    2018-05-24T09:00:00Z

    Brian Clegg with the winemaking byproduct that may be lurking in your larder

  • Periodic table of the elements – 114 – Flerovium
    Podcast

    Flerovium

    2018-02-09T13:45:00Z

    How 'hot fusion' research saw an end to cold war tensions

  • Rolex submariner, dial glowing in the dark
    Podcast

    Strontium aluminate

    2018-02-01T16:25:00Z

    A glow-in-the-dark compound that defies naming conventions

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

    Aluminium chloride

    2017-12-07T16:20:00Z

    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

    2017-11-16T15:50:00Z

    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

    2017-10-26T15:46:00Z

    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

    2017-09-22T14:44:00Z

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

  • Wooden floorboards
    Podcast

    Lignin

    2017-07-27T17:06:00Z

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