Polly Arnold’s diversity of interests

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Kit Chapman asks the champion of actinide chemistry and diversity in science what comes next as she starts her new role at a US national lab

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The chemistry of a curry

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Can chemistry help Nina Notman make a better curry?

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The lithium pioneers

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Katrina Krämer traces the full story of how lithium-ion batteries won the 2019 Nobel prize

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An image showing the letters P, F, A and S, which stand for perfluorinated alkyl substances, sinking into water; a small fish can also be seen

A persistent perfluorinated problem

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PFASs were used in household and industrial products for decades before their harmful health effects and biopersistence came to light. Rebecca Trager investigates a messy situation

An illustrated portrait of June Sutor

The forgotten female crystallographer who discovered C–H⋯O bonds

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Andy Extance tells the overlooked story of crystallographer June Sutor, whose C–H⋯O bonding hypothesis was unjustly suppressed

A photograph of Primo Levi; the tile of the chapters in his book, The Periodic Table, are written around him

Primo Levi and the other periodic table

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Author and chemist Primo Levi was born 100 years ago this July. Philip Ball looks at his chemical and literary legacy – including his books The Periodic Table and If This Is a Man

An image showing a scrunched up piece of paper with the details of element 118 - Ninovium - Written down

Victor Ninov and the element that never was

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 20 years on, Kit Chapman investigates how a scientific scandal unfolded

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Superhydrophobic materials from nature

2019-04-15T09:43:00+01:00By

Chemists who want to make materials that repel water but do not contain fluorocarbons are taking their inspiration from nature, Rachel Brazil finds

An artistic representation of the periodic table based on the shape of a shell

The art of the periodic table

2019-03-25T11:23:00+00:00By

The venerable chart of elements has inspired and entertained in its first 150 years. Hayley Bennett looks at some of its weird, wacky – and wise – incarnations

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Perovskites beyond solar cells

2019-02-18T11:50:00+00:00By

From solar cells and LEDs to catalysts and quantum computing, James Mitchell Crow asks if there is anything perovskites can’t do

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Can we live forever?

2019-01-28T09:58:00+00:00By

We are now living longer than ever before, but not always in perfect health. Anthony King talks to the researchers working to extend our healthspan

Hero illustration showing question marks with different forms of chemical elements as dots

What is an element?

2019-01-10T09:26:00+00:00By

Our understanding of what an element is has evolved over the years, but it’s still a tricky concept to nail down. Philip Ball investigates

A picture of Mendeleev with his 1869 periodic table

The father of the periodic table

2019-01-02T09:26:00+00:00By

Mike Sutton looks at how Mendeleev’s patience revealed periodicity in the elements

A taste of wine chemistry

2018-11-27T13:24:00+00:00By

Nina Notman talks to the wine detectives uncovering the flavour molecules in our favourite tipples

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Half-cooked turkey

The marvellous Maillard reaction

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Andy Extance looks at the culinary reaction cascade that goes beyond Christmas and Thanksgiving dinner and has worrying links to health

An illustration depicting evolution in the laboratory

How chemical evolution took the 2018 chemistry Nobel prize

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Emma Stoye has the full story of how Frances Arnold, George Smith and Greg Winter put evolution to work in the lab

cw nov18 feature medals index 767985363

Are the Nobel prizes good for science?

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Philip Ball looks at whether prizes and awards help or hinder scientific progress

Nuclear medicine hero

The nuclear option

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Using radioisotopes to image inside patients’ bodies – nuclear medicine – is under threat from ageing reactors. James Mitchell Crow discovers the new science trying to fix the problem

Illustration of plants bearing tablets and drug capsules as flowers

From folklore to pharmacy

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Although many drugs have in the past come from plants, Hayley Bennett discovers that it’s hard work getting them approved today 

Hydrogen hero illustration

Hydrogen: still the fuel of the future?

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Is the dream of a hydrogen-fuelled future still a pipe dream, or is it in the pipeline? Angeli Mehta investigates