Bye bye Styrofoam New plantbased material vows to kick insulation butt

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first_img Post a comment Share your voice Getting greener There’s sometimes confusion about what exactly “styrofoam” refers to. It’s a trademarked brand name for an insulation board created by Dow Chemical. It’s also used casually to refer to those white cups designed to hold hot drinks as well as various types of protective packaging materials.WSU calls out styrofoam for creating pollution when it burns and for not being able to degrade naturally. The new plant-based material is made of up 75% cellulose nanocrystals from wood pulp with polyvinyl alcohol added to make a more elastic foam. The lightweight material can support up to 200 times its weight without deforming. bouncebackEnlarge ImageThe researchers demonstrated how the water-soaked foam can bounce back into shape after being pushed down. Video screenshot by CNET Others have developed plant-based foams. You’re probably familiar with biodegradable packing peanuts that dissolve in water. Previous foam efforts don’t have the insulation properties, strength and durability of the newly developed material.”Our results demonstrate the potential of renewable materials, such as nanocellulose, for high-performance thermal insulation materials that can contribute to energy savings, less usage of petroleum-based materials, and reduction of adverse environmental impacts,” said mechanical engineer Amir Ameli, a lead researcher on the project. The initial research is promising, but it’s still early days. You won’t find this stuff insulating your house or your coffee for a while. The scientists are now working on creating stronger and more durable versions of the material while investigating how to take it from the laboratory into the real world.  13 ancient mysteries unlocked by modern science This plant-based material could one day usurp styrofoam. WSI Styrofoam, despite being environmentally problematic, is everywhere because it works so well. It makes for a great coffee cup. It insulates buildings. It protects products during shipping. But it’s also made from petroleum, a finite resource. Researchers at Washington State University (WSU) announced on Thursday that they’ve developed a plant-based alternative material “that for the first time works better than Styrofoam for insulation.” The team published its work online this week in the journal Carbohydrate Polymers.  0center_img Sci-Tech 13 Photos See ya, Styrofoam: We test the Igloo Recool, a $10 biodegradable cooler Earth Day 2019: Go greener with these cool eco-friendly products Tags Green techlast_img read more


Tag: 上海龙凤网址

first_imgIn this undated photo provided on 2 July 2018, by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, visits Sinuiju Chemical Fibre Mill in Sinuiju, North Korea. Independent journalists were not given access to cover the event depicted in this image distributed by the North Korean government. The content of this image is as provided and cannot be independently verified. Korean language watermark on image as provided by source reads: `KCNA` which is the abbreviation for Korean Central News Agency. Photo : APAs secretary of state Mike Pompeo prepares to travel this week to North Korea, experts cautioned that the Trump administration’s plan to dismantle the North’s nuclear weapons and missiles in a year is both unrealistic and risky.The State Department said Pompeo would arrive Friday on his third visit to Pyongyang in three months. It will be the first visit by a senior US official since president Donald Trump’s historic meeting with Kim Jong Un on 12 June in Singapore, where the North Korean leader committed to “complete denuclearisation” of the Korean Peninsula.Trump’s questionable claim afterward that the North was no longer a nuclear threat was soon displaced by doubts about how to achieve denuclearisation, a goal that has eluded US administrations for the past quarter-century since Pyongyang began producing fissile material for bombs.The president tweeted Tuesday that talks on the next steps with North Korea are “going well” and claimed his efforts had defused any nuclear threat.”If not for me, we would now be at War with North Korea!” Trump tweeted. He said: “no Rocket Launches or Nuclear Testing in 8 months. All of Asia is thrilled.”But experts say there is no proof North Korea’s halt of nuclear and missile tests means the North will take concrete steps to give up such weapons. They also say the US has an unrealistic approach to North Korea’s denuclearisation.Less than three weeks ago, Pompeo said the United States wanted North Korea to take “major” nuclear disarmament steps within the next two years – before the end of Trump’s first term in January 2021. Even that was viewed as bullish by nonproliferation experts considering the scale of North Korea’s weapons program and its history of evasion and reluctance to allow verification of disarmament agreements.On Sunday, Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton, publicized the more ambitious one-year plan that he said Pompeo will be discussing with the North Koreans. Bolton, who has expressed hardline views on North Korea, said that if Pyongyang has decided to give up its nuclear weapons program and is cooperative, then “we can move very quickly” and they can win sanctions relief and aid from South Korea and Japan.The rapid timeline he proposed contrasts with more measured, methodical strategies that most North Korea experts insist are needed to produce a lasting denuclearisation agreement. They say any solid deal will require Kim to be completely transparent about his program – at a time when intelligence reports suggest he will try to deceive the United States about the extent of his covert weapons or facilities.The one-year plan is predicated on the North Koreans “rolling over and playing dead,” said Joel Wit, a former State Department official who helped negotiate a 1994 agreement that temporarily froze Pyongyang’s nuclear program. “If it’s our going-in position, it’s fine. We should give it a try and see where it goes. If it’s our bottom line, it’s dead on arrival and then provides a pretext for John Bolton to make mischief.”To date, Kim has halted nuclear and missile tests and has destroyed tunnels at the North’s nuclear test site, but the authoritarian nation has yet to take concrete steps toward abandoning its weapons programs. Recent think tank analyses using satellite imagery suggest that Pyongyang may even be expanding some facilities linked to its missile and nuclear programs.The Washington Post on Saturday cited unnamed US intelligence officials as concluding that North Korea does not intend to fully surrender its nuclear stockpile. Evidence collected since the summit points to preparations to deceive the US about the number of nuclear warheads in North Korea’s arsenal as well as the existence of undisclosed facilities used to make fissile material for nuclear bombs, according to the report. Some aspects of the updated intelligence were reported Friday by NBC News.A US official told The Associated Press that the Post’s report was accurate and that the assessment reflected the consistent view across US government agencies for the past several weeks. The official was not authorised to comment publicly on the matter and spoke on condition of anonymity.North Korea and Washington have yet to negotiate the terms under which the North would relinquish its weapons, so Pyongyang can be expected to seek leverage in those discussions. But those reported activities could add to misgivings in the United States, which has seen agreements with the North flounder before, often amid allegations of evasion or cheating. Pyongyang has often had its own complaints about Washington over slow delivery of aid and imposition of sanctions.”Denuclearisation is no simple task. There is no precedent for a country that has openly tested nuclear weapons and developed a nuclear arsenal and infrastructure as substantial as the one in North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons,” Daryl Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, wrote in a commentary published Monday.A strategy by David Albright at the Institute for Science and International Security suggests the US needs to get Kim to disclose a complete list of all his nuclear program sites and materials, including uranium and plutonium. He also said Trump and Kim should decide whether to move the nuclear weapons out of North Korea to dismantle them or do it inside the country.Even if North Korea is cooperative, the magnitude of dismantling its weapons of mass destruction programs, believed to encompass dozens of sites, will be tough, according to Stanford University academics, including nuclear physicist Siegfried Hecker, a leading expert on the North’s nuclear program.The Stanford team has proposed a 10-year roadmap, based on its belief that “North Korea will not give up its weapons and its weapons program until its security can be assured.”last_img

Tag: 上海龙凤网址

first_img To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: 00:00 /50:42 Listencenter_img X On Wednesday’s Houston Matters: We learn more about Gov. Greg Abbott’s new plan to improve school safety across the state. It comes less than two weeks after a student shot and killed ten people at Santa Fe High School. Plus: News 88.7’s Davis Land reports on how a mother’s stress from a natural disaster can affect her baby.Also this hour: Our political experts discuss the latest national, state, and local political stories with an eye for how they might affect Houston and Texas. Then, we learn about some unusual crime-solving methods being used in Texas, such as hypnosis. And we meet some seriously competitive local Scrabble players.WATCH: Today’s Houston Matters 360-Degree Facebook Live Video.We offer a free podcast here, on iTunes, Stitcher and other podcast apps. This article is part of the Houston Matters podcast Sharelast_img read more


Tag: 上海龙凤网址

first_img Share As part of an initiative to bring the library to more people, the Houston Public Library has launched a new way for people to check out and return books on the go: vending machines.Officially known as BookLink, the first two book vending machines were opened this week in downtown Houston — one is located in One Allen Center next to Amille’s Coffee and the other is in the food court at The Shops at Houston Center.   “We just are so excited that we’re bringing this service to Houstonians where it can be more convenient for them to interact with the library,” said Rhea Lawson, Executive Director of the Houston Public Library. “All you need is a library card.”The machines are simple to use. Users scan their library cards, enter their PIN, and open the door to select the books they want. After the door is shut, the machine runs inventory to determine what’s been checked out. Users then have the option to print a receipt showing what they’ve borrowed and when it’s due.The machines are also equipped with a Wi-Fi hotspot.Lawson says the machines are part of the library’s HPL Everywhere initiative to provide library services in locations throughout the city.“We believe that the library should be everywhere, and we’re trying to try different opportunities, or provide different opportunities, for people to interact with us,” she said.The next book vending machine will be placed at Discovery Green. Video Playerhttps://cdn.hpm.io/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/06160023/Library_Vending-3.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.last_img read more