Chemical

Ed Fontes | September 10, 2014

As a chemical engineer, I can’t just smoke a cigar and leave it at that. Here, I investigate the anatomy, structure, and chemical process zones of a cigar and show you a simple model of the temperature distribution of the smoke in a cigar as well as the concentration of oxygen.

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Jennifer Segui | September 3, 2014

Billions of dollars are spent each year in the U.S. to repair corrosion damage. To help reduce the high cost of corrosion, engineers at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) in Washington, D.C. are using multiphysics simulation to gain a better understanding of the fundamental mechanism. A successful research outcome at NRL will establish the correlation between metal microstructure, corrosion, and mechanical strength. Material designers could then develop stronger, corrosion-resistant materials using this new information.

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Edmund Dickinson | August 14, 2014

Diabetes is an incurable global killer: the World Health Organization estimates 350 million diabetics worldwide, with an average annual fatality rate close to 1%. Fortunately, modern medical science enables diabetics to manage their glucose levels and intake, so many countries have seen greatly reduced danger of the disease. Many diabetics must track their glucose levels throughout the day, requiring an accurate method for measuring the concentration of glucose in blood. For modern sensor designs, the method of choice is electrochemistry.

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Bridget Cunningham | July 21, 2014

In chemistry, separation using differences in migration patterns plays an important role in understanding the properties of different chemical species. To help identify small chemical differences between molecules, researchers use a type of electrophoresis known as isoelectric focusing. With the use of an applied electric potential, this technique helps to define and separate molecules based on their varying isoelectric points. Let’s take a closer look at this separation method.

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Fanny Littmarck | July 18, 2014

When it comes to lithium-ion batteries, quality and safety are top priorities. Assessor of 20,000 batteries per year, Intertek Semko AB understands this perhaps better than anyone else.

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Fanny Littmarck | June 13, 2014

Some chemical applications call for identification and quantification of the components in a chemical mixture. High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) is a versatile separation technology for chemical species. To learn more about the separation process, we can model it with simulation software.

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Fanny Littmarck | May 22, 2014

If you work in the oil and gas industry dealing with offshore drilling, corrosion is your worst enemy. A corroded oil platform is a dangerous platform and it can cost you a lot — in both lives and money. To avoid such a dark fate, you need to safeguard the steel structure from corrosion via a protection system, such as the cathodic protection process shown here.

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Eyal Spier | May 8, 2014

In this final installment of our Chemical Kinetics series, we will look at one of the major chemical syntheses of the modern era. This is a process that every single one of us has benefited from, whether we know it or not: ammonia synthesis. It has become one of the most studied reactions in history, its intricacies and complexities are the subject of several textbooks, and its history is a complex tale of good and evil.

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Edmund Dickinson | April 17, 2014

What’s a penny made of? Though they appear to be solid copper coins, they actually don’t contain much copper at all these days. Instead, the U.S. Mint saves money by applying only a veneer of valuable metal onto a less expensive one. Have you ever thought about the manufacturing process by which this is achieved? Let’s find out.

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Eyal Spier | April 10, 2014

The last two blog posts in the Chemical Kinetics series were concerned with modeling chemical reactions based on a particular set of parameters. While this is important and of great academic and industrial interest, the relevant parameters were assumed. Now, let’s find out how to estimate the chemical parameters using COMSOL Multiphysics.

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Eyal Spier | March 13, 2014

While the mathematical study of chemical reactions has been performed for more than a century, it is only fairly recently that the computational tools for numeric integration of rate equations have been widely available. The old adage of “necessity is the mother of all invention” holds true in this instance. Here, you will find a classical analysis of a non-trivial reaction system, and learn how the simplified solution compares with the “real” one.

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