Sustainable Nano

Sustainable Nano

Curious about nanotechnology, sustainability, or life in science? The Sustainable Nano podcast is produced by the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology, a chemistry research center funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation.

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    Spring 2017 Teaser

    We're back from winter break and preparing a fantastic batch of podcast episodes for spring 2017!

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    Ep 11. When Artists and Scientists Collaborate

    Art and science are often though of as completely separate pursuits, but what happens when artists and scientists actually talk to each other? In this episode of the podcast, we interview Dr. Cathy Murphy about her experiences inviting art students to spend time in her chemistry lab at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

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    Ep 10. Why Were Plastic Mirobeads Banned? Marine Debris and Sustainable Plastics

    Plastic debris in our water is a huge pollution problem, and just one source of that pollution is the tiny microbeads that have been widely used in personal care products. In this episode of the podcast, we interview Dr. Richard Thompson, a Professor of Marine Biology at Plymouth University and an expert on the effects of plastic debris in the marine environment. We discuss the recent federal ban on microbeads and what consumers can do to be more sustainable in our day-to-day use of plastics.

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    Ep 9. Seven Stages of Technological Adaptation

    This episode of the podcast features an interview with University of Minnesota graduate student Peter Clement, discussing the book The War on Science by Shawn Otto. We focus on Otto's explanation of the Seven Stages of Technological Adaptation -- an observation that how our society adapts new technology has generally repeated the same sequence of steps over and over, from discovery through crisis and adaptation, especially since the mid-20th Century.

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    Ep 8. How Nanomaterials Can Build Better Bikes

    On this episode of the Sustainable Nano podcast, we talk about one example of how nanotechnology is changing something many people use every day: bikes! Margy Robinson, a graduate student in the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology and a competitive cyclist, explains how carbon nanotubes and graphene are currently being incorporated into some high-end bicycles.

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    Ep 7. What Do Glaciers Have to Do With Nanoscience?

    Why do glaciers sometimes look blue? Hint: it's not for the same reason we see blue as the color of the sky! On this episode of the podcast, we have an interview with Dr. Robert Hamers, following up on his recent blog post. Bob is the Director of the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology, and he tells us about a recent family trip to Alaska that got him wondering about why some glaciers have an amazing blue color.

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    Ep 6. Happy National Nanotechnology Day!

    October 9, 2016 was the first ever National Nanotechnology Day (10/9 = 10^-9 for nano!). On this episode of the Sustainable Nano podcast, we talk with Dr. Lisa Friedersdorf, Deputy Director of the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office, about National Nanotechnology Day, activities like #100BillionNanometers, the Nobel Prize, and this year's Generation Nano superhero contest.

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    Ep 5. What’s the Deal With Triclosan?

    The U.S. Food & Drug Administration recently announced a ban on using the antibacterial agent triclosan (and 18 other substances) in soaps, and then last week the issue of antibacterial resistance was discussed at the UN General Assembly. In this episode of the Sustainable Nano podcast, we talk with scientist Eric Melby about different types of antibacterial chemicals and why we should care about triclosan in the environment.

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    Ep 3. Nanoparticles in Electric Car Batteries: How Do We Study Sustainability?

    In this episode, we talk about a recent research study that looked at how one type of battery nanomaterial affects bacteria called Shewanella oneidensis. We interview Mimi Hang and Ian Gunsolus, who were co-first authors of the study as graduate students in the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology.

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