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American Chemical Society's Weekly PressPac -- July 30, 2008

lateau at some critical length. After that length, the cylinder begins to bend and is not able to support more weight. Comparing the model to measurements on museum specimens, Vella found that the strider's legs are typically slightly shorter than the critical length. This suggests that the water strider's legs are just the right length: Long enough to provide maximum weight support but not long enough to bend and hinder the insect's movement, he says. MTS

"Floating Objects with Finite Resistance to Bending"


Dominic Vella, Ph.D.
University of Cambridge
United Kingdom


Turning those old electronic circuit boards into new park benches
Environmental Science & Technology

Scientists in China have developed a new recycling method that could transform yesterday's computer into tomorrow's park bench. Their study, which focuses on decreasing environmental pollution through resource preservation, reuses fibers and resins of waste printed circuit boards (PCBs) that were thought worthless to produce a variety of high-strength materials. It is in the July 15 issue of Environmental Science & Technology.

Zhenming Xu and colleagues point out that as more electrical and electronic equipment has become obsolete, the issue of electronic-waste removal has intensified. PCBs account for about 3 percent by weight of all electronic waste, Xu says. Although metals from the circuit boards, such as copper and aluminum, are recycled, landfill disposal has been the primary method for treating their nonmetallic materials, which have been difficult to recycle, the paper says.

In the study, the researchers

Contact: Michael Woods
American Chemical Society

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