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Modern alchemy, fusion energy and more from Princeton
Date:2/17/2013

dult's 32 teeth. The final tooth to erupt, the third molar known as a "wisdom tooth," often ends up either out of alignment or impacted. That can lead to chronic pain, but generally not death. Thousands of years ago, a genetic change or changes brought about the suppression of the calcification of the third molar. This reduced problems with the third molar and allowed people with the change to reproduce at a slightly greater rate than those without it. The frequency of third molar suppression has increased, with 25 percent of individuals in many human populations lacking at least one third molar. Medical interventions available in the developed world have reduced the positive selective value of this change, but it remains a "scar of human evolution" in much of the developing world.

* Iron into "Gold": Modern alchemy for industrial commodity chemical and pharmaceutical synthesis
Paul Chirik, Edwards S. Sanford Professor of Chemistry
Saturday, Feb. 16, 8 a.m., Room 201

Precious metals used in the manufacture of consumer goods could be replaced with less expensive iron-based compounds using techniques developed by Paul Chirik, Princeton's Edwards S. Sanford Professor of Chemistry. The current manufacture of pharmaceuticals, adhesives, shampoos and other silicone-containing products relies on chemical reactions involving costly and rare precious-metal catalysts such as iridium, rhodium and platinum. Because the catalyst often remains in the final product, a considerable amount of these metals are lost. In a turn of modern alchemy, the Chirik group developed a method to replace these expensive metals with less costly and more widely available "base metals" such as iron, cobalt and manganese. The strategy has focused on manipulating base metals to mimic the highly efficient electron transfer of precious metals during catalysis.

* Harness the sun: Issues and paths to magnetic confinement fusion energy
George "Hutch" N
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Contact: Morgan Kelly
mgnkelly@princeton.edu
609-258-5729
Princeton University
Source:Eurekalert

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