A new Action Plan for Health, Safety and the Environment has just been released, based on UiB’s Strategy 2019-2022 «Knowledge that shapes society.» It is centered around three HSE goals that should characterize UiB: (i) A good working community, (ii) Safe and functional workplaces, and (iii) Good safety culture and emergency preparedness. Maybe this sounds familiar after the HSE-Day on Wednesday? Each HSE goal is a priority area specified through sub-goals for the period 2019 – 2021 and is to be followed up through measures taken at the central UiB level as well as locally through action plans developed at the MN faculty and at our department.
Our Dean is frequently using his blog to put local events into a wider and longer perspective — you can easily access the blog by means of the menu at the top of this page. In the most recent entry, you can read the Dean’s address to professor Leiv Sydnes, given on the occasion of the recent symposium.
På onsdag gav Urix-redaksjonen i NRK ein grundig presentasjon av kunnskapsbasen for bruk av kjemiske våpen i Syria og dei store menneskelege lidingane knytt til dette, sjå her for avspeling av programmet. Professor Leiv Kr. Sydnes står sentralt i det internasjonale arbeidet knytt til avvikling av kjemiske våpen. Han er ein gjennomgangsperson i Urix-programmet og gir m.a. innføring i historia til kjemiske våpen, viser kjemisk struktur av utvalde kjemiske stridsmidlar (ved imponerande tavleteknikk), og tek fram dei etiske problemstillingane som ligg bak forbodet mot kjemiske våpen. Formidling av øvste klasse.
Recent week’s events in Syria and UK have again taken chemical weapons to the headlines. Many will know about the central role that OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, Nobel Peace Prize laureate in 2013 ) plays in overseeing the implementation of and adherence to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC, Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction.)
Professor Leiv Kr. Sydnes at our department has released an insightful comment on the various claims appearing the mass media, the difficulties in tracing the origins of a specific sample of a chemical, and what it would take to curb further production of chemical weapons. Please consult his Nature Comment here. Quoting, Research chemists, especially in universities, should work to raise awareness of the chemical challenges related to the CWC. A first step would be to make the convention mandatory reading for all chemistry students. Second, OPCW educational material should be used in university courses. Third, The Hague Ethical Guidelines should be used to improve the ethical framework of the chemical profession.[Sydnes, Nature 556, 293-295 (2018)]
Professor Sydnes has contributed strongly to the work of OPCW through twice chairing the revision of the CWC, mandatory to take place every five years. He reflects on this work in an interview with På Høyden (in Norwegian) here.
I desse søknadstider kan det vere interessant å orientere seg i forhald til ulike kanalar for å formidle vitskap – antan det er til ekspertar eller populærvitskapleg formidling. Eit døme på det siste kan du finne i denne lydmontasjen ( podcast), kor Vidar Jensen gir ei enkel innføring i Idélab-prosjektet sitt. Dersom du også vil ha bilete til forteljinga, kan du ta nettlesaren hit.
Carbon capture technologies are expected to play an important contribution in the efforts to reduce the environmental impact of the use of fossil fuels. One approach to remove carbon dioxide from gas mixtures is its adsorption on nanoporous materials, such as zeolites and metal-organic frameworks. Among the latter, the CPO-27 series of compounds has been widely investigated because of its extraordinary properties for capturing carbon dioxide. Now, using the state-of-the-art equipment available at the Swiss-Norwegian Beamlines (SNBL) at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF), Pascal Dietzel and his team from have investigated with unprecedented time resolution how carbon dioxide is incorporated into the crystal structure of the host framework. Read the full paper here or just watch a video of the CO2 molecules occupying their crystallographic positions as a function of temperature.
Applying NMR spectroscopy and Magnetic Resonance Imaging, researchers at our department (Christian Totland, John Georg Seland and Willy Nerdal) and at Høgskulen på Vestlandet (Signe Steinkopf) document how reduction in marine omega-3 in farmed salmon affects salmon fillet features, right down at the molecular level. The study shows that carbon magnetic resonance spectroscopy direct on the fish meat can quantify the most relevant fatty acids within 40 minutes without the use of chemicals such as chloroform. In 1990, omega-3 in farmed salmon was predominantly marine fatty acids while there are now roughly equal levels of omega-3 from plants and marine sources. MR images show differences in texture between wild and farmed salmon, where wild salmon have narrower lines of fat tissue compared to farmed salmon. In addition, the muscle tissue of farmed salmon shows buildup of fat, known as marbled fat. The softer consistency of farmed salmon can be viewed in conjunction with fat profile.
In the past 20 years, metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) have become one of the most active areas of research within inorganic chemistry. EurJIC is acknowledging the rapid development with a Cluster Issue on «MOFs Heading Towards Application». Our own Pascal Dietzel and Hiroshi Kitagawa from the University of Kyoto are guest-editing this issue, which contains more than thirty papers spanning the breadth of current activities in the leading research groups in the field.