Subscribe to the OSS Weekly Newsletter!


Chemical Confusion

15 Aug 2017

There are two myths that are a constant irritation in the fight against pseudoscience. One is the equating of the term “chemical” with “toxin,” the other is the suggestion that “natural” substances...


31 May 2017

Stereochemistry refers to a branch of chemistry that studies the relative spatial arrangement of atoms within molecules. Some drugs are mixtures of different stereoisomers of a molecule in which...

A Vital Force

10 May 2017

A single experiment in 1828 destroyed the theory of Vitalism which held that “organic substances” found in living systems could not be made in the laboratory because they were empowered with a ...

Music and Chemistry, Living in Perfect Harmony

20 Mar 2017

Quick now, name some famous scientists. Einstein surely comes to mind, then maybe Newton, Marie Curie, Galileo, Stephen Hawking. Not much of a problem. Next, name some famous composers. I suspect...

Mathematician Alan Turing a Great Mind of the 20th Century

20 Mar 2017

Sir Winston Churchill said Alan Turing’s breaking of German codes for secret messages shortened the Second World War by two years. Computer scientists credit Turing with formulating the...

Are Chemists Suffering from Chemophobiaphobia?

20 Mar 2017

Most chemistry conferences these days feature a session on the “public understanding of chemistry.” Usually speakers express frustration about equating the term “chemical” with “toxin” or “poison,”...

Colourful thoughts

20 Mar 2017

I am no alarmist when it comes to "artificial chemicals" used in food or cosmetic production. But I do question the use of colourants because they have no function other than changing the...

Chemistry at the Vatican

20 Mar 2017

The new Pope, Francis, we now learn, has a degree in Chemistry. He received a Master’s from the University of Buenos Aires.  It is interesting then to note that his selection was signaled through...