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(Chem) Analytical Chem: Archaeological Chemistry

 
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 8:38 am    Post subject: (Chem) Analytical Chem: Archaeological Chemistry Reply with quote






American Chemical Society
3 April 2006

Archaeological chemistry featured at American Chemical Society symposium, March 26-27

ATLANTA — When analytical chemistry is applied to archaeological problems, scientists gain new insights into historical events and cultural practices. Archaeological chemistry will be featured during a two-day symposium, "Archaeological Chemistry: Analytical Techniques and Archaeological Interpretation," March 26-27, at the 231st national meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society. Selected topics are described below. All presentations in this symposium take place at the Georgia World Congress Center.

Sunday, March 26

Violent origin of Peruvian trophy heads identified — Archaeologists have wondered for some time whether 1,500 year-old trophy heads found at the Wari site of Conchopata in central Peru were venerated ancestors of local people or non-local victims of warfare or raiding. Using strontium isotope analysis of human tooth enamel and bone from five Conchopata trophy heads, researchers at Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz., and Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., have found that these heads came from a greater variety of different geologic zones than those buried in ancient tombs in the area. This implies that the trophy heads were victims of warfare or raiding and were not local ancestors, the researchers say. (NUCL 14, Sunday, March 26, 1:00 p.m., Room C108)

Corn cultivated in South America earlier than previously thought — First domesticated in Mexico, corn is now one of the most important food crops in South America. Using stable isotope analysis, anthropologists at the University of South Florida in Tampa have identified and quantified chemical markers of corn among ancient human remains taken from sites throughout South America. Based on this analysis, they conclude that corn was cultivated in South America earlier than previously thought. (NUCL 15, Sunday, March 26, 1:20 p.m., Room C108)

Biblical coin-makers were pretty good chemists, study says — "Widows mites" refer to the low-value copper coins minted in Biblical times that have now come to symbolize, based on New Testament scripture, a small contribution by someone who has little. Researchers at the University of Detroit Mercy have analyzed 36 of these small coins and found that they have surprisingly consistent chemical composition for ancient coinage. The finding shows that Judean coin makers were skilled chemists with high standards when it came to their metallurgical craftsmanship, the scientists say. (NUCL 23, Sunday, March 26, 4:20 p.m., Room C108)

###
The American Chemical Society — the world’s largest scientific society — is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

*************************************************************

Questions to explore further this topic:

What is analytical chemistry?

http://www.acs-analytical.duq......lchem.html
http://www.chemistry.org/porta.....tical.html

What is forensic analytical chemistry?

http://www.inform.umd.edu/EdRe.....emConf.htm

An analytical chemistry course on the web

http://ull.chemistry.uakron.edu/analytical/

What techniques and instrumentation are employed in analytical chemistry?

http://www.asdlib.org/list.php.....=Technique

Data acquisition
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....qintro.htm

Data handling
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/chem-ed/data/data.htm
http://science.widener.edu/svb/stats/stats.html

Diffraction methods
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....ffract.htm
http://www.paete.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=1367

Electrochemistry
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....ectroc.htm

Gravimetric analysis
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....avimet.htm
http://ull.chemistry.uakron.ed.....ravimetry/

Imaging techniques
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....crosco.htm

Mass spectrometry
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....-intro.htm

Materials and surface analysis
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....t-anal.htm
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....urface.htm

Optics
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....optics.htm

Sensors
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....ensors.htm

Separations
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....pintro.htm
http://www.paete.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=1504

Spectroscopy
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....ectros.htm
http://www.paete.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=1327

Standards
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....andard.htm

Thermal methods
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....hermal.htm

Titrations
http://elchem.kaist.ac.kr/vt/c.....itratn.htm

Animations that describe analytical methods

http://www.asdlib.org/list.php.....animations
http://www.shsu.edu/~chm_tgc/sounds/sound.html

Virtual laboratories for analytical chemistry

http://www.asdlib.org/list.php.....ual%20Labs

Demonstrations for analytical chemistry

http://genchem.chem.wisc.edu/d.....demos.html

Applications of analytical chemistry

http://www.asdlib.org/list.php.....plications

Teaching resources in analytical chemistry

http://www.asdlib.org/list.php.....y=Pedagogy

Tutorials in analytical chemistry

http://www.asdlib.org/list.php.....=tutorials

Lecture slides for analytical chemistry

http://www.cbu.edu/~mcondren/c415lect.html

The National Chemistry Instrumentation Center, Philippines

http://ginto.chem.admu.edu.ph/NCIC/

The Philippine Institute of Pure and Applied Chemistry

http://www.pipac.com.ph/

What is archaeological chemistry?

http://www.wisc.edu/larch/aclab/larch.htm
http://masca.museum.upenn.edu/archaeochem.html

Carbon-14 dating
http://www.nde-ed.org/educatio.....dating.htm
http://nvl.nist.gov/pub/nistpu.....j92cur.pdf

Historical metallurgy
http://masca.museum.upenn.edu/.....lurgy.html
http://hist-met.org/

Radiometric methods
http://geography.otago.ac.nz/C.....ect08.html

Radiography
http://masca.museum.upenn.edu/radiography.html

Pixe spectrometry
http://masca.museum.upenn.edu/.....metry.html

Ancient DNA
http://www.eva.mpg.de/primat/f.....RG2004.pdf

Archelogical chemistry stories from Vanderbilt University

http://www.vanderbilt.edu/expl...../tung.html

Peruvian trophy heads
http://www.vanderbilt.edu/expl.....s_tung.pdf

GAMES

http://funbasedlearning.com/ch.....efault.htm
http://funbasedlearning.com/ch.....efault.htm
http://funbasedlearning.com/ch.....efault.htm
http://funbasedlearning.com/ch.....efault.htm
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2007 10:50 am    Post subject: Forensic Science Reply with quote

Forensic Science

Concise summaries of articles on forensic science published from 2005-2006 in a dozen major journals, courtesy of ACS' Analytical Chemistry

http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....0871s.html
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....70871s.pdf
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:43 am    Post subject: 'Extreme analytical chemistry' will help unravel Mars' myste Reply with quote

Tufts University
2 August 2007

'Extreme analytical chemistry' will help unravel Mars' mysteries

Mars may also hold clues to climate change on earth, says Tufts' Sam Kounaves, co-investigator on Phoenix Mars Mission
MEDFORD/SOMERVILLE, Mass. -- Sam Kounaves spends his time unraveling fundamental questions in planetary science by applying "extreme analytical chemistry" to the harshest environments imaginable: Places like Death Valley, Antarctica – and now Mars.

The Tufts professor is a co-investigator on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander Mission currently scheduled for launch on August 4. Kounaves will be leading the chemical analysis of Martian soil and ice after the Lander craft touches down on Mars in May 2008.

It's a fitting challenge for someone who grew up with dreams of being an astronaut going to Mars, and fascinated by science. Kounaves is one of only two dozen investigators on the project that is tapping resources from universities and companies around the world.

Watery Clues to Life

Those who seek clues to life always "follow the water." So, Phoenix is designed to study the history of water and search for complex organic molecules in the ice-rich soil of the Martian arctic. Kounaves will spearhead the chemical interpretation of the inorganic and electrochemical analyses of the soil-ice constituents, their relationship to past and present Martian geochemistry, and the potential of the Martian environment to support microbial life.

"We will also try to decipher the climatic history of Mars via the chemical record left in the soil," he says. That history, he says, may hold vital clues and lessons for climate change on Earth.

Phoenix incorporates some of the most sophisticated advanced technology ever sent to Mars, according to NASA. A robotic arm will dig through the soil to the water-ice layer underneath, and deliver soil and ice samples to the mission's experiments. On the Lander deck, miniature ovens and a mass spectrometer will chemically analyze trace matter, the wet chemistry laboratory (WCL) will characterize the soil and ice chemistry, imaging systems will provide an unprecedented view of Mars, and a meteorological station will study the atmosphere and clouds.

Kounaves' team is focused on the WCL, which includes four teacup-size beakers that will receive soil-ice samples. He and his researchers – most of them Tufts students – have developed sampling and analytical methodologies to ensure reliable chemistry and geochemical analysis. In addition, his group was responsible for delivering, as flight ready hardware, the tiny crucibles that hold the chemical reagents that will be mixed with soil-ice samples, and a sensor array originally developed at Tufts for analysis of metal ions in water. The concentrations and forms of inorganic and organic molecules are among the signatures of life that the Phoenix team is looking for.

"We're basically explorers," Kounaves notes, "just like the explorers of centuries past. Usually an analytical chemist would receive samples and be asked to analyze them. With this project, we are also involved with the overwhelming challenge of getting to the sample, insuring we conduct a scientifically valid chemical analysis, and doing good science."

The biggest surprise so far" "That, for all the differences, Mars is so earth-like." For example, polar ice caps, permafrost, climate, and perhaps liquid water exist on both planets. "Scientists have been able to find microbes in Antarctica and miles underground where it was thought impossible for any life to exist," he muses. "If life on Earth can exist in such severe places, perhaps it may have started and still exist on Mars."

"Are We Alone in the Universe?"

Kounaves and Research Associate Suzanne Young will be at Cape Canaveral, Fla., for Phoenix's launch. Growing up, Young took apart everything she could lay her hands on, including the oven. She still loves playing with the big toys and asking the big questions—like "Are we alone in the universe"".

In the Tufts lab, she points out students who are conducting tests to ensure that sensors in the WCL will withstand everything that Mars can dish out. Procedures that would be simple on Earth become Herculean under frigid Martian conditions that would crack similar sensors used on Earth. Notable is a tank labeled "Mini Mars," which mimics the atmospheric pressure on Mars; "Tank o' Mars replicates the planet's alien atmosphere—more than 95 percent carbon dioxide, with smatterings of nitrogen and argon.

At the beginning of this year, the Tufts team produced the tiny crucibles, containing salts or acids, that the Lander will carry 423 million miles to Mars. Each crucible is about 3.5 by 7 mm, made of stainless steel and Teflon-coated so it slides easily in the dispenser mechanism. "It's amazing that stuff we touched will be on Mars," says Young.

Student Scientists Make Big Contributions

The group's accomplishments are all the more impressive because, unlike most of the mission teams, it's comprised almost entirely of students, including Tufts undergraduates.

Jason Kapit is a three-year Phoenix team member who is working on his M.S. in mechanical engineering from Tufts after graduating with a degree in engineering physics in 2006. "What students get to do at Tufts is pretty cool," he says. "This is a research university but small enough for anyone to get involved in exciting projects." So passionate is he about the project that on spring break 2007 he went to Denver to see the actual Phoenix Lander at Lockheed Martin. "It was like Christmas morning for me. I was so excited the night before, I couldn't sleep."

Shake and Bake, Rock and Roll

As launch day drew closer, the team was busy tweaking experiments. Everything needs to pass muster under the severe shake and bake and rock 'n roll conditions of launch, landing and the Red Planet itself.

The Lander will operate about three months after it touches down on Mars, providing plenty of live data for the project team to analyze and interpret. But Kounaves and Young are looking at the mission through a much longer lens. "Space exploration ultimately will be essential to our survival as a species," says Young. "Eventually, we're going to have to move on from Planet Earth."

The 2007 Phoenix Mars Mission is the first in NASA’s “Scout Program.” The Phoenix was one of 30 proposals submitted to NASA in 2002. Kounaves was a member of the winning proposal, selected in August 2003, and initially funded by NASA for $325 million. He is currently the principal investigator or co-principal investigator on three other NASA-supported research projects, including one to try to understand how to definitively detect microbial life on planets.

“There is nothing more intellectually satisfying as an educator and scientist,” says Kounaves, “than being on the cutting edge of discovery, of using the scientific method to expand human awareness of who we are, where we came from, and perhaps where we can go.”

###

More about the Phoenix and other research in the Kounaves lab can be found at http://planetary.chem.tufts.edu
Updated Phoenix launch information is available at http://www.nasa.gov/phoenix
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:09 am    Post subject: Fast, accurate sensor to detect food spoilage Reply with quote

Fast, accurate sensor to detect food spoilage
13 August 2007
Organic Letters

Amid growing concern about outbreaks of food poisoning, researchers in South Carolina are reporting development of a new “food freshness sensor,” for fast, accurate detection of food spoilage. Their study is scheduled for the Aug. 16 issue of ACS’ Organic Letters, a bi-weekly journal.

In the study, John Lavigne and colleagues describe the need for better sensors that can detect food spoilage caused by E. coli, Salmonella, and other disease-causing bacteria. Existing methods, such as “electronic noses” and “electronic tongues,” require expensive equipment, are time consuming and involve complicated analyses.

In the study, they describe development of a polymer material that raises a red flag, changing color in the presence biogenic amines, compounds produced by the bacterial decay of food proteins. In laboratory tests, the polymer identified and distinguished between 22 different kinds of key food-spoilage amines with 97 percent accuracy. Researchers also used the polymer to check the freshness of a tuna by detecting the amount of amines present in the sample. “The sensitivity of the described assay is better than the typical mammalian sense of smell and is able to detect this nonvolatile amine at hazardous levels before the fish would begin to smell rancid,” the report states. The approach also shows promise for detecting spoilage in other food types, it adds.

ARTICLE #4 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE “A Food Freshness Sensor Using the Multistate Response from Analyte-Induced Aggregation of a Cross-Reactive Poly(thiophene)”

DOWNLOAD PDF http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....71065a.pdf
DOWNLOAD HTML http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....1065a.html
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2007 12:56 pm    Post subject: Fast, portable test promises to help detect flammable liquid Reply with quote

Fast, portable test promises to help detect flammable liquids in arson
17 September 2007
Analytical Chemistry

Researchers in Ohio are reporting development of an inexpensive portable test for accurately identifying flammable liquids used in arson — the leading cause of fires and the second leading cause of fire deaths in the United States. Their study is scheduled for the current (Sept. 1) issue of ACS’ Analytical Chemistry, a semi-monthly journal.

Identification of flammable liquids used in arson usually requires time-consuming laboratory tests, Yao Lu and Peter Harrington point out. The new test, called gas chromatography-differential mobility spectrometry (GC-DMS), works fast and is small enough for use in the field, they say.

In laboratory studies, the researchers added seven different flammable liquids to carpet samples and then ignited the samples to simulate an arson event. Analysis of the burned carpet with GC-DMS identified the individual flammable liquids with an accuracy rate of 99 percent. The results demonstrate that this novel test “could be successfully used for forensic analysis of ignitable liquids from fire debris,” the report states.

ARTICLE #4 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

“Forensic Application of Gas Chromatography-Differential Mobility Spectrometry with Two-Way Classification of Ignitable Liquids from Fire Debris”

DOWNLOAD PDF
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....707028.pdf

DOWNLOAD HTML
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....07028.html
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 12:47 pm    Post subject: Spinning a new role for CDs and CD players Reply with quote

Spinning a new role for CDs and CD players
24 September 2007
Analytical Chemistry

CD-ROMs and DVDs and the hardware used to play these popular audio and video compact discs (CDs) have “enormous” potential as a new generation of portable, inexpensive instruments for home health monitoring and laboratory-based testing, scientists in Spain are reporting in the Oct. 15 issue of ACS’ Analytical Chemistry, a semi-monthly journal. CD technology could be adapted for tests ranging from the measurement of environmental toxins to at-home disease diagnosis, their report said.

In the study, Angel Maquieira and colleagues demonstrated technology that uses ordinary CDs and CD players as analytical tools with the potential for performing a range of key laboratory tests. As proof of principle, they developed a CD with a surface coating of so-called immunoassay materials and used it to identify three pesticides — 2,4,5-TP, chlorpyriphos, and metolachlor — placed on the disc. Upon spinning in a CD player with its standard laser light, the compounds caused changes in light intensity. A computer interpreted those changes and correctly named the compounds.

“The obtained results show the enormous prospective of compact discs in combination with CD players for multiresidue and drug discovery applications,” the article states. The researchers are currently working on ways to increase the sensitivity and versatility of the new technique.

ARTICLE #1 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
“Microimmunoanalysis on Standard Compact Discs To Determine Low Abundant Compounds”

DOWNLOAD PDF
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....70328b.pdf

DOWNLOAD HTML
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....0328b.html
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 15, 2007 10:38 am    Post subject: Faster, more efficient method for detecting illegal steroids Reply with quote

Faster, more efficient method for detecting illegal steroids in urine
Analytical Chemistry
15 October 2007

Amid growing concerns about sports “doping,” researchers in Indiana and China report development of a faster and more efficient method for detecting the presence of illegal anabolic steroids in urine. Their new method, which takes only a few seconds and involves no time-consuming sample preparation, will be described in the Nov. 1 issue of ACS’ Analytical Chemistry, a semi-monthly journal.

The study notes that use of banned substances by professional athletes to build muscle and gain a competitive advantage is a growing problem in sports such as track and field, baseball, football and cycling. Although effective methods exist for detecting the presence of illegal steroids in urine, current methods are time-consuming and involve cumbersome preparation steps.

Zheng Ouyang, R. Graham Cooks, and colleagues developed a new steroid-testing method that combines two state-of-the-art testing techniques called desorption electrospray ionization (DESI) and tandem mass spectrometry. In laboratory studies, the researchers used it to analyze fresh urine samples for the presence of tiny amounts of seven different anabolic steroids. The new method accurately identified the steroids in only a few seconds using only a single drop of urine, they say.

ARTICLE #1 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE “Rapid Screening of Anabolic Steroids in Urine by Reactive Desorption Electrospray Ionization”

DOWNLOAD PDF http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....711079.pdf
DOWNLOAD HTML http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/sa.....11079.html
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 1:11 pm    Post subject: Toward a drug-free Olympics: Analytical chemistry takes cent Reply with quote

Toward a drug-free Olympics: Analytical chemistry takes center stage
11 August 2008
Chemical & Engineering News

In the most comprehensive drug-testing effort in sports history, Olympic officials are taking unprecedented steps to make sure this year's athletes compete without the use of performance enhancing drugs. But despite improvements in drug-testing techniques, catching athletes who cheat remains difficult, according to an article scheduled for the August 11 issue of Chemical & Engineering News.

In a feature article in the magazine, C&EN Senior Correspondent Marc S. Reisch points out that Olympic officials will spend about $10 million testing athletes for performance enhancing drugs, including round-the clock monitoring of urine and blood samples. Many of these tests will focus on identifying human growth hormone (hGH) and erythropoietin (EPO), two products of recombinant DNA technology that athletes have used to boost muscle mass and increase endurance.

Although analytical instruments have become more accurate, reliable, and capable over the years, catching cheaters remains a virtual cat and mouse game. One challenge is the use of custom-synthesized "designer" drugs, which are difficult to identify and test, according to the article. But with more money and effort going into testing, athletes are likely to think twice before using performance enhancing drugs, the article suggests.

ARTICLE #5 EMBARGOED FOR 9 A.M., EASTERN TIME, August 11, 2008
"Drugs at the starting line"

This story will be available on August 11 at
http://pubs.acs.org/cen/business/86/8632bus1.html
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