Mahabharata Pandu in Britain too! (Post No.6168)

Written by London swaminathan

Date: 8 March 2019

GMT Time uploaded in London – 15-11

Post No. 6168

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog. ((posted by AND

Mysteries of Mahabharata | Tamil and Vedas


Posts about Mysteries of Mahabharata written by Tamil and Vedas. … People like us who live in Western countries often read strange and interesting news items: Man gives birth to a … We hear the same story with the birth of 3 more sons to Prutha alias Kunti and twins to Madri. …. Mystery No.10: Child from a Dead Body!

Mahabharata snake stories | Tamil and Vedas


Written by London swaminathan. Research Article no. 1706; dated 10 March 2015. Up loaded at 19-30 London time. Strange Animal Stories in Mahabharata!

mahabharata | Tamil and Vedas


10.Name the Inter Galactic traveller (rishi) who advised Dhritarashtra to keep Duryodhana in ….. Valluvar probably knew the story of Kaushika in Mahabharata. ….. By rare co incidence both the sanyasin and the prostitute died on the same day.

Dogs in Ramayana and Mahabharata | Tamil and Vedas


Mahabharata and Ramayana have two interesting dog stories. We have the … After a year of this strangefriendship, Professor H. Ueno died suddenly. … 10. Mysterious Tamil Bird Man. Contact London Swaminathan at

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siamese twins | Tamil and Vedas


Posts about siamese twins written by Tamil and Vedas. … Vanaparvam of Mahabharata describes the end of the world. It says how the world will end at the end …

Mysteries of Mahabharata | Tamil and Vedas


Posts about Mysteries of Mahabharata written by Tamil and Vedas. … Another instance of Siamese twins comes from Sangam Tamil literature (Please read …

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Mahabharata mystery solved | Tamil and Vedas


Posts about Mahabharata mystery solved written by Tamil and Vedas. … Test Tube Babies, Mysterious Births, Siamese Twins, Sex Change Surgeries, …


Epsom Salt and Incendiary Bombs – That is Magnesium (Post No.6140)

Written by london swaminathan

Date: 1 March 2019

GMT Time uploaded in London – 19-26

Post No. 6140

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog. ((posted by AND


Fluorine Wonders- Tooth Paste, Teflon, P.E.T.(Post N0.5984)

Compiled  by London swaminathan

Date: 25 JANUARY 2019
GMT Time uploaded in London –11-31 am
Post No. 5984
Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog

compiled by London swaminathan

Fluorine is one of the 118 known elements. It belongs to the Halogen group.

Fluorine is useful to us in the following ways:-
Tooth paste to strengthen the tooth enamel 
Non sticky Teflon pans
P E T – Positron Emission Tomography in health checks
Landing on Moon and other Space Explorations
Important Medicines

First let us look at some interesting tit bits:-
Contrary to popular belief, it was not space exploration that led to the development of the non -stick frying pan, but the other way round. The non- stick frying pan relies on Teflon, the polymer Tetrafluoroethene. That was discovered by Roy Plunkett at the Du Pont research laboratory in New Jersey, U S A, in 1938.

((posted by AND

One morning he opened a cylinder of tetrafluoroethene which was supposed to hold 1000 grams of the gas but only 990 grams came out. The missing ten grams had turned into a curious white powder which was a plastic with remarkable properties. It would not dissolve in anything, was not affected by heat, wouldn’t burn and was not attacked by hot corrosive acids. More unusual was its ability to flexible down to minus 240 Degree C. It was this property which made it so important for use in space and on moon where such temperatures prevail.

Later Louis Hartman found a way to use this on aluminium pans in 1950s. The French company Tefal, marketed the first non -stick frying pans ten years before man set foot on the Moon.

Nobel Prize

Georgius Agricola described the use of fluorspar, calcium fluoride, in 1529. But it was Henri Moissan who extracted fluorine and got Nobel prize for chemistry in 1906.
Fluorine was named meaning ‘to flow’.

Chemical symbol F
Atomic number 9
Melting point minus 220 degree C
Boiling point minus 188 degree C

Useful to humans

In humans, most of the fluoride accumulates in the bones and teeth. It strengthens both, converting the calcium phosphate of which they are made into fluorapatite, a harder material. This in tooth enamel, can better resist the corrosive effect of acids produced by oral bacteria acting on sugar for this reason it is added to water supplies and tooth pastes.

Cockroach killer

Fluorine is poisonous. But humans need it in minute quantities. Laboratory animals without fluorine in diet became anaemic and infertile. Because of its toxic effects, it is used in insecticide to kill cockroaches and ants. ((posted by AND

47 people died

At a hospital in the USA in 1943, patients were served scrambled eggs to which sodium fluoride had been added instead of normal salt sodium chloride. 163 people became sick and 47 of them died.

Punjab Problem
If too much fluorine is taken, fluorosis disease comes. It results in mottled teeth and deformed skeletons. In Punjab, people drink water with high levels of fluoride and millions of people are affected by this.
Fluoride comes to us from foods such as potatoes, butter, cheese, sea fish, pork and chicken.
Fluorine is produced in China, Mexico and west Europe.


Fluorine has an effect on enzymes, effectively blocking their activity. This is useful in certain experiments and treatments.
The isotope fluorine 18 is used in medical diagnosis through the technique known as P E T , positron emission tomography. The half- life of the isotope is only 110 minutes. It can go into places in our body which other substances can’t do. This helps us to study the internal organs.
Twenty percent of important medicines are made with fluorine compounds and the pharmaceutical companies make big money with it.

Friend of women in kitchen, friend of pharmaceutical companies, friend of every tooth paste using human and friend of space explorers is FLUORINE. ((posted by AND

Source Book:-Nature’s Building Blocks

John Emsley

CADMIUM WONDERS- Do you know Itai-Itai Disease? (Post No.5885)

Written by London swaminathan

Date: 5 JANUARY 2019
GMT Time uploaded in London 7-49 am
Post No. 5885
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அமேஸிங் க்ரெஸ்கின்! (Post No.5840)

Written by S Nagarajan

Date: 27 DECEMBER 2018

GMT Time uploaded in London – 5-40 am

Post No. 5840

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog.

பாக்யா வார இதழில் அறிவியல் துளிகள் தொடரில் வெளியிடப்பட்டுள்ள 405வது அத்தியாயம் (எட்டாவது ஆண்டு 41வது கட்டுரை)

அமேஸிங் க்ரெஸ்கின்!


மனமறியும் வித்தை எனப்படும் மெண்டலிஸம் (Mentalism) இன்று விஞ்ஞானிகளின் கவனத்தை வெகுவாக ஈர்த்துள்ளது. எண்ணத் தூண்டுதலால் எதையும் சாதிக்கலாம் என்ற ஒரு கருத்து என் எல் பி எனப்படும் நியூரோ லிங்க்விஸ்டிக் ப்ரொக்ராம் என்ற உத்தியினால் நிரூபிக்கப்பட்டது. ஆனால் பிறர் மனதைத் தூண்டி அவரை தனது வசத்திற்கு உள்ளாக்குவது சாத்தியம் தானா? விஞ்ஞானிகள் பலர் இந்த்த் துறையில் தீவிர ஆர்வம் காட்டி வரும் இந்த நாளில், இது சாத்தியம் தான் என்று இதைச் செய்து காட்டி அசத்துபவர் க்ரெஸ்கின்.

தி அமேஸிங் க்ரெஸ்கின் என்ற பெயரால் இன்று உலகெங்கும் பிரபலமாக அறியப்படும் இந்த மாயாஜால நிபுணரின் இயற் பெயர் ஜார்ஜ் ஜோஸப் க்ரெஸ்ஜி. (George Joseph Kresge; பிறப்பு 21-1-1935; வயது 84). அமெரிக்கரன இவர் லீ ஃபாக்கின் மாண்ட் ரக், தி மாஜிஷியன் என்ற காமிக் புத்தகத்தால் பெரிதும் கவரப்பட்டு மாஜிக் கலையைக் கற்றுக் கொள்ள ஆரம்பித்தார். ஆயிரத்தி தொள்ளாயிரத்து எழுபதுகளில் அமெரிக்க தொலைக்காட்சி சேனலில் அமேஸிங் க்ரெஸ்கின் என்ற தொடரால் பிரபலமானார். ஐந்து வருடங்கள் இந்தத் தொடர் சக்கை போடு போட்டது.இதை அனைவரும் விரும்பவே மீண்டும் தி நியூ க்ரெஸ்கின் ஷோ என்று புதிய தொடர் ஆரம்பிக்கப்பட்டது.

புகழ் பெற்ற இவரது மாஜிக் வித்தைகளில் அனைவரையும் மிகவும் ஆச்சரியத்திற்குள்ளாக்கும் தலையாய வித்தை, நிகழ்ச்சி நடக்கும் அரங்கத்தினுள் இவருக்குத் தரப்பட வேண்டிய ஒளித்து வ்வைக்கப்பட்டிருக்கும் செக்கைக் கண்டுபிடிப்பது தான்.

இவர் அரங்கத்தின் வெளியே சென்ற பின் அங்குள்ளோர் ஏதாவது ஒரு இடத்தில் செக்கை ஒளித்து வைத்து விடுவார்கள். வரலாம் என்று சொன்னவுடன் அரங்கத்தில் நுழைந்து நேராக செக் இருக்கும் இடத்திற்குச் சென்று அதை எடுத்துக் கொள்வார். கரகோஷம் வானைப் பிளக்கும்.

செக் கண்டுபிடிக்கப்படவில்லை எனில் தனக்கு அன்றைய ஷோவுக்காகத் தரப்படவேண்டிய தொகையை வாங்க மாட்டேன் என்பது இவரது உறுதி மொழி.

சுமார் 6000 ஷோக்களில் 11 முறை மட்டுமே இவர் தனது தோல்வியை ஒப்புக் கொண்டுள்ளார்!

சமீபத்தில் 2018, ஏப்ரல் 14ஆம் தேதி நியூயார்க் லயன் தியேட்டரில் இவரது இரண்டு மணி நேர நிகழ்ச்ச்சி நடந்தது. ஆடியன்ஸில் அப்போதே தேர்ந்தெடுக்கப்பட்ட குழுவினரிடம் வழக்கம் போல் இவர் ஒப்பந்தத்தை எழுதிக் கையெழுத்திட்டுக் கொடுத்தார். அந்த ஒப்பந்தப் பெப்பரைக் கண்டுபிடிக்கவில்லை எனில் பணம் வாங்க மாட்டேன் என்ற அவரது உறுதி மொழி அந்தப் பேப்பரில் எழுதப்பட்டிருந்தது.

வெளியில் சென்றவர், அழைக்கப்பட்டவுடன் அரங்கத்தினுள் நுழைந்தார். ஆனால் உடனே ஒளித்து வைக்கப்பட்டிருக்கும் எப்போதும் செல்வது போல இந்த முறை அவரால் செல்ல முடியவில்லை. அவர் ஒரு குறிப்பிட்ட இடத்திற்குத் திருப்பித் திருப்பிச் சென்று கொண்டிருந்தார். ஆனால் அங்கு அந்த பேப்பர் இல்லை. உடனே தன் தோல்வியை ஒப்புக் கொண்ட அவர் அன்று டிக்கட் மூலம் வசூலான அனைத்துப் பணமும் விலங்குகளின் நலனுக்காக அவைகள் பராமரிக்கப்படும் ஒதுங்கிடங்கள் அமைக்கப்படும் என அறிவித்தார்.

அவர் தனது தோல்வியை ஒப்புக் கொண்டாலும் அவரது ரசிகர்கள் அந்தத் தோல்வியை ஒப்புக் கொள்ளவில்லை. காரணம், முதலில் குழுவினர் ஒரு இடத்தில் அந்தப் பேப்பரை ஒளித்து வைத்தனர். அவரை வருமாறு கூறிவிட்டு அவர் வருவற்குள் இன்னொரு இடத்திற்கு அதை மாற்றி ஒளித்து வைத்தனர்.க்ரெஸ்கினோ முதலில் ஒளித்து வைக்கப்பட்ட இடத்திற்கே திரும்பித் திரும்பி வந்து கொண்டிருந்தார். இது குழுவின் ஏமாற்று வேலை என அவரது ரசிகர்கள் கோபத்துடன் கூறினர்.

மாயாஜால நிபுணரான க்ரெஸ்கின் மாஜிக்கை ஒரு பொழுது போக்குக் கலையாகவே கருதுகிறார். பிறர் மனதை அறியும் சக்தி எதையும் கொண்டிருப்பதாக அவர் கூறியதே இல்லை.

ஆனால் எதிர்காலம் பற்றிய கணிப்புகளை அவர் வெளியிடுவது வழக்கம்.

2002ஆம் ஆண்டில் அவர் ஒரு அறிக்கையை வெளியிட்டார். அந்த ஆண்டு ஜூன் மாதம் ஆறாம் தேதி லாஸ் வேகாஸில் மாலை 6 மணியிலிருந்து 9.45க்குள் வானில் ஒரு பறக்கும் தட்டு தென்படும் என்றும் அதி ஆயிரக்கணக்கானோர் பார்ப்பார்கள் என்றும் அந்த அறிக்கையில் இருந்தது. அப்படி ஒருவேளை யாரும் அதைப் பார்க்கவில்லையெனில் 50000 டாலர் நன்கொடையாக அளிப்பதாகக் கூறினார். ஆனால் அப்படி ஒரு வானியல் நிகழ்வு நிகழவில்லை. க்ரெஸ்கினை இது பற்றிக் கேட்ட போது பல பச்சை வண்ணப் பொருளை வானில் பார்த்ததாகக் கூறி இருப்பதால் 50000 டாலரை நன்கொடையாகத் தர வேண்டிய அவசியம் இல்லை என்று கூறி விட்டார். ஹிப்நாடிஸத்தில் நிபுணரான அவர் 200 பேரை மனோவசியம் செய்து பறக்கும் தட்டைப் பார்க்க வைக்க முடியும் என்றார்.

ஹிட்லர் கூட மனோவசியத்தினாலேயே கூட்டத்தினரை ‘கட்டி’ வைத்தார் என்பது அவரது எண்ணம்.

.அவரிடம் மானேஜராக வேலை பார்த்த சீன் மக்ஜின்லி 2008ஆம் ஆண்டு அவருடனான தனது அனுபவங்களை வைத்து ‘தி க்ரேட் பக் ஹோவர்ட்’ (The Great Buck Howard ) என்ற படத்தை எடுத்தார்.

உலகம் கண்ட மனோவசிய நிபுணர்களில் க்ரெஸ்கின் தனிப்பெருமை கொண்டவர். முப்பது வருட வாழ்க்கையில் பதினோரு தரம் மட்டுமே செக்கைக் காணாமல் தோல்வியை ஒப்புக் கொண்ட அவரது நிகழ்ச்சிகள் இன்னும் தொடர்கின்றன.

அறிவியல் அறிஞர் வாழ்வில் .. ..

ரால்ப் வில்லியம் ப்ரான் (Ralph William Braun பிறப்பு :18-12-1940 மறைவு: 8-2-2013) அமெரிக்காவில் இண்டியானாவில் பிறந்தவர். அவருக்கு ஏழு வயதாகும் போது அவரால் நடக்க முடியவில்லை. முதுகுத்தண்டு வடத்தில் ஏற்பட்ட கோளாறு அவரை ஊனமுற்றவராக ஆக்கியது. ஆனால் மனம் தளராதா ப்ரான் சக்கர நாற்காலியில் செல்ல ஆரம்பித்தார். இண்டியானா பல்கலைக் கழக வளாகம் மிக அகன்ற ஒன்றாக இருக்கவே அவரால் அதில் சக்கர நாற்காலியில் அமர்ந்து செல்ல முடியவில்லை. அதிலிருந்து விலகி சுலபமாக ஓடும் நாற்காலி ஒன்றைச் செய்தால் என்ன என்று யோசித்தார். விளைவு, கடுமையான உழைப்பின் மூலமாக எலக்ட்ரிக் வீல் சேர் ஒன்றை வடிவமைத்தார்.

அத்துடன் பேட்டரியால் இயங்கும் ஸ்கூட்டர் ஒன்றையும் வடிவமைத்தார். இதைப் பார்த்து வியந்த பலர் ஊனமுற்ற தங்கள் குடும்ப உறுப்பினர்களுக்கும், உறவினர்களுக்கும் அதே போலச் செய்து தருமாறு வேண்டினர். உற்சாகத்துடன் ஒரு தொழிலகத்தைத் தொடங்கிய அவர் எலக்ட்ரிக் வீல் சேர்களைத் தயார் செய்து விற்க ஆரம்பித்தார்.

ஆனால் துரதிர்ஷ்டவசமாக தொழிற்சாலையில் ஒரு தீ விபத்து ஏற்பட அது கருகிச் சாம்பலானது. ஆனால் அங்கு வேலை பார்த்த பணியாளர்கள் ஒன்றாக இணைந்து ப்ரானுக்கு உதவி தொழிற்சாலையை மீண்டும் துவங்க உதவினர். 700 தொழிலாளர்கள் பணியாற்றும் மூன்று தொழிற்சாலைகளை அவர் உருவாக்கினார். ஒவ்வொரு மாகாணமாகச் சென்று தன் தயாரிப்புகளுக்கு விற்பனை பிரதிநிதிகளை நியமித்து தனது நிறுவனத்தைப் பெரியதொரு நிறுவனமாக ஆக்கினார் அவர். இன்று 20 கோடி டாலர் நிறுவனமாக அது திகழ்கிறது. அவரது ஊக்கமூட்டும் இந்த மேற்கோளை உலகம் பாராட்டிக் கொண்டாடுகிறது :

மேலே உயருங்கள், எனது நண்பர்களே! பின்னர் மற்றவர்களை வாழ்க்கை ஏணியில் ஏற உதவுங்கள்!

(Rise above, my friends, and reach back to help others climb the ladder of life!)




Written by London Swaminathan
Date: 20 December 2018
GMT Time uploaded in London – 7-13 am
Post No. 5804

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog.

There are 118 known elements and Radium is one of them. Since it emits light it was named Radii (ray). It killed many beautiful girls who worked in the Radium Industry and the famous French scientist Marie Curie (born in Poland). Marie Curies was the first woman to receive a Nobel Prize. She was the only woman who won the prize twice. She was the only person to get noble Prize with her husband (Pierre Curie).

Radium is a radio active element. It is a silvery metal.

Radium craze gripped America at one time and it killed hundreds of people by cancer. Radio activity from Radium caused cancer and other health problems.

Here is the story of Radium:-

Radium is highly dangerous because of its intense radio activity. It was discovered by Marie and her husband Pierre Curie in 1898.

Soon after its discovery, radium was regarded as a wonder drug. USA saw a radium craze in 1900s. For 30 year,s  all kinds of quack cures were sold.  Cosmos bags, Raithor, Ravigorator  were few names that attracted people in those days. They advertised that it cured cancer, mental illness, arthritis etc.

Those who could not buy expensive radium bought a flask lined with radium. People were asked to drink water stored in it overnight to cure several illnesses. Those who drank that water died of cancer in the following years. Eben Beyers, an American steel magnate , was one of the victims. After his death in 1931, the radium wonder drugs were stopped.

Beautiful girls emitted light!

The dangers came to public notice in a well publicized case of Radium Girls. They sued their former employer US Radium. The company used devious methods to prevent the case coming to trial. In the end the company settled the case out of court, awarding each girl $10,000 , but they all died within a few years. (It may remind us of Bhopal Gas Disaster in India).

Some of the girls from the factory were so contaminated with radium that their hair, faces, hands and arms glowed luminously in the dark!

Radium Dial Wrist Watches

In the first half of the20th century radium was an essential part of medical treatment for cancer. They implanted radium needles in the cancerous parts. Several workers who made such needles died later because of cancer. This element was used in luminous alarm clocks and wrist watches. The girls who worked there painted the dials with their hands. The young girls who worked there had the habit of licking the brush to make the painting sharp. They died of cancer later.

During II World War, precautionary measures were taken and the workers did such jobs by staying behind protective glass screens.

In the words of Marie Curie,

“One of our joys was to go into our work room at night when we perceived the feebly luminous silhouettes of the bottles and capsules containing our products. It was really a lovely sight and always new to us.  The glowing tubes looked like faint fairy light.”

Chemical Qualities

Symbol of Radium – Ra

Atomic Number 88

Melting Point 700 C

Boiling point – 1400 C

Even today it is used in industries, but radiation levels are measured and  human beings are protected. Luminous paints contain radium salts. Luminous dialled watches or clocks are no danger because the rays cannot penetrate the glass cases.

Earth is a naturally radio active planet.  Radium also contributes to the background level of radiation.

Radium is produced naturally during the decay of Uranium and Thorium. 25 radium isotopes are known.

Source book:- Nature’s Building Blocks by John Emsley.

tags-Radium, Marie Curie, Radium watch, beautiful girls


Edison failed thousands of times! (Post No.5791)

Written by London Swaminathan
Date: 16 December 2018
GMT Time uploaded in London – 20-59
Post No. 5791

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog.

Experimenters Anecdotes 

Edison failed thousands of times!

Results! Exclaimed Edison to an assistant marvelling at the bewildering total of his failures— 50000 experiments for example, before he succeeded with a new storage battery.
Results? Why man, I have gotten a lot of results. I know fifty thousand things that won’t work.


Shelley s Secret Experiments

Shelley s lifelong Interest in science, especially chemistry, was a roused by a quack lecturer who visited his first school, Sion House. At Eton he was forbidden to study chemistry, and so performed experiments in his room.

One day his tutor Mr Bethel, heard strange noises from his room, entered and found Shelley envelope d in blue flames.
What on earth are you doing, Shelley? Asked the teacher.
Please, Sir, I am raising the devil.
The startled tutor put his hand on some apparatus which being a Leyden jar gave him a bad shock.


Fluke and Luck

Edison s school of scientific experimentation was essentially empirical. Once he was seeking a solvent for hard rubber. Many scientists, seeking it through theory or formula, were yet helpless. Edison went to his impressive and remarkably complete store room of chemical s. He immersed a small fragment of hard rubber in a vial of each one of these many chemical s. It was an enormous number. But Edison found his solvent.


Amazing Americium, Curious Curium! Announced in Kids Radio Show! (Post No.5784)

Written by London Swaminathan

Date: 15 December 2018

GMT Time uploaded in London – 13-42

Post No. 5784

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog.

The story of the discovery of two elements is very interesting. America kept it as a top secret, but it was announced in a ‘Kids Quiz Radio Show’ in 1945!
The discoverers of americium chose an unusual way to announce their discovery in a children’s radio show in USA called Quiz Kids, broadcast on 11 November 1945.

The guest scientist on the panel that week was a 33 year old chemist, Glen T Seaborg, who had worked on the top secret atomic weapons programme that had produced two new elements, curium and americium. Americium came to light as part of the Allied project to develop nuclear weapons, so its discovery was kept secret until the end of Second World War. Its existence was officially announced a few days after the broadcast, and the following year Seaborg proposed naming it americium, after the continent on which it was first produced.

Americium is named after America. It is a radioactive, silvery metal.
Americium was first made in 1944 at the University of Chicago by a team which included Glen T Seaborg, Ralph A James, Leon. O Morgan and Albert Ghiorso. It was produced as a result of the bombardment of plutonium with neutrons in a nuclear reactor. It was in fact discovered after curium, the element which follows it in the Periodic Table.

Smoke Detector
It is widely used in smoke detectors. A smoke detector contains 150 micro grams of americium oxide. The price of americium oxide per gram was $1500 in the year 2000. 5000 detectors can be made in one gram.

Americium 243 is produced from plutonium 239 with a half -life of 7370 years. Americium 241 is used in smoke detectors. It is extracted from nuclear reactors.

Americium probably does occur naturally on earth, but only in incredibly tiny amounts in uranium minerals where nuclear fission may occasionally produce an atom.

Chemical Element

Chemical symbol –Am
Atomic number– 95
Melting point– 994 degree C

Curium for Pace makers

Curium 242 is produced in nuclear reactors by bombarding plutonium with neutrons. This isotope is used as power source for pacemakers and navigational buoys, and on space missions because it gives off 3 watts of heat energy per gram of metal. Its radiation can easily be shielded against.

Nuclear weapon tests from 1945 have pumped some curium into atmosphere.
Curium is a synthetic, radioactive metal belonging to the actinide group. It is silver in colour. Altogether there are 14 known isotopes. The ones made in kilogram quantities are curium 242 ( half- life 163 days) and curium 244 ( half- life 18 years). The longest lived isotope is curium 247, with a half-life of 16 million years.

Chemical properties

Chemical symbol Cm
Atomic number 96
Melting point 1340 degree C

The production of curium in large quantities in nuclear reactors solves a big problem. This helps to reduce the stockpile of plutonium which may be otherwise used for making nuclear weapons. Curium is relatively short lived and useful.

—- Subham—-

Iodine Wonders- Napoleonic Wars and Secret Rains (Post No.5666)

Written by London Swaminathan

Date: 15 November 2018

GMT Time uploaded in London –15-33
Post No. 5666

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog

Iodine is one of the 118 elements and has the Atomic Number 53 in the Periodic Table. There are very interesting titbits about this Common element. All of us know about tincture iodine that is applied on injuries and wounds. But there are more roles played by iodine in the fields of photography, artificial rain, treatment for goitre. Iodised salt, Napoleons interest in iodine, controversy about who discovered iodine, Chernobyl and thyroid cancer and foods rich in iodine.

Let me give some interesting information first

Secret tests carried out by the British defence department caused the death of 31 people in Lyn mouth in 1952. The experiment was done to see whether they can stop advancing enemy tanks in the battle field by creating floods. They tried to produce artificial rain by seeding the clouds with silver iodide. It caused sudden floods in West of England causing natural disaster.

Silver iodide can be used to seed the cloud and thereby initiate rainfall. One gram of silver iodide can provide trillion seed crystals around which water vapour condescend into water and fall to earth as rain .

Chemical details
Chemical symbol ‘I’ ( I for India, I for Iodine)
Atomic number 53
Melting point 114 degree C
It is a black, shiny, non-metallic element and belongs to halogen group in the Periodic Table.

Chernobyl and Thyroid Cancer
Radioactive iodine-131 was released into atmosphere following Chernobyl nuclear accident in 1986. Though the isotope has a half-life of eight days it was picked up by grazing animals. The milk from those animals and the water with the isotope caused thyroid cancer in lot of children. Potassium iodide tablets can counter the bad effects of this isotope, but it was too late for Chernobyl people.

Iodine in photography
In 1839, Louis Daguerre used it in photography. He used a piece of plated silver which had been exposed to iodine vapour. That formed the light sensitive silver iodide. The stronger the light, the more silver iodide was converted back to silver metal. The iodine formed in this was washed resulting in a positive image. Later they replaced it with a wet plate with silver iodide film on glass.

400000 tonnes from the sea
About four lakh tonnes of iodine escape from the oceans every year as iodide in sea spray or as iodine produced by marine organisms. When they are deposited on land micro organisms, fungi and other plants pick some of it and the rest reaches the sea again through river water.

Iodine is used in many industries
Pharmaceuticals account for 25%
Animal feeds 15%
Printing inks and dye s 15%
Industrial catalysts 15%
Photographic chemicals 10%
Miscellaneous uses 20%

Iodine is turned into iodide s of silver, titanium , potassium and zirconium in these industries.

Iodine and Napoleon

Iodine was discovered as an indirect result of the Napoleonic Wars of the early nineteenth century. British navy blockaded France in an effort to cut off the supply of saltpetre—potassium Nitrate —that was needed to make gunpowder. A cottage industry sprang up quickly to supply the saltpetre. Bernard Courtois, a chemist, made saltpetre from seaweed ash. In this process, he saw some beautiful crystals and gave it to two friends. At the end Joseph Gay Lussac proved it as a new element and named it Iode, from the Greek ‘iodes’ meaning violet like.

Iodine crystals produce purple fumes when they are heated.

English man Humphrey Davy confirmed it. English said that he discovered it. This controversy lasted for 100 years. The French celebrated the discovery of iodine in 1913. Napoleon gave permission to English man Humphrey Davy to visit Paris even though the two countries were at War. Davy was given a sample of iodine and he worked on it in his hotel room using his travelling chemistry set.

Iodine in Medicines

In 1820, Dr Jean Francois Coindet used iodine solution and potassium iodide for treating goitre. He knew sea weed which was used in goitre treatment contained iodine. Though his medicine failed to treat goitre it was found a good germs killer. It was used to treat open wounds. This is tincture iodine.

Iodine is needed in the first three months of pregnancy for the development of baby’s nervous system. Body needs iodine for its proper function. Most of it is in the thyroid glands in the neck. Thyroid glands produce two hormones, Thyroxine and Tri iodo thyronine, which regulate several metabolic functions including body temperature. Too little iodine in the body results in goitre— swollen neck— feels cold, dry skin, tiredness and even depression. Too much iodine results in hyperthyroidism with its associated restlessness and hyper activity

Iodine is found in large quantity in natural conditions in Chile, Colorado ,New Mexico in America
It is produced from natural brine and oil well brine. Chile and Japan produce 70% of iodine in the world

Every one of us needs iodine and it is in seaweed, cabbage, mushrooms, fish and oysters. Where ever iodine deficiency is, iodised salt is used in food. India and other countries use iodised salt.

— Subham—


Written by London Swaminathan
Date: 23 October 2018

Time uploaded in London – 18-14

(British Summer Time)

Post No. 5581

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog.


London Newspapers have flashed a news item this morning which warns about micro plastics in our body.

There are nine types of micro plastics in the human body in western countries who eat fish and drink from bottles.

The plastics can be ingested by eating fish that has been exposed to wastes in the sea, while other risks include drinking beer or tap water and using cosmetics.

Sea fish is the main culprit. Also, city life is unhealthy.

In course of time, they may even recommend live in villages surrounded by trees and plants, Well water and vegetarian food. Most of the non -vegetarian foods come in plastic packings in western countries. That way eating vegetables are safe, that too eating vegetables grown organically is safer.

Vegetarians will feel better after reading the following news:

Toxic micro plastics are polluting people’s bodies according to a latest research by experts from Medical University in Vienna, Austria.

Volunteers from eight European countries took part in the study. All of them had potentially dangerous particles in their systems.

Dr Philip Schwabl, who led the research said, “This is the first study of its kind and confirms what we have long suspected—plastics ultimately reach the human gut. Smallest particles can even enter the blood stream., the lymphatic system and may even reach the liver. We need further research to find out how it would affect our health”.

How did they find it ?

The findings are based on analysis of the stools of eight volunteers from Austria, Britain, Finland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland and Russia.

They had kept food diaries which showed the had all eaten products from plastic packaging or drunk from plastic bottles.

Six of the had eaten fish.

Nine types of MICRO PLASTICS were found and there were on average 20 particles per 10 gram of stool.

Full details were presented at United European Gastro enterology week in Vienna yesterday.

Previous research showed it plastic can be ingested through food, drink, cosmetics and even by breathing air in the city.

Plastics contaminates every aspect of our life!