PFAS ‘forever chemicals’ are widespread and threaten human health

(The Conversation is an independent and nonprofit source of news, analysis and commentary from academic experts.)

(THE CONVERSATION) Like many inventions, the discovery of Teflon happened by accident. In 1938, chemists from Dupont (now Chemours) were studying refrigerant gases when, much to their surprise, one concoction solidified. Upon investigation, they found it was not only the slipperiest substance they’d ever seen – it was also noncorrosive and extremely stable and had a high melting point.

In 1954 the revolutionary “nonstick” Teflon pan was introduced. Since then, an entire class of human-made chemicals has evolved: per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, better known as PFAS. There are upward of 6,000 of these chemicals. Many are used for stain-, grease- and waterproofing. PFAS are found in clothing, plastic, food packaging, electronics, personal care products, firefighting foams, medical devices and numerous other products.

But over time, evidence has slowly built that some commonly used PFAS

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Augmented reality goggles could help military dogs find bombs, chemicals

Oct. 6 (UPI) — Researchers have developed augmented reality goggles that would allow handlers to give commands to military working dogs while staying out of harm’s way.

The military often uses dogs to scout areas for explosive devices and hazardous materials and to assist in rescue operations.

But working dogs need handlers who can give them commands while they work — typically by using hand signals or laser pointers, which can pose a safety risk by providing a light source.

Being present to give those commands can put soldiers in harm’s way, and generating a light source can also be dangerous in some situations.

Handlers have tried audio communication — using a camera and walkie talkie placed on the dog — but the verbal commands can be confusing for the dog.

So researchers funded by the Army’s Small Business Innovation Research program and managed by the Army Research Office have

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