Latest Hydrocarbon Stories

Image 1 - Investigating Titan's Chemical Factory
2012-04-25 03:20:22

Saturn's giant moon Titan hides behind a thick, smoggy atmosphere that's well known to scientists as one of the most complex chemical environments in the solar system. It's a productive "factory" cranking out hydrocarbons that rain down on Titan's icy surface and cloak it in soot. With a brutally cold surface temperature of around minus 270 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 170 degrees Celsius), the hydrocarbons form lakes of liquid methane and ethane. However, the most important raw ingredient in...

2012-03-29 22:37:57

Measurements taken by a team including National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) scientists show that a newly created material has the ability to separate closely related components of natural gas from one another, a task that currently demands a good deal of energy to accomplish. The results might improve the efficiency of the distillation process. The material is a new type of metal-organic framework (MOF), a class of materials whose high surface area and tunable properties...

2012-03-29 22:28:39

Metal-organic framework captures saturated hydrocarbons, letting pure unsaturated gases through A new type of hybrid material developed at the University of California, Berkeley, could help oil and chemical companies save energy and money — and lower their environmental impacts — by eliminating an energy-intensive gas-separation process. Today, to separate hydrocarbon gas mixtures into the pure chemicals needed to make plastics, refineries "crack" crude oil at high...

Image 1 - Topography Played Key Role In Bacterial Consumption Of Deepwater Horizon Spill
2012-01-10 07:03:59

Scientists document how geology, biology worked together after oil disaster When scientist David Valentine and colleagues published results of a study in early 2011 reporting that bacterial blooms had consumed almost all the deepwater methane plumes after the 2010 Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Horizon oil spill, some were skeptical. How, they asked the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) geochemist, could almost all the gas emitted disappear? In new results published this...

2011-08-16 08:59:25

Research at Greenland and Antarctic shows decline in methane and ethane levels Recent data from NSF-funded research in both Greenland and Antarctica demonstrate that fossil-fuel related emissions of both methane and ethane, two of the most abundant hydrocarbons in the atmosphere, declined at the end of the twentieth century, according to a paper published Thursday in the journal Nature. The causes of the decline in methane emission rates to the atmosphere have been puzzling scientists for...

2011-05-23 13:40:02

A new computer model of the Gulf of Mexico in the period after the oil spill provides insights into how underwater currents may have primed marine microorganisms to degrade the oil. "It is called dynamic auto-inoculation. Parcels of water move over the ruptured well, picking up hydrocarbons. When these parcels come back around and cross back over the well, the bacteria have already been activated, are more abundant than before, and degrade hydrocarbons far more quickly," says David Valentine...

Word of the Day
  • The unit of magnetic flux density in the International System of Units, equal to the magnitude of the magnetic field vector necessary to produce a force of one newton on a charge of one coulomb moving perpendicular to the direction of the magnetic field vector with a velocity of one meter per second. It is equivalent to one weber per square meter.
This word is named for Nikola Tesla, the inventor, engineer, and futurist.