Printer Friendly

Shock full of nuts.

Shock full of nuts

A supercritical fluid is a substance that has been heated and compressed so that it exists neither as a liquid nor as a vapor but as a combination of the two states with its own distinctive properties. Such fluids are often excellent solvents and are used commercially for processes such as extracting caffeine from coffee beans. However, conventional techniques for bringing a fluid to its critical point are slow and expensive, taking as long as 36 hours. As an alternative, Philip A. Thompson of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., suggests the use of shock waves, which can bring a fluid to its critical point in less than a millisecond. Thompson has been using the shock-wave technique in his laboratory to study the behavior of supercritical fluids.
COPYRIGHT 1987 Science Service, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1987, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:shock waves used to bring fluid to critical point
Publication:Science News
Date:Dec 5, 1987
Previous Article:Looking into metal specimens.
Next Article:The plankton-climate connection: growing evidence suggests that one-celled marine plants play an important role in determining the earth's climate.

Related Articles
Sounding out gallstones.
Listening for hints of the sun's heliopause.
High-rises rock to shuttle shock.
The shocked state of superconductors.
Why three planets radio the sun.
Measuring a shocking velocity.
Halos on Venus: an explosive finding.
A shocking way to trigger star birth.
Imaging shock waves via proton snapshots.
Ka-boom! A shockingly unconventional meat tenderizer.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2021 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters