Chemistry in Pictures—An icy surprise | Chemical & Engineering News

Issue Date: November 9, 2017

Chemistry in Pictures—An icy surprise

Department: Science & Technology
Keywords: Polymers, synthetic chemistry, colorimetric sensors, evaporation, ice crystals, synthetic polymers
Credit: Joe Forzano
A photo of ice crystals surrounding filter paper against a black background.
Credit: Joe Forzano

Things are getting chilly in Waterville, Maine. Joe Forzano, an undergraduate at Colby College, was rinsing a naphthalimide-based polymer with dichloromethane to remove impurities through gravity filtration when these ice crystals formed. The evaporation of the dichloromethane off of the filter paper drew heat from the surrounding air, causing the moisture in the air to freeze. Eventually the ice crystals grew so much that they obscured the filter paper, which is when Joe snapped this photo.

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