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Covestro Q1 earnings driven by volumes and prices

Posted on May 16th, 2017 by

Chemicals Industry News and Analysis


Higher prices for key intermediates in Asia and the knock-on effect in other parts of the world in the first quarter has, not surprisingly, helped lift returns for the petrochemical majors. Continue reading “Covestro Q1 earnings driven by volumes and prices” »

Why is coal the worst fossil fuel – emissions, climate, health, smog…?

Posted on May 15th, 2017 by

Chemical R&D

Coal fossil fuels

Beijing, China (Source,

The photo above shows a street during daytime in Beijing, China, where over 70% of people wear masks on smoggy days.  Smoggy days occur frequently resulting in periodic highway and airport shutdowns.  The main cause of the smog is smoke and soot particles spewed from stacks of coal burning factories. Continue reading “Why is coal the worst fossil fuel – emissions, climate, health, smog…?” »

Running chemical R&D as a business

Posted on May 12th, 2017 by

Chemical R&D


In some companies, the R&D team is not always wholly aligned with the business executives. This can arise from communication difficulties and conflicting priorities. To bridge this gap, the heads of R&D must learn to present their goals for innovation in the language of dollars and sense. Continue reading “Running chemical R&D as a business” »

China encourages more chemical R&D

Posted on May 12th, 2017 by

Chemical R&D

China's chemical industry

Despite making strides in recent years, China still feels far behind developed countries in the world in terms of their overall capability and level of technology innovation. But how will the Chinese government turn from a big chemical country into a great chemical power? With R&D innovation as a key driver. Continue reading “China encourages more chemical R&D” »

How do you lower analytical lab costs?

Posted on May 11th, 2017 by

Chemical R&D

James Elmont case study

A chemist at a global chemical company needed to create new materials for the company’s polymer platform. His challenge was to find and evaluate high performance, cost effective and biodegradable polymers within budget. He needed a way to sort and evaluate large numbers of materials quickly, efficiently and reliably. Continue reading “How do you lower analytical lab costs?” »

Chemistry for Crayola

Posted on May 10th, 2017 by

Chemical R&D

YInMn pigment created by OSU

Image by Oregon State University via Flickr

Life didn’t hand lemons to researchers at Oregon State University, but a new pigment was also not intended. Their journey to materials with novel magnetic properties took an unexpected turn making Crayola see blue in lieu of yellow. Continue reading “Chemistry for Crayola” »

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About Chemical & Materials Blog

This blog is a forum for a critical exchange of ideas on issues, trends and opportunities related to innovation and R&D in chemicals and new materials and applications, offering helpful perspectives in environmental health and safety, risk management, new product development and operational efficiency. This blog serves the chemicals and materials community specifically, heads of R&D, heads of Manufacturing and Engineering, and chemists and engineers involved in chemical and materials R&D from ideation to manufacturing and production at scale.

Editor’s note: The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Elsevier,  its affiliates and sponsors or its parent company, Reed Elsevier.