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By Brittany Howard

A new Pfizer restriction means that lethal injection drugs are no longer available on the US open market.

In April of this year, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced that it will be imposing sweeping restrictions concerning its drugs that are used in carrying out the death penalty, which will effectively bring an end to the open market for execution drugs in the US. As it stands, all FDA-approved manufacturers of potential execution drugs, a diverse suite of 25 global companies, have blocked the sale of their products for use in executions.

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What now for Australian research in a post-Brexit world?

By Andrew Holmes and Cheryl Prager

Brain Exit foreshadowed

Nobody can yet predict exactly what the ramifications will be now the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union, but UK science commentators are already foreshadowing Brexit Mark 2 – a Brain Exit of researchers.

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Also in this issue...

Weighty issues

Is a switch to artificial sweeteners a smart alternative to sugar?


From researcher to attorney

Mike Zammit reflects on the different perspectives of IP for researchers, IP coordinators and patent attorneys.


Suspense in the movie theatre air

With some movies, suspense is quite literally in the air. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry and the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, analysed the air in cinemas during various movie screenings and determined that every movie leaves a characteristic pattern in the air.


Heavy metals in wine

The presence of heavy metals in wine, as with any food or beverage, stimulates active debate about the safe consumption of the product. A UK study released in 2008 created a considerable flurry of articles on the web that were not particularly favourable to the wine industry.


Previous issue

By Madeleine Schultz

Pedagogical content knowledge from teachers and academics has been captured and coded to create a new resource for chemistry education.

Classroom teaching practice is a personal skill that develops with experience and through reflection. Teacher behaviour involves responding to a specific group of students in a particular class and so is impossible to completely plan in advance. However, steps towards the development of more effective teaching methods are possible even with limited time and resources.

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Drones, droids and robots

By Ian A. Maxwell

Technology & innovation

The Australian Government’s ‘National Innovation and Science Agenda’ is hosting the schools theme of ‘Drones, Droids and Robots’ as part of National Science Week this month. The aim of this theme is to ‘embrace [in schools] … real-world application of autonomous technologies in areas including agriculture, mining, manufacturing, medicine and space and deep ocean exploration’.

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Milestone in solar cell efficiency

By Wilson da Silva

New world record set

A new solar cell configuration developed by engineers at the University of New South Wales has pushed sunlight-to-electricity conversion efficiency to 34.5% – establishing a new world record for unfocused sunlight and nudging closer to the theoretical limits for such a device.

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Also in this issue...

Expressing a passion for chemistry and crystals

Four PhD students at the University of Warwick are exploring the creative side of crystal research.


Cobalt blues

Alongside inspiring stories in elite sport are those centred on the use of banned substances such as cobalt.


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