A century and a half ago, a set of symbols, carefully arranged in rows and columns, was published. The 'collection’ was incomplete and the gaps hinted at undiscovered relatives.
Where does the periodic table of elements end? Is there a final element, or are ever-increasing atomic numbers possible?
Researchers have extracted the molecules that power the majestic glowworm displays in New Zealand’s Waitomo Caves.
Professor John Moses, chemist at the La Trobe Institute for Molecular Science at La Trobe University, walks to the corner of his lab and opens the lid on a large bucket of brown seeds. ‘We paid $10 a kilo for this lot of Voacanga africana’, he tells me. ‘We first bought them on eBay and now we source them from a farm in Ghana.’
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