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  • Catalysis

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    An air filter that utilizes a low-temperature oxidation catalyst to convert carbon monoxide to less toxic carbon dioxide at room temperature. It can also remove formaldehyde from the air.Catalysis is the process of increasing the rate of a chemical reaction by adding a substance known as a catalyst (), which is not consumed in the catalyzed reaction and can continue to act repeatedly. Because of this, only very small amounts of catalyst are required to alter the reaction rate in principle. In general, chemical reactions occur faster in the presence of a catalyst because the catalyst provides an alternative reaction mechanism with a lower activation energy than the non-catalyzed mechanism. In catalyzed mechanisms, the catalyst usually reacts to form a temporary intermediate, which then regenerates the original catalyst in a cyclic process. A substance which provides a mechanism with a higher activation energy does not decrease the rate because the reaction can still occur by the non-catalyzed route. An added substance which does reduce the reaction rate is not considered a catalyst but a reaction inhibitor (see below).

  • Platinum

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    Platinum is a chemical element with symbol Pt and atomic number 78. It is a dense, malleable, ductile, highly unreactive, precious, silverish-white transition metal. Its name is derived from the Spanish term platino, meaning "little silver". Platinum is a member of the platinum group of elements and group 10 of the periodic table of elements. It has six naturally occurring isotopes. It is one of the rarer elements in Earth's crust, with an average abundance of approximately 5 μg/kg. It occurs in some nickel and copper ores along with some native deposits, mostly in South Africa, which accounts for 80% of the world production. Because of its scarcity in Earth's crust, only a few hundred tonnes are produced annually, and given its important uses, it is highly valuable and is a major precious metal commodity. Platinum is one of the least reactive metals. It has remarkable resistance to corrosion, even at high temperatures, and is therefore considered a noble metal. Consequently, platinum is often found chemically uncombined as native platinum. Because it occurs naturally in the alluvial sands of various rivers, it was first used by pre-Columbian South American natives to produce artifacts. It was referenced in European writings as early as 16th century, but it was not until Antonio de Ulloa published a report on a new metal of Colombian origin in 1748 that it began to be investigated by scientists. Platinum is used in catalytic converters, laboratory equipment, electrical contacts and electrodes, platinum resistance thermometers, dentistry equipment, and jewelry. Being a heavy metal, it leads to health problems upon exposure to its salts; but due to its corrosion resistance, metallic platinum has not been linked to adverse health effects. Compounds containing platinum, such as cisplatin, oxaliplatin and carboplatin, are applied in chemotherapy against certain types of cancer. As of 2018, the value of platinum is $833.00 per ounce.

  • Bluesmobile

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    Bluesmobile replica at House Of Blues in Dallas. The Bluesmobile is a 1974 Dodge Monaco sedan that was prominently featured in the 1980 Universal Pictures film The Blues Brothers. The car is described as a decommissioned Mount Prospect police car, purchased by Elwood Blues at an auction after he had traded a previous car (a 1968 Cadillac Sixty Special) for a microphone. The Bluesmobile is equipped with a "440 Magnum" engine and squad car package, an option offered by Dodge for the Monaco in 1974. It bears an Illinois license plate reading "BDR 529", a tribute to the Black Diamond Riders motorcycle club of Toronto, Canada. Dan Aykroyd, co-writer of the film, stated that he chose the 440 Dodge Monaco because he considered it to be the hottest car used by police during the 1970s. In describing the car to his brother Jake Blues, Elwood says, "It's got a cop motor, a 440-cubic-inch plant. It's got cop tires, cop suspension, cop shocks. It's a model made before catalytic converters so it'll run good on regular gas.

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