Monthly Archives: December 2013
The celebration of the passing of mid-winter and the lengthening of the days is ancient, Norsemen lit bonfires, told stories and drank ale at the winter solstice; the Roman festival of Saturnalia ran for seven days from 17th December and was a time when ordinary rules were turned upside down (such as men dressing as women, masters as servants), houses were decorated with evergreens, candles were lit and presents given. It was the arrival in Britain of the Romans that brought many of the rituals of Saturnalia to the mid-winter celebrations of the British peoples.
Tinsel is a sparkling decorative material that mimics the effect of ice or icicles. When in long narrow strips (sometimes known as “lametta“), it emulates icicles. It was originally a metallic garland for Christmas decoration. The modern production of tinsel typically involves plastic, and is used particularly to decorate Christmas trees. It may be hung from ceilings or wrapped around statues, lampposts, and so on. Modern tinsel was invented in Nuremberg, Germany, in 1610, and was originally made of shredded silver.
According to the Concise Oxford Dictionary, the word is from the Old French word estincele, meaning “sparkle”.
Tinsel was invented in Nuremberg around 1610. Tinsel was originally made from extruded strands of silver. Because silver tarnishes quickly, other shiny metals were substituted. Before the 16th century, tinsel was used for adorning sculptures rather than Christmas trees. It was added to Christmas trees to enhance the flickering of the candles on the tree.
Modern tinsel is typically made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) film coated with a metallic finish and sliced into thin strips. Coated mylar film also has been used. These plastic forms of tinsel do not hang as well as tinsel made from heavy metals such as silver and lead.
For more information, visit:-
There will be no blog article next week. The P&R Labpak Limited Blog will return in 2014. We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
The conductivity (or specific conductance) of an electrolyte solution is a measure of its ability to conduct electricity. The SI unit of conductivity is siemens per meter (S/m).
Conductivity measurements are used routinely in many industrial and environmental applications as a fast, inexpensive and reliable way of measuring the ionic content in a solution. For example, the measurement of product conductivity is a typical way to monitor and continuously trend the performance of water purification systems.
In many cases, conductivity is linked directly to the total dissolved solids (T.D.S.). High quality deionised water has a conductivity of about 5.5 μS/m, typical drinking water in the range of 5-50 mS/m, while sea water about 5 S/m (i.e., sea water’s conductivity is one million times higher than that of deionised water)
Conductivity Meters – Two electrodes with an applied AC voltage are placed in the solution. This creates a current dependent upon the conductive nature of the solution. The meter reads this current and displays in either conductivity (EC) or ppm (TDS).
Our two part guide will help you to measure conductivity accurately. The guides answer the 7 most asked questions regarding conductivity and the second part is a comprehensive guide on theory and measurement.
Just click on the links below to download your copies.
Part 1 – http://www.prlabs.co.uk/news/article.php?Id=232
Part 2 – http://www.prlabs.co.uk/news/article.php?Id=233
P&R Labpak closes on Tuesday 24th December 2013 and re-opens on 2nd January 2014. There will be no deliveries during this period.
P&R Labpak would like to take this opportunity now to thank you for your custom this year, and look forward to continuing our relationships in 2014.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our blog posts over the last year and hope you will continue to read them in future. If you want us to feature anything or try and answer a question for you then let us know.
Remember to LIKE us on Facebook and subscribe to our Twitter feed too!
Thorium has been in the news recently as it was suggested as a safer and more readily available element than Uranium for generating power.
Thorium is a naturally occurring radioactive chemical element with the symbol Th and atomic number 90. It was discovered in 1828 by the Norwegian mineralogist Morten Thrane Esmark and identified by the Swedish chemist Jöns Jakob Berzelius and named after Thor, the Norse god of thunder.
Thorium produces a radioactive gas, radon-220, as one of its decay products. Secondary decay products of thorium include radium and actinium. In nature, virtually all thorium is found as thorium-232, which undergoes alpha decay with a half-life of about 14.05 billion years. Other isotopes of thorium are short-lived intermediates in the decay chains of higher elements, and only found in trace amounts. Thorium is estimated to be about three to four times more abundant than uranium in the Earth’s crust, and is chiefly refined from monazite sands as a by-product of extracting rare earth metals.
Pure thorium is a soft, lustrous silvery-white metal. If it doesn’t burst into flames first, thorium will slowly tarnish when exposed to air, becoming grey, as you see above, and then finally black in colour. Thorium is very ductile and, like all actinoids, thorium is radioactive.
|Monazite, a rare earth and thorium phosphate mineral, is the primary source of the world’s thorium|
When compared to uranium, there is a growing interest in developing a thorium fuel cycle due to its greater safety benefits, absence of non-fertile isotopes and its higher occurrence and availability.
India’s Kakrapar-1 reactor is the world’s first reactor which uses thorium rather than depleted uranium to achieve power flattening across the reactor core. India, which has about 25% of the world’s thorium reserves, is developing a 300 MW prototype of a thorium-based Advanced Heavy Water Reactor (AHWR). The prototype is expected to be fully operational by 2016, after which five more reactors will be constructed. The reactor is a fast breeder reactor and uses a plutonium core rather than an accelerator to produce neutrons. As accelerator-based systems can operate at sub-criticality they could be developed too, but that would require more research. India currently envisages meeting 30% of its electricity demand through thorium-based reactors by 2050.
For more information visit:-