Developed by British scientists' magnetic soap "may find many applications in modern technology, including environmentally friendly cleaning oil spills.
A substance that reacts to magnetic fields can be used to clean oil stains without leaving a detergent that can damage the surrounding wildlife.
Researchers from the University of Bristol, UK, dissolved iron particles in water containing chlorine and bromine ions, materials that are commonly found in household products such as mouthwash or cleaning cloth. This has created metal centers in the particles of soap, which can be influenced by the magnetic field.
The team tested their new "soap", placing it in a test tube under layers of water and substances like oil slick. Using a magnet, they were able to overcome the force of gravity and surface tension and raise the soap through the layers from the tube.
This test shows that it is much easier to remove the magnetic soap from a mixture of other fluids, meaning that it can be used in response to environmental disasters such as spills of oil spills, because at the moment of their treatment causes great harm to the environment. The magnetic soap can be easily collected after treatment, reducing the impact on the environment.
The magnetic soap can also have a spectrum of industrial applications due to its ability to change such properties as electrical conductivity or the boiling point by the on / off magnet. These properties are usually altered by the addition of an electric charge, or changes in pH, temperature or pressure of the substance, that is, they can not be reversed.
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