Benzene is one of chemistry's great stars. It has numerous applications, and is the basis for manufacturing many more useful compounds. But did you know its structure was a subject of a lot of controversy in the 19th century?
Just a hundred years ago, drugs were expensive and had to be obtained from exotic tropical trees. This changed with the discovery of an artificial compound called Salvarsan. It cured the dreaded disease syphilis and laid the foundation of modern medicine.
Quinine has been used as a cure for malaria since the 17th century. It was only later in the 1940s that other drugs replaced it. Discover how the medicinal properties of this wonder drug were discovered.
Over millions of years, plants and animals have evolved materials with amazing properties - the sticky feet of geckos, spiders' silk, self-cleaning lotus leaves. Scientists are now learning to make products in the lab that imitate their properties; these are called biomimetics.