Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Arsenic criticality poses concern for modern technology

Date:
February 8, 2012
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Risks related to the critical nature of arsenic -- used to make high-speed computer chips that contain gallium arsenide -- outstrip those of other substances in a group of critical materials needed to sustain modern technology, a new study has found. Scientists evaluated the relative criticality of arsenic and five related metals.

Risks related to the critical nature of arsenic -- used to make high-speed computer chips that contain gallium arsenide -- outstrip those of other substances in a group of critical materials needed to sustain modern technology, a new study has found. Scientists evaluated the relative criticality of arsenic and five related metals in a report in the ACS' journal Environmental Science & Technology.

Related Articles


T. E. Graedel, E. M. Harper, N. Nassar and colleagues explain that five metals -- gold, silver, arsenic, selenium and tellurium -- exist in small amounts within larger deposits of copper. Supplies of all six elements are critically important for modern technology. Copper wires, for instance, conduct electricity; electronics makers rely on gold and silver; solar panels require selenium and tellurium and computer chips contain arsenic. The research group notes that while a shortage of any of these would hurt a range of technology industries, there is no existing standard for assessing the relative supply risk, environmental concerns and vulnerability to supply restriction of the metals.

To fill that gap, the team explored the so-called "criticality" of these six metals, a term that takes into account the risk of future scarcity and the potential damage from shortages. They found arsenic to be the most critical, with silver and selenium close behind. The rankings are dynamic and will evolve over time, the scientists note, because the underlying factors that determine criticality for arsenic and the other elements vary with changing economic, technological and social conditions. Using the group's methodology, corporations and nations could identify their unique set of critical materials and take concrete steps to stabilize their supply chains, as well as identify and improve the performance of less critical substitute materials.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nedal T. Nassar, Rachel Barr, Matthew Browning, Zhouwei Diao, Elizabeth Friedlander, E. M. Harper, Claire Henly, Goksin Kavlak, Sameer Kwatra, Christine Jun, Simon Warren, Man-Yu Yang, T. E. Graedel. Criticality of the Geological Copper Family. Environmental Science & Technology, 2012; 46 (2): 1071 DOI: 10.1021/es203535w

Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Arsenic criticality poses concern for modern technology." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 February 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120208132715.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2012, February 8). Arsenic criticality poses concern for modern technology. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120208132715.htm
American Chemical Society. "Arsenic criticality poses concern for modern technology." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120208132715.htm (accessed April 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Homes Threatened by Washington Landslide

Raw: Homes Threatened by Washington Landslide

AP (Mar. 31, 2015) The city of Des Moines, Washington says it could be weeks before a landslide that damaged several homes settles, according to KOMO. (March 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Models in Masks Highlight Indonesian Environmental Devastation

Models in Masks Highlight Indonesian Environmental Devastation

AFP (Mar. 31, 2015) Wearing gas masks and designer dresses, models condemn the fashion industry&apos;s role in causing environmental devastation. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California on Alert Over Surge in Sea Lion Strandings

California on Alert Over Surge in Sea Lion Strandings

AFP (Mar. 31, 2015) Since the start of the year, thousands of baby sea lions have washed up on beaches along the west coast of the United States. Marine animal care centers are working around the clock to save the stranded creatures. Duration: 02:06 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dutch Architects Show Off 3D House-Building Prowess

Dutch Architects Show Off 3D House-Building Prowess

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 31, 2015) Dutch architects are constructing a 3D-printed canal-side home, which they hope will spark an environmental revolution in the house-building industry. Jim Drury reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins