Sophia Hayes, our Chair-elect, is also Professor of Chemistry at Washington University. Much of her research is focused on NMR techniques, and you know what that means: massive superconducting magnets. And you know what that means: a need for super-low temperatures.
Sophia is therefore concerned about the dwindling supply of helium, which is used as a cryogenic liquid (around 4 K) to cool her magnets. She has become something of a go-to person for commentary about this “endangered element.”
Sophia served as a science consultant for a joint ACS/PBS video on the who, what, and why of the helium crisis. It’s less than five minutes, so give it a look.
And if you are interested in a more technical, in-depth take on the issue, Sophia will be co-hosting an ACS webinar, Helium: An Irreplaceable Resource and Why We Must Conserve It, on Thursday, April 11, at 1 pm (CDT). ACS members can register here for the free webinar.