The American Chemical Society (ACS) has released a series of audio podcasts highlighting the science and cutting-edge technology behind solar power. The podcasts, available free of charge, tell the story of how scientists and students are making progress in harnessing the abundant energy of the sun. Well-suited for classroom use, the first two episodes explain the chemistry behind solar power—an alternative to fossil fuels that could have a larger role in the years ahead as a sustainable energy source for the world. The third and fourth podcasts describe a competition supported by the U.S. Department of Energy called the Solar Decathlon, in which students compete to build the world’s best solar homes. The podcasts are based on articles published in the latest issue of ChemMatters, ACS’ magazine for high school students. Published quarterly by the ACS Office of High School Chemistry, each issue contains articles about the chemistry of everyday life and is of interest to high school students and their teachers.


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Jeff Festa