oa Quest - Sunscreen from cashew nut shells? - news

Volume 15 Number 4
  • ISSN : 1729-830X



A team of international scientists has found an environmentally friendly way of producing potential sunscreens by using cashew nut shells, a waste material. So-called ‘green chemists’ from the University of the Witwatersrand, along with colleagues from universities in Germany, Malawi and Tanzania, are working on techniques to produce useful compounds from wood and other fast growing non-edible plant waste, through a chemical process called xylochemistry (wood chemistry). Using cashew nut shells, the team has produced new aromatic compounds that show good ultraviolet (UV) absorbance. These compounds could potentially be applied to protect humans and livestock, as well as paints, polymers and coatings, from the sun’s harmful rays. The research was published as the cover article of the European Journal of Organic Chemistry in August 2019.

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