Chemist developing method to make water safer to drink


One of the best ways to beat the summer heat is to stay well hydrated. Each swig of tap or bottled water contains fluoride, which promotes dental health. Too much, however, could make bones brittle and lead to other health issues.

Federal authorities recommend no more than 0.7 parts per million, but Texas A&M University chemist François P. Gabbaï says fluoride detection at such miniscule levels can be tricky. He and his research group specialize in building one possible solution — organometallic molecules that emit fluorescence when they are mixed with water containing fluoride. Gabbaï recently earned a $440,000 National Science Foundation grant to further develop the technology.

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