• 2019-03-18

    Sustainable pellet production saving lives

    The world needs more efficient energy systems based on renewable raw material, an equation not easily solved. At Karlstad University, research and education are in progress to find sustainable energy systems, for instance, through a project in which pellets replace charcoal in cooking solutions in Zambia, because cooking with charcoal as fuel leads to extensive deforestation as well as health hazards. Globally, more deaths are caused by air pollution at home than malaria, HIV and tuberculosis put together.

    “In this study we looked at twelve different available residual products for pellet production in Zambia and how these products interact in different combinations”, says Stefan Frodeson, lecturer in environmental and energy systems. “The study has led to the discovery of several different residual products from forestry and agriculture. Other important findings are also how the materials could be used to manufacture a product that meets the demands of production in Africa.”

  • 2019-03-04

    What happened to the hyped nanomaterials?

    Carbon based nano materials such as graphene and carbon nanotubes were predicted a brilliant future when they were discovered. But quality problems curb the development of new products. The problem is that it is difficult to analyse the crystal structure and there are no established standard methods for classifying the materials. But now, researchers at Karlstad University are close to a solution.

    ”Carbon atoms must sit perfectly in a well-organised crystal structure at precise distances, but they don’t in the commercially available materials on the market today,” says Krister Svensson, associate professor of physics.

  • 2019-01-31

    Students develop app for new type of cultural experience

    Podcast dramas that enhance the listening experience through interactive effects have become reality through a collaboration between dramatist Amanda Fromell and computer technology students at Karlstad University. Together they have created a new type of cultural experience in which a smartphone interacts with the contents and for example vibrates in time with heartbeats, becomes warm during a heated dialogue or sends links related to the podcast contents.

    “The aim is to offer an art form that everyone with a smartphone can enjoy. I wanted to integrate the contents with effects to reinforce the listening experience,” says Amanda Fromell, dramatist and doctoral student at the Department of Drama and Theatre Arts at the University of Birmingham.
    “I have long been interested in how algorithms affect phone users. This project also allows users to see which control phones exert over us.”

  • 2019-01-24

    Where did the ink go? Effects of liquid absorption in flexography

    An important part of packaging is the printed packaging surface, communicating a message to the consumers. Poor printing quality can affect the perception of the packaging as well as the product. A new doctoral thesis focusing on ink distribution in flexography enables the control of printing quality already in the paper mill production process.

    ”A printed image can consist of several layers of ink and the distribution within each layer cab affect the quality of the image”, says Sofia Thorman, industrial doctoral student in chemical engineering at Karlstad University and researcher RISE, Research Institutes of Sweden. “How evenly the ink is applied and distributed depends on the quality of the carton or the paper it is printed on. To ensure that the carton properties meet the requirements for stable printing quality, it is important to understand what causes irregularities in the print.”

  • 2018-11-30

    Describing transport through thin heterogeneous layers using mathematical models

    Adrian Muntean, Professor of Mathematics at Karlstad University, has been awarded funding by the Swedish Research Council to study the transport of matter through thin heterogeneous layers, that is, thin barriers preventing the free movement of particles. The aim is to understand the behaviour of layers at a microscopic level to control traits such as storage capacity and permeability.

    "I am delighted that the Swedish Research Council has granted my application,” says Adrian Muntean. “This means that I can now further develop and refine the mathematical multiscale techniques I have been working on the last ten years."

    How do ions, pathological agents or tiny particles move through cells and tissues in our body? Which type of packaging coating gives contents the best shelf life? Both cell walls and coatings used in packaging materials are examples of thin heterogeneous layers that have significant functionalities supporting many technological innovations.

  • 2018-11-27

    Karlstad University part of large international research project on suicide

    How can better treatment be offered to young people who arrive at emergency rooms with suicidal thoughts but are not at immediate risk for suicide? SEK 55 million has been awarded to a research project involving Karlstad University that addresses this question.

    Over five years, the project group will compare the current standard treatment offered at emergency rooms with outpatient psychiatric treatment to decide which type of treatment results in the lowest risk of recurrent suicidal thoughts.

    Researchers from Public Health Science at Karlstad University, together with the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and three other hospitals in the USA, have been awarded funding from the Patient-Centered Outcome Research Institute in the USA.