Browse Category by Matter and energy
Matter and energy

A Wonderful BBQ Wedding

bbq wedding

My high school best friend was getting married in Italy. She hosted a BBQ wedding on a piece of big grassland. Honestly, I wasn’t really interested in joining the party at the beginning as it took me 12 hours to land there. But turned out this trip and the party were so much wonderful.

The BBQ party was the highlight of the wedding and it started at evening. The fuel they used was coconut shell charcoal instead of gas or coal. This reflected the couple as Earth lovers and the wedding theme as natural. One of the benefits using coconut shell charcoal is that there’s no smoke. Guests could chat and socialise easily without being “covered” by the smoke.

Because of the consistent heat for over four hours using coconut charcoal made it a very a convenient method of barbecuing (and also economical). There’s no need for anyone to replenish the grill with more fuel during cooking.  After the party, there was little ash produced that allowed us to clean grill a lot easier after barbecuing.

This really inspired me and I tried to use the same fuel for barbecuing with my kids after going home. Well, I can say, coconut charcoal is definitely one of the cleanest and cheapest ways of enjoying a grilling meal. It’s really something which should be given a thought as once you switch to coconut charcoal you won’t feel like trying another fuel for your grill. There’s no health risk, which is my particular concern for the kids, and the meat tastes just as it is. I even find it amazing as there’s no interruption in the middle to refuel my BBQ.

Matter and energy

Carbon FAQs – What raw materials can be used to made carbon?


Basically, any carbonaceous material can potentially be activated.  The common raw materials include, for example, wood (soft & hard), coal, coconut shells, peats and others. Since activated carbon is manufactured from naturally occurring raw materials, its properties will vary. It is necessary to understand the nature of these raw materials, if you would want to purchase carbon for whatever your purpose.

Wood may be activated by one of two methods, i.e. steam or chemical activation, depending on the desired product. The carbon is usually supplied as a finely divided powder which since produced from waste materials such as sawdust, is relatively cheap and can be used on a “throw-away” basis.

Coal is also a readily available and reasonably cheap raw material. The type of activate obtained depends on the type of coal used and its initial processing prior to carbonisation and activation. It is normal procedure to grind the coal and reconstitute it into a form suitable for processing, by use of a binder such as pitch, before activation. Generally, coal contains bigger pores that make it a fairly well adsorbent for gas and air application.

Coconut shell is another common type of raw materials. It contains about 75% volatile matter that is removed largely by partial carbonisation, to minimise shipping costs. The iodine number is high of coconut based carbon, which indicates a higher adsorption capability for molecules. The ash content is normally low and the hardness is relatively higher that makes the carbon hard to breakdown in water. Because of these features, coconut-carbon is a very good filter media for water, beverage and air industries to produce cleaner liquid and air.

Find more about charcoal made from coconut shells

Matter and energy

DIY Activated Carbon?

make activity carbon

We are sometimes asked, “Please show me how to make activated charcoal at home.” But first, you need to understand team activation, one of the most common ways to “activate” carbon.

Handmade Steam-Activated Carbon
Is it possible?

Steam-activation is primarily used for coconut charcoal and coal. In the production of steam-activated charcoal, first the coconut shell or coal is heated to create a char. This char is then activated high temperatures of 1,700° to 1,800°F with steam in the absence of oxygen. The activated charcoal is then cooled off. The very high temperatures required for steam activation is impossibly achieved in a conventional oven (260 °C). Thus, this method is all but limited to industrial technology.

Another huge limiting factor is the cost of production. The world today uses a huge amount of activated carbon annually and so production has to be on an industrial scale to control the price. Even if money was not an issue, the quality would likely also be an issue, since cooking temperatures and times that require professional knowledge are critical.

So, how can you make steam activated carbonactivated carbon produced by trusted carbon manufacturer. This is the most effective and yet affordable way.

Matter and energy

Which type of GAC filter system do I need?


A filter with granular activated carbon (GAC) is a proven solution to remove certain chemicals (in particular organic chemicals) from water. There are commonly two types of GAC filter system, including a whole-house filter or a point of use filter. Each system has its own features and is used in different applications. Sounds confusing? Don’t worry. Here it’s a guide for to find out your Mr. Filter.
There are several factors to consider:

  • The type and amount of contaminants in the water,
  • Other chemicals in the water,
  • Water use, and
  • Exposure pathways that need to be eliminated.

For those who have no clue about exposure pathways, exposure pathways are the ways chemicals enter your body. Some chemicals may cause harm if they are ingetsted while some are harmful if they are breathed in, some if they enter through the skin. Sometimes people are exposed through a combination of exposure pathways.

An under-sink filter protects people from ingesting the chemical by treating the drinking water only from that tap. It will not protect people from inhaling the chemical while showering or bathing, nor will it protect other water faucets.

A whole-house filter system treats all water traveling to any faucet in the home. It removes the chemical before it can be ingested, breathed in, or absorbed by the skin during washing or bathing.

Remember, no matter which filter system you’ll use, use only a licensed filter supplier. For either type of filter system, consistent maintenance and periodic filter or GAC replacement is essential to ensure effectiveness and prevent bacterial build-up.

Matter and energy

Activated Carbon and Air Filters


Activated carbon is carbon that has been treated with oxygen. After the treatment, millions of tiny pores are activated on the carbon’s surface. Amazingly, these pores are so numerous that a single pound of activated carbon may provide 60 to 150 acres of surface area to trap pollutants.

Once carbon has been activated, it can remove a bunch of airborne chemicals, for example, alcohols, organic acids, aldehydes, sulfur dioxide, sulfuric acid, and phosgene. It also removes odours, whether they are from humans or animals. It also removes perfumes, other household cleaning chemicals, and is especially good at removing volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Activated Carbon and Filters

Activated carbon filters will adsorb even a small amount of almost all vapours and they have a large capacity for removing organic molecules like solvents. They can also simultaneously adsorb many different kinds of chemicals, making these filters very efficient. Activated carbon is very durable and non-toxic, so it can work in any temperature or humidity. These make it’s safe for people to handle. As an extra bonus, activated carbon is also relatively affordable.

The trick lies on adsorption – the process by which a gas bonds to the surface of a solid. In this case, the solid is the activated carbon. Air passes through the filter where airborne gases, chemicals, and odours produce chemical reactions with the surface of the carbon, effectively sticking to it. The clean air then flows out of the filter.

Activated carbon filters is analogous to a sponge. The more activated carbon in the filter, the more pollutants it can hold and the longer the filter lasts. The best and the most efficient filters include many pounds of activated carbon to ensure a longer life before the next replacement.

Need some fresh and clean air at home? It’s time to put a good activated carbon filter at your home.

Matter and energy

The Best Solution for Your Water Problem

water drop and green leaf

Ever suspected your water quality? It looks yellowish? It happens to smell like steel? Or it even contains some “unknown” substances? Then you tired different methods to clean the water but nothing worked. What’s the problem?

Indeed, the practicalsolutions to your contaminated drinking water problem are to stop the practices causing the contamination or to change water sources. While changing water sources can be hard or even impossible sometimes, stopping the particles becomes the best solution.

Try Activated Carbon (AC). AC is not necessarily the same as carbon. AC is a black, solid substance resembling granular or powdered charcoal. It is extremely porous with a very large surface area. One ounce of AC has an estimated 30,000 square yards of surface area. Thus, AC removes far more contaminants from water than does of ordinary carbon.

Activated Carbon (AC) filters can remove many organic compounds, such as chlorinated and non-chlorinated solvents. They can also effectively remove chlorine and is moderately effective in removing some heavy metals. Meanwhile, AC can also remove taste and odours in your domestic water treatment systems.

Today, home water treatment using AC is among the best and popular optioused by people with a drinking water quality problem. Your selection of an AC filter should be based upon water analysis and a thorough assessment of your homeowner’s situation. A well-informed decision is always your best insurance for protecting health.

Matter and energy

The Best Water Filter Options

Carbon filters3

Then, Distilled Water?
Recognized by the EPA as the best option for removing chemicals, quality carbon filters remove VOCs, pesticides, bacteria, fluoride, heavy metals, and parasites. Most can safely transform any type of water into safe drinking water.

A big plus for carbon filters is that they seem to be the least expensive in the long run and require the fewest filter replacements. They also hold naturally occurring minerals from the water, making it the best tasting filtered water option, in my opinion.

Conclusion: This is what I personally use now.Amazingly, carbon filters are very inexpensive per gallon cost and need infrequent filter replacement. Portable options can even be used while traveling.From my research, this is the best option for removing contaminants without removing necessary minerals, while keeping a good taste.

Then, Distilled Water?
The distillation process heats the water to become steam. The steam is then cooled toturn back into liquid, leaving behind many contaminants. Distillation reduces large particles like heavy metals but does not remove some other contaminants like VOCs or chemicals that disrupt hormones.
<>bConclusion: It removes a large amount of contaminants, and heavy metals. But it does not reduce VOCs and other hormone disruptors. Home distillation systems are also expensive and consume too much electricity. Overall, it’s better than bottled water but definitely not the best option out there.

I got a lot of emails and questions about the healthiest options for drinking water and best water filters. To be honest, this is something I’ve also been researching for quite a while, and am only now sharing with you since I’ve finally been able to understand all of the options.

Finding the healthiest food is very important, but finding the best water options can be even more important! Some sources of water can contain hundreds of chemicals and many of these chemicals can be more easily absorbed from water than from food.

How About Bottled Water?
Bottled water has gained some popularity these days, thanks for its successful marketing. But it is not a good option for several seasons:
• Chemicals from the plastic bottle itself can leak into the water
• In most cases, the water itself is no different than tap water
• Bottled water costs more than drinking tap water
• Water bottles are not environmentally-friendly!
Conclusion: Not the best option on price, taste, or health so I skip it. Don’t be baffled by its convenience. carbon filters

So, Reverse Osmosis?
Reverse osmosis filtration uses a membrane to remove many contaminants from water. The membrane is semipermeable separates many large size particles from the water. Unluckily, the filtration process wastes a large amount of water. Not to forget many naturally occurring minerals (e.g. calcium and magnesium) are also removed.
Conclusion: Reverse osmosis does remove a large amount of contaminants but it wastes more water than it produces. Just like its distillation counterpart, reverse osmosis cannot remove VOCs and other hormone disruptors. So it’s still not the best water solution.