Questions tagged [chemistry-in-fiction]

Chemistry-in-fiction covers all chemistry that can be seen in TV series, films and can be read in books, etc. which does not necessarily need to be based on proper scientific backgrounds.

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94
votes
7answers
242k views

Is it actually possible to dispose of a body with hydrofluoric acid?

In the TV show "Breaking Bad", Walter White frequently gets rid of people who get in his way by submerging them in a plastic container full of hydrofluoric acid. This, at least in the TV show, ...
17
votes
2answers
45k views

HI/P reduction mechanism

I recently answered a question about Breaking Bad's initial methamphetamine production method (i.e. the reduction of (pseudo)ephedrine). The reaction is as follows: (Source) It is infamously known ...
30
votes
2answers
149k views

How do I extract cyanide from apple seeds?

I'm working on a crime story about cyanide poisoning from apple seeds. I just would like to have an idea of what processes and extraction techniques might be involved in getting cyanide from the seeds....
14
votes
5answers
16k views

Can flames be colored black?

Most of us here would know that flames can be colored by adding an appropriate salt to the 'fuel' or by simply introducing it into a flame. Boron and Barium salts give the flame a green tinge, ...
3
votes
2answers
300 views

Could we possibly discover new extraterrestrial elements and minerals?

So, after dissolving a good portion of my brain by watching a ton of sci-fi, I started thinking about all of the strange new materials that we will supposedly have in the future. For example, the ever-...
33
votes
9answers
10k views

Would it be possible to destroy gold?

I'm a writer. I have a scenario in which a sizable amount of gold needs to be rendered unusable, preferably completely destroyed. I know an acid like aqua regia is able to dissolve gold, but would ...
0
votes
2answers
101 views

How do i create a significantly correct world with large crystal formations in my novel? [closed]

I have uploaded an shorter and less broad Question which is largely the same but requires a different kind of answer. What i want to say is that i re-asked my question in a different way because i do ...
33
votes
3answers
92k views

Chemistry behind Gale's coffee maker in Breaking Bad

Is there a scientific basis for the coffee making equipment which Gale Boetticher describes in Breaking Bad? He talks about maintaining the right conditions for bringing out the coffee flavor without ...
63
votes
4answers
19k views

How does Walter White make pure crystal meth using a non-stereospecific reaction?

In the fantastic TV series Breaking Bad, Walter White, the dying chemistry teacher, takes to making crystal meth (d-methamphetamine) by several routes. Initially, he uses the common small-scale route ...
14
votes
3answers
10k views

Why are acids usually depicted in fiction as green?

In cartoons, etc., acid is generally shown as vividly green, as in this scene from the Simpsons: We even have the colour "acid green". But when I used to use acids in chemistry class, they weren't ...
3
votes
2answers
14k views

What are the effects of Lithium Dioxide on the body?

My question is about how much science-fiction and how much chemistry is involved in the the 'Randy's Donuts' scene of Iron Man 2: Agent Romanoff injects Lithium Dioxide into Tony Stark's neck to ...
15
votes
4answers
12k views

How could I cause metal to rust rapidly?

I'm writing a novel set in the mid-nineteenth century. One of my characters needs to cause an iron padlock to rust rapidly, ideally within a matter of hours. The lock doesn't need to rust away ...
11
votes
3answers
10k views

What does it mean for meth or any other compound to be 'pure'?

In Breaking Bad, Walter White can cook $99.1\%$ pure meth. In general what does it mean for a substance to be pure? In this case, what exactly does it mean for meth to be pure? Does higher purity mean ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

Is the Hollywood portrayal of the effects of ingesting HCN correct?

In the 2012 movie Skyfall, the antagonist Raoul Silva rues that the "hydrogen cyanide" he took ("Do you know what it does to you, hydrogen cyanide?") didn't kill him, leaving him horribly disfigured ...
4
votes
0answers
656 views

Is it possible to make Spider-Man like web fluid? [closed]

Is it possible to make a substance which has similar properties to that of the web fluid e.g. High tensile strength, sticky (can attach to most of the surfaces), evaporates within few hours etc. If so ...
4
votes
1answer
243 views

Non-carbon based life forms on hot planets

I am writing a story with people made of elements other than carbon. A couple of planets in this series are really hot, so I need compounds with high melting points. For example, there is a lone ...
-1
votes
2answers
97 views

Which crystals can exist permanently (and do not break down) under normal earth like outside conditions? [duplicate]

Hi I am looking for crystals I can use in the world of my novel but I have no idea what types to use or what there are. So my question is what kind of crystals fit these criteria: They must be able ...