NNNS chemistry blog http://chem.vander-lingen.nl Chemistry blog : news - comments - basics in chemistry en-us 1440 Reaction in hot water http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Reaction in hot water/id/234/itemid/804 The latest reaction inducted in the Chemical Reaction Database (CRD) is lifted from an article by Feng-Zhi Zhang et al. (DOI) about intramolecular etherification by activated alcohols. Is hot water as advertised in the title an efficient reaction promotor? Or is water just a terrible solvent given t Friday 16 Jan 2015 21:24:51 The War on Elsevier http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/The War on Elsevier/id/234/itemid/803 The Dutch universities are at war with scientific publisher Elsevier. The newspaper NRC with Marcel aan de Brugh has the story. The universities are demanding that Elsevier adopts an affordable open access business model. If it is up to Gerard Meijer, the chief university negotiator, a boycott will Tuesday 13 Jan 2015 20:29:47 The state of Bachelor level education http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/The state of Bachelor level education/id/234/itemid/802 You may have missed it: an ambitious survey on the so-called skills gap in Bachelor level education as published in the Journal of Chemical Education (DOI). What do chemical companies think of Bachelor level education? There is some interesting data to be found. For example for organic chemists in c Saturday 10 Jan 2015 13:06:03 Phosphinoboration http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Phosphinoboration/id/234/itemid/801 In a recent report (DOI) Daley et al. express surprise that of the many bonds containing boron that have been used in the exploration of addition reactions, for example the B-H bond in hydroboration, the boron - phosphorous bond is not one of them. Triggered by a 2013 report by Breuning (DOI), the f Sunday 04 Jan 2015 16:07:29 Elsewhere on the internet http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Elsewhere on the internet/id/233/itemid/800 This blog (if you can call it one) conspicuously does not have a blogroll. Practical reason one: the content management system this blog is written on was conceived before blogs became mainstream and the developer is particularly lazy. Practical reason two: a blogroll is one thing but you only want Wednesday 31 Dec 2014 13:24:06 Another asbestos scare http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Another asbestos scare/id/233/itemid/799 In 2012 authorities in the the Dutch town of Utrecht cordoned off an entire city street on account of asbestos contamination (Link). If you think that was over the top, the city of Roermond (population 57,000 and also in The Netherlands) did one better this week, they closed the entire city centre. Saturday 20 Dec 2014 12:26:09 A giant wheel http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/A giant wheel/id/233/itemid/798 May, Jester and Höger report on a new giant of a molecule IN JACS (DOI). This blog has been taken an interest in chemical giants before. Here are the characteristics: it is a C<sub>1878</sub>H<sub>2682</sub> hydrocarbon resembling a spoked hexagonal wheel. The spokes and rim consist of phenylene-et Tuesday 02 Dec 2014 19:02:14 New in asymmetric photochemistry http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/New in asymmetric photochemistry/id/232/itemid/797 Rijeesh et al. report a novel photoinduced enantioselective reaction DOI It has been done before: in 1971 Kagan directed circularly polarized light (CLP) at a complex hydrocarbon forming a chiral helicene. The CLP handedness matched that of the helicene handedness. In the novel reaction the subs Tuesday 18 Nov 2014 21:30:13 Krug on nanosafety http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Krug on nanosafety/id/232/itemid/796 Nanosafety Research? Are We on the Right Track? Harald F. Krug claims 16 pages of the Angewandte Chemie to talk about nanotoxicology (DOI). With 10,000 papers published on the topic and not a single human casualty on record the question on nanosafety should be: YES! nanotech is safe! Move on! The ma Friday 14 Nov 2014 21:50:54 A computational nanoreactor http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/A computational nanoreactor/id/232/itemid/795 TeraChem is chemical software build on the same graphics processing units that can also be found in mobile phones and especially adapted for parallel computing. It was recently put to use as an ab initio nanoreactor by a group of Standford University researchers. (DOI). They looked for 560 picosecon Monday 10 Nov 2014 23:00:42 Citizen scientists air quality results are in http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Citizen scientists air quality results are in/id/231/itemid/794 Last year we reported on a novel experiment in citizen science (iSPEX) involving a smart phone and a measurement of atmospheric dust levels (here). The official results are now published in Geophysical Research Letters (open access!) and the article has no less than 3203 authors! Must be a world rec Monday 27 Oct 2014 20:49:41 The tunable mirror http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/The tunable mirror/id/231/itemid/793 Wouldn't that be nice. A mirror that you can switch between a reflective mode and a transparent mode with a push of a button. A nice gadget that would make. For some reason police interrogation rooms come to mind. Devices exist based on silver electrodeposition backed by an electrolyte solution (cal Saturday 11 Oct 2014 19:55:12 Opening a can of worms http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Opening a can of worms/id/231/itemid/792 The image of the week is the result of a molecular dynamics simulation of a mammalian plasma membrane (DOI). It looks like a can of worms has opened but the piece of cell wall depicted (a bilayer) consists of a complex mixture of 63 different worm-like lipids (phosphatidylcholines, sphingomyelin and Friday 10 Oct 2014 18:58:12 Meanwhile in the Whitesides lab (V) http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Meanwhile in the Whitesides lab (V)/id/231/itemid/791 Meanwhile in the Whitesides lab. This blog continues to cover George Whitesides in the run up to the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2014 announcement. See earlier episodes I, II, III and IV. This year we have already been covering a new use of the Maglev here but the big breakthrough this year must have b Wednesday 01 Oct 2014 20:53:55 Pubpeer field test http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Pubpeer field test/id/230/itemid/790 The new website pubpeer.com brands itself as an online journal club and a post-publication peer-review forum. The recent threat with legal action against the site (link link Link) surely helped brand recognition, that is how this blog became aware of its existence. The appeal of the site must be th Monday 29 Sep 2014 21:55:01 Sierpinski triangle made easy http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Sierpinski triangle made easy/id/230/itemid/789 One step beyond a dendrimer is a Sierpinski triangle. Imagine a first-generation dendrimer with each extending unit having three arms and then close the edges. Synthesizing a molecule based on this concept may seem a mission impossible but the George R. Newkome team (of dendrimer fame) has reported Saturday 20 Sep 2014 12:37:05 Melamine detection at 20 ppm http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Melamine detection at 20 ppm/id/230/itemid/788 Melamine and milk share a connection ever since the 2008 Chinese milk scandal. You are not supposed to find the compound in it and detection methods have been discussed here ranging from the expensive to the cumbersome. There is always a market for new analytical chemistry and a group of Chinese res Tuesday 16 Sep 2014 20:56:31 Tramadol is not a natural product http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Tramadol is not a natural product/id/230/itemid/787 Last year a French - Cameroonian - Swiss team reported they had isolated the compound tramadol (0.4% by weight) from the root bark of the Cameroonian medicinal plant Nauclea latifolia (Boumendjel et al. DOI). This is unexpected because tramadol was until then only known as a synthetic pain-killer as Saturday 13 Sep 2014 18:25:10 Nicolaou on drug development http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Nicolaou on drug development/id/230/itemid/786 It would be a disappointment if someone like K.C. Nicolaou would write an essay on the present and the future of drug development along the lines that everything that is being done is simply fantastic. The opening line of his essay on this very topic in the Angewandte then is not an encouragement: Saturday 06 Sep 2014 23:18:46 Germanane in photocatalysis http://chem.vander-lingen.nl/articles/Germanane in photocatalysis/id/229/itemid/785 New in the family of graphene / graphane like materials is germanane (GeH). It was invented in 2013 by Goldberger et al. (DOI). Synthesis of precursor CaGe2 is accomplished by heating elemental calcium and germane at 1000°C for 18 hours. This compound is a typical Zintl compound with the calcium ato Saturday 09 Aug 2014 19:19:24