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Posts tagged with "Inorganic Chemistry"

  • Analytical Chemistry

    Phosphine, Life, and Venus

    Well, as a chemist – one who does amateur astronomy on the side, yet – it’s obligatory that I write about the phosphine on Venus paper that came out yesterday. This one’s embargo was spectacularly leaky, so everyone who’s really into this stuff had various kinds of advance warning, but the news certainly has made… Read More
  • Covid-19

    Materials and Gases, Vials and Vaccines

    Let’s talk about some details that might sound small or even ridiculous, but (as you’ll see) they’re just the sorts of things that you have to worry about at the intersection of chemistry, biology, and physics. That makes it sound like I’m going to be going into something really high-tech here, but you be the… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Ammonia, Electrons, and Metals

    Let’s do some pure chemistry today, because an interesting paper has come out about a reaction that every student learns about in their sophomore organic chemistry course: the Birch reduction. It’s a powerful technique that will do some things that very few other reactions will do for you (such as break up the aromaticity of… Read More
  • Chemical News

    Lithium Ion Batteries: The 2019 Chemistry Nobel Prize

    I am very pleased to write up a blog post on the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, because it is well overdue. People have been saying that about recognition of the discovery of lithium-ion batteries for many years now, and like many others I’m just glad that the committee was able to recognize John Goodenough… Read More
  • In Silico

    Machine-Mining the Literature

    We’ve made it to the point – a while back, actually – where people who actually know the subject roll their eyes a bit when the term “artificial intelligence” is used without some acknowledgment that it’s not very useful. I think that’s a real sign that it’s becoming useful. Things are to the point wh… Read More
  • Inorganic Chemistry

    A Room Temperature Superconductor? Well. . .

    Superconductivity is one of those places where chemistry and physics cross paths. That’s especially true as people search for higher-temperature materials, because that seems to involve more and more complex synthesis and characterization of the results. Very tiny changes in conditions or starting materials can make for huge differences in th… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Cooling Crystals is Great. Except When It Isn’t.

    If you’ve ever been around an X-ray crystallography setup, one of the constants is a tube directing a blast of chilly vapor at the crystal that’s mounted for analysis. It’s usually a stream of cold nitrogen gas, often set up as a blast of the cold stuff surrounded by a second concentric layer of dry… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Organometallic Oddities

    Synthetic organic chemists spend a lot of time using organometallic coupling reactions, because they can be such great ways to make carbon-carbon (and carbon-heteroatom) bonds. And that’s the currency of the realm: do you want to build up larger molecules from smaller precursors in a controlled fashion? You’re going to have to make bond… Read More
  • Chemical News

    Single Atoms, On Demand

    We chemists spend a lot of time doing things in the solution phase. It makes sense – if you want things to react, getting all the partners dissolved in some medium where they can roam around and contact each other is surely the way to go, most of the time. But it’s also true that… Read More
  • Biological News

    Zap the Zinc

    Zinc – can’t live without it, can’t get rid of it. That about sums up the situation with trying to figure out the metal’s many important roles in biology. A long, long list of proteins have zinc-binding functions (with the metalloproteases and the DNA-binding zinc-finger domains being two important ones that immediately come… Read More