Allotropes, Polymorphs, and Isomerism oh my

The term allotrope is one of the most vaguely defined chemical terms still in current use. I can understand how one could call the various forms of sulfur (ie. rhombic and monoclinic) as distinct allotropes. But 2 chemical species that can’t be transformed into each other by physical means just don’t seem to garner the right to be called an allotrope. This issue was recently brought up by Fritnat, http://www.chemicalforums.com/index.php?topic=8500.0, when he advocated ozone should be called oxygen since it is an “allotrope” of diatomic oxygen.

At any rate you can read more about the wonderful world of allotropism in a recent article by William B. Jensen, http://jchemed.chem.wisc.edu/Journal/Issues/2006/Jun/abs838.html. It’s a very short read and packed with a historical perspective on the use of the word allotrope. Eventhough, Mr. Jensen never replied to a comment I sent him, I would still recommend everyone read this article. Wink

Mitch

By June 1, 2006 0 comments Uncategorized

Wired Magazine and the fall of citizen chemistry

I’m not a usually a reader of Wired magazine but recently they’ve done an expose on the troubles with citizen chemistry in America. They use the less regal phrase do-it-yourself DIY chemistry and the article can be found here http://wired.com/wired/archive/14.06/chemistry.html .

Trying to do my small part for the citizen science community I created a new forum for individuals to trade chemicals and supplies with each other http://www.chemicalforums.com/index.php?board=53.0, its a sad day when it has to come down to actions like this. But in a hyper-vigilante government era these are the kinds of steps the average citizen has to take.

Mitch

P.S. I know that forum will not be used much, but I’m just doing my small part.

By May 31, 2006 0 comments Uncategorized

What is up with all these chemistry blogs?

Why does it seem that chemistry related blogging has exploded in the last year. You all know me, if anything is new and novel on the internet about Chemistry, I’m usually the first to know, but this has completely skipped my attention. Since CF is known for looking at how others do stuff and taking that idea and doing it better, I’ll start a Chemical Forums blog too. Tongue

At any rate: What chemical related blogs are out there that you visit? How do you think they would feel about linking to us? Can CF handle blogging and keeping our core mission of education of the chemical youth intact. I of course think so, but your comments are more then welcome.

Mitch

By May 28, 2006 0 comments Uncategorized