Left-step or Janet form of the Periodic table and Question of best form of the table

What do people think of the Janet periodic table which is endorsed on WebElements as well as Eric Scerri's new book on the Periodic Table, (OUP, 2006) ?

Do people agree with Scerri's claim that there really might be a 'best form' of the periodic table even though we may now have discovered it yet.

Another way of saying this is should we be realists about chemical periodicity or is it just a matter of convention in which case there is no 'best table'.


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

I don't have Eric's book yet

I don't have Eric's book yet - awaiting delivery. Yes I do like the JANET form, and it's in my chemical bonding book as well. 'Best form'? Tricky. Define best. Are we more interested in chemical properties, if so which ones? Or do we prefer one based upon electronic configuration of the atom, and if so do we mean the isolated atom or atoms in molecules? And so on. Perhaps it is horses for courses?



bloggoman I think that by


I think that by best form he means most closely representing the "truth" about periodicity of the elements. In this sense utility is somewhat seconday. The best table need not necessarily reflect the interests of chemists, quantum physicists, geologists or whatever type of scientists.

It is just be the most fundamental possible arrangement of the elements. It is a philosophical notion which puts truth above utility. At least that's how I read Scerri.


I don't like that JANET

I don't like that JANET table much - anything which puts helium in the same column as the alkaline earth metals seems a bit brainwrong to me!


I like Janet. People might

I like Janet. People might not know, but version I of Janet table has hydrogen above F and He above Ne. Irregardless, since Neils Bohr we know that the periodicity is a product of electronic structure of the atoms. Why not to build the periodic table in accordance with the electron configurations? Afterall, helium has both electrons in subshell s, just as Be and not as Ne, that have all outer electrons in subshell p.

By the way, it was recently determined that element (114)Uuq, behaves like Rn, not as Pb that is listed in standard PT just above Uuq. What are you going to do about that? I say, lets have a table that follows electronic structure of the atom, not the properties as we know them in this enviroment.

Please note that there is improved version of Janet table that is called ADOMAH PT, that follows electron configurations even closer than the original and allows direct redaout of the shell numbers corresponding to the quantum number "n". That feature allows simple derivation of the electron configurations for 85% of atoms! In addition to that it has H and He listed in both locations, whatever you prefer. You can check it out yourself at [url]www.perfrectperiodictable.com/userguide[/url]. It was mentioned by Dr. Philip Stewart in his article about Janet in January 2009 Issue of Foundations of Chemistry journal. I am very excited about that! The bottom line: I agree with Dr. Scerri in regard to LSPT.

No, the JANET table isn't

No, the JANET table isn't very useful; if one really wanted to eliminate the lanthanide and actinide islands at the bottom, the optimal solution would be to move columns 1 and 2 after 18, so that Li and Be follow He and then position the actinides and lanthanides before column 3 so that La (as usual) begins things and Yb precedes Lu and Hf
and the next row begins with Ac and No and Lr precede Rf. That being said, the 18 column, 7 period form currently used not only reflects chemical reality but also quantum physics; that being the case, I don't see the reason for any reshuffling.

If I understand you

If I understand you correctly, what you are describing is Version I of Janet LSPT where H, HE, Li and Be were all shown in first period and sixth and seventh periods began with La and Ac respectively. I do not consider IUPAC standard very useful when one tries to explain how to derive electron configurations and that is because it does not reflect the quantum physics. Just look at 4th period, for example, where primary quantum number changes value from 4 to 3 and then back to 4. It gets even worse as you go down to 5th, 6th and 7th periods. Quantum number "l" is also out of order: 0,3,2,1, vs. 3,2,1,0 in Janet's LSPT. Sorry, but standard PT's reflection of quantum physics is very poor at best. If you want PT that reflects the quantum physics, look up ADOMAH PT.

I think that the Janet /

I think that the Janet / Left-Step / Tarantola form is extremely important in didactic environments. It reinforces the idea that the Universe is regular and can be understood. It's form is clear and consistent, closely modeling the shells. It's beautiful.

The classic form is disjointed, and contains gratuitous complexity.

The objection that Hydrogen does not belong in with the alkaline earth metals is not very convincing - the proton is a unique case regardless of the way the cookie crumbles.

Really interesting post. This

Really interesting post. This was a really engrossing post. Thanks!
Atlanta bankruptcy attorney

Where can I read more details

Where can I read more details about this version of the table?

thaks alot

thaks alot


WebElements: the periodic table on the WWW [http://www.webelements.com/]

Copyright 1993-20010 Mark Winter [The University of Sheffield and WebElements Ltd, UK]. All rights reserved.