Chemistry Nexus

by WebElements: the periodic table on the web

WebElements now has the capability for authors on the site to embed easily interactive spectra using the JSpecView applet via bbcode using jspecview tags. This is achieved by writing:[jspecview=600,400]pclanilIR.jdx[/jspecview].

The =600,400 bit gives the desired spectrum size while the file name to be displayed is included between the tags. The file is uploaded by authors who are assigned rights to upload attachments.

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December 2nd, 2015

Posted In: Chemistry, Chemistry software

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Helium (He)In a letter to Nature E. Kim and M. H. W. Chan (Pennsylvania State University, USA) note that when liquid 4He is cooled below 2.176 K, it undergoes a phase transition and becomes a superfluid with zero viscosity. They claim that in addition to superflow in the liquid phase, superflow can also occur under some conditions in the solid phase of one of the helium isotopes (4He), and present results to back this up.

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December 19th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry

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The giant gypsum crystals in Mexico’s “Cueva de los Cristales” are a stunning natural wonder featuring crystals up to 11 metres long.

gypsum

These giant gypsum (hydrated calcium sulphate) crystals in the “Cave of Crystals” in the Naica mine, Chihuahua, Mexico pose an interesting problem: how are they formed. A Spanish-Mexican team led by Prof García-Ruiz et al. propose that these crystals are derived from “a self-feeding mechanism driven by a solution-mediated, anhydrite-gypsum phase transition”.

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December 15th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry

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A New Chemical Element in the Periodic Table

A New Chemical Element in the Periodic Table

In honour of scientist and astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543), the discovering team around Professor Sigurd Hofmann suggested the name copernicium with the element symbol Cp (eventually the symbol Cn was accepted) for the new element 112, discovered at the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung (Center for Heavy Ion Research) in Darmstadt. It was Copernicus who discovered that the Earth orbits the Sun, thus paving the way for our modern view of the world.

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December 15th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry, Nuclear chemistry

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scerri-bookIt’s great to see a new book about the periodic table and this one is written by Eric Scerri, a world authority on the periodic table! Dr. Eric Scerri is a leading philosopher of science specializing in the history and philosophy of the periodic table. He is also the founder and editor in chief of the international journal Foundations of Chemistry and is a full-time lecturer at UCLA where he regularly teaches classes of 350 chemistry students as well as classes in history and philosophy of science.

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December 14th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry, Periodic table

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The orbitron d-orbitalsThis is to announce the first draft of The Orbitron – a web site with ray-traced images representing atomic orbitals. The site also has some animations that should help you to visualise them

The site shows images representing electron density and animated plots that should help you to understand their nodal structures. Future versions will have molecular orbitals as well.

The Orbitron images are “ray-traced” which hopefully means pretty (as well as informative).

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December 14th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry, Theoretical chemistry

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Wordle showing relative popularity of the elements on WebElements

Wordle showing relative popularity of the elements on WebElements

This picture is a wordle. This shows the chemical elements in proportion to pages viewed for each on the WebElements periodic table web site. Hydrogen is the most viewed element. The question is, I suppose, is whether any useful information is conveyed? You can see this wordle and others at wordle.net

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December 14th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry

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Darmstadtium (Ds)

Darmstadtium (Ds)

A joint IUPAC-IUPAP Working Party confirms the discovery of element number 110 and this by the collaboration of Hofmann et al. from the Gesellschaft für Schwerionenforschung mbH (GSI) in Darmstadt, Germany.

In accord with IUPAC procedures, the discoverers have proposed a name and symbol for the element. The Inorganic Chemistry Division Committee now recommends this proposal for acceptance. The proposed name is darmstadtium with symbol Ds.

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December 9th, 2009

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hs-1995-16-g-web_print.thumbnailThe BBC reported that parts of Venus may be lead plated. David Whitehouse reports that “The highlands of Venus are covered by a heavy metal ‘frost’, say planetary scientists from Washington University.Because it is hot enough to melt lead at the surface, metals vaporise and condense at cooler, higher elevations.This may explain why radar observations made by orbiting spacecraft show that the highlands are highly reflective.Detailed calculations, to be published in the journal Icarus, suggest that lead and bismuth are to blame for giving Venus its bright, metallic skin.”

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December 8th, 2009

Posted In: Chemistry

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gas-giant planet orbiting the yellow Sun-like star HD 209458. Credit: G. Bacon, STScI

gas-giant planet orbiting the yellow Sun-like star HD 209458. Credit: G. Bacon, STScI

Scientists crossed a new frontier in exo-planet research just last year when, using the Hubble Space Telescope, they detected sodium by its characteristic orange colour in the atmosphere of a large alien world orbiting the star HD 209458. Perhaps we are seeing ETs street lighting from a distance?

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December 8th, 2009

Posted In: Analytical chemistry, Atmospheric chemistry, Chemistry

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