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Chemistry International

The News Magazine of IUPAC

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Volume 33, Issue 2

Issues

From the Editor

Published Online: 2011-03-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ci.2011.33.2.ii

From the Editor

The idea of changing something we take for granted can be a bit jarring, especially something as enduring and long-standing as the atomic weights on the periodic table. As the guardian of the internationally accepted values of atomic weights, the IUPAC Commission on Isotopic Abundances and Atomic Weights must continually assess these values and provide guidance on their usage.

At this time, the Commission’s assessment and review of published data, combined with the continuous improvement of analytical techniques available to the scientific community, are forcing a shift in the basic perception about atomic weights. Nowadays, measurement precision is such that in many cases the isotopic variation of certain elements, and not the uncertainties of the measurement, is what causes differences in atomic weight values. So, instead of hiding the concept of isotopes with an abstract number, the Commission now recommends providing the interval values for elements whose standard atomic weight is not constant.

It took about a century for the chemistry community to reach this point. There is no surprise in what the commission reveals; it is just the result of a process that has now reached a tipping point. Some might say “Why complicate things and render a basic concept more complex?” I think that a better way to view the situation is to consider this new development as an opportunity to explore or review concepts such as isotopes, or uncertainties, and to ask “What is ‘in’ these numbers?” Aside from presenting long tabulations, the Commission reports published in the February 2011 Pure and Applied Chemistry are full of details, footnotes, and annotations that together are quite enlightening. The feature by Ty Coplen and Norman Holden is an easier-to-read introduction to the formal reports.

In response to the Commission’s recommendations, a brand new updated periodic table has been compiled, which is provided here on the back cover. Yet another version with graphics similar to what is shown on the cover will be released very soon. An IUPAC task group chaired by Norman Holden is to provide the educational community with the tools and resources necessary to understand and adopt these recent changes.

The other feature in this issue offers a contrasting record of what concerns and interests chemists. Peter Atkins gives us a snapshot of the countless contributions of chemistry to the modern world in “Where Would We Be without Chemistry?” Perhaps this is too bold a question to fully answer, but chemists must not lose sight of the big picture. The International Year of Chemistry has given us an opportunity to talk to the world at large and Atkins reminds us to rightly celebrate the impact of chemistry and the ways in which it has transformed the world.

Happy IYC!

Fabienne Meyers

fabienne@iupac.org

Page last modified 16 March 2011.

Copyright © 2003-2011 International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

Questions regarding the website, please contact edit.ci@iupac.org

From the Editor

President’s Column: Mounting a Positive Offensiveby Nicole Moreau

iupac2011.org—Invitation to Puerto Rico: The First IUPAC Congress and General Assembly in a Latin American Country by Gabriel A. Infante

Features

- Where Would We Be without Chemistry?

by Peter Atkins

- Atomic Weights: No Longer Constants of Natureby Tyler B. Coplen and Norman E. Holden

IUPAC Wire

- Women Sharing a Chemical Moment in Timeby Mary Garson

- The Year Begins

- On Your Marks, Get Wet, Ready, Go!

- African Journal of Chemical Education

- Crop Protection Chemistry Award—Call for Nominations

- Tribute to Pavel - Kratochvilby Michael Robert Hess and Máximo Barón

- In Memoriam: Joachim Meissner

- IUPAC Gold Book Online

The Project Place

- Physisorption of Gases, with Special Reference to the

Evaluation of Surface Area and Pore Size Distribution

- Relation between Rheological Properties and Foam

Processability for Polypropylene

- Quantitative Review and Analysis of Pesticide Sorption and

Its Effect on Degradation in Relation to Soil and Climate

- Rare Earth Metal (Sc, Y, Lanthanoids) Bromides and Iodides

in Water and Aqueous Systems (Solubility Data Series)

Provisional RecommendationsIUPAC Seeks Your Comments

- Definition of the Hydrogen Bond

- Definitions of Terms Relating to Crystalline Polymers

- Terminology for Biorelated Polymers and Applications

Stamps International

- IYC 2011: Ready, Set, Go!

Bookworm

- Pure and Applied Chemistry Recognizes the “Hand of Youth”

in Shaping Chemistry

- Heat Capacities: Liquids, Solutions and Vapours

- Applied Thermodynamics of Fluids

- Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security: A Guide to Prudent Chemical Management

Conference Call

- Chemistry Educationby Mei-Hung Chiu

- Photochemistryby Franco Scandola and Silvia Braslavsky

- Polymer Synthesisby Petr Vlček

- Chemical Thermodynamicsby Kazuya Saito and Mary Anne White

- Polymer-Solvent Complexes and Intercalatesby J.-M. Guenet

Where 2B & Y

- Applied Thermodynamics, 24–27 June 2011, St. Petersburg, Russia

- Colloquium Spectroscopicum Internationale XXXVII, 28 August–2 September 2011, Armação de Búzios, RJ, Brazil

- Chemistry for Life Sciences, 31 August–3 September 2011, Budapest, Hungary

- Boron, 11–15 September 2011, Niagara Falls, Canada

- Analytical Chemistry, 11–15 September 2011, Belgrade, Serbia

- Drug Discovery and Development, 18–22 September 2011, Zadar, Croatia

- General and Applied Chemistry, 25–30 September 2011, Volgograd, Russia

- Functional π-Electron Systems, 13–17 October 2011, Beijing, China

- Green Chemistry, 25–29 August 2012, Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil

Mark Your Calendar

link to calendars of upcoming IUPAC-sponsored events

March-April 2011 pdf (1.77 MB)

Page last modified 16 March 2011.

Copyright © 2003-2011 International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

Questions regarding the website, please contact edit.ci@iupac.org

From the Editor

President’s Column: Mounting a Positive Offensiveby Nicole Moreau

iupac2011.org—Invitation to Puerto Rico: The First IUPAC Congress and General Assembly in a Latin American Country by Gabriel A. Infante

Features

- Where Would We Be without Chemistry?

by Peter Atkins

- Atomic Weights: No Longer Constants of Natureby Tyler B. Coplen and Norman E. Holden

IUPAC Wire

- Women Sharing a Chemical Moment in Timeby Mary Garson

- The Year Begins

- African Journal of Chemical Education

- On Your Marks, Get Wet, Ready, Go!

- Crop Protection Chemistry Award—Call for Nominations

- Tribute to Pavel - Kratochvilby Michael Robert Hess and Máximo Barón

- In Memoriam: Joachim Meissner

- IUPAC Gold Book Online

The Project Place

- Physisorption of Gases, with Special Reference to the

Evaluation of Surface Area and Pore Size Distribution

- Relation between Rheological Properties and Foam

Processability for Polypropylene

- Quantitative Review and Analysis of Pesticide Sorption and

Its Effect on Degradation in Relation to Soil and Climate

- Rare Earth Metal (Sc, Y, Lanthanoids) Bromides and Iodides

in Water and Aqueous Systems (Solubility Data Series)

Provisional RecommendationsIUPAC Seeks Your Comments

- Definition of the Hydrogen Bond

- Definitions of Terms Relating to Crystalline Polymers

- Terminology for Biorelated Polymers and Applications

Stamps International

- IYC 2011: Ready, Set, Go!

Bookworm

- Pure and Applied Chemistry Recognizes the “Hand of Youth”

in Shaping Chemistry

- Heat Capacities: Liquids, Solutions and Vapours

- Applied Thermodynamics of Fluids

- Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security: A Guide to Prudent Chemical Management

Conference Call

- Chemistry Educationby Mei-Hung Chiu

- Photochemistryby Franco Scandola and Silvia Braslavsky

- Polymer Synthesisby Petr Vlček

- Chemical Thermodynamicsby Kazuya Saito and Mary Anne White

- Polymer-Solvent Complexes and Intercalatesby J.-M. Guenet

Where 2B & Y

- Applied Thermodynamics, 24–27 June 2011, St. Petersburg, Russia

- Colloquium Spectroscopicum Internationale XXXVII, 28 August–2 September 2011, Armação de Búzios, RJ, Brazil

- Chemistry for Life Sciences, 31 August–3 September 2011, Budapest, Hungary

- Boron, 11–15 September 2011, Niagara Falls, Canada

- Analytical Chemistry, 11–15 September 2011, Belgrade, Serbia

- Drug Discovery and Development, 18–22 September 2011, Zadar, Croatia

- General and Applied Chemistry, 25–30 September 2011, Volgograd, Russia

- Functional π-Electron Systems, 13–17 October 2011, Beijing, China

- Green Chemistry, 25–29 August 2012, Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil

Mark Your Calendar

link to calendars of upcoming IUPAC-sponsored events

March-April 2011 pdf (1.77 MB)

Page last modified 14 March 2011.

Copyright © 2003-2011 International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

Questions regarding the website, please contact edit.ci@iupac.org

About the article

Published Online: 2011-03-01

Published in Print: 2011-03-01


Citation Information: Chemistry International -- Newsmagazine for IUPAC, Volume 33, Issue 2, Pages II–II, ISSN (Online) 1365-2192, ISSN (Print) 0193-6484, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ci.2011.33.2.ii.

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