Henry Rzepa's Blog Chemistry with a twist

February 8, 2013

The conformation of acetaldehyde: a simple molecule, a complex explanation?

Consider acetaldehyde (ethanal for progressive nomenclaturists). What conformation does it adopt, and why? This question was posed of me by a student at the end of a recent lecture of mine. Surely, an easy answer to give? Read on …

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April 22, 2012

Stereoselectivities of Proline-Catalyzed Asymmetric Intermolecular Aldol Reactions.

Astronomers who discover an asteroid get to name it, mathematicians have theorems named after them. Synthetic chemists get to name molecules (Hector’s base and Meldrum’s acid spring to mind) and reactions between them. What do computational chemists get to name? Transition states! One of the most famous of recent years is the Houk-List.

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