Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Quick and dirty

I did a ringclosure someone else failed to accomplish. He was gone for a few days and I had to take it over. He used dry glassware and solvent and tried some microwave experiments. He had 6% yield in one case. I threw the starting materials in a flask and just heated it to melt, 92% yield. Problem solved.

When I start some new chemistry I am reluctant to think about it first. My first experiment is always the same. Throw the starting materials together with or without solvent and see what happens, if nothing happens I heat it untill the reaction goes or the starting material mutates to a black tar.

I never start the chemistry with dry/inert conditions (except ofcourse when you have a very sensible catalyst/reagent, radical reaction or something like that). Out here when people use for instance NaH they immediately use dry solvents (and have to take a walk to the basement to get it). I am lazy and just throw in some more NaH, most of the time it works just as good.

It is true. My failed reaction rate is high, mainly because I just do so many reactions. Quick and dirty chemistry takes so little time that I am able to do a lot of good things as well. Some people call me ‘the garbage alchemist’, and I see it as a compliment.


Anonymous said...

You are not too do the same. Then people follow it up when the projects are delegated to others. Others do not have a right to call me garbage chemist as long as they can not do a novel reaction on their own and prove themselves.

It is always better know where to be cautious while doing this kind of chemistry.

Good luck with your quick chemsitry.
There is an article in Chem com...on enhancement of recation rates by mixng the satrting materials in solvent and evpoarting them quickly.

Anonymous said...

Here, we'd call you a "hack."