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Book Review Electrochemical Interfaces. Modern Techniques for in-situ Interface Characterization. Edited by H. D. Abruna

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The number of printing errors is kept to a minimum
throughout this volume of Houben-Weyl. Less than 50 errors (and only very few serious ones) were noted while going
through the material. Except for p. XXXVII (where a terrible 20 % of the references contain minor errors or are incomplete) the citation is comparable in quality with that found in
the best journals.
In conclusion, the updated Houben-Weyl volume on
organotellurium compounds is a masterpiece which will be
enthusiastically received by all readers with an interest in
tellurium chemistry.
Lars Engman
Department of Organic Chemistry
Royal Institute of Technology
Stockholm (Sweden)
ElectrochemicalInterfaces. Modern Techniques for in-situ Interface Characterization. Edited by H . D . Abruna. VCH
Publishers, New York/VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, Weinheim, 1991. xviii, 589 pp., hardcover DM 182.00.ISBN 0-89573-715-913-527-27840-0
In seeking to describe and understand electrochemical
processes that occur in the solid/liquid transition region,
experimental data obtained by in-situ measurements are especially valuable. A classic example where this applies is the
technique of cyclovoltammetry (CV). In this the flow of
charge is recorded as a function of the potential, but the
method is intrinsically incapable of yielding information of
a highly specific kind. For this reason other techniques that
can be used in combination with CV have recently been
developed to complement it. Particularly interesting results
can be obtained by carrying out in-situ measurements simultaneously with CV studies. This rapidly developing field is
the subject of the specialist book edited by H. D. Abruna
(Cornell University) which is reviewed here.
The book, with nearly 600 pages, contains ten chapters
following an introduction by the editor, and there is a 22page subject index at the end.
The individual chapters deal with X-ray absorption spectroscopy, surface X-ray scattering, X-ray standing waves,
measurements of surface forces, surface-enhanced Raman
scattering, nonlinear optical methods, surface infrared spectroscopy, in-situ Mossbauer spectroscopy, radioactive labeling, and measurements with vibrating quartz crystals. The
contributions have been printed by the camera-ready
method, and all except one are written by American authors.
Apart from the fact that several of the figures in Chapter 1
have been interchanged (see the comments of the editorial
office), the contributions are impressively well prepared :
they are logically set out, illustrated by clear figures, and
packed with information. In each chapter the main emphasis
is firmly on the description of the experimental techniques,
but this is supported by informative examples of applications. In the description of the standing wave X-ray technique for characterizing the phase boundary region, it would
have been desirable to have examples of a wider range of
applications. Unfortunately the chapter on in-situ measurements with vibrating quartz crystals includes only two examples of applications, namely to coverages deposited in the
under-potential range, and (in more detail) to studies of mass
transport during redox processes in polymer films.
The selection of topics covered by the chapters is not exhaustive, nor can one expect it to be. However, it is notice238
0 VCH Verlagsgeselischafi mbH. W-6940 Weinheim, 1992
able that some important methods are not mentioned, for
example UVjVIS reflectance spectroscopy, ellipsometry and
photocurrent spectroscopy. It is also regrettable that in-situ
topographic methods such as scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM),
which give a microscopic image of the surface, in some cases
with atomic resolution, are not included. Furthermore, there
seems to be no logical connection between the individual
chapters. The fact that articles on optically based techniques
alternate with others on non-optical methods prevents a systematic presentation of the subject matter. Consequently it is
hardly surprising that the book lacks a final summary linking the various methods and results and evaluating them.
The book has a binding of appropriately high quality.
Considered as a whole it provides a good insight into the
progress that has been made in the development of various
in-situ techniques. However, one cannot overlook the shortcomings in the choice of topics and their relative emphasis,
and the lack of a logical arrangement of subject matter, with
the result that the reader fails to get a deeper understanding
of the progress made. The book is unquestionably of considerable importance to scientists with interests in interfacial
electrochemistry, and it should therefore be in every relevant
library, especially since the price of DM 182.00 will prevent
students from buying it.
Rolf Schumacher
Schering AG, Forschungsabteilung GT
Berlin (FRG)
Chemistry of Organosulfur Compounds. General Problems.
(Ellis Horwood Series in Organic Chemistry). Edited by
L. I. Belen’kii. Ellis Horwood, New York, 1990. 378 pp.,
hardcover $ 129.95.-ISBN 0-13-132051-3
Organosulfur chemistry traditionally occupies a position
of considerable importance in Soviet research, and there is
even a special scientific committee to promote it. The monograph reviewed here is based on a status report on work in
this field that was prepared in 1986 by various authors,
mainly from Moscow and Irkutsk. For this English version
the Russian text has been rearranged and updated (but, as
becomes apparent, only in parts). The 15 chapters of this
version deal with the preparation of organosulfur compounds, their transformations, and the methods used to
study them. Details of the chapters are as follows: Modern
Principles of the Synthesis of Organosulfur Compounds
(M. G. Voronkov et al., 14 pp., 25 references); Radical Reactions of Some Thiocarbonyl Derivatives in Solutions
(R. Kh. Freidlina et al., 21 pp., 64 references); Thermal Reactions and High Temperature Syntheses of Organosulfur
Compounds (M. G. Voronkov et al., 20 pp., 56 references);
Photochemical Synthesis and Transformations of Organosulfur Compounds (N. N. Vlasova, 22 pp., 65 references);
Radiochemical Synthesis and Transformations of Organosulfur Compounds (E. M. Nanobashvili, 8 pp., 11 references); Sulfur-stabilized Carbanions and their Synthetic Use
(F. M. Stoyanovich, 43 pp., 267 references); Formation of
C-C Bonds Using Sulfur-containing Electrophilic Reagents
(W A. Smit et al., 32 pp., 99 references); Catalytic Synthesis
of Organosulfur Compounds (A. V. Mashkina, 20 pp., 40
references); Methods of Desulfurization and their Use in
Organic Synthesis (L. I. Belen’kii, 36 pp., 189 references);
Investigation of Organic Reactions by the Use of Radioactive Sulfur (V. M. Fedeseev, 15 pp., 49 references); Mass
0570-0833/92j0202-0238$3.50+ .2510
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. Engl. 31 (1992) No. 2
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book, modern, edited, characterization, electrochemically, review, interface, situ, abruna, techniques
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