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Book Review Fortschritte der Massenspektrometrie. Progress in Mass Spectrometry. Edited by H. Budzikiewicz. Vol. 3. Alkaloide ausser Indol-Triterpen- und Steroidalkaloide. By M. Hesse and H. P

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of texture, indexing according to IT0 for any desired symmetry, and the investigations of pressure and temperature variations are also discussed.
With its detailed and clear presentation of themes, which
are seldom treated elsewhere, this book fills a gap and provides
a valuable supplement to books previously available on crystal-structure determination. In spite of the rather high price
it can thus be strongly recommended to all concerned with
X-ray diffraction.
Jouchim Struhle [NB 330 IE]
Zum Ablauf ionischer Polymerisationsreaktionen(The course
of Ionic Polymerizations). By G . Heublein. Akademie-Verlag,
Berlin 1975. 1st edit., viii, 316 pp., numerous figs. and tables,
bound, ca. DM 58.--.
In comparison with the industrially much more important
field of radical polyreactions there are considerably fewer
proven results on ionic polymerizations. Thus, it is only in
recent years that many of the “classical” concepts of cationic
polyreactions have had to be revised. A critical presentation
of the present state of our knowledge of ionic polyreactions
is thus a difficult but undoubtedly highly valuable exercise.
Following a brief comparison of ionic and radical polymerizations and a general outline of the course of ionic polymerizations, the book treats first cationically and then anionically
initiated polyreactions; a subsequent chapter is devoted to
ionic copolymerizations. In a section contributed by P . Hallpap
the current possibilities for quantifying description of ionic
polymerizations are collected together with their quantumchemical treatment.
A field as wide as this cannot be described in all its parts
in equal detail; one misses, e.g. the recent investigations by
P . H . Plesch’s school on cocatalyst-free cationic initiation
of polymerization with aluminum trichloride and the pseudocationic polymerizations by ester formation. Objections in
principle must be noted concerning some of the concepts
used; the phrase “Mischpolymerisation” (mixed polymerization) should be finally banned from scientific literature according to IUPAC rules. To describe the growth step of polymerizations as the “Polyadditionsschritt” (polyaddition step) (e.g .
p. 16), is at least an error of judgement, since in German
it can easily lead to confusion with other polyadditions occurring according to totally different mechanisms.
These minor details d o not, however, detract from the book‘s
value as an easily readable summary for a currently important
area of macromolecular chemistry, particularly as the more
than 600 literature references make it possible to delve deeper
into the subject. A more serious deficiency-and one that
must certainly be corrected in a new edition--is the absence
of a subject index, particularly as the contents list is only
crudely sectionalized.
Dietrich Braun [NB 331 IE]
IRSpektroskopie-Eine Einfuhrung. (Taschentext 43/44) (IR
Spectroscopy-An Introduction. Pocket book 43/44). By
H . Giinzler and H . Bock. Verlag Chemiephysik Verlag,
Weinheim 1975. 1st edit., xv, 363 pp., 152 figs., 50 tables,
paperback, DM 38.-.
The main emphasis of this book is laid on the description
of group frequencies of organic compounds, which are discussed very expertly with the aid of many original spectra
and tables. Inorganic compounds are mentioned in only one
sentence. Details of the apparatus, its maintenance, and of
the preparation of samples are discussed at length; this part
is of real practical value even for the experienced user, and
treatment of special techniques takes up much space.
566
Theoretical principles up to the rotational vibration spectra
of an anharmonic oscillator are treated in only 30 pages.
Without givingany derivation the authors cite the Schrodinger
equation as a kind of magic formula from which everything
else can follow; here there are formulations that run from
the unfortunate through the inexact to the false, and other
chapters too are not free from them.
Because of the weaknesses in its treatment of the theoretical
principles and its concentration on applications in organic
chemistry, this book is certainly no general introduction to
IR spectroscopy. The limitation to organic compounds should
have been stated in the title.
Gerhard Lehmann [NB 332 IE]
Fortschritte der Massenspektrometrie.Progress in Mass Spectrometry. Edited by H . Budzikiewicz. Vol. 3. Alkaloide,
ausser Indol-Triterpen-, und Steroidalkaloide. By M . Hesse
and H . P . Bernhard. Verlag Chemie, GmbH, Weinheim
1975. 1st edit., xvii, 372 pp., 112 figs., 83 tables, bound,
DM 148.-.
In order to take into account the complexity and structural
variety of this group of natural products the authors confine
themselves in this book in the Progress series[*] to the nitrogen
compounds that are not classifiable as indole, triterpene, steroid, or ergot alkaloids. The classification principle for the
remahing compounds-structurally considered still imposing
in number-is based on the practicable but not always relevant
assumption that in alkaloids the decompositions induced by
electron impact generally start from ionized nitrogen. In consequence, therefore, the “nitrogen” structural element is set up
as the centerpoint, while the traditional classification based
on skeletal or chromophore type and on biogenetic relationships serve as secondary classification characteristics.
The presentation of the immense volume of material succeeds by skilful choice and combination of line spectra, principal routes of decomposition, conclusions by analogy (allowed
and forbidden), critical commentaries on spectral interpretation, and a comprehensive literature search (1082 references
distributed over seven main chapters that in turn are subdivided into 125 fields). The authors have succeeded very well
indeed in directing the reader rapidly and clearly (often with
use of structural formulas) to the data relevant to analytical
use by means of precise formulation and designation of key
fragments. Mechanistic aspects are, in general, considered and
used for spectral interpretation only insofar as they have
been proved by experiment.
In spite of the extensive data material involved (an index,
arranged by molecular weight and names of 1260 compounds,
as well as a comprehensive subject index allow rapid orientation), this book will not only be valuable to the typical alkaloid
chemist but will also prove to be a (provocative) source for
mechanistic studies, as repeatedly indicated by the authors’
views and limits. How helpful and important is well-based
knowledge of the decomposition principles for a correct interpretation of the mass spectra of alkaloids is shown impressively
by Chapter 6 (putrescine, spermidine, and spermine alkaloids).
On the basis of studies of model compounds, carried out
by the Zurich group, it is demonstrated, inter alia, that the
apparent complexity of the mass spectra of these alkaloids
is due to the simple interaction of nonbonded centers ( e . g .
specific, reciprocal H-transfers or electron-impact-induced SNi
reactions).
The book constitutes an important addition to the standard
works already available for chemists concerned with the analytical side of alkaloid chemistry.
Helmut Schwarz [NB 333 IE]
[*] Cf. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. Engl. 15, 58 (1976).
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