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Book Review Noble Gases and their Compounds. By G. J. Moody and J. D. R. Thomas

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Technique of Organic Chemistry. Edited by A . Weissherger.
Vol. XI : Elucidation of Structures by Physical a n d Chemical Methods. Part I. Edited by K. W . Bentley. Interscience
Publishers, a Division of J o h n Wiley & Sons, New YorkLondon 1963. 1st edit., ix + 642, 23 pp., numerous illustrations a n d tables, linen 66.5.0 (about $17.50).
Methods for the elucidation of structures a r e of interest not
only t o the natural-products chemist, b u t also t o th e organic
chemist engaged in synthetic work, for he often encounters
new a n d unexpected reaction products. T h e present volume of
this series will therefore appeal t o a wide variety of readers. A
chapter o n “Isolation, purification a n d preliminary observations” by K. H . Ovcvto,r forms th e introduction here; this
includes very valuable tables of d ata o n color a n d precipitation reactions for use in determining roughly what class of
c om pound is being examined. This is followed by contributions o n Liltraviolet spectroscopy ( J . C. D. Brcrnd a n d A . I.
Scott), infrared spectroscopy ( A . R . H . C o w , nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy ( J . B. Stothers), mass spectrometry
( K . Birmrinn), a n d dissociation constants a n d optical activity
( J . F. K i n g ) . These topics ar e discussed in greater detail in
Vol. I of the s a me series (Physical Methods of Organic Chemistry, four parts). In this book, descriptions of the appropriate
practical procedures a n d theoretical fundamentals have been
almost completely disregarded; instead, only a n appraisal of
the value of the methods for purposes of elucidating structures is given. In each section a description of the general principles involved is followed by illustrations with examples
from the chemistry of natural produtcs. These chapters ar e
wonderfully adapted t o th e needs of th e organic chemist engaged in empirical evaluation of physical measurements conducted with commercial instruments.
Working hypotheses o n the structures of certain natural products a re often developed using biogenetic principles. Th e
general background for such an approach is given by E. Leete
in chapter VII, who reminds readers t o consider theories
before applying them. An essay by G. A . Swcrn o n the “Detection a n d protection of functional groups” introduces
chemical methods. O f the latter, Part I contains discussion on
“Reduction a n d hydrogenation” by F. J. McQuillin a n d o n
“Dehydrogenation” by Z . Vcjlenttr. T h e material collected together in this volume can be obtained only with considerable
effort from other sources, a n d it gives terse but reliable information o n the applicability a n d drawbacks of th e reactions
discussed. We can look forward t o th e forthcoming “chemical” chapters with great interest.
T h e whole volume has been very carefully edited; errors are
seldom found (the position of th e 1/C-H nuclear resonance
in Fig. 4, page 212 is incorrect, an equation o n page 460 is
printed upside down). Th e layout, e.g. t h e appearance of the
steric formulae, is excellent. However, this has been attained
a t the expense of t h e tim e required for publication: the literature reviewed in th e individual contributions does not g o
beyond 1960 (copyright 1963).
This small book contains so much information that it can be
recommended t o even those who ar e undecided ab o u t buying
the complete series.
W. Kirmse [ N B 2661124 IE]
Noble Gases and their Compounds. By G. J. Moody a n d J . D.
R . Thomas. Pergamon Press, Oxford-London-EdinburghNew Y o r k - P a r k F r a n k f u r t 1964. 1st edit., vii + 62 pp.,
1 I tables, linen 12s. 6d. (about 81.75).
This little book gives o n t h e whole a n excellent survey of t h e
title subject. I n t h e first chapter, th e history o f th e discovery
of t h e noble gases is recounted briefly. T h e second chapter is
devoted t o early attempts t o produce inert gas co m p o u n d s
a n d deals with helides, MHe2, clathrates, a n d the particularly
interesting older studies o n the preparation of inert gas halides. In t h e third chapter, t h e authors give a reasonably detailed report o n t h e “present” status o f th e chemistry o f t h e
noble gases; this begins with Bartlett’s co m p o u n d XePtFb,
Angew. Chem. internat. Edit.
Vol. 4 (1965)
1 No. 4
t h e discovery of which initiated numerous investigations i n
t h e U.S.A., a n d then describes t h e xenon fluorides XeF2,
XeFI, an d XeF6, together with their properties, crystal structure, an d the nature of their bonds, and finally the oxylluorides XeO,Fy. Th e discussion then proceeds t o X eO j and
t h e salts of the acids Hc,Xe06 an d H4Xe06, thc krypton fluorides K r F r a n d KrF4, a n d attempts t o prepare compounds of
radon.The compound BaKrOjrecently obtained by vonGrossr
and therecent determination o f t h e s t r u c t u r e o f N a 4 X e 0 ~ ~ 8 H ~ 0 ,
for instance, could n o t yet be fully considered. l n t h e fourth
chapter a survey of future prospects for developments in
this field is given. Th e cursory reader will miss t h e presence
of tables summarizing the most important physical properties of the compounds.
Th e book is well arranged, a n d is easy t o read; t h e latter
stattement applies especially the discussion o f t h e chemical
bonds of these compounds. A s in almost every account in
English of the discovery of the first genuine valence co m pounds of the noble gases in 1962, here t o o there is no mcntion, of t h e fact that t h e first binary noble gas fluorides were
prepared independently a n d almost simultaneously in Germany (XeF2, July 1962) a n d in the U.S.A. (XeF4, early August 1962). Purchase of this little volume can be recommended
without reservation.
R . Hoppe
[ N B 278/135 I E ]
Treatise on Analytical Chemistry. Edited by I. M . Kolrl7off
a n d P . J . Elving. Part I : Theory a n d Practice. Vol. 5 :
Section D.3 : Optical Methods of Analysis. Interscience
Publishers, a Division o f Jo h n Wiley & Sons, New YorkLondon-Sidney 1964. 1st edit., xx
639 pp., numerous
illustrations a n d tables, linen C6.0.0 (about $16.75).
+
T h e constantly increasing number of publications appearing
nowadays in every field of science lends increasing importance
t o t h e various multivolume series which contain comprehensive surveys of extensive, b u t specialized, topics. This series
edited by Koltlzqff an d €lvi,7g is intended t o give a complete
appraisal of the entire field of analytical chemistry. Volumes
5 a n d 6 of Part I arc devoted t o optical analytical methods.
Th e concept “optical methods’‘ is assumed t o be very wide in
scope, an d hence incliides all techniques employing absorption o r emmison, optical rotation, or diffraction or scattering
over t h e whole range of t h e electromagnetic spectrum, from
X-rays u p t o microwaves. Diffraction a n d absorption of electrons a n d neutrons ar e also discussed in these volumes.
reviews
(II
the general principles perIn Vol. 5, E. J . M ~ P / I O
taining t o all optical investigations in the first three introductory chapters of Volume 1 (optical methods, t h e fundamentals
of spectrophotometry, spectroscopic apparatus a n d measurements). Detailed discussions ar e given by F. W: Billmeyer of
t h e fundamentals of light scattering, by D. B. Jirdd a n d I.
Nimerofof t h e specification a n d designation of color, by A .
A . Schilt a n d B. Jnselskis of ultraviolet a n d visible spectrophotometry, by A . L. Conrcid o f fluorescence methods, by
H . A. Liebhnfsk-v, H . G. Pfeiffer, a n d E. H . Winslow of the absorption, emission, a n d diffraction of X-rays, by D.B. Wittry
o f X-ray microanalSsis, by J . H. Goldstein o f microwave
spectrophotometry, a n d by F. P . Hochgesnng of light scattering an d turbidity measurements.
In every chapter the theoretical basis o f the phenomenon i n
question is first discussed t o an extent required for a complete
understanding of its analytical applications. Instrumentation
a n d ineasiirement problems ar e considered by using simple
illustrations, an d the most important properties of commercial
o r even “home-made’’ apparatus a r e reviewed. Practical examples are used t o give a critical survey of methods of evaluat i o n ; a detailed treatment o f possible sources o f e r r o r s is also
always given. Each chapter closes with a list of references
which, however, seldom contains mention of continental
European monographs.
Despite t h e large number of contributors, t h e volume conveys an impression of completeness; in t h e more specialized
38 1
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