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Book Review Physical Organic Chemistry. By O. H. Wheeler

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systems are dealt with in the next two chapters. The treatment of these concepts, which are generally skimped in
mathematics lectures for chemists, is of particular value to
the prospective quantum chemist. The introduction to
mathematical fundamentals concludes with a discussion of
differential and integral calculus.
The second part of the book deals with the fundamentals of
wave mechanics and quantum-mechanical approximation
procedures. A consideration of the wave function, electron
spin, and the Pauli exclusion principle leads to a treatment
of the time-dependent and time-independent Schrodinger
equations. Some information about operator equations is
given in the following chapter. The Schrodinger equation, the
angular momentum, and the electron spin are formulated
with the aid of operators. Subsequently the Born-Oppenheimer approximation, energy hypersurfaces, and nucleus
motion are discussed. The chapter dealing with approximation procedures is devoted to a treatment of the variation
principle and of the calculus of perturbation theory.
Certain special procedures for solving electron problems are
described in the third part of the book.The various quantummechanical methods are, distinguished o n the basis of the
differences between the Hamiltohian operatorsysed. In logical manner, the procedutes for solving the Schrodinger
equation with the use of exact H a m i i t m a n s (H atom, CI,
SCF, LCAO methods) aYe contrasted with the procedures
that use a modified Hamiltonian (Hiickel’s procedure, freeelectron model). It is unfortunate that this chapter, which
contains the methods for the treatment of molecular
problems that are so important to the chemist, is very short.
While three pages are devoted to the treatment of number
sequences, the Hiickel procedure, for example, is dealt with
in a few lines. Because of this brevity of treatment the reader
is merely able to appreciate certain fundamental aspects
underlying the various approximation procedures. Suitable
references are given to more extensive treatments or for the
application of the various methods to chemical problems.
The book can thus serve as a useful introduction.
The reader can test his progress by means of practice exercises. A few misprints, for example those that have crept into
the superscripts of eq. (70) on p. 111, should be amended in
the next edition. As a n elementary introduction, the book is
intended mainly for undergraduates. Considering this it is
regrettable that the price is relatively high.
H. Zimmermann [NB 629 IE]
Physical Organic Chemistry. By 0.H . Wheeler. Principles of
Modern Chemistry, Monograph 2. Elsevier Publishing
Company, Amsterdam-London-New York 1966. 1st Edit.,
ix, 172 pages, 42 tables, Dfl. 27.50; paperback Dff. 15.00.
The present introduction to physical organic chemistry is
claimed to be the first so far that “achieves a balanced treatment of the two principal aspects - the empirical study of
mechanisms and the fundamental theoretical background”.
This claim is not entirely justified. The author has failed to
stress important principles and to confine himself to important points. The attempt to cover the entire field in 160
pages was bound to lead to a superficial treatment. Some
examples are:
Even fundamental concepts such as “transition state” and
“intermediate” are not clearly defined (no mention is made
of the reaction coordinates), and are frequently confused
(pages 59, 72,106, 133); the difference between bond energy
and dissociation energy is not explained (page 19).
The fundamentals of spectroscopy are not discussed, though
spectra are occasionally used in fhe discussion of mechanisms.
The classification of reaction mechanisms does not include
multi-center reactions. Diels-Alder syntheses and the Claisen
rearrangement are formulated as involving “cyclic intermediates”, and pyrolytic syn eliminations as proceeding via
“free radicals or ion pairs”. Both CsH5COO. and CsHsCO.
are described as benzoyl radicals (pages 141 and 145).
The formulae are generally clear. The two-page index is too
short and 36 references are inadequate. Many recent results
have not been referred to. The last chapter, which is entitled
“New Frontiers”, seems completely out of place. The book
Cannot be recommended.
C . Riichnrdt
[NB 615 IE]
Glas im Laboratorium. Eine Einfuhrung fur den Laborpraktiker. (Glass in the Laboratory. An Introduction for the
Laboratory Worker). By E. Deeg and H. Richter. Volume 6
of the series “Der pharmazeutische Betrieb” (Pharmdceutical Practice). Edition Cantor KG., Aulendorf i.Wurtt.
1965. 1st Edit., 160 pp., 74 illustrations, D M 36.-.
This 160-page book could easily carry a more ambitious title,
perhaps “All about Glass Laboratory Apparatus”. There is
hardly a question connected with the use, care, and manufacture of glass apparatus that it does not deal with. The
authors have compiled much useful informatioh which would
otherwise require a laborious search.
After a chapter on glass as a material, glass apparatus and
glassware are desaibed in de.tail Many illustrations of
apparatus are ihcluded. and their properties ate described in
numerous tables,. Special emphasis is laid o n the details given
in the DIN standards. The type5.of bottles for stocking
vations substances, how to free stuck ground-glass joints
and glass taps, precautions to be taken during glass cutting
and glass blowing - all are described in an easily understandable form. The volume concludes with a section on
glass-to-metal joints, hints on laboratory practice, and a
subject index.
H. Griinewaid [NB 644 IE]
The Chemistry of Selenium, Tellurium and Polonium. By K .
W. Bagnull. No. 7 of the Series of Monographs ‘Topics in
Inorganic and General Chemistry’, edited by P. L. Robinson. Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam-LondonNew York 1965. 1st Edit., viii, 190 pp., 11 diagrams, 25
tables, Dfl. 35.00.
The author, who, by virtue of his own investigations, is an
expert o n the chemistry of the extremely rare element polonium, has attempted to present the chemical properties of
this eIement briefly and comprehensively in close comparison
with those of the two lighter elements of the same group,
tellurium and selenium. In view of the hitherto unwtisfactory
treatment of the chemistry of these main-group elements, this
attempt has met with great success in a small, well pwented,
and comprehensible volume. The modern fiteraturg’is almost
completely covered. The book: provides a us&ul review for
those concerned with the chemistry of the heavy ekments of
group VI b (a quarter OF Che book kdevoted t o fhe organic
derivatives of Se, Te, and b)and it may also be recommended generally as a source of stimulating information.
Quite justifiably, most chemists wit! regard the book as too
specialized since it considers the three elements alone and
not in conjunction with the characteristic Group VI element
sulfur. As a result of the high price, the book will probably
only be found in libraries, where, however, it should on no
Max Schmidt
[NB 621 IE]
account be absent.
Modem Approach to Inorganic Chemistry. By C. F. Bell and
K. A . K . Lott, Butterworth and Co. Ltd., London 1966.
2nd Edit., xiii, 331 pp., numerous figures and tables, 45 s.
The book covers the “Higher National Certificate” syllabus
and is intended for “General Degree” students. Its plan
departs markedly from that of conventional German textbooks, in that the principles fundamental to inorganic chemistry are emphasized. This is clear also from the chapter
headings: (1) Atomic structure I, (2) Atomic structure 11,
(3) Valency, (4) The structure of the elements and their
compounds, (5) Reactions in water and in non-aqueous
solvents, (6) Coordination chemistry, (7) Distribution and
Angew. Chem. internat. Edit. J Vol. 6 (1967) / No. I2
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