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Book Review Radiation Chemistry. Principles and Applications. Edited by Farhataziz and M. A. J. Rodgers

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Solid-state Chemistry: Techniques. Edited by A . K. Cheetham and P. Day. Clarendon Press, Oxford 1987. xiv,
393 pp., bound, L 35.00.-ISBN 0-19-855165-7
The first volume (“Techniques”) of a two-volume account of solid state chemistry has now appeared (the second volume is to be subtitled “Compounds”). The work,
which is edited by two Oxford experts, is intended to fill a
gap. According to the editors it is aimed at final-year undergraduates and first-year post-graduates who are
studying solid state chemistry for the first time. Considering this in relation to the requirement for a basic training
in solid state chemistry in the German Federal Republic
situation, the work is suitable for use by advanced students
about to take their final examinations, and by diploma students who wish to prepare themselves for their chosen special area of study. In addition it would be a valuable resource for preparing lectures, and it is also suitable for use
by chemists whose specialization is outside the solid state
area and who seek information and an extension of their
knowledge. In brief: it should be in every library.
This first volume provides a survey of the experimental
methods of solid state chemistry. It begins with a chapter
on “Synthesis of Solid State Materials” (author: J. D. Corbett), which occupies 38 of the 393 pages (a mere lo%!).
This is excellent, and shows that, 15 years after H. Schiifer’s plea in this journal for more attention to be given to
the preparative aspects of solid state chemistry,“’ the learning process then begun is now also bearing fruit in book
form. It is clear from this chapter that solid state chemists
involved in preparative work (a description which is almost a pleonasm!) are much better than is suggested by
their reputation as bakers using powder mixtures.
This is followed by the (one might almost say, unavoidable) chapters on physical techniques which the solid state
chemist must use to characterize his materials: Diffraction
methods (A. K . Cheetham), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and related methods (G. K. Wertheim). Magnetic
measurements ( W . E. Hatfield), Optical techniques (R. G .
Denning), High-resolution solid-state MAS N M R investigations of inorganic systems (C. A . Fyfe and R . E. Wasylrshen). Computational techniques and simulation of crystal structures [C. R . A . Catlow), Transport measurements
(A. Hamnett) and Vibrational spectroscopy (D. M . Adams).
The book concludes with a chapter by A . Naurotsky on
“Thermodynamic aspects of inorganic solid-state chemistry.”
The index, consisting of only four pages, is rather scanty, but since the book is by no means intended to be an
encyclopedia but rather is a textbook, this shortcoming can
be excused. The fact that all the authors are from the English-speaking world has no doubt made the editorial work
easier, but this should not be taken as a n indication that
solid state chemistry work going on elsewhere is not of the
highest standard.
To summarize, this is an indispensable book. This reviewer looks forward with keen anticipation to reading the
second volume, which will be of greater interest to him in
view of the declared intention to cover “Compounds”.
Gerd Meyer [NB 886 IE]
lnstitut fur Anorganische und Analytische Chemie
der Universitat Giessen (FRG)
[*] H . Scha/er: Zur Situation der praparaliven Feststoffchemie-The Present
Situation in Preparative Solid-state Chemistry (Angew. Chern. 83 (1971)
3 5 ; Angew. Chem. l n t . Ed. Engl. I0 (1971) 43).
Angew. Chem. l n t . Ed. Engl. 27(1988) No. 6
Radiation Chemistry. Principles and Applications. Edited
by Farhataziz and M . A , J. Rodgers. VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, Weinheim/VCM Publishers, New York 1987. 641
pp., bound, DM 208.00.- ISBN 3-527-26197-4/0-89573127-4
Radiation chemistry is concerned with chemical reactions which are triggered by ionizing radiations. Its importance extends very much further than is often supposed.
For example, ionizing radiation makes it possible for the
chemist to create free radicals independently of the temperature, color and state of aggregation of the medium,
which is not usually possible with other methods, and
pulsed radiolysis allows one to investigate the kinetics of
free-radical reactions (and also of some non-radical reactions) in a way which is almost unique. Radiation chemistry also provides the basis for a better understanding of the
primary chemical processes involved in radiation biology
and radiation medicine (the killing of cells by radiation,
radiation-induced mutagenesis, tumor therapy etc.). Radiation-chemical techniques have now also become well established in industry.
Various monographs on radiation chemistry have appeared over the years. That most familiar to German readers is the excellent book by Henglein, Wendenburg. and
Schnabel (Einfiihrung in die Strahlenchemie, Verlag
Chemie, Weinheim 1967), which is not outdated in its essentials even today. The book reviewed here differs from
most of its predecessors in what it sets out to do. It is not
so much a textbook as a collection of review articles. It
contains contributions from more than twenty authors, although, surprisingly, neither of the two editors has written
an article themselves. The fact that it is a multi-author
work gives it both its strengths and its weaknesses. The editors have tried to indicate the broadness of the range of
areas where radiation chemistry makes an important contribution. Since the number of such areas is too great to be
adequately covered, even in more than 600 pages, the editors have had to be highly selective i n what has been included. In accordance with their own bias of interest, they
have mainly included authors who are active in work on
primary radiation-chemical processes. For example, there
are detailed discussions of energy absorption and theoretical aspects of radiation chemistry (A. Chatterjee, J. L.
Magee, and N. V. Klassen). the properties of the electron
( R . A . Holroyd and N. R. Kestner). reaction kinetics ( A .
Hummel), and evidence for short-lived transient species, in
which the various different pulse radiolysis techniques (L.
K . Patterson) will be of great interest to many readers.
Other topics covered are the special features of the radiation chemistry of gases (D. A . Armstrong), aqueous solutions (G. V. Buxton), organic liquids (A. J. Swallow) and
solids (J. E . Willard), colloidal aggregates ( J . K . 7’homas),
alkali halides (V. J. Robinson and M. R. Chandratillake),
and polymers (A. Charlesby).
These chapters, which are mainly oriented towards physical chemistry and theory, make u p almost 80% of the
book. In contrast the chapter on biopolymers (L. M . Mee)
is short and consequently unsatisfying, dealing in 22 pages
with the radiation chemistry of nucleic acids, chromatin,
proteins, lipids and polysaccharides. The excellent chapter
by P. Wardman on some applications of radiation chemistry in biochemistry and radiation biology gives some indication of the great potential of radiation chemistry beyond
its usual domain. It would have been desirable to give nonradiation chemists a wider picture of the many possibilities
offered by radiation chemistry techniques for elucidating
86 1
free radical, and also non-radical, reactions in organic and
inorganic chemistry. Instead of this the editors have included two chapters on the radiation biology of microorganisms (D.Ewing) and of mammalian cells (J. E.
Biaglow), both of which are very specialized and fail to
give any more detailed information about, for example, radiation risks and radiation-induced mutagenesis. The book
ends with a chapter by M . Takehisa and S . Machi on the
engineering applications of radiation chemistry (with emphasis on the situation in Japan).
The book will be of interest to readers oriented towards
physical chemistry. Because of the articles of a fundamental nature which it contains, it should be included in the
library of every academic chemistry department or research institute.
Clemens von Sonntag [NB 867 IE]
Max-Planck-Institut fur Strahlenchemie,
Miilheim/Ruhr (FRG)
Ab-initio Molecular Orbital Theory. By W. J. Hehre, L.
Radom, P. von R . Schleyer, and J. A . Pople. Wiley, ChiChester 1986. xviii, 548 pp., bound, & 81.80.--ISBN 0471 -81241-2
After a very brief introduction to the quantum-mechanical basis of ab-initio M O theory, the program packages
available under the name “GAUSSIAN-n” (where n is one
of the years 70, 76, 80, 82, or 85) are described. Several of
the authors played a considerable part in the development
of these programs, which are introduced in a rather pragmatic manner. Most of the book is devoted to applications
of the GAUSSIAN-n programs, though calculations using
other systems are also considered, especially when no
GAUSSIAN-n calculations are available for the purpose in
This compilation of numerical results is extremely valuable. It spares the reader a tiresome search through the original literature, and since all the calculations carried out
with the GAUSSIAN program satisfy certain standardizing criteria, results from various groups can be compared.
The wealth of material itself makes the book exceedingly
useful. The things that can be done today with ab-initio
MO calculations are most impressive-from determination
of equilibrium molecular structures, calculation of vibrational spectra, rotation and inversion barriers, bond and
reaction energies and intermolecular interactions, to the
elucidation of reaction mechanisms. The results concerning carbocations and carbodications deserve special mention, as d o those on lithium-carbon compounds. Reading
this book should convince any organic chemist that the
study of his subject is no longer conceivable without abinitio MO theory. For anyone who is interested in this type
of calculation, an indispensable reference work is now
available, including also a good introduction to the use of
the GAUSSIAN programs. The book is not, and does not
claim to be, an account of the current state of ab-initio
quantum-chemical methodology (in this sense the title of
the book is misleading). Although it is oriented too much
towards GAUSSIAN-n, and does not explore fundamental
questions sufficiently (for example electron-correlation,
and non-adiabatic or relativistic effects), the majority of
readers will hardly see this as a disadvantage.
Werner Kutzelnigg [NB 891 IE]
Fakultat fur Chemie
der Universitat Bochum (FRG)
Dynamics of Proteins and Nucleic Acids. By J. A . McCammon and S . C. Harvey. Cambridge University Press,
Cambridge 1987. 234 pp., hard cover, & 25.00.--ISBN 0521-30750-3
The aim of this book is to provide the reader with a selfcontained introduction to the theoretical aspects of proteins and nucleic acid dynamics. It is intended for graduate students as well as for research workers in the fields
of physical biochemistry and molecular biotechnology.
The principal goal of the authors is threefold: (1) to outline
theoretical methods and their capabilities, (2) to provide
an insight into the nature and biological significance of
biomolecular dynamics, mainly by summarizing of and reference to theoretical studies, and (3) to indicate prospects
and directions of future work in this area.
The books definitely meets these goals. It is organized as
follows: The first three chapters (34 pages) contain a brief
introduction to the function, structure and dynamics of
proteins and nucleic acids. Chapter 4 (44 pages) discusses
the theoretical methods that have been used to describe
and model the dynamics of these molecules. On this basis
the next four chapters (88 pages) deal with dynamical behavior by reviewing the literature of the last decade. Ordered according to the time scale and spatial scale of the
different types of motions, the following are discussed:
short time dynamics, local structural transitions, global
structural changes, and the dynamics of molecular association. The last chapter (16 pages) stands a bit apart from the
rest of the book. It mentions a number of new developments in the field of computer simulation of biomolecules.
The book is completed by three appendices (21 pages) discussing some technical details of computer simulation, a
list of references, and a subject index.
The authors have done a good job. They have reached
the goals they set out. Starting from basic data the book
summarizes the literature on theoretical studies of protein
and nucleic acid dynamics. The referencing is done very
carefully, many numerical examples are given and also the
influence of solvent surroundings on the structure and dynamics of biomolecules is not neglected. It may be best
characterized as an overview of the theoretical work in the
field of biomolecular dynamics up till 1986. Perhaps due to
its descriptive style the book is not very critical of the various studies, and space spent on the description of applications is not allotted according to the scientific value of the
methods used, but more according to the number of published applications. An example is the relatively exhaustive
attention given to normal mode calculations of proteins,
which are-as the authors admit (p. 91)-of rather limited
value because of the very anharmonic character of protein
motion. The most promising practical applications of simulation techniques are only mentioned in the last chapter; the use of molecular dynamics simulation in the refinement of the spatial structures of proteins based on nuclear magnetic resonance atom-atom distance data or on
crystallographic X-ray intensities ; the thermodynamic cycle integration technique to obtain relative binding constants is briefly but not critically discussed.
The book does not provide sufficient information for the
chemist who wishes to use theoretical methods in the study
of biomolecular structure and dynamics. It lacks a critical
evaluation of the various force fields in use for biomolecules. When discussing the limitations of simulation methods (p. 66) the yet insufficient accuracy of force fields is
not even mentioned, whereas a critical discussion of factors contributing to accuracy is essential for a proper asAngew. Chern Inr Ed Engl 2711988)
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