Friday, July 24, 2009

A short notation for 1,1'-(alkane-1,ω-diyl)-bis(pyridinium): Cn(Py)2

The short form Cn(Py)2 is used to refer to the class of 1,1'-(alkane-1,ω-diyl)-bis(pyridinium) cations. The subscript n is a whole number. With n=4, for instance, we get C4(Py)2 encoding the class member 1,1'-(butane-1,4-diyl)-bis(pyridinium). The ion entry forms of the Chemical Property Viewer accept short notations encoding this cation class and members thereof. To access chemical data of the ionic compound 1,1'-(butane-1,4-diyl)-bis(pyridinium) dihexafluorophosphate ([C4(Py)2][PF6]2), for example, enter C4(Py)2 or Cn(Py)2 for the cation and PF6 for the anion without any mark-up of the subscripts.

Selected publication using explained short notation
X.-Z. Yang, J. Wang, Z.-Z. Zhang and G.-S. Li: Solubilities of 1,1'-(Butane-1,4-diyl)-bis(pyridinium) Dihexafluorophosphate in Acetone + Water from (278.15 to 328.15) K. J. Chem Eng. Data 2009, 54, 1385-1388. DOI: 10.1021/je800893n

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Teflonates — an anion class name derived from the trade name Teflon

The word teflonate is derived from the brand name Teflon, commonly used to denote the perfluorinated polymer poly(tetrafluoroethylene) (PTFE). Chemically, teflonates are not derived from Teflon. The word teflonate applies to any member of the following anion class: [Al(ORF)4]. The anions of this class are aluminates(-1) (also: alumanuides), consisting of a central aluminum atom that is tetrasubstituted by perfluoroalkoxy (ORF) groups. The molecular surface (molecular envelope) of a teflonate anion is dominated by fluorine atoms adjacent to carbon atoms (C-F bonds), similar to the surface of a Teflon macromolecule. This explains, why some chemists like to assign a name similarity between Teflon and [Al(ORF)4](tetra(perfluoroalkoxy)aluminates(-1) or tetra(perfluoroalkoxy)alumanuides).

electrochemistry, charge distribution, cation-anion interaction, ionic compounds, ionic liquid design

Teflonate English-German dictionary
English: Singular: teflonate, Plural: teflonates
German (including definite grammatical article): Singular: das Teflonat (neutral), Plural: die Teflonate

Further reading (in German)
Nils Trapp und Ingo Krossing: Exotisches und Nützliches • Mit schwach koordinierenden Anionen lassen sich viele instabile exotische Kationen stabilisieren. Dennoch sind diese Anionen nicht nur eine Laborspielerei – Anwendungen finden sich in der Katalyse, in der Polymerisation oder als Elekrolyte. Nachrichten aus der Chemie Juni 2009, 57, 632-637.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Acronyms: CAO, CEO, CFO, CIO, COO and CTO

These acronyms stand for chief managing positions in a company. A person holding such a position can be considered as a Chief Managing Officer (CMO). Now you may guess the meaning of the acronyms by replacing the word Managing by a word describing an activity or department critical to the success of a company:

CAO: Chief Advertising Officer
CEO: Chief Executive Officer
CFO: Chief Financial Officer
CIO: Chief Information Officer
COO: Chief Operating Officer
CTO: Chief Technology Officer

Of course, it doesn't stop here. CSO, for example, can refer to a Chief Strategy Officer, Chief Security Officer, or Chief Sourcing Officer. And who hasn't heard of a Chief Disinformation Officer (CDO) or a Chief Vacationing Officer (CVO)?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Acronym: WESRF for Wallace Energy Systems & Renewables Facility

The WESRF research center has been named
in memory of [Alan] Wallace, who died in 2006, but the Wallace Energy Systems & Renewables Facility (WESRF) is familiarly known as “We Surf.”
Alan Wallace was a professor of electrical engineering at Oregon State University, where he along with Annette von Jouanne and others shared their fascination of ocean's power and studied wave-energy converters.
At WESRF, research and testing is focusing on (although not limited to) surfing objects including an all-electric naval ship, a hovercraft and buoys such as wave-energy converters designed by von Jouanne.


Elizabeth Rusch: Catching a Wave • Engineer Annette von Jouanne is pioneering an ingenious way to generate clean, renewable electricity from the sea. Smithsonian July 2009, Volume 40, Number 4, pp. 66-71.

Italian: Capo pazzo • English: mad head • French: tête folle • German: verrückter Kopf

Mad heads are found in all professions. But it is difficult to believe that a composer of beautiful Baroque music, such as the Italian violinist-composer Francesco Maria Veracini (1690-1768) had his dark side:
During the following ten years [1723 and after], during which he was generally inFlorence, he earned a continuing reputation for mental instability, exemplified by an attempt to kill his wife and by eccentricities that brought him the descriptive title of Capo pazzo (mad head).
Keith Anderson (English version), Jeremy Drake (French translation), and Teresa Pieschacón Raphael (German version): Francesco Maria Veracini (1690-1768). Brochure accompanying NAXOS compact disc 8.553413: Veracini, Complete Overtures and Concertos Vol. 2 • Accademia I Filarmonici • Alberto Martini.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Spanish: Santiago de Compostela • French: Saint Jacques de Compostelle

Occasionally, you'll find street names explained right on spot next to the street sign, as found in Hanover. No need for a guide book or iPhone! Sometimes, however, nothing can replace a personal description that expresses familarity with a given place and provides the historical background. One such example is the rue Saint-Jacques in Paris, France. Reading Thad Carhart's lovely book about a piano shop in Paris [1], you are getting more than just a history tour of piano making:
One day [...] I walked home from a friend's apartment in the Latin Quarter by a roundabout way, purposely taking the narrow street that leads past my favorite church in Paris, Val de Grâce. It lies on the rue Saint-Jacques, a small but noisy thoroughfare that has led south since the time when Paris was the Roman city of Lutetia. Its current name derives from its use as a route in the Middle Ages for pilgrims heading to Santiago de Compostela in Spain; or, in the usage the French prefer, Saint Jacques de Compostelle. Val de Grâce is a large late Renaissance church that is unusual for Paris; its exuberant carvings and animated façade are more typical of Rome, and the most beautiful dome in the city graces its undulating mass of light yellow stone.
[1] Thad Carhart: The Piano Shop on the Left Bank • Discovering a Forgotten Passion in a Paris Atelier. Random House Trade Paperbacks, New York, 2001; p. 170.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Acronyms: TMBX, TMEX and TMOX are TMAXs

[S-(2H-thiophen-2-yl)]-methyl-alkyl xanthates (TMAXs) are xanthate (dithiocarbonate) derivatives of thiophen. TMAXs have been investigated as additives to rapeseed oil, which is applied as steel-steel lubricant. Selected chemical members of the TMAX compound class are:

TMEX: [S-(2H-thiophen-2-yl)]-methyl-ethyl xanthate
TMBX: [S-(2H-thiophen-2-yl)]-methyl-butyl xanthate
TMOX: [S-(2H-thiophen-2-yl)]-methyl-octyl xanthate

Qing-Ye Gong, Lai-Gui Yu and Cheng-Feng Ye: Study of the tribological behaviors of [S-(2H-thiophen-2-yl)]-methyl-alkyl xanthates as additives in rapeseed oil. Wear
Sept. 2002, 253 (5-6), pp. 558-562. DOI: 10.1016/S0043-1648(01)00881-X

Monday, July 6, 2009

From the name Jagannatha to the noun juggernaut

A juggernaut is something that crushes or seems to crush everything in its path. Literally, this something can be a heavy vehicle such as a steamroller. The word juggernaut can also refer to a strong force, either physically or spiritually, that exercises power. Julia Whitty, with roots in the Indian state of Bengal, explains the origin of the word juggernaut from the local name for the god Krishna: Jagannatha, the Lord of the Universe, whose home is the Temple of Jagannatha in Puri on the Bay of Bengal [1]. Each year Jagannatha is worshipped by being taken on a tour as an oversized head with arms coming out of his ears. Aboard a huge chariot, Jagannatha makes its way to the Gundicha temple through the sea of ecstatic worshippers:
Along the way, most years, a few unlucky disciples are crushed beneath the wheels of the chariot, while others throw themselves under (or once did), desiring deliverance from the cycle of birth and death and the subsequent bliss of nirvana. Upon witnessing Jagannatha's monstrous chariot, its unhurried and invariably deadly path, the British coined the word juggernaut.
[1] Julia Whitty: The Fragile Edge • Diving and Other Adventures in the South Pacific. Houghton Mifflin Company, 213 Park Avenue South, New York, NewYork 10003, 2007; p. 129.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

On the high bank of the Leine river: Hanover

Hanover is the capital of the state of Lower Saxony in northwest Germany. It's name is spelled with two letters of n in German: Hannover. A way above and along the Leine river in today's historic downtown area is named Am Hohen Ufer, meaning on the high bank. The name Hannover is supposedly derived from this discriptive phrase of its location when the language of Mittelniederdeutsch was spoken there. In Mittelniederdeutsch, the adjective ho or hoch means high and the noun over means bank (Ufer in German today) . The name of the English town Heanor in Derbyshire probably has a very similar origin: In 1236 its name was Henovere. Around 1150, Germany's Hanover was named vicus Honovere. The word vicus indicates that it was a market place. There are other places in Germany with related names: Hanöver near Berne in the Wesermarsch and Hahnöfersand, an island in the river Elbe near Blankenese, Hamburg. And then, there are all those Hanovers in the United States. Mapquest lists ten states with a town named Hanover.

[1] Duden Taschenbücher • Geographische Namen in Deutschland • Herkunft und Bedeutung der Namen von Ländern, Städten, Bergen und Gewässern. 2., übearbeitete Auflage von Dieter Berger, Dudenverlag, Mannheim, 1999.
[2] Ulfrid M
üller: Die Marktkirche St. Georgii et Jacobi in Hannover. F&W Mediencenter, Kienberg (brochure available inside the Marktkirche Hannover church).

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Word play with the German words 'Stadt' and 'Statt'

The German word Stadt is a noun meaning town or city. The noun Statt means place or stead. Written in lower case, statt is a preposition with the meaning instead of. These words sound alike. The word stattstrand, here seen next to the Hunte Wendehafen in downtown Oldenburg in northwest Germany, is composed of the word statt and the noun Strand, meaning beach. The compositum Stattstrand can be understood as Stadtstrand (city beach) and also as alternative or atypical beach. In the extreme sense, it means no beach at all, but something different.