Gillespie (1967) and Spingler (2001)

September 18, 2017

Hello all you avid CHM650 readers!

We have two papers to consider for Wednesday which will assist in our introduction to (or remembrance of) inorganic chemistry. We covered oxidation states and d electron configurations previously. We now understand coordination geometry and coordination number, plus how ligands and metals interact. The paper of Gillespie is longer (6 pages) than previous papers, but not too long.

The other paper discusses what is referred to as a “Werner complex”. Werner is a co-author on the Spingler et al. paper despite the fact he was dead for over 80 years by that point. You should assign oxidation states, electron configuration, coordination number, coordination geometry, etc on your own (don’t post your answer in the comments) for discussion on Wednesday.

Have a read over these papers (they are all short) and post your questions.

Don’t forget to find and uncover (perhaps even scan in and discuss with your advisor) the papers that you will be leading the discussion for later in the semester.


Energy Production in Stars (1938)

September 13, 2017

Dear all CHM650 students,

On Friday we will be discussing two papers. “Energy Production in Stars” by Hans Bethe (1939, Physical Review, pg 103). This paper is a single page, although I also suggest you briefly read the first two pages of the longer paper (same author, year and journal) that follows it.

There is a interesting story about this paper, can you discover it?

The second paper that we will be considering is the paper “Nuclear reactions in Stars without Hydrogen” by E.E. Salpeter from 1951 (Astrophysical Journal).

Please have your questions posted here by Thursday lunchtime for the in-class discussion!

Disintegration of Uranium by Neutrons (1939)

September 11, 2017

Dear class,

On Wednesday we will be discussing the Nature paper (Feb 11, 1939) by Meitner and Frisch entitled “Disintegration of Uranium by Neutrons: a New Type of Nuclear Reaction”. This is a short paper (1.25 pages). When reading it you should consider the “Who, What, When, Where and How”. Likely I will call upon people in class to discuss the paper, so be prepared. Comments should be constructive and thought out.

A few things to keep in mind.

1) Where was Meitner when this paper was published? Why?

2) What is masuruium?

3) Why do the authors use the strange series of “eka-” prefixes?

4) The Curie’s just missed out on several discoveries relating to the nucleus. Was this one of them?

Please have your questions posted here in by Tuesday evening to give the presenter time to consider them. 🙂

Welcome to CHM650 for 2017

September 8, 2017

Dear Chemistry Graduate Students,

Welcome to the wordpress blog for CHM650 for Fall 2017. Have a look at the older entries to prepare for the rest of the semester. I highly recommend that you sign up for receiving updates so that you can reply in a timely manner to posts.

Soon I will be tracking people down to get their select papers and research highlights assigned. If you have questions, please post them on the blog.

Best wishes,

Prof. Hurst

Gurney and Condon (1928) and Bethe (1938)

September 8, 2017

Greetings class,

On Monday we will be discussing the paper “Wave Mechanics and Radioactive Disintegration” by Gurney and Condon from the 28 September 1928 edition of the journal Nature. This very short (1 page) paper discusses how particles can escape from the nucleus.

Some points to ponder…

1) How does this paper reflect particle capture as much as particle decay?

2) What does the curious last paragraph mean?

Please feel free to post your questions below, try not to make them too simplistic!

An educational experiment is born…

August 16, 2011

It’s alive I tell you, alive!

Ok, so it is just another freshly birthed blog from wordpress. Still for me it will be a handy tool. Please let me introduce myself to the big empty world. I’m Prof. Stephanie Hurst, a lecturer in inorganic chemistry at Northern Arizona University in, well… Northern Arizona.

The point of this blog will be to serve as a testing ground for my new approach to teaching a graduate level inorganic chemistry course. This year I will be leading the graduate level inorganic chemistry course (CHM650) and we will be taking a “classic papers” approach. This means we will be looking at papers that define or gave birth to a particualr area of chemistry, will rlevance to inorganic chemistry.

Students can submit their questions about the paper in the comments section of the blog page, and the person leading the discussion (sometimes me, sometimes a student) can respond. Before the semester begins I will post an example.

Hello world!

August 1, 2011

Welcome to After you read this, you should delete and write your own post, with a new title above. Or hit Add New on the left (of the admin dashboard) to start a fresh post.

Here are some suggestions for your first post.

  1. You can find new ideas for what to blog about by reading the Daily Post.
  2. Add PressThis to your browser. It creates a new blog post for you about any interesting  page you read on the web.
  3. Make some changes to this page, and then hit preview on the right. You can always preview any post or edit it before you share it to the world.