If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.


Mass Spectrometry


November 3, 2018 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 96, Issue 44


Letters to the editor

Mass spectrometry is correct

O. David Sparkman (C&EN, Aug. 27, page 3) is correct that there is “no such thing” as the term “mass spectroscopy.” Paul J. Karol (C&EN, Oct. 1, page 2) is correct to refer to the International Union of Pure & Applied Chemistry but unfortunately referenced the 1991 recommendations in Pure & Applied Chemistry (DOI: 10.1351/pac199163101541). This older document has been superseded by 2013 recommendations (Pure Appl. Chem., DOI: 10.1351/pac-rec-06-04-06), which state on page 1565, “Mass spectroscopy is an obsolete synonym for mass spectrometry that should not be used to avoid confusion with spectroscopies in which the measured quantity is absorption or emission of electromagnetic radiation.”

Unfortunately, the usually reliable IUPAC Gold Book ( has not been updated with the most recent recommendations and still refers to the obsolete 1991 entry for mass “spectroscopy.” Hopefully this valuable resource will be updated soon.

Charles Lucy
Edmonton, Alberta

Sponsored content

My electronic C&EN summary had a link to sponsored content provided by Johnson Matthey about new lithium battery cathode materials. I started reading this article with interest. However, I found it frustrating that there is no new scientific content in the article. The article announces “a family of promising new cathode materials called eLNO” but does not provide any insight into what this material is or what it contains (other than “less cobalt”). The one thing I expect from C&EN is a bit more scientific content than I would get in a press release. If these sponsored-content articles are simple press releases, I do not think they belong in C&EN, and I will not be eager to read them.

James Mayer
New Haven, Conn.

Editor’s note: Sponsored content is a paid advertisement. It aims to provide valuable information to C&EN readers but is not intended to be a source of news.


This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.