‘Bastard’ Nomenclature | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 86 Issue 26 | p. 6 | Letters
Issue Date: June 30, 2008

‘Bastard’ Nomenclature

Department: Letters

I was delighted to read of the carbonyl allylations discovered by Michael Krische, a former colleague of mine (C&EN, May 12, page 10). However, I was not so pleased to see “isopropanol” listed as a source of hydrogen for one variant of this reaction. Isopropanol is “bastard” nomenclature, combining elements of IUPAC and common nomenclature. Its use should be avoided, particularly in a science-oriented publication such as C&EN.

Jack Gilbert
Santa Clara, Calif.


Editor’s Note

Editor’s Note: Gilbert is correct, of course, it should have been 2-propanol. C&EN’s own style guide has an extended section on chemical nomenclature, with a part devoted to the names of alcohols. It concludes, “Some commonly used names of alcohols confuse the two systems, are always incorrect, and should never be used in C&EN. Examples include isopropanol, isobutanol,” Sigh.

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