Chemistry in pictures | April 3, 2017 Issue - Vol. 95 Issue 14 | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 95 Issue 14 | p. 13
Issue Date: April 3, 2017

Chemistry in pictures

Selections from cen.chempics.org, where C&EN showcases the beauty of chemistry
Department: Science & Technology
Keywords: Chemistry in Pictures, liquid crystals, crystals, catalysis
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Crystals in bloom

Dean Campbell, a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Bradley University, found these wildflowerlike crystals of copper(II) acetylacetonate in his lab. His team was using jars filled with a solution of copper acetylacetonate in tetrahydrofuran (THF) for soaking slabs of polydimethylsiloxane. They hoped that the polymer slabs, which are known to absorb THF, would prove useful in catalysis. After these experiments, Campbell and his team found that the THF had slowly evaporated out of the closed jars, which were left in the back of a fume hood. As the solvent evaporated, these crystals formed on the jars’ walls.—Manny Morone
Credit: Kathryn Campbell
Copper(II) acetylacetonate crystals that look like wildflowers forming on the walls of a jar.
 

Crystals in bloom

Dean Campbell, a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Bradley University, found these wildflowerlike crystals of copper(II) acetylacetonate in his lab. His team was using jars filled with a solution of copper acetylacetonate in tetrahydrofuran (THF) for soaking slabs of polydimethylsiloxane. They hoped that the polymer slabs, which are known to absorb THF, would prove useful in catalysis. After these experiments, Campbell and his team found that the THF had slowly evaporated out of the closed jars, which were left in the back of a fume hood. As the solvent evaporated, these crystals formed on the jars’ walls.—Manny Morone
Credit: Kathryn Campbell
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Frustration

When n-butanol is supercooled to –133 °C, a liquid-crystal phase forms. You can see those phases in this photo: They’re the ~150-µm-diameter blue, red, and yellow droplets. When the remaining liquid crystallizes, the resultant crystals can’t penetrate into the droplets. Basically, this unusual liquid-crystal phase frustrates the formation of the crystals. This phenomenon can push liquids to solidify into glasses instead of crystals under certain conditions.—Craig Bettenhausen
Credit: Klaas Wynne/Chris Syme/Finlay Walton
Supercooled n-butanol that has two distinct phases, one liquid crystal and one solid.
 

Frustration

When n-butanol is supercooled to –133 °C, a liquid-crystal phase forms. You can see those phases in this photo: They’re the ~150-µm-diameter blue, red, and yellow droplets. When the remaining liquid crystallizes, the resultant crystals can’t penetrate into the droplets. Basically, this unusual liquid-crystal phase frustrates the formation of the crystals. This phenomenon can push liquids to solidify into glasses instead of crystals under certain conditions.—Craig Bettenhausen
Credit: Klaas Wynne/Chris Syme/Finlay Walton

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Chemical & Engineering News
ISSN 0009-2347
Copyright © American Chemical Society
Comments
Chandrasekhar (Wed Apr 11 22:39:16 EDT 2018)
Wish to b part of it n associate with it
Craig B (Thu Apr 26 16:40:10 EDT 2018)
Hi there, we'd love to have you participate. You can email us at cenchempics@acs.org, or you can submit photos directly at http://cen.chempics.org/submit-photo

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