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Erik's Chemistry
News Archive: September 1998
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August 1998 September 1998 October 1998

9/29/98 New Section! Nuclear Physics is now available. However, there are still 4 examples of nuclear decay with diagrams that are still being made.
New Section! General Rules For IUPAC Nomenclature will be uploaded as soon as I finish the Alkane's rules. This will be a running section containing the rules for Alkanes, Alkynes, Cycloalkanes and other organic compounds.
I've noticed that the main page has grown extremely large, causing a long load time. If anyone has suggestions of how to better organize the links and news please let me know at I welcome all suggestions.
Also If anyone has any ideas for the bullets in front of the links, send them in.
Remember, if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate! (Chemistry humor, where would we be without it?) :-)
On another note, if anyone knows of any great online chemistry references, send them to me at so I can add them to the links section.
Until next time. - Erik
9/26/98 Sorry its been a while since I've last updated the page. I've been busy studying for my organic chemistry exam.
For anyone wishing to post my 'Laws' of Laboratory Glassware (see 9/16/1998) on their site, all I ask is that you credit me for them and have a link to this page:
Thank you very much.
I've found a useful collection of links to various sources of information it can be found in the links section as Wilton High School Chemistry tutorial links or by going to
Thank you for your patience as I work to add new sections to the site. - Erik
9/16/98 The News Archive was getting rather large so it has been broken up by month.
The Nuclear Physics section will probably not be added until sometime next week. This week is study time for the first Organic Chemistry Exam.
Here is a fun (yes, even organic chemists have a sense of humor) list I compiled based experience.

Laws of Laboratory Glassware:

  • If a piece of glassware can fall it will do so.
  • Glass isn't as sturdy as it looks.
  • If glassware can fall in two directions, it will fall in such a way as to create the most damage.
  • The above damage will also be done in such a way as to cause the most injury to your person.
  • The probability of a piece of glassware breaking is directly proportional to its price, its cleanliness and its necessity for the current lab.
  • The probability of a piece of glassware breaking is inversely proportional to its the quantity available for use.
  • The probability of a piece of glassware falling is directly proportional to its height above the floor.
  • If a piece of glass may fall it will fall just out of reach.
  • If two pieces of glass may break, the most expensive one will.
  • The one moment you turn away is the one moment the glassware decides to fall.
  • The probability of a piece of glassware falling is inversely proportional to the amount of time until the lab is complete.
  • The number of glass shards to clean up is inversely proportional to the lab time remaining.
These laws have been discovered over the course of many labs and the emptying of wallets many times.
I go now to the land of books and notes. - Erik
9/15/98 Section Complete! Organic Nomenclature Table is complete and can be found under the Organic Chemistry Notes
Advice of the day: never reach over a hot plate, even after you turn them off, they still are hot! -Erik
9/13/98 Sorry about the lack of updates, but school is picking up. Not only that but for 2 days I didn't have an Internet connection because a construction crew cut the neighborhood's phone lines. Not just mine, but the entire neighborhood's phones. Oh, well. A new section, Nuclear Physics, is being worked on, along with summary table of organic functional groups.
For anyone who wants it, I will be adding a zip file containing all of the pages and images on this site for download. This will be up within this next week.
Another day, another lab...
The latest lab was a distillation lab, separating two substances by heating one above its boiling point while remaining below the boiling point of the other. Then cooling the gaseous substance and collecting it. This lab used both the index of refraction and boiling point determination to identify the purity of the samples. Since we were working with hot glass again, I burned myself, twice.
Tip of the day: glass cools rather fast, but don't use you finger to check if it is cool enough. :-)
On an un-chemistry related note, I finally got a hold of a copy of Foundation and Earth by Isaac Asimov. Since the book is out of print I have had a hard time finding one. It was well worth the search.
Its that time of year again...Ahhh, the wonderful smell of paper in the air...Paper?!
Yes, time to scramble through millions of forms. SATs, College applications, Scholarships. More paperwork than Organic Chemistry Comprehensive Exam! And twice as important. Good bye free time, hello form filling and essay writing.
I expect to have another update within the week. -Erik
9/5/98 Section Complete! Nuclear Physics: An Introduction.
I am enjoying the three-day weekend, hope everyoine else is too. Have fun!
9/1/98 Complete! The final page of notes has been appended to Chapter 7: Electronic Structure of Atoms.
Section Complete! The Periodic Table.
Another week underway. I finished Chapter 7: Electronic Structure of Atoms this past weekend but haven't been able to post it until now. The Periodic Table is a new notes section and is also complete at this time.
Organic Chemistry is wrapping up Chemical Bonding and I will begin inputting it. I am now working on "Nuclear Physics: An Introduction"
Today in Organic Chemistry we performed our second lab, this time about boiling points. This lab was very glasswork intensive, requiring breaking glass tubes and smoothing and sealing the ends. I learned that hot glass and cold glass look alike :-)
No serious damage done. The new methods I learned were extremely precise yielding less than .4% deviation with known CRC values.
August 1998 September 1998 October 1998

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