Just a fortnight before Christmas, 1871, a young man, twenty-four years of age, returned home to his dinner about eight o'clock in the evening. He was married, and with him and his wife lived his wife's sister. At that somewhat late hour he walked in among the two young women, and another much older woman who was preparing the table for dinner. The wife and the wife's sister each had a child in her lap, the elder having seen some fifteen months of its existence, and the younger three months. "He has been out since seven, and I don't think he's had a mouthful," the wife had just said. "Oh, Harry, you must be half starved," she exclaimed, jumping up to greet him, and throwing her arm round his bare neck.
Here in one source is a wide variety of practical, everyday information often required by chemists but seldom found together, if at all, in the standard handbooks, data collections, manuals, and other usual sources. Discussing physical, chemical, and mechanical properties of substances and systems, the authors answer such questions as:<ul> <LI>How do I test for and destroy peroxides in different solvents and what is the best way to purify such solvents? <LI>What are the structure, physical properties, and recent references to the use of common-name solvents and solvent aids such as the "Skellysolves," "Cellosolves," "Crownanes," and "Glymes"? <LI>What is the utility of a particular molecular sieve, or permeation gel, or epoxy cement, or liquid crystal, and where do I buy them and find references to their application? </ul> The book is divided into nine chapters and covers properties of atoms and molecules, spectroscopy, photochemistry, chromatography, kinetics and thermodynamics, various experimental techniques, and mathematical and numerical information, including the definitions, values, and usage rules of the newly adopted International System of Units (SI Units). A section on statistical treatment of data which provides an actual least-squares computer program is also included. In the spectroscopy chapter, very extensive and up-to-date collections of spectral correlation data are presented for ir, uv-vis, optical rotation, nmr, and mass spectra, along with data on esr and nqr spectroscopy. Also included is a variety of hard-to-classify but frequently sought information, such as names and addresses of microanalysis companies and chemistry publishers, descriptions and commercial sources of atomic and molecular models, and safety data for hazardous chemicals. More than 500 key references are also included, most of which are recent. There are important hints and definitions associated with the art as well as the state of the art for the appropriate subjects. Also found throughout the book are about 250 suppliers and directions for obtaining special booklets or other material. <p> Containing a wealth of useful information, <I>The Chemist's Companion</I> will be an indispensable guide for students and professional chemists in nearly all the chemical disciplines. In addition, it will provide for the teacher and student an unusual adjunct for use in a broad cross-section of chemistry courses.
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