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Vol. 27 No. 6
November-December 2005

IUPAC in Beijing—Division Roundups

- Division I. Physical and Biophysical Chemistry
- Division II. Inorganic Chemistry
-- Commission II.1. Isotopic Abundances and Atomic Weights
- Division IV. Polymer
- Division VIII. Chemical Nomenclature and Structure Representation
- CHEMRAWN

Division VIII. Chemical Nomenclature and Structure Representation
Alan McNaught, President

At its meeting, Division VIII discussed a number of exciting developments. The most high-profile of these is the International Chemical Identifier (InChI), a software implementation of which was released in April 2005 and quickly generated a great deal of interest. The Identifier has been widely adopted by database providers and is being considered for use by patent offices in the UK and USA. A subsequent project for development of additional layers and for promotion is under way. The Identifier is thought to have the potential to revolutionize the way we communicate information about chemicals. An article on the project has since appeared in Chemical & Engineering News (22 August 2005 issue). Information about InChI is available at <www.iupac.org/inchi/>.

Take for example alpha-pinene—this compound might be known by its PIN (i.e. Preferred IUPAC Name) (1S,5S)-2,6,6-trimethylbicyclo[3.1.1]hept-2-ene, but our computers will recognize it by its InChI=1/C10H16/c1-7-4-5-8-6-9(7)10(8,2)3/h4,8-9H,5-6H2,1-3H3/t8-,9-/m1/s1.

In other news from the division, a number of publications will be released soon. A revised edition of the Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry should be in print by the end of the year (see Bookworm section, p. 25 in print). A revised edition of the Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry, which also includes recommendations for selection of preferred names for organic compounds, has finished public review and review by ICTNS. Comments are being evaluated and appropriate revisions prepared. These revisions are to be reviewed by means of the division’s webboard. Publication is expected in 2006.

In addition, a publication describing nomenclature recommendations for molecular rotaxanes is in the final stages of preparation and will soon be in the review process. Recommendations for graphical representation of stereochemical configuration have completed public review and are now being finalized. More general recommendations for graphical representation of chemical structures are in preparation.

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Part 2 of the Divisions Roundups from the 2005 GA will appear in the next issue of CI (Jan.-Feb. 2006)


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