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Specialty Chemistry Forums => Chemical Education and Careers => Topic started by: mana on October 03, 2016, 02:26:18 PM

Post by: mana on October 03, 2016, 02:26:18 PM
Hi all
I'm teaching organic chemistry at a university in an under development country, I want to determine a msc thesis for my first msc student. I want to work on a new topic synthesis of organic compounds coupled with computational chemistry, (I have worked on ionic liquid as new solvent for multicomponent reactions before but I do not want to continue methodology anymore).
I'm nerves and I don't know how to start, especially in our country publishing a paper is very important. I would be grateful if you help me , I need your constructive comments.
thanks for your help
Post by: Enthalpy on October 06, 2016, 04:55:41 PM
Hi Mana!  :)

Would that be too short for an MSc thesis? Measure (and model if you wish) the heat of formation of geminal amines.
- Measure (because data is too scarce) CN(C)CN(C)C, compare (measuring again by the same people with the same apparatus would be nice) with CN(C)CC(C)C and CC(C)CC(C)C.
- Or (and) measure (because data is very inconsistent) hexamethylene tetramine and adamantane.
controversial hence worth publishing.

Recent UV light-emitting diodes are meant to replace Hg lamps in photochemical reactions.
High-intensity reactor there, fun by itself
Play with a bunch of diodes (ask the manufacturer to donate them, it's their interest), observe how good and convenient they are, let it know in research journals. Compute spectra and light intensities if you wish.

If you feel rocket fuels attracting, I'm interested in the ease of mass-production, heat of formation (measured! Computed isn't accurate enough), melting point, flash point, stability at heat, density
- Pmdpta and variants for low-freezing fuels to the Moon and Mars
- Strained amines for efficiency and safety
- Strained hydrocarbons

I believe a market exists for synthetic long branched alkanes, liquid but with a very low vapour pressure or high flash point and boiling point. Is there computational chemistry there?

More academic: measure (...and try to predict) the density of n-alcanes
and confirm (or rather infirm) if it explains the odd-even effect on the melting point.

Looots of computations for chemistry: create this equilibrium software
but you must find a commercial or non-profit development path for it, because it needs much data
and this project will extend a lot beyond the MSc thesis.

If such photoreactions work, they're worth publishing
Post by: mana on October 07, 2016, 04:55:22 AM
dear Enthalpy, your answer was great and very valuable and I belive it's the result of long time research and study   :). but beside looking for a topic, I like to learn how I sholud think and study to suggest a project as a supervisor for my future too, (as you did here) .
I would be very grateful if you tell me how to start, do you think I should work on my phd thesis for ever or I can change my field?
we can work on computational chemistry here but working on synthesis of organic compounds is a little difficult because we don't have enough budget to pay for all chemical compounds we need.
Post by: Enthalpy on October 09, 2016, 12:49:17 PM
Teaching MSc and PhD without the necessary budget: be reassured that it's common in so-called developed countries too, for instance France. I very strongly suppose this is the true reason behind the development of computational chemistry anywhere. I've seen the same drift in electrical engineering. My interrogation is how useful and valid computational anything is - in electrical engineering it's not very valid despite circuits are easier to model and predict than chemistry.

A software for general chemical equilibria might be useful - take more opinions here. Some exist for flames, others for ionic aqueous solutions, but I've seen no general one. At least at the first development years, it needs only brain time, no material expenses. The unknown is how to make money with it (if you want that!) despite the software demands a huge database. The business models I imagine are:
- Completely free, like Latex. Your University supports one or two persons to develop and maintain the software and database, and the thermochemistry data is supplied freely by the users worldwide, again like the Latex packages are.
- Low-priced at the beginning, when the software contains no database. The paying users input their data to run the software locally. You pay a symbolic sum like 5usd to your customers when they send you data that you ntegrate to the base. Over time, the database grows and you sell the software for more money.
- Or your team gathers the data, and this costs years, possibly prior to the first sale.

If you access a calorimetric bomb, you can study the heat of formation of geminal amines. The three compounds CN(C)CN(C)C, CN(C)CC(C)C and CC(C)CC(C)C cost very little to buy or synthesize. Too easy and short for an MSc?

Same for the density of n-alkanes: costs nearly zero (liquid nitrogen), but too easy and short? By the way, how long is an MSc thesis? (I come from a different education system)

Developing expertise for the use of Uv Led would be an opportunity right now. While not Nobel-ripe, just telling the community "I've tried this known reaction with Led instead of an Hg lamp" would raise the awareness of Led and promote them, something useful just now, which the Led manufacturer can sponsor. Just find a bunch of classical reactions using cheap reactants and 365nm-385nm-405nm light. Cheap way to participate in progress.

Same scheme for the exotic photochemical reactions: they need a set of expensive lamps that their manufacturer may offer. The reactants are cheap. Try dozens of reactions, especially the halogen and groups swapping ones if they bring something, and publish the results to the delight of the lamp manufacturer. Err, first take more opinions here, these photochemical reactions are just my ramblings, a due proportion must be nonsense.