The Organometallic Reader

Dedicated to the teaching and learning of modern organometallic chemistry.

About this Blog

with 11 comments

Welcome! The Organometallic Reader is devoted to the teaching and learning of organometallic chemistry. Quite simply, I believe that there is a better way to teach organometallic chemistry than the approach taken by the average American graduate school. Plus, you don’t need to be a chemistry whiz kid to learn organometallic chemistry! John Anthony said it best:

You don’t need to be a genius to do chemistry; you just need to be smarter than molecules.

In many respects, the molecules of organometallic chemistry are unlike any you encounter in general, organic, or inorganic chemistry. Still, they are definitely governed by general principles that come into greater focus with each passing day, and you can learn a lot about the other branches of chemistry by studying organometallics. Few fields cross so many of the traditional “divisions” of chemistry.

In the coming weeks, we’ll explore the general nature of organometallic chemistry as a whole and its signature molecules, organometallic complexes. We’ll get acquainted with periodic trends of the transition metals, that large but often forgotten chunk of elements stuck in the center of the periodic table. From there, we’ll round out organometallic structure with discussions of the different classes of ligands commonly found in OM complexes. We’ll then move into the elementary mechanistic steps of organometallic chemistry, and finally we’ll put them together as we discuss organometallic reactions. Get ready for a wild ride!

Written by Michael Evans

December 30, 2011 at 11:16 pm

11 Responses

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  1. This blog is awesome! It’s the best organometallic web resource that I’ve found. Thanks for taking the time for making such detailed and high quality notes.


    February 26, 2012 at 4:04 pm

  2. Good stuff. Any chance you would be interested in contributing your content to the ChemWiki ( We are at 7M visitors/year and growing. We need some strong organometalic content to crosslink to. DSL


    September 7, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    • I would love to! I think my email address is on my WordPress profile; feel free to drop me a line. More posts will be coming later this year. Work and life have taken their toll in recent months.


      September 8, 2012 at 12:15 pm

  3. Hello! I’m not sure how to get in contact with you, so I’ll leave a message here. I have a new publication in the Journal of Computational Chemistry on an exact way to find the Tolman cone angle. The advantage of my method is that the sterics of a ligand can be easily quantified for any conformation. This allows the cone angle to be found for a ligand in a specific environment. All that is needed are the Cartesian coordinates and van der Waals radii. We’ve even written a Mathematica program where the user only needs to input the coordinates and the cone angle is solved for and visualized.

    Since the cone angle is so often used for organometallic catalysts to try and quantify how sterics determines reactivity, I thought you would find this interesting. Below is a link for the paper and another to download the Mathematica program.

    Jenna Bilbrey

    March 1, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    • Very cool, Jenna! I think I address cone angle in the post on phosphines, so I’ll post a link to your paper there (feel free to beat me to the punch and comment there yourself).


      March 1, 2013 at 3:57 pm

  4. Very good work, will pass it on


    December 2, 2013 at 7:23 pm

  5. Wonderful blog. Learned a lot from it. I have a general question though, how will you draw a MO diagram for oxidative addition of LnPd(0) to Ar-X bond? Please comment.


    October 29, 2014 at 4:43 pm

  6. Do you know what would make your blog so much better? references 🙂


    April 1, 2015 at 9:35 am

    • You’re absolutely right…time is short these days. 🙂 Where I can, I do try to link out to journal articles in the posts.

      Michael Evans

      April 1, 2015 at 9:45 am

      • i’ll second that request. Your resource has helped me quite a bit over the the past couple years, as someone trained to count to eight I have found myself referring back to your site and topics on a semi-regular basis. i’ve printed a couple of your posts to have as reference but it would also be nice to have a consolidated resource of your topics (eg as a single pdf file or something). as you have mentioned time is easily filled with higher priority items. don’t let the blog die!


        April 5, 2015 at 10:18 am

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