Inorganic  Syntheses

Submission and Review

Submitting a Synthesis


Inorganic Syntheses publishes detailed and independently-checked procedures leading to important inorganic and organometallic compounds. Syntheses are judged by their value to the scientific community. The most useful syntheses are widely used and provide access to a broad range of compounds. The synthesis should represent the best available procedure, and new or improved syntheses are particularly appropriate. Syntheses of compounds that are available commercially at reasonable prices are ordinarily not accepted, unless the procedure usefully illustrates some technique. Inorganic Syntheses is NOT a repository of primary research data, nor is it the place to report new syntheses. It is expected that submitted syntheses will have already appeared in the primary, peer-reviewed literature, and, at least to some extent, passed the "test of time". The series offers authors the chance to describe the intricacies of synthesis and purification in greater detail than possible in the original literature, as well as to provide updates of an established synthesis.

Guidelines for Authors

Submissions should consist of four sections: Introduction, Procedure, Properties, and References.

The writing style should conform with that of previous volumes of Inorganic Syntheses.

The Introduction should include a concise and critical summary of the available syntheses of the product(s) in question. It should also include an estimate of the time required for the synthesis, an indication of the significance and utility of the product, and a warning of potential hazards. The criteria for judging the purity of the final product should be clearly delineated.

The Procedure will consist of detailed and unambiguous laboratory directions and be written so that in anticipates possible mistakes and misunderstanding on the part of the person who attempts to duplicate the procedure. The Procedure is to be written in the present tense, since it is a set of directions rather than a report of what happened. Unusual equipment and procedure should be clearly described. Line drawings should be included when necessary. Safety measures should be clearly stated. Sources of unusual starting materials must be given, and, if possible, minimal standards of purity of reagents and solvents should be stated. Ideally, all reagents are readily available commercially or have been described in earlier volumes of Inorganic Syntheses. The scale should be reasonable for normal research purposes, and any problems involved in scaling the procedure either up or down should be discussed.

The Properties section should supply and discuss those physical and chemical characteristics that are relevant to judging the purity of the product and to permitting its use.

Pertinent literature citations should be listed. A style sheet is available from the Secretary to the Editorial Board. Each manuscript should be submitted to:

Secretary of the Editorial Board
Professor Stanton Ching
Department of Chemistry, Box 5324
Connecticut College
270 Mohegan Ave
New London, CT 06320
Email: sschi [at] conncoll [dot] edu

Electronic submissions are greatly preferred and appreciated.

The manuscript should be typewritten in English. Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry, 2nd ed., Butterworths & Co., London, 1970, and in Pure and Applied Chemistry, Volume 28, Now. 1 (1971). Abbreviations should conform to those used in publications of the American Chemical Society, particularly Inorganic Chemistry.


The Editor-in-Chief sends the manuscript to an independent laboratory for checking, where the procedure must be satisfactorily reproduced. Chemists willing to check syntheses should contact the editor of a future volume or make this information known to the Secretary to the Editorial Board, Stanton Ching, at the address listed above or by email at sschi [at] conncoll [dot] edu.

Toxic Substances and Laboratory Hazards

Chemicals and chemistry are by their very nature hazardous. Chemical reactivity implies that reagents have the ability to combine. This process can be sufficiently vigorous as to cause flame, an explosion, or, often less immediately obvious, a toxic reaction.

The obvious hazards in the syntheses reported in this volume are delineated, where appropriate, in the experimental procedure. It is impossible, however, to foresee every eventuality, such as a new biological effect of a common laboratory reagent. As a consequence, all chemicals used and all reactions described in this volume should be viewed as potentially hazardous. Care should be taken to avoid inhalation or other physical contact with all reagents and solvents used in procedures described in this volume. In addition, particular attention should be paid to avoiding sparks, open flames, or other potential sources that could set fire to combustible vapors or gases.

A list of 400 toxic substances may be found in the Federal Register, Vol. 40, No. 23072, May 28, 1975. An abbreviated list may be obtained from Inorganic Syntheses, Volume 8, p. xv, 1978. A current assessment of the hazards associated with a particular chemical is available in the most recent edition of Threshold Limit Values for Chemical Substances and Physical Agents in the Workroom Environment published by the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists.

The drying of impure ethers can produce a violent explosion. Further information about this hazard may be found in Inorganic Syntheses, Volume 12, p. 317. A hazard associated with the synthesis of tetramethyldiphosphine disulfide [Inorg. Synth., 15, 186 (1974)] is cited in Inorganic Syntheses, Volume 23, p. 199.

Synthesis Review and Checking

Editorial Board Review

Manuscripts are first sent to members of the Inorganic Syntheses Editorial Board for initial comments. Board Members reply to the following questions on the Comment Sheet:
  1. Please suggest qualified reviewers.
  2. The estimated utility of this (these) compound(s) is: (very useful to not significantly useful, 1-5 scale)
  3. What synthetic method is better than this one for the above compound(s)? If possible please cite an author/journal reference. Has it appeared in a previous volume of Inorg. Synth.?
  4. Please note any corrections, omissions, or suggested changes with regard to the following points. If your response is NO to parts a-g, please cite page, paragraph, and line for the change.
    1. Is an adequate source or reference for the preparation of starting materials given?
    2. Are quantities correctly and completely specified (i.e. g, moles, volume)?
    3. Is the apparatus clearly specified as to type and size?
    4. Is the procedure clearly and completely described?
    5. Are the dangers in the synthesis for the protection of people clearly described?
    6. Is the final purity of the compound adequately established and stated?
    7. Is the manuscript format correct? Does it contain correct abbreviations, verb tense, and grammar?

Checker's Report

Checkers are asked to review the following points on all submissions to Inorganic Syntheses:
  1. Did the synthesis proceed smoothly, with yield and purity close to that stated in the manuscript? If not, please give your recommendations for improvement.
  2. Were adequate procedures specified for hazardous steps?
  3. Was the procedure described in sufficient detail so that someone new to this area of chemistry would not encounter difficulties? If not, please recommend specific revisions.