Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I find this fascinating:

"In chemistry, a racemic mixture, or racemate, is one that has equal amounts of left- and right-handed enantiomers of a chiral molecule... A racemate is optically inactive, meaning that there is no net rotation of plane-polarized light. Although the two enantiomers rotate plane-polarized light in opposite directions, the rotations cancel because they are present in equal amounts. In contrast to the two pure enantiomers, which have identical physical properties except for the direction of rotation of plane-polarized light, a racemate sometimes has different properties from either of the pure enantiomers. Different melting points are most common, but different solubilities and boiling points are also possible."

No comments: