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Pericyclic Reactions (Oxford Chemistry Primers) [Paperback]

Ian Fleming
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

November 19, 1998 0198503075 978-0198503071
Pericyclic reaction - the third type of organic reaction mechanism along with ionic and radical reactions - include some of the most powerful synthetically useful reactions, like the Diels - Alder reaction, 1,3- dipolar cycloadditions, the Alder ene reaction, Claisen rearrangements, the 2,3-Wittig rearrangement, diimide reduction, sulfoxide elimination and many others. These reactions are characterised by having cyclic transition structures, and also have highly predictable stereochemical features. Every organic chemist must be able to recognize the various types of pericyclic reaction and know something of their mechanisms and the factors that affect how well they work in organic synthesis. This book identifies the four main classes of pericyclic reaction, and discusses the main characteristics of the most important class, cycloadditions - providing a working knowledge, based on real examples, of their scope, patterns of reactivity, and stereochemistry. Then it explains the main features using ideas based in molecular orbital theory, but ( as in the companion book by A. J. Kirby on Stereoelectronic Effects ) without mathematics. It presents the Woodward - Hoffmann rules in the form of two all-encompassing rules, one for thermal reactions and its opposite for photochemical reactions. These rules are explained in detail and carefully illustrated, so that you will be able to predict the stereochemical outcome for any pericyclic reaction. The remaining chapters use this theoretical framework to show how the rules work with the other three classes of pericyclic reactions - electrocyclic reactions, sigmatropic rearrangements and group transfer reactions. By the end of the book, you will be able to recognise any pericyclic reaction and predict with confidence whether it is allowed, and with what stereochemistry, and you will have a working knowledge of the range of pericyclic reactions available to the synthetic organic chemist.

Frequently Bought Together

Pericyclic Reactions (Oxford Chemistry Primers) + Mechanisms of Organic Reactions (Oxford Chemistry Primers, 45) + Structure and Reactivity in Organic Chemistry
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Editorial Reviews


The Oxford chemistry primers are now firmly rooted in the hearts (and I hope the minds) of both students and teacher of chemistry...The established text is of course Fleming's excellent account of the area : Frontier orbitals and organic chemical reactions...Quite simply, this is an excellent workbook for studying pericyclic reactions from concept to application. Fleming has done an extraordinary job in producing a text on what many perceive as a difficult subject, whyich is accessible to beginners and useful reading for reputed experts./Christopher G. Frost/Chemistry in Britain.

About the Author

Dr Ian Fleming, Reader in Organic Chemistry, University of Cambridge. Tel: 01223 336 372. Email:

Product Details

  • Series: Oxford Chemistry Primers (Book 67)
  • Paperback: 90 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (November 19, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0198503075
  • ISBN-13: 978-0198503071
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 7.4 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,355,572 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Understanding Pericyclic Reactions March 9, 2002
By Eduardo
If you want to learn pericyclic chemistry (with no mathematics), this book is the right choice. For understanding the text, is only necesary to have a little background in order to get an idea about the subject of the boook (most organic chemistry books, for example: John McMurry or T. R. W. Graham Solomons classic texts, have a chapter about this kind of reactions and reviewing them will be enough).
Fleming's writing style is so easy to asimilate, and the book really "teaches" you the basic principles: mechanisms, Woodward-Hoffmann rules, stereochemistry prediction (and tells you "why" it is like this), exceptions and their possible explanations.
There are examples all over the text, but the most important thing....It has end-of-chapter problems, and "their answers" too (so you can check if you have done it well).
After trying it, I got some skills about this kind of reactions and they allow me to face some "Advanced Organic Chemistry" books, without "feeling scared of them" any more.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book. March 7, 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I needed something for my organic class that could help me understand these topics of orbitals and their interactions, and this book is an excellent introduction. It explains the four pericyclic reactions in a way its clear, without the use of mathmatics that maybe it could generate some confusion.
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