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The principle of microscopic reversibility in organic chemistry - a critique

Chandrasekhar, S (1992) The principle of microscopic reversibility in organic chemistry - a critique. In: Research on Chemical Intermediates, 17 (2). pp. 173-209.

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Abstract

The principle of microscopic reversibility is one of the few generalising principles used in organic chemistry which have their roots in the fundamental laws of thermodynamics. It has, therefore, been highly popular. However, although the principle has some important uses, its general application is not without pitfalls. The principle is easy to misunderstand and to misapply: indeed, some of its formulations are semantically dubious. The principle is most dangerous when used as a charm, for it is more subtle than some of its formulations suggest. But above all, the principle may not be used for deducing or disproving the mechanism of a reaction, except when the mechanism in the reverse direction is known independently. For, such use is, perhaps, the deadliest misapplication.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Springer.
Department/Centre: Division of Chemical Sciences > Organic Chemistry
Date Deposited: 30 May 2011 05:35
Last Modified: 30 May 2011 05:35
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/37777

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