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Conducting Background Research
Before beginning your hunt for chemical data and peer-reviewed articles, you may want to do some background reading on your topic. Encyclopedias and books can be very helpful when collecting this background information and may also have information about the history or use of a particular substance. Use some of the databases below to conduct your background research:
Online reference library providing access to a large number of encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri and other reference books, including Who's Who, and Who Was Who.
Use the "Property Search" to find material and property information from technical references. Knovel also provides access to handbooks, case studies, and other technical documents. Their site includes online tools such as a unit converter and interactive equation worksheets that help you find and learn to solve engineering equations.
Search the library catalog
The Library Catalog includes records for print and electronic books, theses, media, musical scores, and more owned by the DU Libraries.
Try the Advanced Catalog Search to find materials by type, location, publication year, language, and more.
To retrieve a book you found in the DU Library Catalog, note the:
1. Status: See a green dot & the word "Available"? The book should be on the shelf, ready for you to check out.
2. Location: The most common locations you'll see are:
- 2a: Main Library, New Book Area : Located on the Main Level of the AAC -- see map below.
- 2b: Main Library, Main Stacks: Located on the Lower Level of the AAC -- see map below.
- 2c: Hampden Library, Stacks: This is our off-campus storage facility for books that don't fit in the AAC -- click the "Get It" button for details on how to request the book.
- 2d: Online access: It's an ebook -- click "Access Online" to read it now.
3. Call number: This is the item's address on the shelf -- bring the entire call number with you to the library. Look on the ends of each shelf for signs indicating what span of call numbers are on that shelf.
The books in the Anderson Academic Commons are arranged by subject, so you can walk through the bookshelves in a particular subject area to see all the print books we have on that topic. Books purchased within the last six month are on the Main Level of AAC, and our main on-campus collection of books is on the Lower Level:
|Subject areas of potential interest:
G -- Geography
- GA: Mathematical geography, Cartography
- GB: Physical geography
- GC: Oceanography
- GE: Environmental Sciences
- GF: Human ecology
Q -- Science
- QA: Mathematics
- QB: Astronomy
- QC: Physics
- QD: Chemistry
- QE: Geology
- QH: Natural History - Biology
- QK: Botany
- QL: Zoology
- QM: Human anatomy
- QP: Physiology
- QR: Microbiology
R -- Medicine
S -- Agriculture
Example chemistry books from our catalog
The 100 Most Important Chemical Compounds by What is a chemical compound? Compounds are substances that are two or more elements combined together chemically in a standard proportion by weight. Compounds are all around us - they include familiar things, such as water, and more esoteric substances, such as triuranium octaoxide, the most commonly occurring natural source for uranium. This reference guide gives us a tour of 100 of the most important, common, unusual, and intriguing compounds known to science. Each entry gives an extensive explanation of the composition, molecular formula, and chemical properties of the compound. In addition, each entry reviews the relevant chemistry, history, and uses of the compound, with discussions of the origin of the compound's name, the discovery or first synthesis of the compound, production statistics, and uses of the compound.
Publication Date: 2007-08-01
Chemical Properties Handbook by Necessary data that's often hard to find or difficult to calculate, all in one place, in easy-access format. That's what this Handbook provides to scientific, engineering, and environmental professionals, and students, who seek information on how chemicals will behave at different temperatures and under different conditions. Covering both organic and inorganic substances, and providing both experimental values and estimated values based on methods developed by the author and other noted experts, this book can save countless hours of searching for the right source or performing complicated calculations. Useful for hundreds of on-the-job information requirements, this much-needed Handbook makes it easy to obtain critical values for temperature and pressure for design or operation of compressors and turbines; find heat capacity data for heat exchangers; accurately design and safely operate vaporizers and condensers with precise information on enthalpy of vaporization; size vaporizer/condenser storage vessels with density data; determine the heating and cooling requirements of reactors with values for the enthalpy of formation; determine chemical equilibria for reactions using Gibbs' energy of formation; design and operate effective stripping operations for water pollutant removal using water solubility data and Henry's Law Constant; find needed adsorption capacities of activated carbon for cleaning air of various pollutants; use soil sorption coefficient for agricultural applications; solve problems for fluid flow of gases and liquids using viscosity data; use thermal conductivity data for heat transfer applications; use lower and upper explosion limits in air, flock point and autoignition temperature for safety in designs and operations; use threshold limit value (ACGIH), permissible exposure limit (OSHA) and recommended exposure limit (NIOSH) to design facilities while safeguarding health; use thermal expansion coefficient data to design relief systems; and find thousands of other time-saving uses.
Publication Date: 1998-10-22
A Consumer's Dictionary of Food Additives, 7th Edition by An Essential Household Reference…Revised and Updated With our culture’s growing interest in organic foods and healthy eating, it is important to understand what food labels mean and to learn how to read between the lines. This completely revised and updated edition of A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives gives you the facts about the safety and side effects of more than 12,000 ingredients–such as preservatives, food-tainting pesticides, and animal drugs–that end up in food as a result of processing and curing. It tells you what’s safe and what you should leave on the grocery-store shelves. In addition to updated entries that cover the latest medical and scientific research on substances such as food enhancers and preservatives, this must-have guide includes more than 650 new chemicals now commonly used in food. You’ll also find information on modern food-production technologies such as bovine growth hormone and genetically engineered vegetables. Alphabetically organized, cross-referenced, and written in everyday language, this is a precise tool for understanding food labels and knowing which products are best to bring home to your family.
Publication Date: 2009-04-14
Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology by Reviews from the previous edition: "The most indispensable reference in the English language on all aspects of chemical technology...the best reference of its kind". --Chemical Engineering News, 1992 "Overall, ECT is well written and cleanly edited, and no library claiming to be a useful resource for chemical engineering professionals should be without it." --Nicholas Basta, Chemical Engineering, December 1992 The fifth edition of the Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology builds upon the solid foundation of the previous editions, which have proven to be a mainstay for chemists, biochemists, and engineers at academic, industrial, and government institutions since publication of the first edition in 1949. The new edition includes necessary adjustments and modernisation of the content to reflect changes and developments in chemical technology. Presenting a wide scope of articles on chemical substances, properties, manufacturing, and uses; on industrial processes, unit operations in chemical engineering; and on fundamentals and scientific subjects related to the field. The Encyclopedia describes established technology along with cutting edge topics of interest in the wide field of chemical technology, whilst uniquely providing the necessary perspective and insight into pertinent aspects, rather than merely presenting information. Presents the versatile field of chemical technology through articles on properties, manufacturing, and uses of chemical substances and materials, industrial processes and unit operations, along with scientific principles and insights into current research related to the field Addresses such aspects as economic, health and safety factors, standards, specifications and environmental concerns Includes over 1,300 articles Updated regularly to reflect changes and developments in the field (50-60 new or updated articles added each year) Articles are citable and peer reviewed and include bibliography of cited references as well as suggested reading Previous versions of articles are archived for historical reference The Smart Article functionalities were added in 2014, to enable searching for structures and reactions through to the title and across related products, such as journals, databases, and other reference works The last print edition of Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia published between 2004 and 2007 and is available as a comprehensive 27-Volume Set. Since then, a concise edition (2007) and four thematic volumes (2007-2013) on the Environment, Food and Feed Technology, Separation Technology and Cosmetics, have been published and are available in print and e-book formats 27 Volumes Updating wileyonlinelibrary.com/ref/kirk
Publication Date: 2004-03-29
Every Molecule Tells a Story by From cooking to medicine, from engineering to art, chemistry--the science of molecules--is everywhere. A celebration of the molecules of chemistry, Every Molecule Tells a Story celebrates the molecules responsible for the experiences of everyday life: the air we breathe; the water we drink; the chemicals that fuel our living; the steroids that give us sex; the colours of the seasons; the drugs that heal us; and the scented molecules that enrich our diet and our encounters with each other. You can't see them, but you know that they are there. Unveiling the structures of poisonous "natural" substances and beneficial man-made molecules, this book brushes away any preconceived notions about chemistry to demonstrate why and how molecules matter.
Publication Date: 2011-11-16
Gardner's Commercially Important Chemicals by Includes the structures, chemical names, synonyms, and properties of commercially important chemicals. Properties that have been provided, when available, include: the melting point, boiling point, density or specific gravity, optical rotation, ultraviolet absorption, solubility, and acute toxicity. The major uses of most of the chemicals are indicated and, where appropriate, regulatory information is also provided.
Publication Date: 2005-07-11
Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry by 89 years of expertise in applied and industrial chemistry - Ullmann's is back in print! Generations of chemists and engineers have relied on the well structured and trusted information from Ullmann's Encyclopedia - and you still can count on Ullmann's with the current 6th edition in print. Ullmann's is a synonym for the world's most current and trustworthy knowledge in everything that relates to the chemical industry, be it processes, chemicals, products, analytical chemistry, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology..........you name it, Ullmann's has it - well over 800 articles on over 30 000 printed pages in 40 volumes. Organized in alphabetical order, the chapters are easy to read and excellent starting points to introduce you to any topic. Over 15 000 tables and 25 000 figures (some of them in color) make it easy for you to quickly find what you are looking for. Countless literature and patent references guide you to the relevant and accessible primary literature. Numerous cross-references point you to relevant chapters in the same context and a well organized index volume enables searching for keywords. Finding what you need is very simple indeed and you won't have to ask for a user's manual for this massive work! Supervised by an internationally acclaimed advisory board, the articles are written by over 3000 international experts from industry and universities, thoroughly edited to uniform style and layout in an in-house office. All figures are re-drawn to give a maximum of clarity and uniformity in style. Compared to the prior edition, almost 60% of the material has either been newly written or thoroughly updated. The rest has been checked for validity and newer references have been added throughout.
Publication Date: 2003-02-24
The Yaws Handbook of Physical Properties for Hydrocarbons and Chemicals by Refineries and petrochemical engineers today are accepting more unconventional feedstocks such as heavy oil and shale, causing unique challenges on the processing side of the business. To create more reliable engineering design of process equipment for the petrochemical industry, petroleum engineers and process managers are forced to study the physical properties and compounds of these particular hydrocarbons. Instead of looking up each compound's information, The Yaws Handbook of Physical Properties for Hydrocarbons and Chemicals, Second Edition presents an easy-to-use format with rapid access to search for the particular compound and understand all the complex calculations in one tabular format. Understanding the composition of hydrocarbons is not easy to calculate quickly or accurately, but this must-have reference leads the engineer to better estimated properties and fractions from easily measured components.
Publication Date: 2015-01-06
Science & Engineering Librarian