Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

University Of Minnesota Chemists Study Mysterious Y2K Molecule

Date:
December 17, 1999
Source:
University Of Minnesota
Summary:
Noting that 1999 has been flooded with reports on Y2K, University of Minnesota associate chemistry professors Jeffrey Roberts and Christopher Cramer were shocked to learn that the chemical literature contained no mention of this timely molecule, which could conceivably form when two atoms of yttrium (abbreviated Y on the periodic chart) combine with one atom of potassium (abbreviated K).

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL -- Noting that 1999 has been flooded with reports on Y2K, University of Minnesota associate chemistry professors Jeffrey Roberts and Christopher Cramer were shocked to learn that the chemical literature contained no mention of this timely molecule, which could conceivably form when two atoms of yttrium (abbreviated Y on the periodic chart) combine with one atom of potassium (abbreviated K). (In the same manner, water--H2O--forms from two atoms of hydrogen plus one atom of oxygen.) The researchers promptly performed an in-depth quantum chemical analysis of diyttrium potassium, or Y2K, which will be reported in the Dec. 17 issue of Science.

"Our computers encountered no problems in analyzing Y2K," said Roberts. He said he and Cramer are mulling over the possibility of analyzing two other yttrium-containing compounds, YOY (two yttriums, one oxygen) and YNOT (yttrium, nitrogen, oxygen and tritium, a radioactive form of hydrogen).

"We could have studied Y3K too, but we thought we could put it off," the researchers said.

The chemists used the resources of the university's Minnesota Supercomputing Institute to determine that two yttriums and a potassium could indeed come together chemically, at least as a single molecule. Their analysis indicated that the molecule could adopt either of two shapes with roughly equal facility--linear, as Y-Y-K, or T-shaped, they said.

They did not try to predict its solid-state properties, leaving open the possibility that Y2K might someday be used in computer chips. Roberts and Cramer said that should solid Y2K get into a computer, it should pose no problem, provided coffee has not been spilled in the keyboard. (The danger stems from the tendency of potassium to react violently with water.)

Nevertheless, "We suspect that solid Y2K could be the material of the millennium," the researchers said.

The researchers wish to point out to their dean and department head that only 12 hours of supercomputer time were spent on the analysis.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Minnesota. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Minnesota. "University Of Minnesota Chemists Study Mysterious Y2K Molecule." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/12/991217081946.htm>.
University Of Minnesota. (1999, December 17). University Of Minnesota Chemists Study Mysterious Y2K Molecule. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/12/991217081946.htm
University Of Minnesota. "University Of Minnesota Chemists Study Mysterious Y2K Molecule." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/12/991217081946.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Climate Change Could Cost Billions, According To White House

Climate Change Could Cost Billions, According To White House

Newsy (July 29, 2014) A report from the White House warns not curbing greenhouse gas emissions could cost the U.S. billions. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stranded Whale Watching Boat Returns to Boston

Stranded Whale Watching Boat Returns to Boston

Reuters - US Online Video (July 29, 2014) Passengers stuck overnight on a whale watching boat return safely to Boston. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Baluchistan Mining Eyes an Uncertain Future

Baluchistan Mining Eyes an Uncertain Future

AFP (July 29, 2014) Coal mining is one of the major industries in Baluchistan but a lack of infrastructure and frequent accidents mean that the area has yet to hit its potential. Duration: 01:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short

Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short

AP (July 29, 2014) The U.S. nuclear industry started building its first new plants using prefabricated Lego-like blocks meant to save time and prevent the cost overruns that crippled the sector decades ago. So far, it's not working. (July 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins