Talk:Dioxygen difluoride

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Synthesis of FOOF[edit]

I don't (currently) have access to this paper, but it describes a method for synthesis (posted here because there's a couple of citation needed comments in synthesis) (I found this page from - perhaps a notable out-link ) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:02, 25 February 2010 (UTC)


Several people have contributed edits taken directly from links that were posted here: [1]. Though humorous, they don't contribute and should probably be cleaned out. The main ones are Derek Lowe's quotes calling it Satan's Kimchi, the every-man-for-himelf exotherm comment, and the claim that a company in Hangzhou manufactures O2F2. (talk) 12:37, 10 April 2013 (UTC)Nick Sweeting

Xkcd should be commended for prompting people to take an interest in chemistry. Articles on chemical do not need to be boring. This chemical has a lot of interest, and also terror, for chemists, and we should not censor this fact in an attempt to be "serious". Besides, it's not like a put in "Xkcd calls this chemical the most dangerous thing you can do with a pressure cooker." Ego White Tray (talk) 15:09, 10 April 2013 (UTC)
While I became aware of this chemical through xkcd, I do believe some of the quoted material to be unfit for Wikipedia. Specifically Lowe’s comments "the kind of every-man-for-himself exotherm that you want to avoid at all cost" and "A. G. Streng, folks, absolutely takes the corrosive exploding cake, and I have to tip my asbestos-lined titanium hat to him." While I greatly enjoyed these comments, do no provide meaningful information.Stanislao Avogadro (talk) 22:19, 11 April 2013 (UTC)
But do they need to? Since we can't coin great quotes about something (original research), our next best thing is to quote someone else that has. Ego White Tray (talk) 01:20, 12 April 2013 (UTC)

Moles and molecules[edit]

Edits are going back and forth about whether the 433kcal produced is for molecules or moles.

O2F2 has an atomic weight of ~70g/mol, while H2S is ~34g/mol. This gives us 314g/mol for the set of five. 314g/mol over Avogadro's constant is 5.21×10^-25 kg. Wolfram Alpha helpfully informs us that through E=mc^2, this corresponds to a maximum possible energy output of 292 GeV, or 1.12×10^-11 kcal -- much less than the promised 433kcal.

While it would be interesting if this material's reaction produced a billion times more energy that the complete annihilation of the very matter it's composed of, I think we'll have to conclude that the source blog post is confused (as dozens of commenters have pointed out). — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2620:0:1000:4401:B6B5:2FFF:FEB8:1481 (talk) 01:50, 11 April 2013 (UTC)

Someone reverted your edit quoting Lowe as a source. I hope my inserting the reference back to Streng stops this from happening here again. Whenever the mole/molecule distinction gets confused, so do people. Same thing happened at the fermentation of acetate. Yours, Tomásdearg92 (talk) 01:04, 12 April 2013 (UTC)
It sounds like I was mistaken for doing so. I'm not a chemist, I was just going by the source. Apologies. Ego White Tray (talk) 01:18, 12 April 2013 (UTC)
Ah, sorry, I realise I may have sounded a bit harsh, so it's my turn to apologise. It is true that the sheer size of Avagadro's number escapes most people, but comparing a burning matchstick to an average star is a pretty close estimate. Yours, apologetically Tomásdearg92 (talk) 06:25, 12 April 2013 (UTC)

Can not exist vs extremely unstable[edit]

I'm restoring the original working that Fl2O2 can not exist at room temperature. The change to "extremely unstable" is based on a technicality that most of our readers will not understand.

  • To most of our readers, unstable means that it's sitting there on the table and could blow up any second.
  • Considering that it decomposes at -160C at a rate of 4% per day, it's safe to say that the chances of there being any left by the time the temperature reaches 20C is essentially 0. Yes, there is a chance, but it is so minuscule that it is actually more accurate to say there is no chance rather than a tiny chance.
  • Finally, saying that this chemical is extremely unstable at room temperature is entirely meaningless in this case. After all, it's extremely unstable at any temperature.

Ego White Tray (talk) 12:25, 12 April 2013 (UTC)

What about: "practically non-existant" instead, or "considered non-existant"? Plasmic Physics (talk) 12:34, 12 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm fine with practically non-existent, I suppose, or perhaps essentially non-existent. Still, it's awkward wording for no real benefit. Those who are familiar with statistical chemistry know that non-existent means extremely unlikely (after all, you did), and everyone else is better served by viewing it as non-existent. What about changing "can not exist" to "does not exist"? Ego White Tray (talk) 01:10, 13 April 2013 (UTC)
What about those are not familiar with statistical chemistry, Wikipedia is aimed, foremost, at the layman, and thereafter, at the chemist. I'm not entirely happy with "does not exist", but I suppose it is somewhat less exclusive than "cannot exist". Plasmic Physics (talk) 05:15, 13 April 2013 (UTC)

I was unaware of this discussion when I looked at the article, so I made changes before seeing this. I object to "does not" / "can not" exist as imprecise and inaccurate. The lifetime may be short, measured even in miliseconds, but that does not mean non-existent - if it did, that would mean denying the existence of short-lived isotopes, which would be ridiculous. I am open to discussing alternative formulatiuons if my draft is seen as undesirable, but we must remain accurate as well as accessible in our content. EdChem (talk) 00:56, 14 April 2013 (UTC)


Folks - I removed most of the recent mentions to Derek's blog. This is an encyclopaedia, not The Daily Mail, and just because one blogger (however well respected) has called this 'Satan's kimchi', that does not mean that this compound is nicknamed Satan's Kimchi. See the above comments in the XKCD thread - let's stick to the facts. I think the majority of WP:chemistry participants will agree with this, based on the comments above - can we have some consensus please before tis is readded? Chris (talk) 21:56, 13 April 2013 (UTC)

PS - Even the bit about suppliers is borderline - all fule kno that Chinese chemical suppliers will offer to sell you anything, regardless of whether they have it or not. Again, just because Derek mentions it doesn't make it encyclopaedic.

Encyclopedic does not mean boring. It does not mean to delete everything that makes this interesting to anyone but a chemist. No one's going to Ted Bundy and saying we should delete the quote calling him "the most cold-hearted son of a bitch you'll ever meet" - this type of thing does not make an article unencyclopedic, it makes it worth reading. I'm not sure why the chemists here are opposed to having something interesting to the layman in this article. Are you trying to increase job security by making chemistry boring or something? Ego White Tray (talk) 02:02, 14 April 2013 (UTC)
"it makes it worth reading." Says who?
"I'm not sure why the chemists here are opposed to having something interesting to the layman." It is unfortunate that you find the articles uninteresting. For me, they are fascinating. And for most readers the articles are just sources of information, nothing more or less. Entertainment-wise, we probably do not rate highly.
Speaking as only one of several chemistry editors, I am loaded with colorful sagas about many compounds, techniques, and concepts, but we dont inflict these stories on the readers. If I wanted to be (or even could be) colorful, I would write a blog.
I know my comments come across as slightly prissy, but be assured that most editors here are just busy presenting unadorned facts weighted according to our own ideas of importance. We have a lot of turf to cover. We probably could use some lessons on communications, and I for one look forward to your future suggestions about how to get our message across.--Smokefoot (talk) 03:38, 14 April 2013 (UTC)
"I am loaded with colorful sagas about many compounds, techniques, and concepts..." - No doubt you are. And it you have reliable sources for it, they belong in the article. If you don't, they don't. Knowing what people think about something is some of the information we are supposed to present to the readers. If we have reliable sources saying that chemists are terrified of the stuff, that needs to be there, otherwise the article is incomplete. If you look around Wiki articles, commentary like Lowe's is routinely placed in articles about every subject we have, except apparently chemistry. There is no rule, policy, guideline, or practice that well-sourced commentary be omitted if it's "not serious" - after all, such a standards would almost certainly be rejected as no one would be able to define "serious". Ego White Tray (talk) 15:29, 14 April 2013 (UTC)
Your comments remind me of the colorful teachers who have great stories but little insight. Their stories were substitutes for substance. Blogs are blogs, but they not reliable sources in Wiki-chem. They are fun to read. Wiki-chem's encyclopedic tone and content is one of the reasons that the hit rate is high. Our greatest threat come from poor sources and undue emphasis on trivia. Lots of wanna-be chemistry editors are desperate to add fluffy content because (i) they dont know enough to add the serious stuff and (ii) they get some sort of warm feeling that they are "contributing", but in my view they are not. IMHO. --Smokefoot (talk) 15:53, 14 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but what? Blog or not, I thought Derek Lowe was a well-respected chemist. By what standards are his words not good enough for you? Are you implying that Lowe is one of those colorful teachers with no substance? Cause I wasn't making up stories, I was quoting him. You seem to have this bizarre idea that an article can't be both technically accurate and fun to read. They absolutely can be, and there is no good reason they shouldn't be. Ego White Tray (talk) 16:20, 14 April 2013 (UTC) For the record, I'm not a "wanna-be chemist". I'm not a chemist and have no interest in being one.
As far as wiki-chem policy goes, Derek Lowe stature is irrelevant: we don't quote blogs. At least I think that is the party line. The standard is WP:SECONDARY, although many editors rely a lot on primary sources (refereed journals). I think that Wiki-chem is stimulating to read, but I also understand what you are saying that the topic can seem dry. But we are serving a pretty dry audience who are not coming here for entertainment. My guess as to what readers are seeking in these articles: a melting point, a preparation, a structure, lead ref, or a real world app. --Smokefoot (talk) 16:45, 14 April 2013 (UTC)
Actually, the standard isn't secondary, as Lowe's article clearly is a secondary source. I think what you have in mind is Identifying reliable sources. I'm not sure if Lowe counts as a news source, in which case the relevant passage is "The opinions of specialists and recognized experts are more likely to be reliable and to reflect a significant viewpoint". If we count it as a self-published source, the relevant passage is "Self-published material may sometimes be acceptable when its author is an established expert whose work in the relevant field has been published by reliable third-party publications". I think it's clear that Lowe qualifies on both counts. Ego White Tray (talk) 01:46, 16 April 2013 (UTC)
Whatever. Secondary to scientists means that a report is refereed and reassessed a second time, but this unimportant molecule has caught your attention and this blogger has your admiration, so run with it.... but I will strive to revert any citation of a blog.--Smokefoot (talk) 02:03, 16 April 2013 (UTC)
Referral and reassessment may be valid for a scientific journal, but it is not at all a valid standard for a blog or any kind of journalism or news, for that matter. You have this bizarre idea that only scientific journals can be reliable sources, it seems, which is not and has never been the case on Wikipedia or any other encyclopedia. Ego White Tray (talk) 03:16, 17 April 2013 (UTC)

The first source[edit]

The opening sentence cites a paper that isn't even about this topic: the paper is entitled "Ozone Fluoride or Trioxygen Difluoride, O3F2". Shouldn't that be removed and replaced with a reference to some other paper, like A.G. Streng's? APerson (talk!) 01:54, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Good catch! I redid much of the article to address your find and provide hopefully a more encyclopedic tone. --Smokefoot (talk) 02:55, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Agree that as far as sources are concerned, the focus should be on Streng's detailed (and terrifying) experiments. Ego White Tray (talk) 04:35, 6 August 2013 (UTC)