Wikipedia:Peer review/Carbon/archive1

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Article (Edit|History) • Article talk (Edit|History) • Watch articleWatch peer review

I've listed this article for peer review because it appears to be very good, and is labeled as an A class article. I was wondering what should be improved to make this ether a Good or a Featured article.

Thanks, Zginder (talk) (Contrib) 19:25, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

Review by Jayron32[edit]

Hey, I gave the article a cursory readthrough. I don't have the time at the current minute to give a full readthrough, though I intend to soon, and when I do I will make more detailed comments. First of all, if I were grading the article, I would say it is clearly a "B" class and not an "A" class at this point. Not sure what criteria it would be considered an A class, but while certain sections are excellent, others are clearly below Wikipedia standards. Some general and broad criticisms now, more detailed to come later:

  • The lead is a bit scattered. Paragraph organization seems funny. In general, individual paragraphs should focus on single ideas or related groups of ideas. The first paragraph seems to lack a coherent thesis. Also, the lead reads much better (IMHO) if it flows from more general and accessible facts at the start to more specific and esoteric facts later. In terms of readability, the first paragraph of the lead should be written to "draw the reader in". The first paragraph of this article is already dealing with beta-decay statistics and the like. It isn't very inviting for the non-chemically-minded to read through. Consider, and I hate this phrase, "dumbing it down" a bit for the lead. The nitty-gritty can still be treated in the main article, but the lead really should be more general.
  • The article is overlinked. In general, only link the first occurance of a term. For a longer article such as this it is allowable to link terms for their first occurance in each section, but there is no need to, for example, link Carbon-12 every time it appears. It is linked several times in each section. Consider reducing this so it is linked no more than once per section at the most, and if it is a short section, consider not linking it at all. Also, some very common terms not likely to be misunderstood (like "seconds") are also linked. See WP:MOSLINK for more details.
  • The article is sketchy on its referencing. The first 2-3 sections are scrupulously referenced, but later this falls apart. See WP:SCG for more information, and always err on the side of more references than less. While common scientific knowledge (i.e. something you might encounter in every single chemistry textbook) need not have specific inline citations, other places, for example where superlative statements are made (most, least, best, etc. etc.) or opinions are expressed, or surprising or non-intuitive statements, or in the case of this article, statistics or data are quoted, a source SHOULD be provided via inline citation. Interestingly, while many facts that need references lack them, some places, where there is common and uncontroversial and non-quantitative facts cites, there are a REDICULOUS number of cites. Check out the allotropes section. That first paragraph contains nothing that I would think would require more than a single cite to a single source, if that (this seems exactly the kind of paragraph that WP:SCG refers to as uncontroversial knowledge) and yet there are TEN footnotes for it. Ugh...
  • The production section is lacking entirely.

Just a start, again. When I have time to read this more thoroughly, I can make more specific critiques. However, the above should give you some stuff to work on. --Jayron32|talk|contribs 01:41, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Other reviews[edit]

  • A script has been used to generate a semi-automated review of the article for issues relating to grammar and house style. If you would find such a review helpful, please click here. Real live comments to follow in the next few days. Thanks, Ruhrfisch ><>°° 03:13, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
  • A few comments that I hope are of some use:
    • I agree with the above review by Jayron32. There are too many "[citation needed]" entries needing a citation for this to be A-class.
    • I'd like to see the history section cover the discovery of the carbon isotopes and the subsequent introduction of carbon dating by Willard F. Libby.
    • Some logical re-arrangement of the sections is necessary. Production should go just before Applications, for example, and Allotopes should precede Compounds, rather than Characteristics.
    • Jargon such as "π-cloud" should be explained.
    • Some of the single-sentence paragraphs need expanding or merging.
    Thank you.—RJH (talk) 18:01, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

Review by Ruhrfisch[edit]

First off I agree with the points raised by the other reviewers. I would also suggest you look at some Featured articles as possible models for improving this one. Diamond is featured, as are several elements (Hydrogen and Titanium to name two).

The article is currently offers a lot of information, but is not always well organized, referenced, or clearly written. Some examples from the History and etymology section follow.

  1. "The English name carbon comes from the Latin carbo for coal and charcoal,[7] and hence comes French charbon...". I think this means the French name also comes from Latin, but it sounds as if the French somehow comes from the English. Since the next sentence is other foreign language names, why not add the French in there to avoid confusion (as they all derive from names for coal)?
  2. "...while carbon in the forms of charcoal was made around Roman times..." it should read "in the form of charcoal" and Roman times is very vague - can a more specific date be found?
  3. "A new allotrope of carbon, fullerene, that was discovered in 1985 includes nanostructured forms such as buckyballs and nanotubes.[14]" First off, I think most people would agree these are multiple allotropes of carbon (not one allotrope). I also think fullerenes are not generally seen as including nanotubes. Perhaps "The 1985 discovery of C60, a new allotrope, has led to isolation of many more fullerene and nanotube allotropes of carbon" or something similar would be a better way to say it.

In the Allotropes section, the two most important allotropes are graphite and diamond, then the amorphous form. I would start with those and describe each clearly, then move on to the more exotic forms. I would also label the figure with letters corresponding to the figure (so a) diamond, b) graphite...). I would try to be clear about structures and show how lonsdaleite can be seen as derived from the diamond structure (but hexagonal) and nanotubes can be seen as derived from the graphite stucture (rolled sheet). I would also mention hybridization here (i.e. diamond sp3 and graphite sp2).

The next section, Characteristics, repeats some information and the table comparing properties is something that I doubt would pass at WP:FAC (describe it instead). The table is also slightly misleading as the left column is three different allotropes, while the right is two allotropes.

I am not going to go through each section, but try to follow summary style better - the articles on allotropes and allotropes of carbon both describe what allotropes are better than this. The Carbon cycle section starts off by discussing the rarity of transmutation of the elements, which is just bizarre (though I understand the point, it could just start by saying "The amount of carbon on Earth is effectively constant"). I see no mention of the role of C in global warming and greenhouse gases. In the compounds, there should be an inorganic section to go with the organic one and it should include more on things mentioned elsewhere in the article (like steel and carbides). A good copy edit (just try reading it aloud) is also needed, but so many other changes need to made first that copyediting now is a waste of time (although I do note that Texas and New York have finally achieved nationhood as "Graphite is found in large quantities in New York and Texas, the United States, Russia, Mexico, Greenland, and India.").

Finallly, I note that the references tend to be internet based, which are likely less reliable (see WP:RS) than the many books on carbon that are available in any good library. Some of the books cited are also quite old - surely there are newer works available? Hope this helps, Ruhrfisch ><>°° 20:54, 7 January 2008 (UTC)


The new production states that in South Korea and Austria are major deposits, which might be right, but the larges producer nearly 10 times larger than the second is china, which is stated in the graphite article. The production of C60 and diamonds has to be included. --Stone (talk) 10:52, 21 January 2008 (UTC)


First it is said that 900 Gigatonns coal reserves plus 150 of oil and gas exist than a few lines later the statment 4000 Gt, or 80% of coal, gas and oil reserves occure which is a much higer number. --Stone (talk) 13:52, 27 January 2008 (UTC)