Happy Hanukkah and Thanksgiving Eve to all, here in the Baran lab, we have a lot of pretty mundane reactions running on a day to day basis, but sometimes things get weird. Here's a few of my observations that I've managed to photodocument. As for the details of these reactions - I'll let those that ran them chime in if they care to.
[...Click through to see some photos...]
|Figure 1. Quentin's wacky distillation.|
To be honest, this isn't super weird, but the set up is amusing and I like it. We've got a 100 mL flask that barely fits in the oil bath being used to heat it, a long, aluminum foiled wrapped vigreux column topped by a cute short-path distillation head followed by a second water jacketed reflux condenser, and finally a dry ice bath on top of two lab-jacks. This entire apparatus appears to be held up by a single, small clamp (though, its probably got some support on the left side from the dry ice bath).
|Figure 2. Emily, scale up, scale way up.|
Isn't it great when you can't scale up past 10g or your yield drops off? Here we have ten, 10g x 1L reactions, first step of Emily's synthesis. Someday, I may work on process scale and understand these phenomena of scale, but for now, 10g at a time it is. In order to run these reactions, she occupies no less than five hoods overnight. I suspect she has run >100 of these 1L reactions.
|Figure 3. Rotovaps, hah! The old weekend water/acetonitrile blow down, courtesy of Rodrigo himself.|
In case you were planning on using that ice bucket, don't! It has some important material from the HPLC in it. (Editor's note: I am informed that this wasn't actually that important --don't panic Phil-- despite the label.) As his hoodmate, I'm certain that this didn't decrease in volume by more than 10 mL over the entire weekend.
|Figure 4. My own boiled potato broth. Not for human consumption.|
Soup for group meeting... or Baran lab doing some simple biology? Since this one is mine, I can fill in some details: making a potato broth as the substrate for a fungus to grow on; a fungus which produces natural products! Is this the first biology we've ever conducted ourselves in the Baran lab? Perhaps!
Anyone have any other photos of funny set-ups or reactions? Lets see them.