The discovery of Ferrocene, the first ‘sandwich’ compound, is one of the classic stories in the history of chemistry. structure so different from those known at the time that a J. Am. Chem. Soc. The editor suggested Robert Woodward was on drugs when he dreamed it The outlandishness of the structure is hard to imagine today, when it’s a feature of undergraduate degrees around the world. The chemists who first made it didn’t know that it would be a sandwich structure. If the Ferrocene had been discovered at another time it wouldn’t be this structure. And had it not been discovered, would anyone have made it by design? Who would have suggested that an aromatic ring could bond facially to a metal atom? That would have been quite some leap of faith – and chemical.

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