The Molecular Equivalent of Honey Badger

Today Shaun sent me this from PZ Meyers, which links to an article about a pretty bad ass, terrifying molecule:

It’s a beast, all right. The compound is wildly, ridiculously endothermic, with a heat of formation of 357 kcal/mole, all of which energy is ready to come right back out at the first provocation (see below). To add to the fun, the X-ray crystal structure shows some rather strange bond distances, which indicate that there’s a lot of charge separation – the azides are somewhat positive, and the tetrazole ring somewhat negative, which is a further sign that the whole thing is trembling on the verge of not existing at all.

Apparently, this stuff will explode at the drop of a hat, or if you happen to be thinking about a hat while looking at it.  Yep, it’s just going blow the fuck up.  It don’t care.  It don’t give a shit.  It’s the molecular equivalent of a honey badger:

Make a little bit in the lab? BOOM.  Manage to make some and have it not explode but then touch it with a spatula? BOOM. Make some, touch it, and manage to get it into the light of a spectrometer?  BOOM.  This molecule does not give a shit.  It will explode all over your damn lab.  I would venture to say that it would also fuck a honey badger up because it is a nasty ass exploding compound and it does not care about honey badgers.

Though perhaps it is unfair to assume that this molecule wreaks havoc on laboratory environments and the chemists that love them due to sheer James Dean levels of apathy.  Maybe it’s really just the molecular equivalent of Malfunctioning Eddie, who explodes at even the thought of being startled:

Or maybe it just wants to be a star in Michael Bay’s next movie:

Whatever the reason, I am happy to admire these brave, crazy ass chemists from afar.  If they want to do death defying research that results in one picture in a general chemistry book that enables a professor to say, “This is some nasty shit”, then I am all for it.

Intellectual content, shmintellectual shcontent.

2 responses to “The Molecular Equivalent of Honey Badger

  1. I initially read “it would also fuck a honey badger up because it is a nasty ass exploding compound” as “it would also fuck a honey badger up it’s nasty ass” and was both scandalized and delighted. I am (as always) tickled pink with this blog- the juxtaposition of posts about skepticism, mental health, and bad-ass exploding shit is just delightful.

  2. I would totally go see that movie.

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