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July 14, 2022

Precious metal delight in the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge

In June, the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge rolled around for the Lower Eighth chemists and a lucky few Sixth Formers who got to stay in school after a morning GCSE chemistry exam. 

All put themselves to the test counting up double bond equivalents and contending with some poor humour on the part of the question setters. The image above shows a reaction scheme that the pupils had to navigate, in which every molecule has six carbons, but where the number of hydrogen atoms dictates the structure and the number of double bond equivalents (DBEs).

The results exceeded all expectations, and bore out the promise of the record-setting Olympiad results earlier in the year: more awards than ever before were won (89 beating 87 in 2021), including a spectacular 42 gold awards (smashing the previous record of 37 in 2021).  Jash Jhaveri, who announced himself last year by earning a gold award in this event as a Sixth Former, finished in the top 15 of the 8,400 entrants in this year’s national competition, earning himself an award of rarest coinage metal, roentgenium, plus an invitation to a residential camp in Cambridge during the summer.  

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