Big thanks and The Great #RealTimeChem Cook Off 2017 Winners

Hello RealTimeChemists,

2017. It’s been a rough year for the world. Troubling political climate. Troubling social climate. Troubling climate in general. Throughout these rough times it’s important to find something to bring people together and for chemists, that’s chemistry. I’ve greatly enjoyed all your #ChemTogether-ness during this year’s #RealTimeChem Week.  I’m glad that the hashtag continues to be a small haven on social media where everyone in this community can join in and share their enthusiasm for the central science.

Some big thank yous have to go out to a variety of people who have made #RealTimeChem Week possible this year:

  • Firstly, Andy Brunning of @compoundchem. Continues to produce the best chemistry infographics the world wide web has ever seen and also this year’s Beatles inspired #ChemTogether banners. His best work yet. We’ve still never met in person you know (Andy we should work on that).
  • Thanks again to David Peralta, Managing editor of @ChemMedChem and everyone at WileyVCH who continue to enthusiastically support The Great #RealTimeChem Cook Off with prizes.
  • Dorea Reeser and colleagues at C&EN, who have provided a lot of support this year and added greatly to the awards with a very generous donation.
  • Matt Hartings for the kind donation of a signed copy of his book for the very best Cook Off tweet.
  • A final thanks to all my colleagues at the Royal Society of Chemistry, who’ve continued to support this slightly mad endeavour of mine.
  • My wife for her love, understanding and endless patience.


Now, final prizes time. Below I will announce the winners of The Great #RealTimeChem Cook Off 2017:


As mentioned above this year’s contest was again sponsored by @WileyVCH‘s society chemistry journals.* The five winners below all receive a ChemPubSoc Europe package containing:

A copy of What’s Cooking in Chemistry: How Leading Chemists Succeed in the Kitchen
-An exclusive #chemquackers scientist rubber duck (everybody wants one of these. Hell, I want one.)
-Other Wiley-VCH goodies!


The prizes for this year’s Cook off in all their glory.

*@ChemEurJ, @ChemistrySelect, @ChemistryOpen, @ChemBioChem, @ChemCatChem, @ChemMedChem@ChemElectroChem, @ChemPhysChem, @ChemPlusChem, @ChemSusChem,@ChemPhotoChem, @EurJIC, and Eur. J. Org. Chem (all journals of @ChemPubSoc_Euro); @ChemAsianJ, @AsianJOrgChem, and @ChemNanoMat (all journals of the Asian Chemical Editorial Society); and @angew_chem (a journal of @GDCh_aktuell).


This was a harder choice than last year and that was ridiculously hard. 280 Characters was introduced part way through the week too and, funnily enough, that really suits cooking tweets!

Some sensational entries this year but someone has to win the goodies and the below were chosen based on a number of factors; invention, chemistry content, popularity (via retweets and favourites), general looks of the cook, humour, etc.

After much deliberation both on my part and after consultation with my partners at Wiley, here are the chosen winners. Note that all 5 winners receive the above pack. As a special prize for the very best cook off creation, the overall winner will also receive a signed copy of  Matt Hartings (@sciencegeist) book “Chemistry In Your Kitchen“.

So…*drum roll*

First we have Jess Wade, who bravely took on a recipe from  Heston Blumenthal FRSC. This one was long in the making and looks absolutely fantastic.  Check out the full thread.


A wonderful pie from the Borovik Lab at UCI (you’ll have to let me know who baked this!) with a clear chemistry theme. I also really like the sentiment of the tweet itself, which is inspiring and relevant to the #ChemTogether theme.


Sheer volume of food from Maria is impressive. It’s a full meal. Frankly, I feel absolutely starving by this point in the blog post *tries to eat screen*, especially as these are some of my favourite foods!


You need to see the whole thread to completely appreciate Sarah‘s white chicken chilli, but it’s a great step by step journey. Plus she uses the best Jamie Oliver-ism “wazz it up”.

Overall winner 

Like others above, you have to open the full tweet thread to appreciate the shear awesomeness of this. A multi-layer cake is tricky, but one with an actual trick inside is mind blowing. Plus it’s rainbow coloured and #ChemTogether themed. Respect Victoria. Respect.


Congratulations everybody! To claim your prize pack please send the below details via email to Plus cc in

1) Full name
2) Twitter handle
3) Current affiliation and position (if student, mention lab to which you belong)
4) Complete shipping address


Once again thank you a million times to everyone who took part in #RealTimeChem week 2017. If anyone has got ideas for 2018, it’s never to early to share them with me!

But for now…

mischief managed

-Doctor Galactic-




#RealTimeChem Week 2017 – Awards


Hello everyone, welcome to the #RealTimeChem Week Awards!

First of all, thank you to every one who took part this year and tweeted using #RealTimeChem or #ChemTogether. This community is nothing without the people that are part of it. I’d give everyone of you a prize, but sadly, I’m not clinically insane.

This year the awards are divided in 8 categories. The first 5 are below. Welcome to the best of #RealTimeChem:


Sometimes chemistry doesn’t work as intended, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t beautiful.

Runners up. 

Phil seems to have accidentally made one of those glass baubles that you use as a paper weight.

Giorgia seems to have made everybody’s favourite: black tar.


I think we can all feel Conrad’s pain here. Good save by all accounts afterwards!



Chemists are funny people. Witness the funny.

Runners up

Speaks for itself. Cheesy, but funny.

I was born in the 80s, I endorse this joke.


Michelle found this gem waiting for her. Sometimes the jokes come to you.



The OED says a “selfie” is “a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and shared via social media”. Or something. I’m not down with the kids.

Runners up

Suze has the best job. Plus she’s #ChemTogether themed!

As Lab Daily points out Chemistry isn’t all about explosions! We also have glowing stuff. Look! Ooooh!


Safety first from Richard. We can only wonder what hazards await.


Fancy glassware is one of the things that stands out about chemistry. Beakers, flasks, test tubes, pipettes, condensers…so much glassware, so little time.

Runners up

As I was saying above. Andryj speaks the truth.

The humble test tube elevated to art by Bram.


Tiny glassware is the best glassware. It’s the cutest. I like the inclusion of a pen for scale.


Sometimes a still image is not enough, sometimes you gotta get out the video! This was very hotly contested.


Runners up

Who ya gonna call? Tom that’s who! Fantastic slow mo action here. This was only one of several video’s by Tom during the week. You should also check out his rendition of The Periodic Table from memory, whilst also sounding like a chipmunk.

Mike’s video of crystals growing in a vial is beautiful to behold.


Sometimes a transparent oil’s dreams *do* come true! *cue emotional music*. The sudden switch in Cecilia’s video also keeps you on your toes.


The overall winning tweet in each of the five categories above will be awarded this year’s #RealTimeChem Week mug with the #ChemTogether logo (sadly runners up don’t get a prize, except massive kudos this year). 


Winners: to claim your prize please send me the below details, either via DM on Twitter or to

-Affiliation (Uni/Company/Department) and position/role
-Email account
-Shipping Address (if at an institution, please indicate the Lab/Division/department and/or Room numbers)


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The following three categories were sponsored by C&EN. The winning tweet will receive the above mug like all the other winners, but also there are additional cash/gift card prizes. You will also have your tweet featured in C&EN’s Chemistry in Pictures (see example here)!  Prizes as follows:

  • $100 for the 3 winners in each category (3 prizes in total)
  • $25 for each runner up (6 prizes in total)

Please note that cash prizes are only for US-based competitors. International winners will receive an Amazon gift card.


Without further ado:


Runners up

Henry has got the traditional #ReaTimeChem Week balloon party down. Plus in keeping with the colourful theme of this year’s week.


A stylish shot from the Townsend Lab. I hope you’ll pass the prize onto Jamin!


Frankly I think defying gravity is a pretty worthy achievement that’ll let you win most prizes. Fran also produced a great video later too (see here).



Runners up

Some fantastic luminescence crystals from Amie!  They almost seem to be on fire.

Like all true artists, Tracy has named her art. Beautiful crystals and very seasonal!


I should probably say something super insightful about these brilliant crystals… they’re so fluffy!



Runners up

Madison gets some #RealTimeBio in her #RealTimeChem, along with some striking colours.

Andres putting red cabbages to good use.


This was the single most favourited tweet of the week. The ever reliable Brian. This time showing off all your daily fluorescent objects in one colorful arrangement.

To claim your prizes please send me your details above, either via DM on Twitter or to

So, congratulations to everyone who won an award and thank you for taking part in #RealTimeChem Week.

If you’re waiting for the Cook Off prizes, those will be announced later in the week!


-Doctor Galactic-


#ChemTogether Blog Carnival Round up


Hello bloggers and blog readers!

Welcome to the blog carnival round up for #RealTimeChem week. As noted above this year blog posts are all about the hashtag theme, #ChemTogether. There’s been some really interesting stuff written so far, which you can find in the round up below:

Thanks to everyone above for blogging this week. I’ll update this round up at the end of the week if there are any further blog posts.

-Doctor Galactic-