Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Searching for Chemicals by Structure and Reaction
You can perform searches by structure, by a portion of the structure (called a substructure), or by a reaction scheme in many of Penn's chemical science resources. Here are a few of the most comprehensive.
Commercial Availability Sources
Commercial availability can be tricky. It is generally most efficient to search an aggregate source that contains availability through multiple suppliers. Depending on the supplier, however, the aggregators may not include information like quantity or price. In a case like that, you will have to go to the individual suppliers' Web sites for the missing information.
Aldrich/Sigma/Fluka Online Catalog
Searches the catalogs of Aldrich, Sigma, and Fluka, primarily for fine chemicals. Pricing and quantity are available, as are physical properties, MSDS information, and some spectral information.
CHEMCATS (through SciFinder)
When you search for substances in SciFinder, you may have the option to link to the CHEMCATS database, which gives commercial availability for a large number of suppliers. Some do not give pricing and quantity, while others do. All give the URL and contact information for the company, however. In some cases, bulk quantities are indicated.
Suppliers submit their own information to this aggregate catalog, which links back to individual sellers. Quantities are generally included; you must request a quote in order to get pricing. Bulk quantities are indicated, as is the contact information and URL of individual suppliers.
Searchable by structure or identifier, this resource lists the suppliers and some limited physical data for over 8M substances. Link directly to the suppliers' sites for quantities and pricing. Also available as a link from a Reaxys substance or reaction search.
ICIS Chemical Business
Successor publication to Chemical Market Reporter. From late 2007 to late 2010, articles entitled "Key Indicators" in most issues contain bulk pricing data for a regular set of popular industrial chemicals. Articles marked "Chemical Profile" provide a regional (ex. Europe, North America, etc.) view of the chemical, its sales, and its industry. Regular articles throughout provide profiling of various chemicals individually with some including pricing data. Available from the ABI Inform business periodical database.
ICIS Historical Chemical Prices
Broad list of bulk chemical prices taken from the 28 August 2006 issue of Chemical Market Reporter, which is no longer published.
Sources for Physical and Chemical Properties
Handbooks can be a quick method of finding physical properties, especially if you wish to find the same property for a number of different substances. Bear in mind that each handbook has two scopes: a scope of substances and a scope of properties, and that the two need to intersect for you to find the information you need. Not all properties covered are available for all substances!
Handbooks are listed in alphabetical order.
Links to information from over 400 various Web services about over 25 million chemicals, as well as housing user-deposited data on those substances. It is searchable by text, as well as structure.
Combined Chemical Dictionary
Contains physical and chemical properties for over 500,000 substances of all types and classes
CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics
Also available in print; most recent edition shelved in Chemistry Reading Room (QD65.M315)
Contains over 500 physical and chemical properties for more than 28M organic, inorganic, and organometallic substances. Searchable by substance ID, structure, and property information.
CAS REGISTRY (over 130M substances) includes physical properties and spectral data.
This database consists of materials properties and data from over 250,000 different materials.
More Information About Substances, Properties, and Reactions
These research guides can help you navigate these and other substance, property, and reaction resources.