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Oktay Sinanoglu

Book quote; originating from:
New Haven Register, June 7, 1988.

Yale prof's theory passes students' test

by Abram Katz - Science Editor

GUILFORD — Future historians may go to Room 5 in the town high school to see the place where students first learned complicated quantum chemistry in only 20 minutes.

Oktay Sinanoglu, Yale University professor of chemistry and molecular biophysics and biochemistry, Monday gave the first dass on his new system for analyzing molecular structure.

NewHavenReg.jpg The lesson was presented as a quickly learned game of dots, lines and imaginary rubber bands and boats.

"I've given talks to Nobel Prize winners," Sinanoglu said as students crowded into the room, "but this is scary."

After a brief explanation, about 80 freshmen and juniors hunched quietly over pieces of paper, using pencils to cross out lines and to solve a chemistry problem that would baffle many chemistry professors.
Sinanoglu plans to meet Wednesday with Connecticut education officials and teachers from Woodbridge and Greenwich to discuss the new system, and a possible pilot curriculum for the state's public schools. If it catches on, it would be exported to other states.

Ann Manner, chairwoman of the chemistry, mathematics and physics department of Greater New Haven State Technical College in North Haven, said Monday that she, too, is exploiting the new system with state educators.

Sinanoglu announced his new method in February after working about 10 years on the complicated equations that underlie the simple game.

"There is a tremendous amount of quantum chemistry and math behind the system," he said. "I started from the very beginning and said, Let's look at this completely new."

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Last updated : July 14, 2002 - 18:34 CET