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SciFinder: Search Substances and Reactions

search substances and reactions content

Searching by Name or Formula

  • Search for a Substance by Name
  • Search for a Substance by Formula

Searching by Chemical Structure

  • Search by Drawing a Structure
  • Search for a Product or Reactant

Searching by Name or Formula

Search for a Substance by Name

To search for a substance by name, select the Explore tab, and under Substances, click Substance Identifier. Substances can be searched for by name, brand name, or CAS Registry Number. Enter one substance per line.


Search for a Substance by Formula

To search for a substance by formula, select the Explore tab, and under Substances, click Molecular Formula. Enter one formula per line.

Searching by Chemical Structure

SciFinder also allows users to search for substances and reactions by drawing a structure in the structure editor. To search by drawing a chemical structure, select the Explore tab and choose Chemical Structure.


Search by Drawing a Structure

In the Chemical Structure search, click on the Structure Editor. The Structure Editor opens in a pop-up window. 

The most common drawing tools are located on the bottom toolbar: atoms (1), bonds (2), rings (3), and stereochemistry (4).

By typing any atom or molecule into the text box on the toolbar, the next bond drawn will connect to that. You can also click on the end of a bond to add that atom/molecule.

For more complex structures, select the Templates button on the left toolbar. From there, browse the structure categories and select one to paste into the structure editor.


Search for a Product or Reactant

To search for a structure in a certain reaction role--i.e. the synthesis of aspirin--either open the reaction editor within Explore Reactions or select the Reaction option under Drawing Editor: in the open structure editor. Several new icons will appear on the left toolbar.

After drawing the structure, select the Reaction Role icon on the left-hand toolbar. Select the structure, then choose the reaction role to search for.