Library Services




Chemistry reading room

Online resources

An extensive range of electronic resources are available, and these databases are relevant to Chemistry, in particular:

Indexing and abstracting databases
  • SciFinder - provides access to the Chemical Abstracts Service databases of chemical literature (back to 1907), structures and reactions. You will need to register your details via a UCL networked computer. Once registered for SciFinder web you can log into your account from your smartphone via https://scifinder.cas.org/mobile whether on, or off-site and access the mobile friendly SciFinder mobile interface. SciFinder mobile does not include all the functionality of the PC version.
  • Science of Synthesis -helps you get up to speed on a chosen field of research quickly and complete the design of your synthetic strategy. It is your online synthetic methodology tool for the most reliable chemical transformations available.
  • Reaxys - provides access to reactions, spectra and physical data of compounds.
  • Web of Science - indexes over 6000 science journals from 1981 onwards.
  • SCOPUS - a comprehensive scientific, medical, technical and social science database containing references to journal articles, conference proceedings, trade publications, book series and web resources.
  • PubMed - indexes biomedical literature.
Free resources
  • ChEMBL - ChEMBL is a database of bioactive drug-like small molecules.
  • Chemical Database Service - provides access to Crystal strucutres, spectroscopy and themophysical properties.
  • ChemIDplus - allows users to search the National Library of Medicine ChemIDplus database of over 370,000 chemicals.
  • eMolecules - provides a structure searchable database of over 7 million chemical structures and chemical data from more than 140 suppliers.
  • Fundamental Physical Constants Database - gives values for the basic constants and conversion factors of chemistry and physics.
  • PubChem - provides information on the biological activities of small molecules.
  • Spectral Database for Organic Compounds - from National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan.
  • SPARC Physical properties calculator - the calculator uses CAS registry numbers or SMILES strings to search.

Journal collections

The library holds both print and electronic journals (periodicals). Journals cannot be borrowed but may be photocopied, subject to copyright. Printed Physics journals are kept in the PHYSICAL SCIENCES Pers section on the third floor of the Science Library. Older journals and those which are also available electronically are held in the library store. These can be requested via the Store Request Form and will be available the next day.

Use Explore to search for journals.

For further information see Finding journals.

Book collections

The Chemistry collection is on the 3rd floor of the Science Library.

CHEMISTRY C - analytical chemistry
CHEMISTRY D - physical chemistry
CHEMISTRY F - inorganic chemistry
CHEMISTRY H - organic chemistry
CHEMISTRY M - medicinal chemistry

(Note: CHEMISTRY F 72 IMA for Lathanides in organic synthesis by Tsuneo Imamoto (where Chemistry is the collection; F 72 the classified position within the collection and IMA the first three letters of the author's surname).

Use Explore to find the exact class mark (shelf location) of a book.

Some of the other sections of the Library you might find useful:

Full text services

Collections of eBooks that may be browsed or searched. Relevant collections include:

  • Knovel - an interactive database and ebook provider containing full-text science and engineering publications and including tables, graphs and equations. Useful for chemical and physical property data.
  • DawsonEra - provides access to the full-text ebooks from various publishers covering a wide variety of subjects areas.
Professional organisations
Web Gateways


ChemDraw - UCL students and staff wishing to use ChemDraw software can gain access through the  ChemBioOffice software suite, which is listed in UCL ISD's software database.  Search for ChemBioOffice and click the red link to see the entry detail.

It is first necessary to register on the official web site and obtain an individual serial number (via email) to activate the software.
Installation instructions are available in the "Resources" tab of the software database, under the heading "Documentation".
Technical queries can be directed to ISD.

Free drawing packages

General Resources

Find out more about using other libraries, and links to other library catalogues.

The British Library is a useful resource and all UCL staff and students can apply directly for reference access. You will need to bring identification showing proof of address (e.g. utility bill), proof of signature (e.g. driving licence) and proof of student or research status (UCL ID card) in order to obtain a reader's pass.

The London office of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) is at 1 Portland Place, London, W1B 1PN. Email the IChemE for details of student membership.

A wide range of training and support is available for staff and students.


  • Contact your Subject Librarian for one to one or small group training
  • Our Moodle module WISE: Information Skills from Library Services covers information skills includes literature searching, referencing and use of reference management tools, specific electronic resources etc.
  • Subject Librarians can provide information skills training such as how to carry out a literature search, as part of your course. If you haven't heard about any training and would find a session helpful, please speak to your tutors or contact your Subject Librarian.
  • More about Getting Help

Beyond Library Services:

  • The ISD help-desk is located on the ground floor of the Science Library for queries relating to your email or computer accounts. ISD also provide IT training and resources and an email address for questions about bibliographic software: biblio-support@ucl.ac.uk.
  • Training for postgraduate students is available via the UCL Graduate School including training in reference management software, abstracting and indexing databases and Bilbliometrics provided by library staff, and a range of other courses.
  • Research Support: Services for researchers includes access to resources, undertaking research, disseminating, evaluating & preserving research.
  • Information on Open Access
  • UCL Discovery showcases UCL's research publications, giving access to journal articles, book chapters, conference proceedings, digital web resources, theses and much more, from all UCL disciplines.
  • Contact your Subject Librarian for one to one support including training in literature searching, referencing, use of bibliometric data.