Treadwell states in his text, Analytical Chemistry, Volume II, that "the only method for examining cyanates consists in determining the amount of carbon and nitrogen present by combustion." A review of the available literature shows that, although this is not literally true, a procedure for this quantitative determination of small amounts of cyanates in the presence of interfering substances is lacking.
A survey of the literature yielded few references for instrumental methods for the quantitative determination of cyanates. Ripan-Tilici published a method for the determination of cyanates poteniometrically, but attempts to duplicate her work have failed. Madame Tilici, in a subsequent publication, determined cyanates in the presence of cyanides by means of a conductometric titeration. Work done by Carlisle, with the polarograph, indicated that the cyanate ion had an ill-defined half-wave but the presence of the wave was not clearly established. Bailey and Bailey published a colorimetric method for the determination of cyanates but the method was not applicable in the presence of a number of anions.
The cyanate ion is known to form in a number of complexes with metallic cations and aminos, many of which are colored and are in insoluble water. A colorimetric method utilizing one of these colored cyanate complexes offered a means of approach to the problem.
Cyanate, Dicyanatodipyridine (II)
Level of Degree
Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology
First Committee Member (Chair)
Second Committee Member
Douglas G. H.
Third Committee Member
Fourth Committee Member
Sherman A. Wingard
Fifth Committee Member
McClelland, Jean. "A Study of the Use of the Dicyanatodipyridine (II) Complex for the Determination of Cyanate." (1950). https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/chem_etds/68