NFDI4Chem will support those ELNs that are relevant for documentation of chemical research activities. This support will include hosting one ELN instance for each of the relevant ELNs at KIT for teaching and training purposes. This service was established in 2022 to allow all scientists to compare ELNs and their functionalities. Comparing and testing different ELNs is a prerequisite for making the right choice. Furthermore, NFDI4Chem organises various seminars with the goal of giving a first impression of different ELNs. These seminars are a good opportunity for ELN providers to demonstrate their ELN's usefulness and possible applications. For past and forthcoming seminars, please see the Stammtisch event page.
Chemotion is the ELN reference instance in NFDI4Chem. The Chemotion ELN is developed by several software developers at different NFDI4Chem sites. The ELN development started at the Karlsruhe institute of Technology (KIT) in Karlsruhe as part of a DFG-funded project. The extension of the software was and is further supported by the State Ministry of Baden-Wuerttemberg for Sciences, Research and Arts, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, and the German Research Foundation (DFG).
The Chemotion ELN was designed for chemists and adapted to the special requirements of chemical laboratory work and documentation. It therefore serves as a digitalization instrument for work in chemistry, developed to overcome the current limitations of the existing systems. To reach this goal, the development, improvement, and extension of the ELN is a community effort.
The ELN is also used in other disciplines beyond chemistry as it offers a broad generic functionality to meet the needs of scientists working in interdisciplinary environments. These generic functions are still being extended and adapted. The latest generic extension (from November 2023) is LabIMotion, which allows completely non-chemical functionalities to be used by designing new modules.
Chemotion ELN offers a specific function that facilitates the publication of research data: it supports the transfer of data from a user's ELN account to a research data repository. This function reduces the scientists' effort in allowing access to research data, which is required by many funding agencies and helpful for the publication of scientific text publications. Currently, the ELN supports the transfer of data to the Chemotion repository. Additionally, Chemotion Repository is connected to other databases (e.g. PubChem) and repositories (e.g. NMRShiftDB2, soon to be superseded by nmrXiv), to ensure best visibility and a user-friendly search of original research data. The NFDI4Chem team is working on establishing connections to further repositories, in particular, the repositories supported and recommended by NFDI4Chem.
A short introduction to the Chemotion ELN as well as the connection to the Chemotion repository is demonstrated in this video:
Documentation, information, and contact
Chemotion ELN and its functions were described in various publications (see below). For users, developers, and admins, a documentation is available via the project's website. Chemotion ELN is an Open Source development; the source code is available on GitHub.
Sources and further information
- Chemotion ELN: an Open Source electronic lab notebook for chemists in academia
- Chemotion-ELN part 2: adaption of an embedded Ketcher editor to advanced research applications
- CHEMSCANNER: extraction and re-use(ability) of chemical information from common scientific documents containing ChemDraw files
- Chemotion ELN documentation
- Chemotion ELN on Github