The main entrance to the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center is now open. Van Pelt Library and the Fisher Fine Arts Library are currently open to Penn Card holders, Penn affiliates, and certain visitors. See our Service Alerts for details.

Address and Contact Information

Chemistry Laboratories, 1973 Wing
231 S. 34th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6323
Accessibility information

For Students, Faculty, and Staff of the University of Pennsylvania

Penn affiliates should present their PennCards to the security guard for inspection before proceeding to the library, and a visible PennCard must be worn above the waist at all times while in the building.

Weekdays after 5 p.m., weekends, and holidays, access is restricted to holders of department-validated PennCards, which must be worn in a visible location above the waist at all times while in the building.

PennCards are validated for the Chemistry Library by advance arrangement with the Chemistry Department: users should visit the Chemistry Department Office (first floor), Monday - Friday, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., with their PennCard and request access to the Chemistry Building for all hours that the library is open. Alternatively, users may e-mail Judith Currano at with their name and ID number, and she will forward the information to the Department. Validation is tied to the life of the PennCard, so users who get a new card you must have it revalidated.

For All Other Visitors

The Chemistry Library is open by appointment only to scholars from other institutions and members of the general public on weekdays, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Anyone wishing to make an appointment should do so by contacting the Chemistry Library at 215-898-2177 or Upon arrival, they must display a valid photo ID card and sign in with the security guard, who will impart further instructions.

Research Services

Ask a question

Judith Currano, the reference librarian for the Chemistry Library, is available between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to help with your reference questions. Finding chemical information can be challenging, so, we users are encouraged to contact the librarian whenever they think finding the information they seek is taking too long!

Walk-ins are encouraged, but before making a special trip to the library, users may want to phone ahead, especially during the fall and spring semesters. Judith Currano can be reached by phone at 215-746-5886, or by email at

Users can also use the Ask a Question form to make an inquiry. This service is primarily for students, faculty, and staff. Library staff will try to respond as soon as possible.

Request course-related instruction or schedule a consultation

Penn faculty may request course-related library instruction sessions customized to meet the needs of their students. Faculty who are interested in having library instruction for their classes should contact Judith Currano directly at 215-746-5886 or or use the Request a Consultation or Instructional Session form.

To schedule an appointment with a reference librarian to discuss your research needs, use the Request a Consultation or Instructional Session form.

STN Substructure Searching

Can't find a preparation for the compound you want? Interested in finding a compound with a similar structure to your target molecule? Substructure searching on the STN database is available to current Penn affiliates only after 5 p.m. on most weekdays. Please make an appointment with Judith Currano at least two days in advance by calling 215-746-5886 or by e-mailing