Physical Chemistry is concerned with the application of physics to the study of chemical systems. Through physical chemistry one can understand and predict the behaviour of chemical systems, thereby allowing these systems to be optimised. This module will provide an introduction into the fundamentals of physical chemistry, focusing on basic chemical thermodynamics, the principle of equilibrium and its application to acid-base and electrochemical systems.
Aims and Objectives
Knowledge and Understanding
Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:
- Explain basic principles including perfect gas behaviour, fundamental forces in chemistry, state functions, spontaneity of reactions, phase diagrams and titration curves.
- Describe the thermodynamics of phase transitions, and of ideal gas and liquid mixtures, and how dilution affects melting and boiling points in mixtures.
- Calculate the equilibrium constants, standard Gibbs energy of reactions, and standard cell potentials for Galvanic cells.
- Calculate the pH for different solution mixtures involving strong and weak acids and bases.
- Apply the concept of thermodynamic equilibrium.
- Define the terms and determine the enthalpy, entropy and Gibbs energy change associated with a reaction.
Subject Specific Practical Skills
Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:
- Meet the learning outcomes of a co-requisite practical module.
Chemical thermodynamics: concepts of enthalphy, entropy and internal energy; first and second laws of thermodynamics; Hess cycles; use of energies of formation; definition and use of heat capacity; Gibbs energies and chemical potential; links to chemical equilbria; solution phase equilbria; activities and activity coefficients; effects of pressure and temperature on equilibrium constants; Le Chatelier’s principle; Henderson Hasselbach equation; exploration of equilibria, with emphasis on those important in aqueous acids and bases; electrochemical equilibria
Learning and Teaching
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures, small group tutorials and laboratory sessions.
|Wider reading or practice||20|
|Preparation for scheduled sessions||10|
|Total study time||150|
Resources & Reading list
Peter Atkins, Julio de Paula, and James Keeler. Atkins' Physical Chemistry.
Peter Atkins and Julio de Paula. Elements of Physical Chemistry.
Final exam, tutorials and laboratory marks. The latter are accumulated under the co-requisite lab module.
External repeat only possible if lab module is already passed.
This is how we’ll give you feedback as you are learning. It is not a formal test or exam.Open Book Exam
This is how we’ll formally assess what you have learned in this module.
|Open Book Exam||60%|
Repeat type: Internal & External