Study of macroscopic and microscopic phenomena in chemical systems in terms of physical laws and concepts [thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, kinetic theory, quantum mechanics...].

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How to thermodynamically understand process of burning a piece of coal?

Let's imagine that I have a match in hand and nugget of coal on my desk. Then I light up the match and place it for few seconds near the coal so a tiny piece of nugget catches fire. Then another piece ...
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1answer
7k views

How to know what materials are good conductors of electricity?

I'm not asking a question like "Is the wood conductive?". No. I'm asking what properties do they have to have to be good conductors. Theoretically I mean. Thanks.
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3answers
2k views

What is the quantum mechanical explanation of the octet rule?

What is the quantum mechanical explanation of the octet rule? In other words, what makes the octet rule be true from a quantum mechanical view? How we explain what makes some atoms don't follow the ...
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0answers
53 views

Calculating the heat transfer into CO$_2$ gas at a constant pressure

I am having trouble with a homework question and I am just not sure how to attack it. We have not covered how to deal with non-ideal gases yet, and we are expected to answer this question without that ...
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0answers
173 views

Confusing Chemical potential of mixtures

I feel that there are very few textbook that treat the chemical potential of mixtures in an understandable clear way, which is why I wanted to ask here about certain things? Although I do not have a ...
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0answers
54 views

Why do aromatic rings absorb in UV?

Why do aromatic rings absorb in UV? I think that the whole molecule absorb light which causes transition of an electron to another molecule orbital.
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1answer
178 views

Can ice freeze? [closed]

We know that ice is already the frozen (solid) form of water. The question is more like: Can this frozen form freeze further? Or can it become more solid? (for example, by exposing to colder ...
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1answer
97 views

Why is the objective function used in Nudged Elastic Band method reasonable?

In Nudged Elastic Band (NEB) method, which is used to find reaction pathways when both initial and final states are know, an objective function is first constructed and then minimized to find reaction ...
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1answer
85 views

Increase in Solubility of a Gas with an Increase in Temperature

On the UC Davis ChemWiki I read, "some gases have an increase in solubility with an increase in temperature." I understand why this is applicable to solids in liquids such as water, but why is it ...
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47 views

How does gas pressure increase the lifespan of Halogen tungsten lamps in the Halogen Cycle?

I am curious about this passage "Since quartz is very strong, the gas pressure can be higher,[5] which reduces the rate of evaporation of the filament, permitting it to run a higher temperature (and ...
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0answers
53 views

What is the argument for detailed balance in chemistry?

Detailed balance is an important property of many classes of physical systems. It can be written as $$ \frac{p_{i \to j}}{p_{j \to i}} = e^{\frac{\Delta G}{k_B T}},\tag{1} $$ where $i$ and $j$ ...
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432 views

Melting and Boiling Points of Odd Materials

In Chemistry, I was taught that there are three main states of matter: solid, liquid, and gas, and that heat and pressure determine that state. For some substances, the line is blurry between them. ...
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2k views

How are the calories in food calculated?

This is intended to be a fun question. Calorimetry used for calculating the heat generated from chemical changes has been around for centuries, however, I suspect the process for calculating food ...
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3answers
349 views

Why does a pitcher with lemon juice have foam, while one with pure water does not?

Whenever I pour water into lemon juice (pouring directly from the tap into the pitcher, not quietly along its edge) I get a foam on top: The same pitcher with water (same water tap, pitcher, time ...
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2answers
18 views

Exothermic heat release mechanism in gases

How is heat released when bond formation occurs in gases? For example, when atomic oxygen and molecular oxygen combine to form ozone?
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2answers
67 views

Could we describe acids and bases using electromagnetism?

Why don't we use Maxwell's equations in acids and base theory? Surely the interaction between two charged species is readily described by this. The theory I have so far come across is HASB theory. ...
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3answers
843 views

How much heat from a fire actually warms your home?

A fire in a hearth disperses heat to, I guess, three places: the bricks of the chimney out the hearth (where the person tending the fire is standing) out the chimney, above the house How would you ...
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0answers
20 views

Better gas mileage going fast or slow [duplicate]

In an automobile, do you get better miles per gallon when going faster or slower? Is this question answerable without more information? If more information is needed, assume the following: ...
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1answer
147 views

DFT Calculations, Atomic Ionization Potentials — Which Exchange-Correlation Functional to Use, to Preserve Koopmans' Theorem?

I have a program which can perform density-functional calculations for atoms, given a density functional. Of course the simplest form of exchange potential to use is one relevant for a uniform ...
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1answer
56 views

Should it really be called “valence *sub*shell”?

The Wikipedia article on electron shells states this, which I (a chemical layman) also always assumed: The electrons in the outermost occupied shell (or shells) determine the chemical properties ...
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2answers
116 views

Why Does Air Hold More Water When the Air is Warmer?

I know that when the temperature of the air rises, the maximum amount of Water it can hold before the water condenses to water droplets increases. But why is this - has it got something to do with ...
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0answers
38 views

Like viscoelastic polymers, why there are not storage and loss moduli for cast iron?

Viscoelastic polymers have different paths upon loading and unloading, so there is energy dissipation, so they have storage and loss moduli. Plastic behavior is also shown by cast iron: loading and ...
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4answers
20k views

Why does ice have a lower density than water?

Can someone explain me why is ice lighter than water? As I know, all solids are usually heavier than the liquids (correct me if I am wrong).
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Could the Periodic Table have been done using group theory?

These three questions are phrased as alternative-history questions, but my real intent is to understand better how well different modeling approaches fit the phenomena they are used to describe; see 1 ...
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3answers
368 views

Kinetic proof of law of mass action

Suppose we have a chemical reaction of the form $$n_1 A_1 + \cdots + n_r A_r \leftrightarrow m_1 B_1 + \cdots + m_s B_s$$ where $A_i$ and $B_i$ are molecules, and the $n_i$ and $m_i$ are the integer ...
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76 views

How much entropy is produced in evaporating water due to irreversible evaporation towards equilibrium (humidity=100%)?

$dS=dH/T_{boil}$ for the increase in entropy by changing a phase at saturation ($T=373\text K$ for $p=1\text {atm}$ for water). However, water also obviously evaporates below boiling point when ...
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41 views

bimolecular reaction master equation

I was wondering how to write down the deterministic rate equation for a bimolecular reaction with similar particles. e.g. $A \rightarrow^{k_+} B +B$ and $B +B \rightarrow^{k_-} A$ now the rate ...
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28 views

What is the minimum bend radius of a square optical fiber on a microfluidic chip interface?

I want to make a microfluidic chip with colorimetry cuvettes with 100um square optical fibers coupled to the side of them. They should bend at a 90 degree angle to exit the side of the chip in a ...
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0answers
19 views

Mixing liquids when applying a voltage

I'm thinking in the following experiment: A) Two (non mixable (like water and oil)) liquids are going to lie in a container, in the extremes of the container there are two electrodes, those ...
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2answers
463 views

Can we fully simulate molecular physics?

Is our knowledge of physics complete enough to achieve fully natural simulations of molecular interactions in a computer simulation? How far off are we? Reason for question: I wonder how far we are ...
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0answers
37 views

problem about heat in thermodynamics

$$\nabla G=-T\nabla S-T\nabla S_{sur}=-Q+q $$ $$\nabla G=-T\nabla S-T\nabla S_{sur}=-(U-W_{rew})+q $$ $$\nabla G=-T\nabla S-T\nabla S_{sur}=-(q+W-W_{rew})+q $$ $$\nabla G=-T\nabla S-T\nabla ...
7
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1answer
109 views

What would be the first compound formed in the early universe?

This may sound like a chemistry problem, but I suspect this would have lot to do with primordial nucleosynthesis. After all physics underlies everything. It is believed that several elements were ...
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2answers
63 views

How do we represent 'smell' and 'taste' as signals?

I was wondering if we could represent 'smell' and 'taste' as signals like we do for audio. How do we mathematically represent them? Is there any research papers related to it? Can someone give me ...
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5answers
150 views

Mass and Energy

Would the mass of burnt firewood be equal to the mass of firewood before burning? Then where does that heat come from? According to Einstein's equation, $E=mc^2$ Shouldn't there be some mass going ...
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1answer
56 views

Boiling is not well described? [duplicate]

It is said that boiling occurs only when the vapour pressure becomes equal to the pressure surrounding the vapour (say atmospheric pressure). Why does it take place only satisfying these conditions ...
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1answer
100 views

Why does intramolecular hydrogen bonding cause molecules to separate?

Today I learned about intramolecular hydrogen bonding, which occurs in molecules such as ortho-nitro-phenol. What I was told is that, in case of intramolecular bonding, the molecules separate from ...
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0answers
58 views

Why are atoms with a complete octet the most stable ones? [duplicate]

I mean are the valence electrons in an octet arranged so that they have the lesser amount of energy that is lesser than electrons in other atoms?
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0answers
21 views

Conical intersections - phase

Can anyone explain why at a conical intersection the wavefunction changes sign? My understanding is that it is a test to see if the crossing IS indeed a conical intersection or just a coincidence of ...
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0answers
51 views

Solving for the Nernst Potential in 3D

Hi guys I'm totally stuck on the following question: We know the ionic flux between two chambers due to uneven concentration can be computed by the Nernst-Planck equation $$j = -D_p \left(\nabla C ...
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4answers
391 views

Two soft questions about spin and the particle nature of electrons

How can we define spin as the spin of an electron around it's own axis if an electron is described by a probability cloud of finding an electron in a point in space? How does that probability cloud ...
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1answer
49 views

(Chemistry) Dimensionless heat transfer coefficient

I'm trying to reproduce in Matlab the model of a continuous stirred tank reactor (CSTR) that I've gotten for a project. The model is written in the state space and uses some dimensionless values, ...
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1answer
234 views

Steam above meal

When I fry something on the pan and the fire is big and intensive (the flame over the pan), there is no stean above the pan or just a little. But when I turn off the fire, suddenly the steam appears, ...
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4answers
2k views

Bond Angles - H2O vs CO2

H2O has a 109.5 degree bond angle, but CO2 has exactly 180 degrees. Is there a qualitative reason for this? It's hard to believe CO2 is exactly 180 degrees unless there were some symmetry, but the ...
6
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1answer
525 views

What is the most stable nuclide of an isobar?

From the semi-empirical mass formula, the mass of an atomic nucleus is $$M\left(A,Z\right)=Zm_p+(A-Z)m_n-\frac{E_b(A,Z)}{c^2}$$ I've been told (at first) that for a given mass number $A$, the most ...
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0answers
45 views

Approach to model solvent in a lattice: e.g. H2O in NaCl

If a lattice contains a solvent, lets say NaCl and water of crystallisation, what is the condition for a solvent molecule to change it's location? From my current point of view I assume that such a ...
2
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1answer
190 views

Conductivity of Aqueous Ionic Solutions as a Function of Time

It is well-known that an aqueous ionic solution can conduct electricity. Let's take the electrolyte NaCl for example. In the diagram below, the circuit consists of a voltage source, a light bulb, and ...
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0answers
61 views

Linear decrease in temperature during a redox reaction?

This is physics-related, don't worry. To calculate the enthalpy change of a solution during a redox reaction, what we did in class was measure the temperature of the solution every 30 seconds (before, ...
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1answer
48 views

Hydrogen extraction efficiency of newish nano particle AA battery

The internet is ablaze with the new nano particle based extraction method of converting water to hydrogen. In 2002/2003 when I was 16 there was a similar craze about a lawn mower motor which ...
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1answer
63 views

why some elements of same group cannot be used for doping semiconductors?

15th group elements like As, Sb, P can be used for doping whereas N and Bi cannot be used for doping even though they too belong belong to 15th group. Why ?
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3answers
536 views

Potential energy graphs of chemical systems

I really wish someone could dissect this for me in the language of physics. The system is that of two atoms that approximate each other along 'r' (or distance themselves apart). My concerns are ...