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seen Mar 24 '13 at 4:55

Feb
11
comment Chaos theory and determinism
What a great answer. Reminds me that I need to keep coming back to this website.
Feb
4
comment Why is quicksilver (mercury) liquid at room temperature?
@Georg Any thoughts on the more specific and detailed argument I have in my answer now?
Feb
4
revised Why is quicksilver (mercury) liquid at room temperature?
Improved answer
Feb
3
comment Why is quicksilver (mercury) liquid at room temperature?
One more thing: even after disconsidering VB or MO theories, the concept of valence shell remains being important. Wavefunction methods will either be perturbation, or expansion of possible electronic configurations, in which the characteristics of the atoms (such as their valence shell) will determine the probability for distinct electron configurations in the expansion and also the most important corrections in perturbation theory. Of course if you want, you can only do the math or computation and get your results without worrying about any of this, but I believe the point here is clear now.
Feb
3
comment Why is quicksilver (mercury) liquid at room temperature?
@Georg The major explanations in the link are based on calculations, experimental facts and models such as the ones given by quantum mechanical molecular orbital theory and the Dirac equation. Quantum Mechanical MO theory, or even old and modern valence bond theory, though inaccurate in not capturing full electronic correlation, are powerful ways to interpret chemistry, specially when the predictions of those and experiment are alike. The concept of filled valence shell for the properties of Hg is important in all of those (Dirac eqn, MO, and VB theory). I wonder what else would you want.
Feb
3
answered Why is quicksilver (mercury) liquid at room temperature?
Feb
2
awarded  Supporter
Feb
2
comment What is the mechanism of dielectric saturation?
Thank you for the insights. So, if I understood it correctly, the lack of orientational freedom, i.e., rigidity of the first solvation shell molecules, in the presence of the field created by the ion, makes solvent molecules less prone to reorganize themselves, and hence orientational polarization response decreases, reducing the experimentally measured dielectric constant for this same region. I'd say this makes perfect sense.
Feb
2
awarded  Editor
Feb
2
revised What is the mechanism of dielectric saturation?
added 773 characters in body
Feb
2
awarded  Student
Feb
2
asked What is the mechanism of dielectric saturation?
Feb
1
awarded  Teacher
Feb
1
comment Why are the noble metals inert?
@Georg: That's certainly true, and that's what I meant by saying that it is better not to reduce the arguments to simple gas-phase electronic configuration trends. By the way, just to make it clearer, the inaccurate arguments I mentioned are the ones made by Carl Brannen, not by Georg. I completely agree with Georg's statements.
Feb
1
answered Why are the noble metals inert?