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CH20152: Principles of physical chemistry for natural scientists

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2014/5
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Chemistry
Further information on credits Credits: 12
Further information on unit levels Level: Intermediate (FHEQ level 5)
Further information on teaching periods Period: Academic Year
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Summary: EX 80%, PR 20%
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • Examination - Semester 1 (EX 20%)
  • Examination - Semester 2 (EX 60%)
  • Practical (PR 20%)
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: CH20152 Re-sit Examination (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites: Before taking this unit you must take CH10137 or take CH10138 and in taking this unit you cannot take CH20151
Further information on descriptions Description: Aims:
To introduce and expand on advanced physical chemistry methods in kinetics, spectroscopy, surfaces, polymers and quantum mechanics.

Learning Outcomes:
After studying this Unit, students should be able to:
* Describe some experimental methods for investigating reaction rate and mechanism and how kinetic parameters may be calculated.
* Account in kinetic terms for the mechanism of a range of reactions.
* Analyse kinetic data in terms of a number of theoretical models
* Describe methods for measuring rates of fast reactions
* Describe the effect of light on some chemical reactions and account for the rates of photochemical processes.
* Understand how lasers work, and their applications
* Describe the fundamental processes that lead to absorption, emission and scattering of electromagnetic radiation from molecular species, and interpret IR and Raman spectra.
* Describe and define the types of adsorption at solid surfaces
* Explain the qualitative and quantitative basis of catalysis and physical adsorption
* Define surface tension and solve simple problems involving its application
* Define and interpret the forces between two colloids
* Define the terms `wavefunction┬┐ and `eigenvalue┬┐.
* Relate physical models to quantisation of molecular and electronic energies.
* Use quantum mechanical methods to generate and rationalise the structure and bonding in organic molecules.
* Demonstrate an understanding of how polymer structure can be influenced by the methods of synthesis and how this affects material properties.
* Describe and explain methods for characterising polymers and their synthesis by step- and chain growth polymerisation.
* Perform a range of numerical problems concerning polymerisation chemistry.

Numeracy (F, A), Problem solving (T, F, A), Independent working (F).

Revision of basics of reaction kinetics - order, molecularity, temperature effects. Kinetic treatment of more complex mechanisms such as chain and oscillating reactions, enzyme kinetics.
Theoretical treatments of reaction kinetics and examples of their application. e.g. collision theory, transition state theory. Reactions in solution. Diffusion and activation control, the "cage" effect. Experimental methods for studying reactions: Basic photochemical methods and processes. Applications of photochemistry. Kinetics of photochemical reactions.
The physical basis of spectroscopy, developing from the basic quantum mechanics of simple molecules to the interpretation of spectra of complex molecules
Introduction to surfaces. chemisorption versus physisorption.
Adsorbed amounts. Types of isotherms: Langmuir Isotherm. determination of heat of adsorption, BET isotherm: Introduction to heterogeneous catalysis. Kinetics of catalysis. Langmuir Hinshelwood mechanism. Eley Rideal mechanism. Catalysis examples Molecular basis and consequences of surface tension. Colloid stability. Micellisation. Gibbs equation
Basic principles of quantum mechanics; wavefunctions, eigenvalues and operators. Solving the Schrödinger equation and the calculation of energy levels. Development of the variation method applied to diatomic molecules and hydrocarbons. Calculation of electronic and bonding energies. The relationship between molecular orbitals, electron density and reactivity.
Classification and types of polymers. Synthesis of polymers with examples taken from several different classes (addition, step-growth, ring opening, organometallic) with the emphasis on how physicochemical considerations influence the polymer structure. Characterisation of polymers (molecular weight and chain length, spectroscopy, thermal methods). Structure and morphology of polymers and how this influences properties. A survey of recent applications taken from current research and industrial topics.
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

CH20152 is Compulsory on the following programmes:

Department of Chemistry
  • USCH-AFB03 : BSc(Hons) Chemistry with Management (Year 2)
  • USCH-AAB04 : BSc(Hons) Chemistry with Management with Study year abroad (Year 2)
  • USCH-AFM07 : MSci(Hons) Chemistry with Management (Year 2)
  • USCH-AKB04 : BSc(Hons) Chemistry with Management with Industrial Placement (Year 2)
  • USCH-AKM07 : MSci(Hons) Chemistry with Management with Industrial Placement (Year 2)

CH20152 is Optional on the following programmes:

Programmes in Natural Sciences
  • UXXX-AFB01 : BSc(Hons) Natural Sciences (Year 2)
  • UXXX-AAB02 : BSc(Hons) Natural Sciences with Study year abroad (Year 2)
  • UXXX-AKB02 : BSc(Hons) Natural Sciences with Year long work placement (Year 2)
  • UXXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences (Year 2)
  • UXXX-AKM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Professional Placement (Year 2)
  • UXXX-AAM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Study year abroad (Year 2)

* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2014/15 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2015/16 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2014/15.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.