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Chapter 3

Study tips and resources for Chapter 3 – Physical Chemistry by Laidler, Meiser, Sanctuary

Using multimedia to illustrate Entropy and Avogadro’s constant

Here are a couple of clips where I use multimedia from the physical chemistry book, in the classroom, to explain concepts Continue reading

The two ultimate questions of Thermodynamics

All you need to know about Thermodynamics

Understanding the laws of thermodynamics is paramount to understanding why chemical reactions proceed or not. Unfortunately, many times they seem detached or irrelevant when learning to predict reactions, but they are always there in the background. In a chemists view, thermodynamics is what makes the world go round! Continue reading

A look into Gibbs Energy

Conditions for chemical equilibrium
The Gibbs Energy, G is a function of state that provides useful information for deciding whether or not a change of any kind will tend to occur. It is defined as G = HTS where H, T and S are the enthalpy, temperature and entropy. This ubiquitous subject is reviewed in Chapters 3.6 and 3.7 of the Physical Chemistry book. Continue reading

Entropy and the Second Law of Thermodynamics

Spontaneous Process

So far we have learnt from Chapter 2 of the Physical Chemistry book that the First Law of Thermodynamics is essentially the law of conservation of energy, i.e. energy can neither be created nor destroyed but it may change from one form to another. Continue reading

Thermodynamics and pathological science.

DeLorean time machine from the film ' Back to the future'

Time traveling? DeLorean time machine from the film 'Back to the future'

Chemistry and Physics offer more than mere equations to the serious student. Even philosophical concepts can be derived from the thermodynamic laws. Can you believe it?

Let’s read, for example, a Statement of the Second Law of Thermodynamics;

It is impossible for an engine to perform work by cooling a portion of matter to a temperature below that of the coldest part of the surroundings.

OK, maybe this is not exactly what you and I had in mind when speaking of philosophy, but this law is powerful indeed, and has an incredible predictive potential! Continue reading

Try our bestselling undergraduate Physical Chemistry courseware

Thermodynamics Module - Physical Chemistry
Thermodynamics module
Chapters 1 to 6 of Physical Chemistry - Laidler, Meiser, Sanctuary


Includes multimedia that opens on relevant pages and allows the student to visualize many of the concepts by varying parameters and plotting different graphs. Things students often have difficulty with, such as isothermal, isobaric, isochoric and adiabatic process, are clearly visualized.

Get it from: Thermodynamics Module - Physical Chemistry



Physical Chemistry - Laidler, Meiser, Sanctuary
Physical Chemistry textbook
by Laidler, Meiser, Sanctuary


This popular Physical Chemistry text book is now available in electronic format. We have preserved much of the material of the former hard copy editions, making changes to improve understanding of the concepts in addition to including some of the recent discoveries in physical chemistry. Many chapters have new sections and the coverage of several chapters has been greatly expanded.

Get it from: Physical Chemistry - Laidler, Meiser, Sanctuary

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