Chemistry 201: Introduction to Physical Chemistry

Course Level: 
Second Year
Academic Year: 

Textbook:  Physical Chemistry, P. W. Atkins and J. De Paula, W.H. Freeman, 9th Edition

Outline: This is a course in basic Physical Chemistry, with emphasis on elementary thermodynamics and chemical kinetics.

Part I. Thermodynamics (7 weeks) 
1. Gases, ideal and otherwise: equations of state
2. Thermodynamics: temperature, system, surroundings, types of 
    processes and reversibility
3. First Law: internal energy, work, heat, sign conventions
4. State functions vs. path-dependent variables
5. Heat capacity at constant volume
6. Equipartition principle: extensions to polyatomic molecules
7. Enthalpy: heat capacity at constant pressure
8. The Joule and Joule-Thomson experiments 
9. The Carnot heat engine 
10. Second Law: entropy, spontaneity 
12. Gibbs and Helmholtz free energies: chemical potential
13. The approach to equilibrium: phase changes, chemical reactions

Part II. Kinetics (5 weeks)
1. Reaction kinetics: rate laws
2. Measurement of reaction rates 
3. Integration of rate laws 
4. Determination of rate laws 
5. Rate laws and equilibrium constants for elementary reactions 
6. Temperature dependence of rate constants
7. Reaction mechanisms 
8. Chain reactions and free-radical polymerization
9. Catalysis 
10. Enzyme catalysis

1. A Homogeneous Catalytic Reaction 
2. Kinetics of the Reduction of Hexacyanoferrate(III) by Ascorbic Acid 
3. Thermochemistry: Enthalpies of Reaction and Formation 
4. Vapour Pressure of a Binary Solution 
5. Adiabatic Expansion of a Gas