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Introduction to Quantum Mechanics Hardcover – December, 1935

4.6 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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About the Author

Linus Pauling: Two-Time Nobel Laureate
In 1985 Dover reprinted Introduction to Quantum Mechanics with Applications to Chemistry, a well-known older book by Linus Pauling and E. Bright Wilson. This book had been first published fifty years earlier and remarkably still found readers in 1985, and still does today, twenty-five years further on.

The first edition of Pauling's General Chemistry was a short book of lessr than 250 pages published in 1944, during World War II. Three years later, it had more than doubled in size to almost 600 pages, and the 1953 edition was over 700 pages. Fifteen years later, for the 1970 edition, it reached its final size and configuration at almost 1,000 pages ― and that is the edition which Dover reprinted in 1988. Dr. Pauling's one request at that time was that we keep the price affordable for students.

Linus Pauling is of course the only Dover author to win two Nobel prizes, for Chemistry in 1954 and for Peace in 1962; he is the only winner in history of two unshared Nobel Prizes.

In the Author's Own Words:
"Satisfaction of one's curiosity is one of the greatest sources of happiness in life."

"Do unto others 20% better than you would expect them to do unto you, to correct for subjective error."

"The way to get good ideas is to get lots of ideas, and throw the bad ones away."

"Facts are the air of scientists. Without them you can never fly." — Linus Pauling

Critical Acclaim for General Chemistry:
"An excellent text, highly recommended." — Choice

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 568 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Inc.,US (December 1935)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0070489602
  • ISBN-13: 978-0070489608
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #642,106 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Bosco Ho on June 12, 2002
Format: Paperback
In many ways, this is still my favourite quantum mechanics text. Why? Because the text is completely grounded in the quantum mechanics of atoms and molecules.
Historically, Linus Pauling spent his post-doc working throughout Europe where he absorbed the, then, new theory of quantum mechanics. However, the physicists that he learnt q.m. from only analysed the physics of, relatively simple, atomic systems. It would require someone with an immense breadth of knowledge in chemistry to make quantum mechanics come alive for molecules. This was Linus Pauling. Pauling first applied q.m. to such diverse topics as: the chemical bond, resonance energy, electronegativity, crystal structure of molecules and hydrogen bonds.
And it shows. The uniqueness of this q.m. textbook is that it gives immensely detailed references to the different ways the early physicists/chemists attacked the q.m. of bonds in molecules. Many different ansatz's and approximations to pertubation problems are given. And Pauling should know, for he was right in the thick of it. The historical value of these references alone is worth the price of this book. It's a real shame that most modern books leave these out, because a discussion of these approximations methods give a lot of insight to q.m. in molecules.
In contrast, I find modern textbooks on physical chemistry to be often lacking in deep physical insight. However, textbooks written by physicists run into all sorts of esoteric directions like quantum entanglement and the uncertainty principle and as a previous reviewer noted, Pauling's books says nothing about scattering and hardly anything on spin. This is probably because chemists aren't interested in what happens to particles in beams or Stern-Gerlach experiments.
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Format: Paperback
Linus Pauling's treatise on quantum chemistry is even more brilliant than that on general chemistry. His vivid and clear explanation makes quantum theory so interesting and appealing to learn. Instead of going through the obscure mathematics and operator mechanics, Pauling conveys the essence of quantum mechanics in very simple language. Maybe this is how Pauling distinguishes himself as a Nobel Prize laureate. I studied Donald McQuarrie "Physical Chemistry: A Molecular Approach" (you may find my review for McQuarrie here as well) and found McQuarrie so much more understandable than Atkins. Yet Pauling's account on the subject is even more concise and motivating. The book teaches basic concepts but also ensures understanding of applied theory. While "Introduction to Quantum Mechanics" might not be as reader-friendly as its counterpart in general chemistry, I highly recommend this book for all chemistry students and those who want to adventure in advanced chemistry.
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Format: Paperback
In my opinion I found this book very useful if you start studying QM, it describe in very interesting way how the modern QM theory was develop from the old one, it use simple mathematics to describe the physical phenomena compare to the other books in the same subject, and the chemistry application is something definitely you need to understand the applied theory, with this amazing low price and the material inside the book it worth every penny.
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Format: Paperback
Linus Pauling revolutionised the chemical world by his magnum opus 'The Nature of the Chemical Bond' which would come out a few years after this book. This work first came out in the 30s when people were beginning to perceive the potential uses of quantum mechanics in Chemistry, it reveals everything you need to know about the foundations of quantum chemistry and it's indeed a priceless gem for any aspiring chemist. The problem with newer books is that they present the subject in a very dogmatic and, at times, superficial way leaving the student often puzzled and confused with all the mathematical formalities. This book has everything and I mean EVERYTHING ! At the risk of becoming pedantic for those more knowledgeable in calculus and linear algebra, every calculation and every reasoning is justified. The formalities are all unveiled and minimized but it still digs deep into the characterization of the theories of the chemical bond, electronic structure, the infamous group theory and some basic spectroscopy.
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Format: Paperback
How would an "Introduction to Philosophy" by Socrates or a "Basics of the Piano" by Mozart sound like? This is something similar. Linus Pauling, the unprecedented pioneer of the application of Quantum Mechanics to Chemistry, had written this book in the 1930s as perhaps the first introduction to QM for Chemists, supported by his colleague, E Bright Wilson, a brilliant chemist in his own right. A generation of Chemists grew up learning from this book, and its content is as relevant and articulate today as it was then. Hundreds of Quantum Chemistry books, some of which are excellent, have been written in the times since it was first published. But this book still retains an incomparable flavour that brings out the fundamental nature of QM and Chemical Bonding. I have to admit that I found this book slightly difficult, because Pauling and Wilson, although being extremely lucid, never compromise on the Math. But gradually I learnt that this is the kind of book which belongs in the same category of, say, Ernest Eliel's stereochemistry book. That means that every moment you spent on it will be worth it, even if it takes you a very long time to go through it. This is one of those books where every word is carefully thought and then stated, making the journey difficult at places, but always rewarding. And why not. It is hard to imagine anyone else writing with so much confidence on the topic. So it is important not to gloss over this book quickly and then discard it as being dry, but persist in reading it and get insight out of it. The book opens with a discussion of Lagrangian mechanics and discusses some simple examples of its applications. It then moves on to the basic principles of QM, and comes to the Hydrogen molecule, which was the pinnacle of succcess for the Physicists.Read more ›
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