Physical Chemistry, 9th Edition 9th Edition
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- Publisher : W.H. Freeman and Company; 9th edition (December 1, 2009)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 1060 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1429218126
- ISBN-13 : 978-1429218122
- Item Weight : 4.9 pounds
- Dimensions : 8.8 x 1.4 x 11.1 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #286,356 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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1) Before reading the chapter, look at the end of the chapter, before and after the problem section for "Further Information" and the Math lesson supplement. You need not understand it off the bat, but be familiar with what is there so that when you're going through the chapter, you can refer back to further information to make sense of the details.
2) Don't expect a perfect walk-through for the math. You need to sit there with the paper and figure out the skipped steps. There are a lot of skipped steps. Some easy algebra, other harder differentials.
3) When reading the units, you need to beware that you will see things like T/K. This doesn't mean Temperature/Kelvin or anything other that you want to make T to be, but rather saying it is temperature expressed in Kelvin. Seems like a silly way to do it, but once you get that it makes some problems easier.
4) If you get the answer manual, It is only for odds and A parts of problems. Evens and B's are in the Purple version of the answer key and that is pain in the butt to find. So I recommend looking up the previous edition to this one (i.e 8th edition solution manual) and using that one. The problems will be found under different sections/numbering but after a little searching you'll find it. The editions don't change much. No surprise there though.
5) Beware, there are questions awkwardly phrased. There is one in the first chapter regarding a tire. I solved it with my Gen Chem knowledge and it turned out to be wrong. As a class, we discussed it with our professor and found that in order to accurately answer the question, we need to define what is a tire- Meaning is it an isolated system, or not?
6) Make sure to review your basic calculus. In particular partial differentials, cross derivatives, and the terminology. By terminology I mean, something like: You have an equation U. Express U as a function of T. Know what that means.
This is a decent book, but DO NOT make the mistake of thinking it will hold your hand and walk you through a nice path of flowers. Take your time with it and do as much problems as you can as far as you can. If you can get your hand on both versions of the answer keys, I recommend doing all the problems with one, and then returning the next day and doing the B problems without the assistance of the answer key.
EDIT: I just remembered a quote I thought you all would enjoy, which I found to be true.
Thermodynamics is a funny subject. The first time you go through it, you don't understand it at all. The second time you go through it, you think you understand it, except for one or two small points. The third time you go through it, you know you don't understand it, but by that time you are so used to it, so it doesn't bother you any more. -Arnold Sommerfeld
I still feel that too many of the theoretical problems are critical concepts and should not have to be proved by the student. I do understand having them prove some, but those should mostly be proved by the author or instructor. Proof at this level should be trivial results that are obvious extensions of fundamental concepts. Outside of that, Atkins is one of the better junior level physical chemistry books. If you need something more advanced, McQuarrie is a much better text for an advanced physical chemistry class.
Top reviews from other countries
Physical Chemistry as you can imagine is basically the grey area between Physics and Chemistry. This book is pretty heavy with Maths. I personally find this book hard to read. Partly because it isn't an easy part of Chemistry and partly because this book is so dense with variables and constants it is hard to know what is going on at any one time (especially for a first year).
Some sections mainly the first few sections are pretty steady. The later sections are pretty intense and you have to spend quite some times sifting through the information for the stuff you need.
Some small things that are annoying is that you can be looking over a hard subject that uses equations and variables from other sections which are even more difficult so it can feel like the whole subject is trying to force itself onto every page.
The great thing is that this book does a good job at making a difficult subject ordered somewhat. When you finally grasp this book you will wonder what the problem was in the first place, and that feels good. Physical Chemistry is a great subject but you just have to work at it (maybe more than Organic and Inorganic).
Good luck, and just remember, stick with it, you will get there in the end.
All of the topics I have covered in university so far have been well explained by the textbook, with examples, diagrams and pictures where appropriate. The maths can sometimes get a bit tricky in physical chemistry, but this is always well explained by the text when it crops up.
I don't use the chapter self-tests very often, but they seem to cover all of the content explained to a decent depth.