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Spring 2009: Chem 2C

Note: Add codes will be provided in class if you do not already have one.

Course outline: PDF

Phelps 1508, T & R, 9:30 pm to 10:45 pm: Office hours following class or by appointment

TA: Lani Seaman (lseaman-at-chem)

Textbook (required):

Chemical Principles — The Quest for Insight, Peter Atkins and Loretta Jones, 4e. W. H. Freeman, New York. We will cover chapters 1, 2, 3, 14, 15, & 16.


o Periodic table of the elements with plotting capabilities. Horrible ads !

o Printable (PDF) periodic table from NIST with electronic configurations.

o Blackbody spectrum. Also look at the wikipedia page on blackbody radiation.

o The quantum corral, or quantum particles in 2D boxes.

o This image, hosted by Professor M. G. Bawendi at MIT, shows how small particles of CdSe, made in different sizes, emit different colors when excited by UV light. To a first approximation, the different colors correspond to the length of the quantum mechanical box: the longer the box, the smaller the energy between the different quantum states, and the more red the emission. Remember red = low energy and blue = high energy.

o Look at the wikipedia entry on G. N. Lewis, which includes a fascinating photograph of his 1902 notebook page trying to understand the structure of atoms. And here is the original paper by Lewis in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, where he proposes the octet rule (you will have to be on the university network to have download rights). Note, remarkably, that this paper was written when very little was known about the atom. Bohr had only just proposed his model, and Moseley had only just reported his experiments to determine atomic numbers using x-rays. The number of electrons in He were not known !

o Apropos VSEPR theory, here is the original review by Sidgwick and Powell as a PDF file from the JSTOR website. And the later paper by Gillespie and Nyholm that made some crucial corrections to the original work: DOI. Also look, for example, at the paper by Andersson (DOI) on the stereochemistry of xenon compounds, suggesting corrections to VSEPR theory. You will have to be on the university network to have download rights to these papers.

o Water is blue (D2O is not): Look at this web site. Also here is the 1922 paper by Raman pointing out that it was not due to the reflection of a blue sky.


Date Description Resources
T 3/31 The nuclear atom to Rydberg formula
R 4/2 Black body radiation to the Uncertainty Principle Assignment 1
T 4/7 The Schrödinger equation, particle in a box, zero point energy Notes
R 4/9 The hydrogen atom, quantum numbers, orbitals Assignment 2
T 4/14 Periodic table, electron configurations, radii
R 4/16 Ionization energies, electron affinity, ions, ionic bonding Assignment 3
T 4/21 Covalent bonds, Lewis structures, resonance, formal charge
R 4/23 Radicals, biradicals, dipoles, electronegativity, polarizability Assignment 4
T 4/28 Bond strength, bond lengths, covalent radii
R 4/30 Midterm 1 (solutions)
T 5/5 VSEPR, polar molecules Assignment 5
R 5/7 Valence bond theory, hybridization
T 5/12 MO theory, homonuclear diatomics, heteronuclear diatomics Assignment 6
R 5/14 Polyatomic systems, benzene, crystal structures, 1D solids
T 5/19 Midterm 2
R 5/21 Chapter 14, the first four main groups Assignment 7
T 5/26 Chapter 15, the last four main groups
R 5/29 Chapter 16, the transition elements
T 6/2 Review of chapters 14 and 15 Review 1
R 6/4 Review of chapters 1, 2, and 3

This page: http://www.mrl.ucsb.edu/~seshadri/teach.html