Physical Chemistry from Ostwald to Pauling: The Making of a Science in America

Physical Chemistry from Ostwald to Pauling: The Making of a Science in America

by John W. Servos
     
 

ISBN-10: 0691026149

ISBN-13: 9780691026145

Pub. Date: 03/18/1996

Publisher: Princeton University Press

John Servos explains the emergence of physical chemistry in America by presenting a series of lively portraits of such pivotal figures as Wilhelm Ostwald, A. A. Noyes, G. N. Lewis, and Linus Pauling, and of key institutions, including MIT, the University of California at Berkeley, and Caltech. In the early twentieth century, physical chemistry was a new hybrid

Overview

John Servos explains the emergence of physical chemistry in America by presenting a series of lively portraits of such pivotal figures as Wilhelm Ostwald, A. A. Noyes, G. N. Lewis, and Linus Pauling, and of key institutions, including MIT, the University of California at Berkeley, and Caltech. In the early twentieth century, physical chemistry was a new hybrid science, the molecular biology of its time. The names of its progenitors were familiar to everyone who was scientifically literate; studies of aqueous solutions and of chemical thermodynamics had transformed scientific knowledge of chemical affinity. By exploring the relationship of the discipline to industry and to other sciences, and by tracing the research of its leading American practitioners, Servos shows how physical chemistry was eclipsed by its own offspring—specialties like quantum chemistry.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691026145
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
03/18/1996
Edition description:
REPRINT
Pages:
430
Product dimensions:
6.08(w) x 9.21(h) x 1.03(d)

Table of Contents

List of Figuresix
List of Tablesxi
Prefacexiii
Acknowledgmentsxix
List of Note Abbreviationsxxi
Chapter 1Modern Chemistry Is in Need of Reform3
Chemistry and the Cartography of Science6
Chemistry in the Minor Key: Physicalist Traditions in Nineteenth-Century Chemistry11
Ambitions and Ideas Convergent: Ostwald, van't Hoff, and Arrhenius20
The New Chemistry of the Ionists39
Chapter 2Physical Chemistry from Europe to America46
The Diffusion of Physical Chemistry46
Ostwald and the Americans53
Charting the Expansion of the Discipline70
American Graduate Centers74
Why Physical Chemistry Prospered in America87
Chapter 3King Arthur's Court: Arthur A. Noyes and the Research Laboratory of Physical Chemistry100
Poverty and Promise: Boston Tech at Century's End100
The Makings of a Physical Chemist: Arthur Amos Noyes at Newburyport and MIT103
A Massachusetts Yankee Builds a Court110
From Processes to Structures: The Anomaly of Strong Electrolytes and the Problem of the Chemical Bond120
Chemical Thermodynamics: From Activities to a Table of Free Energies138
The Research Laboratory of Physical Chemistry in Retrospect150
Chapter 4The Phase Ruler: Wilder D. Bancroft and His Agenda for Physical Chemistry156
Wilder Bancroft: Gentleman Chemist159
Bancroft at Cornell163
Bancroft's Conception of Physical Chemistry168
The Appeal of the Phase Rule174
The Use and Abuse of the Phase Rule183
Bancroft Redux194
Chapter 5Physical Chemistry in the "New World of Science"202
The Integration of Science and the Industrial Order204
The Integration of Physical Chemistry and Other Sciences220
The Integration of Physical Chemistry into the University: Chemistry at California238
Chapter 6From Physical Chemistry to Chemical Physics251
The Once and Future King: A. A. Noyes from MIT to CIT253
Chemical Engineers, Physical Chemists, and the Struggle for MIT254
Caltech: From Base Camp to Temple263
Chemistry at Caltech269
Linus Pauling: From Student to Teacher275
Chapter 7A Dissenter's Decline299
From Phase Ruler to Colloid Chemist300
Bancroft's Journal and American Physical Chemists308
The End of Bancroft's Editorship and the Birth of the Journal of Chemical Physics315
Bancroft and the Traditions of Physical Chemistry321
Notes325
Index391

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