Second cycle degree in CHEMISTRY

Campus: PADOVA

Language: English

Teaching period: First Semester


Number of ECTS credits allocated: 10

Prerequisites: B.Sc. level knowledge of Physical Chemistry and Physics.
Examination methods: Written and oral exams, as well as active participation in the course and associated laboratory experiments.
The written tests will focus on specific topics of the course, to facilitate a fast and progressive learning of the content of the classroom lectures.
The oral exam is meant to evaluate the students' capability of utilizing the acquired skills and methodologies to address chemical problems.
Course unit contents: Part A.
Fundamentals of statistical thermodynamics: probability distribution, statistical ensembles, Boltzmann statistics, Maxwell velocity distribution, equipartition of energy. Applications: thermodynamic properties of the ideal gas, heat capacity of solids.
Electric properties of molecules (dipole and higher order multipoles, polarizability) and their connection with the dielectric properties of matter. Applications: dielectric constant of liquids, electrostatic contribution to the solvation free energy.
Inter.molecular interactions: pair interactions and their expressions in terms of molecular quantities. Applications: lattice energy of ionic crystals, equation of state of van der Waals fluids.
Interaction of molecules with electromagnetic fields: time-dependent perturbation theory, transition probability, Fermi golden rule.
Classroom activities will also concern practical application of the methods introduced during the lectures.

Part B.
The first part concerns chemical kinetics: fundamental principles, temperature effect on chemical reactions, Arrhenius equation. Afterward, we will introduce: the Collision theory; the Transition-State theory; mass-transport mechanisms; homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis. The second part of the course focuses on electrode kinetics, with particular emphasis on mass transport and charge transfer as the rate-determining steps. These analyses are addressed with reference to the most popular electrochemical methods. In the third part, the Marcus theory and further quanto-mechanical developments are described together with the distance effect on electron transfer and some applications to specific systems.
Finally, laboratory experiments have been devised to blend the above concepts on a practical standpoint.