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Physical Chemistry - Essay Example

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Democritus had first suggested that the atom existed, but no conclusive studies had been carried out to prove its existence (Vasilescu & Adrian-Scotto,…
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Physical Chemistry
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Physical Chemistry

This motivated John Dalton to study what makes different reactions unique.
John Dalton, in his childhood years was educated by his father, and a man who managed a private school, called John Fletcher. He gained a wide understanding of science from the unofficial tutoring by John Gough. At age 27 he was appointed to teach mathematics and natural philosophy at the New College where he taught for 7 years (Emery, 1988).
Dalton formulated the theory after carrying out experiments into the behaviour of various gases. These experiments were based on 2 laws. The first was the law of conservation of mass (by Antoine Lavoisier) that posits that the overall mass in a chemical process does not change (Dial, et al., 2009). The next law was the law of definite proportions (by Joseph Proust) that posits that when a compound is stripped into its basic elements the masses of the basic elements will have similar quantities, irrespective of the amount of the original material. As a follow-up to the experiment conducted by Proust on oxides of tin, John Dalton conducted the same experiment on the oxides of tin. He also experimented with water and how it absorbed carbon dioxide and nitrogen. Dalton also started the study of various atomic weights depending on the combinations of the mass proportions, while taking the hydrogen atom as the base standard. 
From the laws Dalton established the law of multiple proportions that posits that when 2 chemical elements combine to produce more than one likely compound then the proportion of the second element’s mass that joined with a specific mass of the first element will be represented as proportions of whole numbers (Niaz, 2001). The results of this laid the foundation for Dalton’s Atomic Laws. These are made up of five theorems. The first theorem posits that an element, in its unmixed state, is made up of particles referred to as atoms. The second posits that all the atoms in ... Read More
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