Questions tagged [chemistry]

For questions about the study of chemical reactions, dynamics and related phenomena.

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How did Staudinger demonstrate that polymers are high molecular weight covalently bonded molecules?

Hermann Staudinger was awarded the 1953 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work demonstrating that polymers are high molecular weight covalently bonded molecules. Prior to his work, the consensus among ...
6
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124 views

How did early physicists experimentally assign electronic transitions in atoms?

The spectrum of hydrogen was very well studied by the mid-19th century. However, if one were doing experimental spectroscopy for more complex atoms, one would see plenty of spectral lines in the ...
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How could John Dalton hypothesised his atomic theory based on his experimental observations?

The key of this question is not simply stating the content of his theory, but telling what results or principles he had at that time and how could they lead to the theory. He was as such the first ...
2
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93 views

Is it a historical coincidence that relative atomic weights by chemical methods and mass spectrometry are very close?

The concept of relative atomic weight originated from measuring the combining weight of hydrogen with a certain element. In the simplification process H was taken as unity (18th, 19th and 20th century)...
2
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74 views

What is the difference between chemico-chemists and physico-chemists according to Van't Hoff?

“Whereas the chemico-chemists always find in industry a beautiful field of gold-laden soil, the physico-chemists stand somewhat farther off, especially those who seek only the greatest dilution, for ...
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110 views

How did the theories of Lavoisier, Davy, Arrhenius then Bronsted & Lowry come about?

What scientific experimentations, methods of thinking, ideas and so forth necessitate each individual definition of their acids / bases?
1
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56 views

In the old days, how did chemists trap and measure gases?

The old days being roughly 1600 - 1850, the time when chemistry and the nature of the elements was being investigated empirically. For example, hydrogen gas was discovered by Robert Boyle in 1671 ...
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35 views

What is the first instance in which Mendeleev published a long-form table as compared with his 8-column table of 1869?

Mendeleev is famous for having published his first periodic table in 1869. This was a short-form or 8-column table. He also published a number of 18 column periodic tables. I am asking for ...
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34 views

How could “Law of Reciprocal Proportions” be formulated before “Law of Definite Proportions”?

"Law of Reciprocal Proportions" was formulated in 1792 by Jeremias Richter, and "Law of Definite Proportions" was formulate in 1794 by Joseph Proust. How is this possible? Isn't "Law of Definite ...
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52 views

How common were death and mutilation among chemists 1750-1950?

Several famous chemists were blown up, poisoned, blinded, mutilated or got lethally sick by radiation. Are these isolated anecdotes or was researching chemistry a truly dangerous job during the period ...
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86 views

How has it been discovered that water consists of acid and base?

The chemical composition of water was discovered about 1784, but when has it been discovered that it is also composed of acid and base?