Physical Chemistry

Physical Chemistry

Multidisciplinary Applications in Society

1st Edition - June 14, 2018

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  • Author: Kenneth Schmitz
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780128005132
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128005996

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The advancements in society are intertwined with the advancements in science. To understand how changes in society occurred, and will continue to change, one has to have a basic understanding of the laws of physics and chemistry. Physical Chemistry: Multidisciplinary Applications in Society examines how the laws of physics and chemistry (physical chemistry) explain the dynamic nature of the Universe and events on Earth, and how these events affect the evolution of society (multidisciplinary applications). The ordering of the chapters reflects the natural flow of events in an evolving Universe: Philosophy of Science, the basis of the view that natural events have natural causes - Cosmology, the origin of everything from the Big Bang to the current state of the Universe - Geoscience, the physics and chemistry behind the evolution of the planet Earth from its birth to the present - Life Science, the molecules and mechanisms of life on Earth - Ecology, the interdependence of all components within the Ecosphere and the Universe - Information Content, emphasis on how words and phrases and framing of issues affect opinions, reliability of sources, and the limitations of knowledge.

Key Features

  • Addresses the four Ws of science: Why scientists believe Nature works the way it does, Who helped develop the fields of science, What theories of natural processes tell us about the nature of Nature, and Where our scientific knowledge is taking us into the future
  • Gives a historical review of the evolution of science, and the accompanying changes in the philosophy of how science views the nature of the Universe
  • Explores the physics and chemistry of Nature with minimal reliance on mathematics
  • Examines the structure and dynamics of the Universe and our Home Planet Earth
  • Provides a detailed analysis of how humans, as members of the Ecosphere, have influenced, and are continuing to influence, the dynamics of events on the paludarium called Earth
  • Presents underlying science of current political issues that shape the future of humankind
  • Emphasizes how words and phrases and framing of issues can influence the opinions of members of society
  • Makes extensive use of metaphors and everyday experiences to illustrate principles in science and social interactions


Self-motivated learners; for students of science, philosophy, and the humanities; for professionals whose fields embrace one or more fields in science; for environmentalists; and for scientists and politicians

Table of Contents

  • Science and Society - an Overview
    1. Philosophy of Science
    2. Cosmology
    3. Geosciences
    4. Life Sciences
    5. Ecology
    6. Information Content
    Appendix A. Basic Thermodynamics
    Appendix B. Forces and Flows
    Appendix C. Quantum Theory of Atoms and Molecules

Product details

  • No. of pages: 1200
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier 2018
  • Published: June 14, 2018
  • Imprint: Elsevier
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780128005132
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128005996

About the Author

Kenneth Schmitz

Kenneth S. Schmitz earned BAs in 1966 for Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics from Greenville College in Greenville, Illinois. He earned his PhD in 1972 for Physical Chemistry and Biophysics from the University of Washington in Seattle. From 1972 to 1973, Dr. Schmitz was a National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Associate in the Departments of Chemistry at the University of Washington and then Stanford University. Dr. Schmitz started his teaching career as Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida from 1973-1975. He then moved to the University of Missouri in Kansas City in 1975 where he was Assistant Professor of Chemistry until 1979, Associate Professor of Chemistry until 1986, and Professor of Chemistry until 2014. He is now Emeritus Professor of Physical Chemistry and Environmental Studies. Dr. Schmitz has won several awards/traineeships in his career including the National Science Foundation Summer Trainee, Department of Chemistry, University of Washington, Seattle in 1968 and 1969; Fellowship in the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science in 1997; and Fellowship in the Kyoto University Foundation in 1998. He organized the Gordon Research Conference in 1984, which continues to meet every other year under the name "Colloid, Macromolecular, and Polyelectrolyte Solutions." Dr. Schmitz has authored over 90 scientific publications in refereed journals, three books, an invited review article, and edited two more books. His areas of specialization include dynamic light scattering, statistical mechanics, computer simulations, and biophysics.

Affiliations and Expertise

Emeritus Professor in Physical Chemistry and Environmental Studies, University of Missouri, USA

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