Practical Chemical Thermodynamics for Geoscientists

1st Edition

Authors: Bruce Fegley, Jr.
Hardcover ISBN: 9780122511004
eBook ISBN: 9780080918143
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 11th July 2012
Page Count: 732
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Practical Chemical Thermodynamics for Geoscientists covers classical chemical thermodynamics and focuses on applications to practical problems in the geosciences, environmental sciences, and planetary sciences. This book will provide a strong theoretical foundation for students, while also proving beneficial for earth and planetary scientists seeking a review of thermodynamic principles and their application to a specific problem.

Key Features

  • Strong theoretical foundation and emphasis on applications
  • Numerous worked examples in each chapter
  • Brief historical summaries and biographies of key thermodynamicists—including their fundamental research and discoveries
  • Extensive references to relevant literature


Students and researchers in earth sciences and related fields, including astronomy and physics

Table of Contents



Chapter 1. Definition, Development, and Applications of Thermodynamics

I Historical Development of Chemical Thermodynamics

II Pioneering Applications in the Geosciences

III Thermodynamics versus Kinetics

Chapter 2. Important Concepts and Mathematical Methods

I Definitions

II Pressure and Temperature

III Boyle’s Law

IV Charles’s or Gay-Lussac’s Law

V Dalton’s Law

VI An Ideal Gas Thermometer

VII Ideal Gas Equation of State (the Ideal Gas Law)

VIII The PVT Surface for an Ideal Gas

IX Complete Differentials and the PVT Surface of an Ideal Gas

X Thermal Expansion Coefficient

XI Compressibility Coefficient

XII Some Further Notes about Differentials


Chapter 3. The First Law of Thermodynamics

I Historical Overview of Ideas about Heat and Work

II The First Law of Thermodynamics

III Some Applications of the First Law to Ideal Gases

IV Adiabatic Processes and the Thermal Structure of Planetary Atmospheres

V Other Types of Work


Chapter 4. Thermal Properties of Pure Substances and Some Applications

I Some Basic Concepts about Heat Capacity and Enthalpy

II An Overview of Calorimetry

III Thermal Properties of Solids


Chapter 5. Thermochemistry

I Some Basic Concepts

II Calorimetric Measurement of Reaction Enthalpies

III Some Applications of Thermochemistry


Chapter 6. The Second Law of Thermodynamics and Entropy

I A Review of Some Important Definitions

II Historical Development of the Second Law


IV Carnot Cycle

V Thermodynamic Temperature Scale

VI Entropy

VII Some Applications of the Second Law

VIII Gibbs and Helm


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About the Author

Bruce Fegley, Jr.

Affiliations and Expertise

Washington University, Planetary Chemistry Laboratory, St. Louis, MO, USA


"Bruce Fegley has scripted a comprehensive text in classical phenomenological thermodynamics…The greatest strength of this volume is its attention to the needs of the student. I hope its greatest value will be in drawing a new generation to apply classical thermodynamics in the geosciences with intellectual rigor." --Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 2013

"This book covers thermodynamics from a different angle. Fegley…puts a much stronger emphasis on the effects of pressure or the equilibrium between materials as they occur in the geological or planetary sciences…this focus is demonstrated in the examples and problems discussed in each of the 12 chapters." --CHOICE April 2013