Practical Chemical Thermodynamics for Geoscientists

Practical Chemical Thermodynamics for Geoscientists, 1st Edition

Practical Chemical Thermodynamics for Geoscientists, 1st Edition,Bruce Fegley, Jr.,ISBN9780080918143


Academic Press



Reader-friendly approach introduces students to applications of thermodynamics in the geosciences

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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


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.


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

Bruce Fegley, Jr.

Affiliations and Expertise

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

Practical Chemical Thermodynamics for Geoscientists, 1st Edition



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 Helmholtz Free Energy

IX Entropy and Probability


Chapter 7. Phase Equilibria of Pure Materials

I Basic Concepts and Definitions

II Phase Equilibria, the Clapeyron Equation, and the Clausius-Clapeyron Equation

III Effect of Total Pressure on Vapor Pressure

IV Types of Phase Transitions

V Melting Curves and Polymorphic Phase Transitions at High Pressures


Chapter 8. Equations of State

I The Maxwell Relations and Thermodynamic Formulas

II Real Gas Equations of State and Thermodynamics

III Thermodynamic Properties of Real Gases

IV Thermodynamic Properties of Gas Mixtures

V Critical Phenomena of Real Gases

VI Equations of State for Solids and Liquids


Chapter 9. The Third Law of Thermodynamics

I Historical Development of the Nernst Heat Theorem

II The Third Law and Its Consequences

III The Third Law and Entropy

IV Absolute Entropy Values and the Third Law


Chapter 10. Chemical Equilibria

I Chemical Equilibria of Gases

II Gas-Condensed Phase Equilibria

III Gibbs Free Energy and Electrochemistry


Chapter 11. Solutions

I Basic Concepts

II Partial Molal Properties

III Thermodynamic Properties of Ideal and Dilute Solutions

IV Thermodynamic Properties of Nonideal (Real) Solutions

V Aqueous Solutions

VI Activity Coefficients of Aqueous Electrolytes


Chapter 12. Phase Equilibria of Binary Systems

I Binary Phase Diagrams


Chapter 2. Problem Solutions

Chapter 3. Problem Solutions

Chapter 4. Problem Solutions

Chapter 5. Solutions

Chapter 6. Solutions

Chapter 7. Problem Solutions


Chapter 8. Problem Solutions

Chapter 9. Problem Solutions


Chapter 10. Problem Solution


Chapter 11. Solutions

Chapter 12. Problem Solutions


Appendix 1

Appendix 2



Quotes and reviews

"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

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