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Atkins' Physical Chemistry [Paperback]

Peter Atkins , Julio de Paula
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

19 Nov 2009 0199543372 978-0199543373 9

Atkins' Physical Chemistry epitomises the benchmark of achievement for a chemistry degree throughout the world. Its broad coverage, concise explanations, and robust mathematical support are clearly presented in an engaging style to furnish students with a solid foundation in the subject.

In this ninth edition the authors continue to refine their presentation of physical chemistry. The coverage of introductory topics is streamlined, and the addition of a new fundamentals chapter provides students with an overview of key principles on which the subject is based. The text includes increased coverage of computational chemistry and additional contextual examples of materials chemistry throughout, mirroring the current needs of today's students and lecturers.

Mathematics remains an intrinsic yet challenging part of physical chemistry. Extensive mathematical support, including a 'Checklist of key equations' at the end of every chapter, and 'Mathematical background' sections containing worked examples and self-tests, empower students to overcome any barriers to understanding that grasping the mathematical content might present. These features help to ensure the reader can master the subject without a need to sacrifice the rigour and depth of the mathematical content.

The pedagogical framework, which is a hallmark of the authors' writing, has been further strengthened. New 'Key points' provide summaries of the main take-home messages of each section and enable students to gain an overview of the topic before tackling it in depth; 'Brief illustrations' give a concise insight into how a particular mathematical concept is applied in practice, providing students with the opportunity to contextualise their learning.

All these exciting new features and innovations are presented within a refreshed full colour text design, to stimulate and engage students yet further.

The Online Resource Centre contains Living Graphs, illustrations from the book, and web links. An Instructor's Solutions Manual (free to adopters) and a Student's Solutions Manual are also available.

Access to the Physical Chemistry eBook is also included with the purchase of the printed text. Offering enhanced functionality, including notetaking and highlighting, it also includes access to 'Explorations in Physical Chemistry', which contains interactive Excel worksheets and exercises related to the Living Graphs, allowing students to visualise, actively explore and test their understanding of the subject.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 1008 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford; 9 edition (19 Nov 2009)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 0199543372
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199543373
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 28.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 36,230 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


In summary this is another very impressive book. The Atkins' Physical chemistry book continues to improve with each successive thanks to the commitment of the authors to make t he book more accessible to its readers and more relevant to modern physical chemistry.

About the Author

Peter Atkins is a fellow of Lincoln College in the University of Oxford and the author of more than sixty books for students and a general audience. His texts are market leaders around the globe. A frequent lecturer in the United States and throughout the world, he has held visiting professorships in France, Israel, Japan, China, and New Zealand. He was the founding chairman of the Committee on Chemistry Education of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry and was a member of IUPAC's Physical and Biophysical Chemistry Division.

Julio de Paula is Professor of Chemistry and Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at Lewis & Clark College. A native of Brazil, Professor de Paula received a B.A. degree in chemistry from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, and a Ph.D. in biophysical chemistry from Yale University. His research activities encompass the areas of molecular spectroscopy, biophysical chemistry, and nanoscience. He has taught courses in general chemistry, physical chemistry, biophysical chemistry, instrumental analysis, and writing.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Strong in parts but overall weak 17 Oct 2012
By Andrew Dalby VINE VOICE
This has become the standard textbook for Physical Chemistry in most University Chemistry Departments and this has made Atkins very rich but I cannot understand why. Atkins research area was quantum mechanics and so I was concerned about the review that points out errors in his treatment of quantum mechanics. I have read his monograph on Thermodynamics and that is excellent and shows the area where he can really show his knowledge of his subject, but the coverage of equilibria and kinetics is poor.

The problems with the explanations and symbols in treating chemical equilibria caused me to fail my first year physical chemistry exam. It is treated particularly badly. Later I became a specialist in physical chemistry and a computational chemist before finally becoming a computational biochemist. But after that first disaster I never used Atkins again. There are much more accessible and clearer texts and so I would not recommend it.
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Chemistry Undergraduates: read this before buying 22 July 2010
By danrak
As a final year chemistry student I would like to impart some invaluable knowledge to all new students.

This book is no doubt very good, I bought the previous addition in my first year and it has served me well. However, you will save an awful lot of money buying older editions. Doing so will not damage you education in any way. I assure you that none of your lecturers (unless you are lucky enough to be taught by Prof. Atkins himself) will be using the new edition.

If you do not believe me then go to your university library, which will no doubt have several different editions of the book. Have a look though and you will quickly see that there is very little difference between each edition.

One last thing - if you do not want to buy every book on your chemistry reading list, might I suggest the 'holy trinity' of:

Atkins' Physical Chemistry, 7th Ed.
Organic Chemistry - Clayden et al
Inorganic Chemistry - Housecroft and Sharpe

These three covered everything I was taught in the first three years and will no doubt be useful in my final year. Enjoy your studies
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not easy reading 19 July 2013
By S. Lau
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Incredibly dense and intimidating for first year undergraduate chemists but as your course progresses so too does your understanding of the physical concepts shrouding our world. Though at times derivations are vague a must have for an undergraduate chemists.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Quantity instead of quality. 23 Sep 2010
I have always been puzzled by the popularity of Atkins' Physical Chemistry. It is not a book that one can use to learn something properly. An enormous number of topics is discussed, but the relations between them aren't. There are paragraphs called Justifications that are supposed to indicate links, but they are much to superficial to be useful. The authors have simply tried to cram too much in too few pages. As a consequence the book promotes rote learning and not understanding. This means that students who have used this book are not capable of any useful reasoning in the field of physical chemistry.

There is also the problem of fundamental errors. This is particularly bad in the chapters using quantum theory (chapters 7 to 11). Here are some of the worse ones that I found.
- The wavefunctions of the Schrödinger equations are not the only wavefunctions that can occur as claimed on page 260. In fact the book even shows other wavefunctions.
- Energy is not always quantized as is suggested in chapter 7. Again the book is inconsistent. It shows examples were the energy varies continuously.
- The conditions on the wavefunction on page 266 are neither all relevant for quantization, nor sufficient.
- The list on page 279 of the "postulates" of quantum mechanics is far from complete, and the Heisenberg uncertainty relation is not a postulate.
- Covalent and ionic bonds are not treated differently in quantum chemistry (page 371).
- Section 10.3 (page 379) tries to explain chemical bonds in terms of an accumulation of charge between the nuclei. In the example the normalization of the wavefunction is ignored however. Including it shows that the opposite of accumulation occurs.
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5.0 out of 5 stars book you definitely need for studies 18 May 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm rating 5 because the book arrived fast, it was exactly what I ordered and it was quite cheap compared to all the hard cover books which are double this price. I recommend it to all the chemistry students, no matter if they are first/second/third year.
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To put it simply: this is THE textbook on physchem. It is not my favorite reference (I prefer Levines book), but thats just a matter of personal taste. A wonderfully structured and comprehensive book, where the chapters are cross-referencing for making it easier to read in whatever way suits you (and makes it easier to use for reading up later on). Also, the "Further Informations" and "Mathematical Backgrounds"-sections makes the text more or less complete for a wide variety of readers. Great exercises and very well written.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars recomended text book for Chemistry,
a must for A level chemistry.
well written and very helpful. My daughter has recently passed her A level in Chemistry and this book has helped her enormously ( her words)
Published 14 days ago by G. Mastrangelo
5.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect condition
Great but my book had a small dent/crease on the top corner of the spine, but apart from that this is the exact book that I required and the postage was very prompt and well... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Joe R.
5.0 out of 5 stars Whhhew
Ok, if you are a new first year degree Chemistry student then brace yourself for this book.

Physical Chemistry as you can imagine is basically the grey area between... Read more
Published on 15 April 2012 by Dannystaples
4.0 out of 5 stars Essential
If anyone is doing a chemistry degree then this book is important to own. Unlike some other books its colourful which makes it much easier to read, and it explains even the harder... Read more
Published on 6 Aug 2011 by SammyD
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect.
Doing a masters undergraduate in Biochemistry, excellent and detailed book for the physical side of chemistry. Perfect balance between examples, diagrams and text!
Published on 31 July 2011 by Piyush Patel
5.0 out of 5 stars Excelent book
This version of APC is much better than the previous version (8e) for several reasons. Firstly the images are much improved, and some of the previously un readable diagrams are now... Read more
Published on 10 Oct 2010 by Ben
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