Fundamentals of Chemistry

1 YEAR1 semester9 CFU
Prof. Roberto Paolesse 2019-20
Code: 8037945

To provide students with basic chemical skills, in order to facilitate the understanding of the subsequent class of the course. To provide a solid basic knowledge of chemistry, preparatory to the understanding of a wide range of phenomena. To provide the tools for a proper interpretation of matter and its transformations, both at a microscopic (atomic/molecular) and macroscopic (phenomenological) level.

At the end of the lectures, the student must have acquired the knowledge necessary to understand and apply general chemistry concepts, in particular concerning reactivity and structure of matter in its different states of aggregation, with specific regard to relevant issues of Engineering Science. The acquired skills will be employed by the student to carry out more advanced studies.

At the end of the teaching period the student must have matured the ability to apply the theory of basic chemistry to the resolution of exercises and problems, with specific reference to engegneering science.

Judgment skills are developed through individual or group works. The student will have to self-evaluate (self assessment-test) and compare with colleagues.

At the end of the teaching sessions the student will be able to use a rigorous chemical language, both in written and oral form, together with the use of graphic and formal languages to represent the descriptive models of the matter.
Inoltre lo studente avrà la possibilità di dimostrare di saper operare efficacemente nel gruppo di pari utilizzando supporti informatici per raccogliere e divulgare informazioni.
In addition, the student will have the opportunity to demonstrate that he / she can work effectively in the peer group using IT support to collect and disseminate information.

At the end of the teaching sessions the student will be able to understand and predict the outcome of the most common inorganic reactions, as well as correlate structure-reactivity properties of the fundamental inorganic compounds and of selected simple organic molecules


  • The scientific method. Elements and compounds. Chemical formulas. The balancing of chemical reactions. Chemical nomenclature (notes). Stoichiometric calculations. The principal chemical reactions. Atomic Theory. Sub-atomic particles. Isotopes. Quantum Theory. Particles and waves. Quantum numbers. Atomic orbitals. Pauli and Hund principles. Electronic structures of atoms. The periodic system and periodic properties.
  • Chemical bonds. Ionic and covalent bonds. Valence bond theory: hybridization and resonance. Determinationof meolecular structuresbased on the repulsion of the valence electron pairs (VSEPR). Molecular orbitals theory (LCAO-MO). Application of MO theory for homo- ed heteronuclear diatomic molecules of the I and II period. Dipolar interactions. Hydrogen bond. Metallic bond. Band theory. Structure and conductivity.
  • Solid state. Crystal and amorphous solids. Metals. Ionic crystals and lattice energy. Insulators and semiconductors.
  • The gaseous state. Ideal gas laws. Ideal gas equation. Dalton law. Real gases: van der Waals equation.
  • First principle of thermodynamics. State functions: Internal Energyand Enthalpy. Thermochemistry. Hess law. Secondand third principleofthermodynamics. Entropyand Free Energy. Equilibrium and spontaneity criteria. Molar free energy: activityand standard states.
  • Vapour pressure. Clapeyron equation.
  • Solutions: Phase equilibria. State diagrams. Fractional distillation.Colligative properties for ideal solutions.
  • Chemical equilibrium: Le Chatelier principle. Equilibrium constant. Law of mass action. Gaseous dissociation equilibria.
  • Electrolytic systems: electrolytic dissociation equilibria, electric conductivity. Colligative properties of electrolytic solutions. Low soluble electrolytes: solubility product.
  • Acid-base equilibria. Autoionizationof water: pH. Monoprotic and polyprotic acids and bases. Buffer solutions. Indicators. Titrations. pH dependent solubility.
  • Chemical kinetics: Chemical reactions rate, activation energy, catalysis.
  • Red-ox systems: electrode potentials. Galvanic cells: Nernst equation. Electrolysis: Faraday law; electrode discharge processes.
  • Electrochemical applications: Fuel cells, batteries. Metal corrosion.
  • Nuclear Chemistry. Notes of Organic chemistry. Polymers.