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28_562ln08 - MIT OpenCourseWare http/ocw.mit.edu 5.62...

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MIT OpenCourseWare http://ocw.mit.edu 5.62 Physical Chemistry II Spring 2008 For information about citing these materials or our Terms of Use, visit: http://ocw.mit.edu/terms .
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5.62 Spring 2008 Lecture #28 Page 1 Kinetic Theory of Gases: Maxwell-Boltzmann Distribution “Collision Theory” was invented by Maxwell (1831 - 1879) and Boltzmann (1844 - 1906) in the mid to late 19th century. Viciously attacked until ~1900-1910, when Einstein and others showed (1910) that it explained many new experiments. It is key to describing collisions in dilute gases which kinetic theory relates to transport properties such as diffusion and viscosity. Collision Theory provides an alternative to standard Statistical Mechanics for the computation of thermodynamic quantities. In Statistical Mechanics, we make simplifying assumptions about energy levels, degeneracies, and inter-particle interactions in order to compute Q(N,V,T). In Collision Theory, we start with the Maxwell-Boltzmann velocity distribution for a gas, then compute everything from Newton’s Laws. Stoss-zahl ansatz : each collision is independent of previous events. Get a classical mechanical picture for the properties of gases: * pressure * transport (mean free path, thermal conductivity, diffusion, viscosity, electrical conductivity) * reactions.
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