15750 - Basics Principles of Chemistry

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Docente: Nadia Lotti
  • Credits: 9
  • SSD: CHIM/07
  • Language: Italian
  • Moduli: Nadia Lotti (Modulo 1) Nadia Lotti (Modulo 2) Nadia Lotti (Modulo 3)
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures (Modulo 1) Traditional lectures (Modulo 2) Traditional lectures (Modulo 3)
  • Campus: Cesena
  • Corso: First cycle degree programme (L) in Biomedical Engineering (cod. 9082)

    Also valid for First cycle degree programme (L) in Electronics Engineering (cod. 5834)

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student has acquired knowledge of the correlations between the microstructure of the matter and its chemical-physical properties. In particular, the student will be able to understand the properties and structure of molecules of biological interest.

Course contents

Atomic structure of matter.
The atom and its constituents: electron, proton, neutron. The elements: the atomic number and the mass number; isotopes. Absolute and relative atomic masses. The mole and the number of Avogadro. The compounds. Minimum formula, molecular formula and structural formula of a compound. IUPAC nomenclature for the most common inorganic compounds. Main classes of inorganic compounds.

Electronic structure of atoms.
General information on electromagnetic waves. Photons. Photoelectric effect. The uncertainty principle and the De Broglie waves. Wave mechanics. Quantum numbers and orbitals. The hydrogen atom in wave mechanics. The structure of polyelectronic atoms. Electron spin: the Pauli exclusion principle and Hund's rule. Electronic configurations of atoms.

The periodic classification of the elements.
The periodic table and the periodic properties of the elements.

The chemical bond.
Parameters of the molecular structure. Classification of chemical bonds. The ionic bond and the lattice energy. Ionic valence. The covalent bond: simple and multiple bonds. Hybrid orbitals and molecular geometry. Polarity of molecules. The theory of molecular orbitals. The metallic bond: the band theory. The weak ties.

Chemical reactions.
The stoichiometric equation and its quantitative meaning. Types of reactions; redox reactions. The oxidation number and its calculation. Balancing of redox reactions. Stoichiometric calculations.

The states of aggregation of the matter.
The gaseous state: the ideal gas model and the equation of state of perfect gases, mixtures of ideal gases. Real gases (outline). The liquid state: solutions; ways of expressing solution concentrations; physical units and chemical units. Calculations on solution concentrations. The solid state: ionic, covalent, molecular and metallic crystals.

The enthalpy status function. Training enthalpies; standard states and standard enthalpies. Combustion enthalpy. Law of Hess and its applications.

The colligative properties.Ebullioscopic elevation. Cryoscopic lowering. Osmotic pressure.

Chemical kinetics.
Definition of the reaction speed. Kinetic equations and reaction orders. Reaction mechanisms and molecularity of elementary processes. Influence of temperature on the reaction rate: the Arrhenius equation. Activation energy and steric factor. Catalysis: catalysts and inhibitors. Properties of catalysts: activity, stability and selectivity. Homogeneous catalysis and heterogeneous catalysis. Enzymatic catalysis.

Chemical equilibrium.
The chemical equilibrium from the kinetic point of view; the equilibrium constant K. Various expressions of K. Equilibrium in homogeneous systems and in heterogeneous systems. Balance shift. Equilibria in aqueous solution. Water self-healing. Acidic, basic and neutral solutions: the concept of pH. Acids and bases. The strength of acids and bases. Calculations (of concentrations and pH) on ionic equilibria in aqueous solution: exact and approximate settings. Buffer solutions.

Oxidation-reduction reactions of biological interest: the flow of electrons to produce biological work. Stacks: general information on batteries, types of semi-elements, schematic representation of a stack. The electrochemical series of standard potentials. Electrolytic phenomena (outlines).

Organic chemistry: hydrocarbons: alkanes, alkenes, alkynes and aromatic compounds. Functional groups: alcohols, ethers, phenols, aldehydes and ketones, carboxylic acids, amines and amides. Main reactions of organic compounds and general principles of reaction mechanisms. Electronic delocalization and resonance. Stereoisomery. Structural effects on reactivity: inductive, resonance and steric effects.


1. R.A. Michelin, A. Munari - " Fondamenti di Chimica ", Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, Milano, 2019.

2. R.A. Michelin, P. Sgarbossa, M. Mozzon, A. Munari - "CHIMICA, Test ed Esercizi", Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, Milano, 2018.

3. W. Brown, T. Poon "Introduzione alla Chimica Organica" III ed. EDISES (Na) (2008)

Teaching methods

The course includes a part of theory and a part of exercises; in the latter the students will be guided in the resolution of exercises such as stoichiometric calculations, balancing of redox reactions, calculating the heat of formation, calculating the concentration of a solution and calculating pH.

Lessons will be delivered in blended mode taking into account the government's indications regarding the COVID-19 emergency

Assessment methods

The learning assessment involves two written tests. Each of them includes a part consisting of multiple choice theory quizzes (typically from 22 to 28), theoretical questions and exercises (usually 4) on topics carried out in classroom exercises. To be able to attend the second written test, you must have obtained a sufficient mark (at least 18) in the first.

Given the persistence of COVID-19, it has not yet been established whether the examination tests will be conducted in person or online

Teaching tools

Video projector and blackboard.
The teaching material is also available at https://virtuale.unibo.it/

Office hours

See the website of Nadia Lotti


Good health and well-being

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.