Article ID: CBB001210468

Mathematical Thinking in Chemistry (2012)


Restrepo, Guillermo (Author)
Villaveces, José L. (Author)

Volume: 18
Pages: 3--22

Publication Date: 2012
Edition Details: Part of a special issue, “Chemistry and Mathematics, Part 1”.
Language: English

Mathematical chemistry is often thought to be a 20 th-century subdiscipline of chemistry, but in this paper we discuss several early chemical ideas and some landmarks of chemistry as instances of the mathematical way of thinking; many of them before 1900. By the mathematical way of thinking, we follow Weyl's description of it in terms of functional thinking, i.e. setting up variables, symbolizing them, and seeking for functions relating them. The cases we discuss are Plato's triangles, Geoffroy's affinity table, Lavoisier's classification of substances and their relationships, Mendeleev's periodic table, Cayley's enumeration of alkanes, Sylvester's association of algebra and chemistry, and Wiener's relationship between molecular structure and boiling points. These examples show that mathematical chemistry has much more than a century of history

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Article Restrepo, Guillermo; Schummer, Joachim (2012) Editorial Introduction. Hyle (p. 1). unapi

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Authors & Contributors
Parshall, Karen V. Hunger
Joly, Bernard
Crilly, Tony
Steven H. Weintraub
Di Giacomo, Francesco
De Berg, Kevin
Substantia: An International Journal of the History of Chemistry
Revue d'Histoire des Sciences
Foundations of Chemistry
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Science and Education
Oxford University Press
Johns Hopkins University Press
Mathematics and its relationship to science
Chemical elements
Periodic system of the elements; periodic table
Mendeleev, Dmitri Ivanovich
Lavoisier, Antoine Laurent
Sylvester, James Joseph
Geoffroy, Étienne-François
Cayley, Arthur
Time Periods
19th century
18th century
20th century
20th century, late
17th century
Great Britain
Académie Royale des Sciences (France)
International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry

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