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  1. The 4s and 3d Subshells: Which One Fills First in Progressing Through the Periodic Table and Which One Fills First in Any Particular Atom? [REVIEW]Sadegh Salehzadeh & Farahnaz Maleki - 2016 - Foundations of Chemistry 18 (1):57-65.
    In this paper, first we discuss an old problem in teaching electron configuration of transition metals and the order in which the orbitals are filled. Then we propose two simple computational experiments, in order to show that in the case of first row transition metals and the main group elements after them, the electrons occupy the 3d subshell before the 4s. It is shown that if we begin with the bare nucleus of above elements in the vacuum and then continue (...)
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  • Mendeleev's Discovery of the Periodic Law: The Origin and the Reception. [REVIEW]Masanori Kaji - 2003 - Foundations of Chemistry 5 (3):189-214.
    This paper addresses the conceptual as well as social origins of Mendeleev’s discovery of the periodic law and its reception by the chemical community by taking account of three factors: Mendeleev’s early research and its relevance to the discovery; his concepts of chemistry, especially that of the chemical elements; and the social context of the discovery and the reception in the chemical community. Mendeleev's clear distinction between abstract elements and simple bodies was a departure from Lavoisier’s famous definition of elements (...)
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  • Periodic Patterns: The Group (N) and Group (N + 10) Linkage. [REVIEW]Geoff Rayner-Canham - 2013 - Foundations of Chemistry 15 (2):229-237.
    The early Periodic Tables displayed an 8-Group system. Though we now use an 18-Group array, the old versions were based on evidence of similarities between what we now label as Group (n) and the corresponding Group (n + 10). As part of a series on patterns in the Periodic Table, in this contribution, these similarities are explored for the first time in a systematic manner. Pourbaix (Eh–pH) diagrams have been found particularly useful in this context.
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  • Newlands Revisited: A Display of the Periodicity of the Chemical Elements for Chemists. [REVIEW]E. G. Marks & J. A. Marks - 2010 - Foundations of Chemistry 12 (1):85-93.
    This is a periodic table explicitly for chemists rather than physicists. It is derived from Newlands’ columns. It solves many problems such as the positions of hydrogen, helium, beryllium, zinc and the lanthanoids but all within a succinct format.
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  • On the Rightful Place for He Within the Periodic Table.Octavio Novaro - 2008 - Foundations of Chemistry 10 (1):3-12.
    Many different arguments have been put forward in order to assign the best place for a given element within Mendeleev's Table: its spectroscopy, its chemical activity, the crystalline structure of its solid state, etc. We here propose another criterion; the nature of the few body corrections to the pairwise additive energy. This argument is used here to address a question often brought forward by Eric Scerri in Foundations of Chemistry, namely the rightful place of helium; either above the column of (...)
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  • Developing the Periodic Law: Mendeleev's Work During 1869–1871. [REVIEW]Nathan M. Brooks - 2002 - Foundations of Chemistry 4 (2):127-147.
  • What is an Element? What is the Periodic Table? And What Does Quantum Mechanics Contribute to the Question?Eric R. Scerri - 2012 - Foundations of Chemistry 14 (1):69-81.
    This article considers two important traditions concerning the chemical elements. The first is the meaning of the term “element” including the distinctions between element as basic substance, as simple substance and as combined simple substance. In addition to briefly tracing the historical development of these distinctions, I make comments on the recent attempts to clarify the fundamental notion of element as basic substance for which I believe the term “element” is best reserved. This discussion has focused on the writings of (...)
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  • A Critique of Weisberg’s View on the Periodic Table and Some Speculations on the Nature of Classifications.Eric R. Scerri - 2012 - Foundations of Chemistry 14 (3):275-284.
    This article carefully analyzes a recent paper by Weisberg in which it is claimed that when Mendeleev discovered the periodic table he was not working as a modeler but instead as a theorist. I argue that Weisberg is mistaken in several respects and that the periodic table should be regarded as a classification, not as a theory. In the second part of the article an attempt is made to elevate the status of classifications by suggesting that they provide a form (...)
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  • How Chemistry Shifts Horizons: Element, Substance, and the Essential.Joseph E. Earley Sr - 2009 - Foundations of Chemistry 11 (2):65-77.
    In 1931 eminent chemist Fritz Paneth maintained that the modern notion of “element” is closely related to (and as “metaphysical” as) the concept of element used by the ancients (e.g., Aristotle). On that basis, the element chlorine (properly so-called) is not the elementary substance dichlorine, but rather chlorine as it is in carbon tetrachloride. The fact that pure chemicals are called “substances” in English (and closely related words are so used in other European languages) derives from philosophical compromises made by (...)
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  • The First Metals in Mendeleiev’s Table: Part II. A New Argument Against the Placement of Hydrogen Atop the Alkali Metal Column. [REVIEW]Raymundo Hernández & Octavio Novaro - 2014 - Foundations of Chemistry 16 (3):177-180.
    Every so often an experiment trying to give reliable evidence for a metallic hydrogen solid is reported. Such evidence is, however, not too convincing. As Eric Scerri has recently reiterated, “the jury is still out on that issue” . This search stems from the common spectroscopy shared by the hydrogen atom and all the alkali metal atoms, and perhaps is guided by a desire to place hydrogen atop the alkali metals, in Mendeleiev’s Table, reinforced by the fact pointed out by (...)
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  • Lavoisier and Mendeleev on the Elements.Robin Findlay Hendry - 2004 - Foundations of Chemistry 7 (1):31-48.
    Lavoisier defined an element as a chemicalsubstance that cannot be decomposed usingcurrent analytical methods. Mendeleev saw anelement as a substance composed of atoms of thesame atomic weight. These `definitions' doquite different things: Lavoisier'sdistinguishes the elements from the compounds,so that the elements may form the basis of acompositional nomenclature; Mendeleev's offersa criterion of sameness and difference forelemental substances, while Lavoisier's doesnot. In this paper I explore the historical andtheoretical background to each proposal.Lavoisier's and Mendeleev's explicitconceptions of elementhood differed from eachother, and (...)
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  • Isodiagonality in the Periodic Table.Geoff Rayner-Canham - 2011 - Foundations of Chemistry 13 (2):121-129.
    Diagonal relationships in the periodic table were recognized by both Mendeléev and Newlands. More appropriately called isodiagonal relationships, the same three examples of lithium with magnesium, beryllium with aluminum, and boron with silicon, are commonly cited. Here, these three pairs of elements are discussed in detail, together with evidence of isodiagonal linkages elsewhere in the periodic table. General criteria for defining isodiagonality are proposed.
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  • Concerning Electronegativity as a Basic Elemental Property and Why the Periodic Table is Usually Represented in its Medium Form.Mark R. Leach - 2013 - Foundations of Chemistry 15 (1):13-29.
    Electronegativity, described by Linus Pauling described as “The power of an atom in a molecule to attract electrons to itself” (Pauling in The nature of the chemical bond, 3rd edn, Cornell University Press, Ithaca, p 88, 1960), is used to predict bond polarity. There are dozens of methods for empirically quantifying electronegativity including: the original thermochemical technique (Pauling in J Am Chem Soc 54:3570–3582, 1932), numerical averaging of the ionisation potential and electron affinity (Mulliken in J Chem Phys 2:782–784, 1934), (...)
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  • Periodicity in the Formulae of Carbonyls and the Electronic Basis of the Periodic Table.Peter G. Nelson - 2013 - Foundations of Chemistry 15 (2):199-208.
    The basis of the Periodic Table is discussed. Electronic configuration recurs in only 21 out of the 32 groups. A better basis is derived by considering the highest classical valency (v) exhibited by an element and a new measure, the highest valency in carbonyl compounds (v*). This leads to a table based on the number of outer electrons possessed by an atom (N) and the number of electrons required for it to achieve an inert (noble) gas configuration (N*). Periodicity of (...)
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  • The First Metals in Mendeleiev’s Table: Further Arguments to Place He Above Ne and Not Above Be. [REVIEW]Alejandro Ramírez-Solís & Octavio Novaro - 2014 - Foundations of Chemistry 16 (2):87-91.
    In a recent paper in this Journal, one of us argued against placing He above Be in Mendeleiev’s system of the elements. In it the goal was to dispute the notion that in Mendeleiev’s system of the elements the location of He should in fact lie above Be, which has a very similar electronic configuration, rather than above the noble gas column. That paper was based on rather old, Hartree–Fock limit studies on the strikingly limited non-additive contributions in the He3 (...)
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  • Chemical Elements and the Problem of Universals.M. F. Sharlow - 2006 - Foundations of Chemistry 8 (3):225-242.
    In this paper, I explore a seldom-recognized connection between the ontology of abstract objects and a current issue in the philosophy of chemistry. Specifically, I argue that realism with regard to universals implies a view of chemical elements similar to F.A. Paneth’s thesis about the dual nature of the concept of element.
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  • Explaining the Periodic Table, and the Role of Chemical Triads.Eric Scerri - 2010 - Foundations of Chemistry 12 (1):69-83.
    Some recent work in mathematical chemistry is discussed. It is claimed that quantum mechanics does not provide a conclusive means of classifying certain elements like hydrogen and helium into their appropriate groups. An alternative approach using atomic number triads is proposed and the validity of this approach is defended in the light of some predictions made via an information theoretic approach that suggests a connection between nuclear structure and electronic structure of atoms.
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  • What and How Physics Contributes to Understanding the Periodic Law.V. N. Ostrovsky - 2001 - Foundations of Chemistry 3 (2):145-181.
    The current status of explanation worked out by Physics for the Periodic Law is considered from philosophical and methodological points of view. The principle gnosiological role of approximations and models in providing interpretation for complicated systems is emphasized. The achievements, deficiencies and perspectives of the existing quantum mechanical interpretation of the Periodic Table are discussed. The mainstream ab initio theory is based on analysis of selfconsistent one-electron effective potential. Alternative approaches employing symmetry considerations and applying group theory usually require some (...)
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  • Concerning the Position of Hydrogen in the Periodic Table.Lawrence J. Sacks - 2006 - Foundations of Chemistry 8 (1):31-35.
    The placement of hydrogen in the periodic table has unique implications for fundamental questions of chemical behavior. Recent arguments in favor of placing hydrogen either separately at the top of the table or as a member of the carbon family are shown to have serious defects. A Coulombic model, in which all compounds of hydrogen are treated as hydrides, places hydrogen exclusively as the first member of the halogen family and forms the basis for reconsideration of fundamental concepts in bonding (...)
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  • Where to Put Hydrogen in a Periodic Table?Michael Laing - 2007 - Foundations of Chemistry 9 (2):127-137.
    A modification of the regular medium-form periodic table is presented in which certain elements are placed in more than one position. H is included at the top of both the alkali metals and the halogens; He is above Be and above Ne. The column of noble gases is duplicated as Groups O and 18. The elements of the second and third periods are duplicated above the transition metals. This arrangement displays more patterns and connections between the elements than are seen (...)
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  • A Revised Periodic Table: With the Lanthanides Repositioned. [REVIEW]Michael Laing - 2004 - Foundations of Chemistry 7 (3):203-233.
    The lanthanide elements from lanthanum to lutetium inclusive are incorporated into the body of the periodic table. They are subdivided into three sub-groups according to their important oxidation states: La to Sm, Eu to Tm, Yb and Lu, so that Eu and Yb fall directly below Ba; La, Gd, Lu form a column directly below Y; Ce and Tb fall in a vertical line between Zr and Hf. Pm falls below Tc; both are radioactive, and not naturally occurring. The elements (...)
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  • How Chemistry Shifts Horizons: Element, Substance, and the Essential.Joseph E. Earley - 2009 - Foundations of Chemistry 11 (2):65-77.
    In 1931 eminent chemist Fritz Paneth maintained that the modern notion of “element” is closely related to (and as “metaphysical” as) the concept of element used by the ancients (e.g., Aristotle). On that basis, the element chlorine (properly so-called) is not the elementary substance dichlorine, but rather chlorine as it is in carbon tetrachloride. The fact that pure chemicals are called “substances” in English (and closely related words are so used in other European languages) derives from philosophical compromises made by (...)
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  • Argon and the Periodic System: The Piece That Would Not Fit. [REVIEW]Carmen J. Giunta - 2001 - Foundations of Chemistry 3 (2):105-128.
    The discovery of the noble gases and their incorporation into the periodic system are examined in this paper. A chronology of experimental reports on argon and helium and the properties relevant to their nature and position in the periodic system is presented. Proposals on the nature of argon and helium that appeared in the aftermath of their discovery are examined in light of the various empirical and theoretical considerations that supported and contradicted them. ``The piece that would not fit'' refers (...)
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  • Isoelectronic Series: A Fundamental Periodic Property. [REVIEW]Geoff Rayner-Canham - 2009 - Foundations of Chemistry 11 (2):123-129.
    The usefulness of isoelectronic series (same number of total electrons and atoms and of valence electrons) across Periods is often overlooked. Here we show the ubiquitousness of isoelectronic sets by means of matrices, arrays, and sequential series. Some of these series have not previously been identified. In addition, we recommend the use of the term valence-isoelectronic for species which differ in the number of core electrons and pseudo-isoelectronic for matching (n) and (n + 10) species.
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  • A Century on From Dmitrii Mendeleev: Tables and Spirals, Noble Gases and Nobel Prizes. [REVIEW]Philip J. Stewart - 2007 - Foundations of Chemistry 9 (3):235-245.
    Mendeleev’s failure to represent the periodic system as a continuum may have hidden from him the space for the noble gases. A spiral format might have revealed the significance of the wide gaps in atomic mass between his rows. Tables overemphasize the division of the sequence into ‘periods’ and blocks. Not only do spirals express the continuity; in addition they are more attractive visually. They also facilitate a new placing for hydrogen and the introduction of an ‘element of atomic number (...)
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  • The Periodic Table and the Model of Emerging Truth.Mark Weinstein - 2016 - Foundations of Chemistry 18 (3):195-212.
    The periodic table may be seen as the most successful example of inquiry in the history of science, both in terms of practical application and theoretic understanding. As such, it serves as a model for truth as it emerges from inquiry. This paper offers a sketch of a central moment in the history of chemistry that illustrates an intuitive metamathematical construction, a model of emerging truth. The MET, reflecting the structure the surrounds the periodic table, attempts to capture the salient (...)
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  • Eka-Elements as Chemical Pure Possibilities.Amihud Gilead - 2016 - Foundations of Chemistry 18 (3):183-194.
    From Mendeleev’s time on, the Periodic Table has been an attempt to exhaust all the chemical possibilities of the elements and their interactions, whether these elements are known as actual or are not known yet as such. These latter elements are called “eka-elements” and there are still some of them in the current state of the Table. There is no guarantee that they will be eventually discovered, synthesized, or isolated as actual. As long as the actual existence of eka-elements is (...)
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  • Newlands Revisited: A Display of the Periodicity of the Chemical Elements for Chemists. E. Marks & J. Marks - 2010 - Foundations of Chemistry 12 (1):85-93.