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Kinetic Theory of Gases and Radiation

  • Atomic hypothesis: All things are made of atoms − little particles that move around in perpetual motion, attracting each other when they are at a little distance apart and repelling when squeezed into one another.

  • Atomic theory: Proposed by John Dalton to explain the laws of definite and multiple proportions.

  • First law states that any given compound has fixed proportion by mass of its constituents.

  • Second law states that when two elements form more than one compound, for a fixed mass of one element, the masses of the other elements are in the ratio of small integers.

  • Gay-Lussac’s law: When gases combine chemically to yield another gas, their volumes are in the ratio of small integers.

  • Avogadro’s law: Equal volumes of all gases at equal temperature and pressure have the same number of molecules.



  • Boyle’s Law  PV = constant, at constant temperature
  • Charles’s Law V α T, provided P is constant
  • Avogadro’s Law At the same temperature and pressure, equal volumes of all gases contain equal number of molecules.
  • Graham’s Law of Diffusion At same temperature and pressure, the rate of diffusion of each gas is inversely proportional to the square root of the density of the gas.


  • Dalton’s Law of Partial Pressure: The pressure exerted by a mixture of several gases equals the sum of the pressures exerted by each gas occupying the same volume as that of the mixture.


  • Equation of state of a perfect gas

      = Constant


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