34 Best Books on Physical Chemistry

We have compiled a list of the Best Reference Books on Physical Chemistry, which are used by students of top universities, and colleges. This will help you choose the right book depending on if you are a beginner or an expert. Here is the complete list of Physical Chemistry Books with their authors, publishers, and an unbiased review of them as well as links to the Amazon website to directly purchase them. If permissible, you can also download the free PDF books on Physical Chemistry below.

1. Physical Chemistry

1."Physical Chemistry" by P Atkins and J de Paula
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The book starts with an introduction to the equilibrium concept. The coloured 3D Graphical images make us understand the subjects easily. It offers practice exercises to reinforce the concepts learned. It covers various topics, such as atomic structures and spectra, molecular structure and symmetry, statistical thermodynamics, molecules in motion, kinetics, and many more, in a clear manner. The book also features a self-test section to assess the reader’s understanding and utilizes comment feature to highlight important notes. This book is highly recommended for undergraduate students studying thermodynamics.

2."Physical Chemistry - A Molecular Approach" by D A McQuarrie and J D Simon
“Physical Chemistry – A Molecular Approach” Book Review: This physical chemistry book provides coverage of various topics necessary for the study of the subject. It begins with the fundamentals of Quantum Chemistry, including classical wave equation, probability and statistics, the Schrodinger equation, and Hydrogen atoms. The book is well-organized with a clear and readable font style. It contains numerous solved examples and exercises with answers provided at the end of the book to test the readers’ understanding. Advanced topics such as Approximation methods, multielectron atoms, and computational quantum chemistry are also covered in detail. This book is highly recommended for undergraduate students learning Thermodynamics, as it contains hundreds of worked problems and examples.

3."Physical Chemistry" by David Warren Ball
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The book features a blue and black color scheme along with 3D images and graphs to aid in comprehending the concepts easily. It comprehensively covers topics such as Zeroth, First, Second, and Third laws of thermodynamics, Quantum mechanics, Magnetic spectroscopy, Statistical thermodynamics, and many others. Numerous examples are provided for each topic to enhance our understanding. There is an appendix section that includes information on Thermodynamic and nuclear properties. The book contains a set of exercises that allow readers to test their knowledge, with the answers provided at the end. It is an excellent reference for students studying calculus-based physical chemistry.

4."Physical Chemistry" by Peter Atkins and Julio De Paula
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The revised edition of this book is designed to enhance the reader’s understanding of the topics covered. Each chapter and topic is accompanied by detailed illustrations for better comprehension. The book covers a wide range of topics, including molecular interactions, crystallography, translational motion, solution properties, phase diagrams, and many more, presented in a clear and concise manner. Illustrations are provided throughout the book to aid in understanding the concepts. A checklist is included at the end of each chapter to ensure that all important topics have been covered. The “Chemist’s tool-kit” section provides essential formulas and techniques. The book includes numerous practice problems to test the reader’s knowledge, making it useful for exam preparation. This book is ideal for undergraduate students and serves as a quick reference guide for revision, with all topics explained with mathematical illustrations.

5."Advanced Problems in Physical Chemistry" by Neeraj Kumar
“Advanced Problems in Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book is designed to prepare students for competitive exams in Physical Chemistry. It contains over 4,000 multiple-choice questions covering topics such as Mole and Equivalent Concepts, Gaseous State, Thermodynamics, Thermochemistry, Electrochemistry, Solid State, and Ionic Equilibrium. Each chapter ends with a Level 1 problem for JEE Mains and a Level 2 problem for JEE Advanced and other competitive exams. The problems are arranged systematically, and the book also includes high-level problems for important topics like Surface Chemistry, Atomic Structure, Nuclear Chemistry, and Chemical Kinetics.

6."Physical Chemistry: A Molecular Approach" by Donald A McQuarrie
“Physical Chemistry: A Molecular Approach” Book Review: The book starts with explaining the basic concepts to help the beginners. It covers various topics such as probability and statistics, Approximation methods, computational quantum chemistry, Hydrogen atoms, and more in detail. The concepts are arranged in a sequential manner for better comprehension. The book is presented in a tidy format. Advanced topics like multielectron atoms, classical wave equation, Schrodinger equation are explained thoroughly. To test our comprehension of the concepts, exercises with solutions at the end of the book are included. This book is a valuable resource for undergraduate students.

7."Physical Chemistry" by Ira Levine
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The fundamentals of physical chemistry are comprehensively covered in this book, accompanied by numerous examples and graphs for easy comprehension. Topics such as Material equilibrium, Non Ideal solutions, Electrochemical systems, Reaction kinetics, Quantum mechanics, and many more are clearly explained. To gauge understanding of the concepts, exercise problems are provided with answers to selected problems at the end of the book. A chapter summary is provided at the end of each chapter to quickly review the key points. Study suggestions are also included at the end of each chapter to aid exam preparation. This book is an ideal reference for those new to chemistry.

8."Physical Chemistry" by Vemulapalli
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The book delves into the fundamentals of physical chemistry, providing an extensive examination of the subject matter. Equilibrium thermodynamics, quantum chemistry, chemical kinetics, and other basic concepts are covered comprehensively in this text. With around 300 solved examples, readers can gain a better understanding of the concepts presented. Furthermore, the book provides a thorough treatment of advanced topics such as statistical thermodynamics and intermolecular forces. Readers can test their understanding of the subject with the book’s 1,200 exercise problems. Physical chemistry professionals will find this book to be an invaluable reference.

9."Physical Chemistry" by Atkins
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The book features helpful checklists to ensure that readers cover all critical topics. It also includes images that aid in quickly grasping the concepts. The book presents clear explanations of various subjects, such as reaction analysis, chemical and ionic equilibrium, thermodynamics, and molecular structure. Additionally, mathematical methods are outlined in the appendix to assist students without a mathematics background. Key takeaways are provided at the end of each chapter. This book provides a solid grasp of fundamental concepts, making it useful for students preparing for competitive exams.

10."A Textbook of Physical Chemistry, Computational Aspects in Physical Chemistry" by Kapoor
“A Textbook of Physical Chemistry, Computational Aspects in Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book provides coverage of Physical Chemistry and is accompanied by numerous illustrative numerical examples. It adheres to the IUPAC recommendations and employs SI units. The book not only explains the computational aspects of Physical Chemistry but also provides a brief overview of commonly used statements in BASIC Language. It presents preliminary illustrations using BASIC statements and includes illustrative programs based on the principles and basic concepts of Physical Chemistry.

11."Physical Chemistry" by G W Castellan
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book offers an understanding of the logical underpinnings of thermodynamic principles. Its presentation is well-organized with legible font styles. It discusses the topics such as the Structure of Gases, Quantum Mechanical Principles, Chemical Kinetics, and more with in-depth discussions. Each chapter is prefaced by an author’s review, which provides an overview of the chapter’s contents. The book presents clear explanations of complex concepts and problems. It is a valuable resource for Physical Chemistry students, especially for those studying Chemical Kinetics.

12."Mathematica® Computer Programs for Physical Chemistry" by imusti
“Mathematica® Computer Programs for Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The book is a valuable addition to physical chemistry courses, incorporating the impressive computational power and elegance of Mathematica. It follows the organization of contemporary textbooks and covers a range of problem types encountered in physical chemistry, providing helpful worked examples to enhance student comprehension. The book’s appendix is particularly noteworthy, as it outlines critical physical chemistry calculations and offers guidance on how to execute them using Mathematica code.

2. Applied Physical Chemistry

1."Physical Chemistry for Engineering and Applied Sciences" by Frank R Foulkes
“Physical Chemistry for Engineering and Applied Sciences” Book Review: This book serves as a valuable reference for first-year students as it offers detailed step-by-step derivations of equations, helping students simplify assumptions and mathematical tricks. It includes 600 exercises and chapter-end problems with non-trivial examples, covering topics like ionic reaction rates, activities and activity coefficients. The book provides an in-depth explanation of electrochemistry and chemical kinetics, with real-world industrial applications. An appendix is included, which offers detailed explanations of basic integration and natural logarithms for students.

2."Physical Chemistry Food Processes: Fundamental Aspects" by Baianu I C
3."Mathermatica Computer Programs for Physical Chemistry" by William H Cropper
4."Mathematics for Physical Chemistry" by Robert G Mortimer
“Mathematics for Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The latest edition of this book is an ideal resource for students and physical chemists aiming to enhance their mathematical skills. It serves as a supplementary text for undergraduate courses and as a reference for graduate students and researchers. Emphasizing physical chemistry and applications, it provides a practical approach to mathematics rather than just theory. The updated version offers new exercises after each chapter, presented in a step-by-step manner. Starting with basic mathematical topics, the book gradually progresses towards more advanced concepts. The final chapter is dedicated to mathematical topics necessary for experimental data analysis. Each chapter includes an extensive preview, objectives, and summary.

5."Applied Physical Chemistry" by Colin Heald
6."Applied Physical Chemistry" by N Goswami R Reddy
“Applied Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book presents a comprehensive approach to studying applied physical chemistry, making it ideal for gaining a clear and thorough understanding of the subject. It covers the principles, practices, and concepts of physics, such as thermodynamics, quantum chemistry, statistical mechanics, and dynamics.

7."Principles and Problems in Physical Chemistry for Biochemists" by Nicholas C Price and Raymond A Dwek
“Principles and Problems in Physical Chemistry for Biochemists” Book Review: This book begins with introducing the laws of thermodynamics. This book presents an in-depth explanation of how these laws are used to derive equations related to chemical equilibria, properties of solutions, acids and bases, and oxidation-reduction processes. The book focuses on the study of reaction kinetics, discussing how the rate of a reaction is influenced by factors such as temperature, pH, ionic strength, and the characteristics of the reactants.

8."Applied Mathematics for Physical Chemistry" by James R Barrante
“Applied Mathematics for Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book is a guide to applying mathematical concepts and techniques to solve physicochemical problems. A deeper understanding of modern concepts in physical chemistry requires more than a basic introduction to mathematics. Therefore, this book presents both basic and advanced mathematical techniques along with their applications in physical chemistry. Each chapter includes tests to reinforce the reader’s mathematical knowledge. It is a core textbook in physical chemistry that equips students with the tools to answer questions on topics such as thermodynamics, atomic/molecular structure, spectroscopy, and statistical mechanics.


3. Physical Chemistry of Surfaces

1."Physical Chemistry of Surfaces" by A W Adamson and A P Gast
“Physical Chemistry of Surfaces” Book Review: This book provides an in-depth exploration of the methodologies employed in the study of physical chemistry surfaces. Its main chapters cover topics such as the nature and thermodynamics of liquid interfaces, surface films on liquid substrates, and long-range forces. It includes discussions on electrical aspects of surface chemistry, solid surfaces, wetting, flotation, detergency, and a new chapter on macromolecule films. The end of each chapter is equipped with review questions and problems for students to reinforce their understanding. This book is recommended for advanced chemistry students.

2."Surface Analysis - The Principal Techniques" by J C Vickerman
“Surface Analysis – The Principal Techniques” Book Review: This book provides an overview of the fundamental techniques and characteristics of surface analysis. It covers various topics such as Auger electron spectroscopy, electron spectroscopy for chemical analysis, and molecular surface mass spectroscopy by SIMS. It includes discussions on dynamic SIMS, low energy ion scattering, and Rutherford backscattering. The principal techniques are described in detail with relevant examples, and practice problems are included at the end of each chapter. This book is recommended for advanced chemistry students.

3."Introduction to Surface Chemistry and Catalysis" by G A Somorjai
“Introduction to Surface Chemistry and Catalysis” Book Review: This book covers the fundamental principles of surface chemistry and catalysis. It introduces major topics such as surface structures, dynamics, and thermodynamics. Additionally, the book discusses the electrical, chemical, and mechanical properties of surfaces. Tables containing experimental data are included as well. This book is a useful resource for advanced courses in physics, chemistry, engineering, and materials science, whether for undergraduate or graduate students.

4."Surface Chemistry" by E M McCash
“Surface Chemistry” Book Review: This book provides an overview of surface chemistry, covering main topics such as clean surface, electronic and structural properties, adsorption and desorption. It also discusses surface reactions and reactivity, ultra-thin film growth and properties, kinetics and thermodynamics, and photochemistry. Techniques and approaches are explained in detail using figures, and a new phenomenon of surface dynamics is also introduced. This book is recommended for graduate students in chemistry and chemical engineering.

5."Textbook of Engineering Chemistry" by Dara S S and Umare S S
“Textbook of Engineering Chemistry” Book Review: This book provides an introduction to the fundamental principles of environmental chemistry, covering topics such as water treatment, fuels and combustion, nuclear power generation, chemical bonding, composite materials, thermodynamic equilibrium, kinetics, crystal structures, glass, and ceramics. The book comprises 26 chapters and includes a question bank at the end to help students prepare for exams. It is recommended for students of environmental science and chemical engineering.

6."A Life Scientist's Guide to Physical Chemistry" by Marc R Roussel
“A Life Scientist’s Guide to Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book covers the essential principles of physical chemistry, including key topics such as quantum mechanics, spectroscopy, thermodynamics, and free energy. It also covers chemical equilibria, coupled reactions, non-ideal behavior, electrochemistry, and integrated rate laws. Each chapter ends with a summary of key ideas and equations for students to review. The book features over 130 worked-out examples and more than 350 exercises to reinforce learning. It is an ideal resource for advanced chemistry students.

7."Physical Chemistry of Surfaces" by SEA
“Physical Chemistry of Surfaces” Book Review: This book covers the concepts of physical chemistry related to surfaces. It includes chapters on the formation of new faces, nucleation and crystal growth, microscopy and spectroscopy, and long-range forces. Each chapter provides a comprehensive overview of the basic surface chemistry topics, including complete derivations and recent advances. Worked-out problems and end-of-chapter problems are included in each unit to help students in their understanding and practice. This book is recommended for senior-level undergraduates and graduate students of chemistry.

8."The Physical Chemistry of Surface Films" by Peter Debye and William Draper Harkins
“The Physical Chemistry of Surface Films” Book Review: This book provides an overview of the physical chemistry of surface films. The main topics covered in this book include the nature and energetics of surfaces, films on liquids, films on solids, and properties of soap solutions. The book covers the mechanism of emulsion polymerization and the role of electric double layer in behavior. The figures and equations are labelled in detail for a clear understanding of the topics. This book is recommended for advanced chemistry students.

9."Recent Research Developments In Physical Chemistry: Surfaces And Interfaces of Nanostructured Systems" by Edited by Chuan-Yi Wang
“Recent Research Developments In Physical Chemistry: Surfaces And Interfaces of Nanostructured Systems” Book Review: The book focuses on recent advancements in physical chemistry and covers key topics such as energy conversion, optoelectronics, lasers, catalysis, and biomedical treatment. Numerous research papers and studies are included in the book to aid students in comprehending the subject matter. This book is a valuable resource for advanced chemistry students and researchers in the field of physical chemistry.

10."Introduction to Surface Physical Chemistry" by K Christmann
“Introduction to Surface Physical Chemistry” Introduction to Surface Physical Chemistry (Topics in Physical Chemistry)” Book Review: This book serves as an introductory guide to surface physics and chemistry. It covers microscopic treatment of surface phenomena, thermodynamics, and kinematics of surfaces, as well as scientific tools used in surface chemistry. In addition, it discusses surface reactions and model catalysis. Each chapter contains worked-out examples and equations to facilitate better understanding. This book is recommended for advanced chemistry students.

4. Molecular Thermodynamics and Kinetics

1."Physical Chemistry" by P W Atkins
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: The main focus of this book is to provide a molecular perspective on physical chemistry. It covers a wide range of applications and presents its content through vibrant and informative diagrams. Additionally, the book utilizes dynamic media tools to create an interactive learning experience. This book is an essential resource for students studying physical chemistry.

2."Physical Chemistry: Statistical mechanics" by H Metiu
“Physical Chemistry: Statistical mechanics” Book Review: Horia Metiu’s four-volume book on physical chemistry offers a comprehensive coverage of theoretical and mathematical aspects of the subject. The book is filled with numerous examples and practical applications, including actual experimental data. It also covers industrial and laboratory practices. Each volume contains Mathcad workbooks on CD-ROM.

3."Physical Chemistry: Chemical Kinetics" by H Metiu
“Physical Chemistry: Chemical Kinetics” Book Review: This book is a comprehensive textbook that covers the principles and applications of chemical kinetics. The book is divided into six chapters, which cover topics such as reaction rates, rate laws, reaction mechanisms, catalysis, and experimental techniques. Each chapter includes examples, exercises, and discussion questions to reinforce the concepts learned. The book is well-written and easy to follow, making it a valuable resource for students and professionals alike.

4."Physical Chemistry" by I N Levine
“Physical Chemistry” Book Review: This book delves into the fundamental concepts of physical chemistry, with full step-by-step derivations and clear explanations of all topics. Required mathematical and physical concepts are covered in detail. Worked examples and practice exercises are also provided, making it a useful resource for students and professionals alike.

We have put a lot of effort into researching the best books on Physical Chemistry and came out with a recommended list and their reviews. If any more book needs to be added to this list, please email us. We are working on free pdf downloads for books on Physical Chemistry and will publish the download link here. Fill out this Physical Chemistry books pdf download" request form for download notification.

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