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Van der Waals Forces: A Handbook for Biologists, Chemists, Engineers and Physicists

  • Author is among the most highly respected biophysicists
  • Van der Waals forces are significant for a wide range of questions and problems in the life sciences, chemistry, physics, and engineering, ranging up to the macro level
  • No other book that develops the subject vigorously, and this book also makes the subject intuitively accessible to students who had not previously been mathematically sophisticated enough to calculate them

By: V Adrian Parsegian(Author)

398 pages, b/w illustrations

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Mar 2006 | #219826 | ISBN: 0521547784
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £51.99 $66/€58 approx
Hardback | Mar 2006 | #219825 | ISBN: 0521839068
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £87.99 $112/€98 approx

About this book

This should prove to be the definitive work explaining van der Waals forces, how to calculate them and take account of their impact under any circumstances and conditions. These weak intermolecular forces are of truly pervasive impact, and biologists, chemists, physicists and engineers will profit greatly from the thorough grounding in these fundamental forces that Van der Waals Forces offers.

Parsegian has organized his book at three successive levels of mathematical sophistication, to satisfy the needs and interests of readers at all levels of preparation. The Prelude and Level 1 are intended to give everyone an overview in words and pictures of the modern theory of van der Waals forces. Level 2 gives the formulae and a wide range of algorithms to let readers compute the van der Waals forces under virtually any physical or physiological conditions. Level 3 offers a rigorous basic formulation of the theory.

"[...] by the vivacity, passion, and precision of language with which Parsegian discusses his subject, the reader [...] is inspired to participate in a grand dialog that has been going on for over a century. [...] a passionate discourse on a subject of importance, presented from a very personal point of view: it will remind you why you went into science."
- Physics in Canada

"A relatively short prelude provides an excellent overview of van der Waals forces and the various theories developed to explain them [...] Excellent references are suggested in all such instances. Problems and examples are scattered throughout the book [...] Parsegian has a gift with words and the text is enjoyable not only for its scientific insights and elegant exposure of ideas, but also for its beautiful prose [...] I feel, in fact, somewhat awkward reviewing a book that is already a hit. A student walked into my office as I was absorbed in the text. His face lit up in a smile as he remarked: 'Ah, you too have discovered this book [...] I just got it myself. It's excellent!' – Indeed it is!"
- Journal of Statistical Physics

"[...] a user manual that describes their behaviour in many situations [...] The treatment aims to explain the physical ideas in an accessible manner, while giving the mathematical derivations in full detail."
- Chemistry World

"In this book, one finds all needed information when the attractive interaction becomes the core question in an experiment involving colloids, including those attracting interest for biophysicists such as bilayers, vesicles etc. This book – unique in this domain – regroups information very dispersed in primary literature."
- Current Opinion in Colloid and Interface Science

"Van der Waals Forces is an outstanding volume and the authoritative work on the topic."
- The Quarterly Review of Biology



1. Introduction
2. Practice
3. Foundations

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