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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
Since arriving on the island of Guam in the 1940s, the brown tree snake ( Boiga irregularis ) has extirpated native...
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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The Attraction of Gases
23 November 1999 7:00 pm
is the 162nd anniversary of the birth of Johannes van der Waals, a Dutch physical chemist known for his theories about gases and interatomic forces. Van der Waals described in simple mathematical terms the various phenomena of gases and liquids that other scientists had observed experimentally, such as the existence of a critical temperature, above which a gas cannot be liquefied by pressure alone. By accounting for the intermolecular attractions of different gases, van der Waals extended the idealized gas laws of Robert Boyle and others to the behavior of real gases. These intermolecular attractions in gases came to be known as van der Waals forces. Van der Waals won the Nobel Prize in physics in 1910 and died in 1923.
[Source: Roy Porter, Ed., The Biographical Dictionary of Scientists (Oxford University Press, ed. 2, 1994).]