Richard Abegg Discoverer of Abegg's Rule, Theory of Freezing Point Depression

Richard Abegg – discoverer of Abegg's rule

Richard Abegg

Biography & contributions

Richard Abegg (Richard Wilhelm Heinrich Abegg) was a German chemist born on January 09, 1869 – died on April 03, 1910. Abegg is famous for the discovery of Abegg's rule and the theory of freezing-point depression.

Abegg discovered the theory of freezing-point depression and anticipated Gilbert Newton Lewis's octet rule by revealing that the lowest and highest oxidation states of elements often differ by eight. He researched many topics in physical chemistry, including freezing points, the dielectric constant of ice, osmotic pressures, oxidation potentials, and complex ions.

Abegg is known best for his research recognizing the role that valence had with respect to chemical interactions. He found that some elements were less likely to combine into molecules, and from this concluded that the more stable elements had what is now called full electron shells. Abegg was able to explain the attraction of atoms through opposite electrical charges.

Abegg’s Rule

Abegg’s rule is sometimes referred to as "Abegg’s law of valence and countervalence". Abegg’s rule states that the difference between the maximum positive and negative valence of an element is frequently eight.

For a given chemical element (as sulfur) Abegg’s rule states that the sum of the absolute value of its negative valence (such as −2 for sulfur in H2S) and its positive valence of the maximum value (as +6 for sulfur in H2SO4) is often equal to 8.

Osmotic Pressure

Osmotic pressure is the minimum pressure which needs to be applied to a solution to prevent the inward flow of water across a semipermeable membrane. It is also defined as the measure of the tendency of a solution to take in water by osmosis. Osmotic pressure is necessary for many plant functions.

It is the resulting turgor pressure on the cell wall that allows herbaceous plants to stand upright, and how plants regulate the aperture of their stomata. Potential osmotic pressure is the maximum osmotic pressure that could develop in a solution if it were separated from distilled water by a selectively permeable membrane. It is the number of solute particles in a unit volume of the solution that directly determines its potential osmotic pressure.

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