FORM ONE CHEMISTRY TOPIC 1: INTRODUCTION TO CHEMISTRY

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Introduction To Chemistry

The Concept of Chemistry

Explain the concept of Chemistry

1.1.1 Meaning of chemistry

Chemistry is a branch of science which deals with the study of nature, properties and composition of matter. Matter can be defined as anything that has weight or mass and can occupy space. Therefore, in chemistry we study about materials that make up the earth and universe.

Materials/Objects Made by Application of Chemistry

Mention materials objects made by application of chemistry

1.1.2 Materials made by the application of chemistry

Application of chemistry knowledge enables the production of different materials and products that we need to live better. In everyday life, we need different substances to meet our basic human needs like food, shelter, clothing, comfort and health.

Some materials made by the application of chemistry include kerosene (paraffin), sugar, chalk, shoes, clothes, common salt, soft drinks, medical drugs (medicines), toothpaste and plastics. Others are spirits, wines, shoe polishes, cement, baking soda, petrol, diesel and cosmetics (soaps, body oils and lotions, body and hair creams, etc). All these materials, among others, are made by applying chemical processes.

Many products made by the application of chemistry in industry are all around us. Some of these materials are summarized in Table 1.1 below:

Some materials made by application of chemistry

Field where applied Examples of products
Medicine Drugs, vaccines, equipment, nutritional supplements, bandages
Agriculture Agro-chemicals ( fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, acaricides), animal drugs and vaccines, animal feed and supplements
Manufacturing industry Vehicles, cement, plastics, chemicals, paints, iron sheets, vanishes, glue
Food and beverage industry Soft and alcoholic drinks, baked food, canned food, spices, cooking oil, salt
Home care and cosmetics industry Cosmetics, detergents, toothpaste, shoe polish, insecticides, antiseptics, disinfectants
Transport Fuels, lubricants, oil, grease, tar, coolants, tyres
Textile industry Clothes, dyes, bleaches, wax, threads
Leather industry Shoes, belts, purses, automobile seats, clothing, bags

Importance of chemistry in life

Areas (fields) where chemistry is applied

State the importance of Chemistry in daily life

Chemistry is such an important subject that it is applied in many fields such as agriculture, manufacturing industry, medicine, food and beverage industry, education, home care and beauty industry, transport and communication, textile industry and leather industry, among others.

As we have seen, chemistry is applied in many fields which are important in our every-day lives. Below is a detailed explanation of how chemistry is applied in these fields to produce materials or services that are important in plant, animal and human life.

Agriculture

Sustainable crop and animal production is enhanced by application of chemistry knowledge. Fertilizers, insecticides, acaricides, herbicides (weed killers) play a good role in crop production. In order to get a good harvest, it is important for the farmer to apply fertilizer, herbicide and insecticide to improve production.

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Figure 1.1 A farmer fertilizing crops

The same case applies to animal production. For example, as regards to control and prevention of tick-borne diseases, application of different acaricides is often emphasized. An acaricide is any chemical that kills ticks or mites.

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Figure1.2 Use of acaricide in tick control

Also is the use of different drugs to treat internal parasites such as worms, and vaccines to control certain diseases.

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Figure 1.3 Treating a sick goat

Medicine

Pharmaceutical drugs (medicine or medication), vaccines and other chemicals used in medical field are manufactured through chemical processes. Injection drugs are injected into the body of a patient to treat diseases or infections. Medicines, which are in the form of pills, capsules, solution or suspension, are often swallowed or applied onto the affected part of the body. Laboratory reagents used in medical laboratories are also important chemicals in this field.

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Figure1.4 Injection of a drug to a patient

Textile industry

Some clothing is made from natural fibres such as cotton or silk. Other fabrics like polyester and nylon are made from chemicals found in coal and crude oil.

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Figure1.5 Clothes

Leather industry

Shoes, belts, purses and bags can be made from skins and hides of animals. The process of converting skins and hides into finished products involves chemical processes.

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Figure 1.6 Leather articles

Manufacturing industry

In this field, application of chemistry enables manufacture of various goods such as cement, chemicals, paints, iron sheets, vanishes, glue, etc. Machines used to manufacture goods are made of metals and sometimes covered with plastics. Metals and plastics are made through chemical processes.

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Figure 1.7 Manufactured goods

Food and beverage industry

Food industry relies heavily on chemicals. Food is flavoured using honey, sugar or other flavours. Chemicals known as preservatives or additives are added to food to make it stay longer without spoiling. Some chemicals are also used to preserve foodstuffs like bread, cakes and sweets. Carbon dioxide gas is added into beverages such as soda and juices in order to stop chemical reactions from taking place in food or microbes from attacking and spoiling food. All of these activities involve chemical processes.

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Figure 1.8 Food and beverages

Transport and communication

Transport and communication field relies on chemicals made through chemical processes. These chemicals include fuels such as diesel and petrol and lubricants like oil and grease. Metals, tyres and plastics which are used to make different parts of vehicles are also made through application of chemistry.

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Figure 1.9 Motor fuel and oil

Likewise, chemical processes are applied in the manufacture of telecommunication tools and equipment such as computers, cell phones, papers, pens, radios and cables, among others.

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Figure1.10Communication equipment

Home care and beauty products

Home care products are the products used to clean your body and the home and its surroundings. The products include disinfectants, insecticides, detergents, soaps, toothpaste, toilet cleaners, air fresheners, paints, polishes, etc.

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Figure 1.11 Home care products

Beauty products are substances used to improve or change the appearance of the face or smell and texture of the body. Such products include nail vanishes, hair shampoos, oils, lotions, creams, deodorants, antiperspirants, etc.

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Figure 1.12 Beauty products

Education

Many items we use at school are made by applying chemistry. Laboratory chemicals are prepared from minerals that are mined from the rocks in the earth through chemical processes. Other important materials in education field that are made through chemical processes include chalks, laboratory apparatuses, reagents, ink, rubber, and paper.

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Figure 1.13 School laboratory chemicals

CHAPTER SUMMARY

Chemistry is a branch of science which deals with the study of nature, properties and composition of matter.

The knowledge obtained from chemistry can be used to produce different materials which help to meet our basic human needs like food, shelter, clothing, comfort and health. These materials include soaps, clothes, cement, iron sheets, food, drinks, cosmetics, etc.

Chemistry is important because it is applied in many fields such as agriculture, manufacturing industry, medicine, food and beverage industry, education, home care and beauty industry, transport and communication, textile industry and leather industry.

 

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