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Philosophische und historische Aspekte des Periodensystems der chemischen Elemente (HYLE Studies in History and Philosophy of Chemistry, No. 1) (e-book)

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Author(s): Ralph M. Cahn

Journal: Hyle : International Journal for Philosophy of Chemistry
ISSN 1433-5158

Volume: 8;
Issue: 2;
Date: 2002;
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Keywords: philosophy of chemistry | history and philossophy of chemistry | chemical elements | periodic system of chemical elements

ABSTRACT
In this book Ralph Cahn analyzes the logical structure of the periodic system of chemical elements and discusses the differences and similarities between various tables advanced by 19th-century chemists. After a survey of the historical and philosophical literature, the author suggests a more general and philosophically informed approach that allows for a critical epistemological history of the periodic system including its precursors. He argues that the periodic system is essentially a constitutional scheme consisting of relations, and discusses which combinations of scientific relations (atomic weights, elements, chemical similarities, etc.) are sufficient to constitute a law-like system. From such a general epistemological point of view, the development of these relations becomes an integral part of the history of the periodic system. Similarity applied to chemical elements (e.g. by Leopold Gmelin and Alexander Martius) deserves particular attention as an evolving relation as well as the rather neglected chemical system of Gustav Tschermak. e-book of Philosophische und historische Aspekte des Periodensystems der chemischen Elemente (HYLE Studies in History and Philosophy of Chemistry, No. 1)

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