You are not currently logged in. Please create an account or log in to view the full course.

Properties of Matter

6. Forces Between Particles

This is the course trailer. Please create an account or log in to view this lecture.

  • Description
  • Cite

About this Lecture


In this mini-lecture, we discuss the forces between particles, which is not fully accounted for when describing an ideal gas. In particular, we focus on: (i) interactions between polar particles, such as water molecules (H2O), and interactions, such as the dispersion interaction, between non-polar particles; (ii) a plot of the net intermolecular forces of a molecules vs. the separation distance, specifically discussing the point where the force is zero (i.e. the attractive and repulsive forces balance out) and the region around this point where we can form a molecular explanation of Hooke’s Law; and (iii) a demonstration illustrating material rupture.


In this course, Dr Janet Lovett (University of St Andrews) explores properties of matter. Throughout this course, we present 14 demonstrations. In the first mini-lecture, we discuss atomic structure and look specifically at what makes up the elements (protons, neutrons, and electrons), models of the atom, energy levels, and element emission spectra. In the second mini-lecture we explore the discovery of the electron, focusing on a series of demonstrations that illustrate J.J. Thomson’s cathode ray experiment and how electron charge was first determined. The third mini-lecture turns towards nuclear physics, where we discuss nuclide stability, mass and energy, binding energy per nucleon to understand nuclear fusion and fission, and radioactivity. In the fourth mini-lecture, we take a step back from atoms to consider matter as a whole, specifically discussing the phases of matter, and how pressure and temperature affect these phases. In the fifth mini-lecture, we explore the relationships between pressure, volume, temperature, and number of particles before introducing the ideal gas law. In the sixth mini-lecture, we look at the forces between particles and how they interact in a substance.


Janet Lovett is a Lecturer in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of St Andrews. Her primary research interest is in measuring nanometre distances for structural biology using Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. Dr Lovett teaches a first-year ‘Properties of Matter’ course at the University in addition to other courses such as magnetic resonance.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Lovett, J. (2022, January 12). Properties of Matter - Forces Between Particles [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Lovett, J. "Properties of Matter – Forces Between Particles." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 12 Jan 2022,

Image Credits

Get instant access to over 6,800 lectures