Chemistry is the study of matter and the ways in which different forms of matter combine with each other. You study chemistry because it helps you to understand the world around you. Everything you touch or taste or smell is a chemical, and the interactions of these chemicals with each other define our universe. Chemistry forms the fundamental basis for biology and medicine. From the structure of proteins and nucleic acids, to the design, synthesis and manufacture of drugs, chemistry allows you an insight into how things work. Chapter One in this text will introduce you to matter, atoms and their structure. You will learn the basics of scientific measurement and you will gain an appreciation of the scale of chemistry; from the tiniest atom to the incredibly large numbers dealt with in the “mole concept” (Chapter 4). Chapter One lays the foundation on which we will build our understanding.
Thumbnail: Two small test tubes held in spring clamps. (CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported; Amitchell125 via Wikipedia)