WHAT IS CHEMISTRY?
Chemistry is that branch of science dealing with the study of composition, structure and properties of matter. It deals with the study of the changes which different forms of matter undergo under different conditions. Chemistry also had branches that look at the laws governing these changes. Now that we know what chemistry is, let us move on and read about the importance of the same.
Fig: Branches of chemistry
BRANCHES OF CHEMISTRY
IMPORTANCE AND SCOPE OF CHEMISTRY
There are many instances in your day-to-day life that involve chemistry, its applications and its rules. Let us look at them one by one.
1. Supply of Food: The study of chemistry provided the world with chemical fertilizers such as urea, calcium superphosphate, sodium nitrate, and Ammonium Sulphate. These chemicals have helped greatly in increasing the yield of fruits, vegetables and other crops.
Thus, we can cater to the ever-growing demand for food. It has helped to protect the crops from insects and harmful bacteria by the use of certain effective insecticides, fungicides and pesticides.
Chemistry also led to the discovery of preservatives. These chemicals have greatly helped to preserve food products for a longer period. It has given methods to test the presence of adulterants. This ensures the supply of pure foodstuff.
2. Contribution to Improved Health and Sanitation Facilities: Chemistry provided mankind with a large number of life-saving drugs. We could find a cure for dysentery and pneumonia due to the discovery of sulphur drugs and penicillin. Besides this, life-saving drugs like cisplatin and taxol are effective for cancer therapy and AZT is used for AIDS victims. Some of the common drugs that chemistry has blessed us with include:
3. The Scope of Chemistry in Saving the Environment: Thanks to science, now we have environment-friendly chemicals that help us conserve nature. One such example is the replacement of CFCs in the refrigerators.
4. Increase in Comfort, Pleasure and Luxuries: Because of the advancements in science and the discoveries of chemistry, we lead a more comfortable life today. You may ask how? Let us see below.
5. Transport and communication: All means of transport use either petrol or diesel or coal which are all chemical products.
6. Nuclear atomic energy: Chemistry has come to the rescue by providing an alternative source of energy which is nuclear energy.
7. The Scope of Chemistry in Industry: Chemistry plays an important and useful role towards the development and growth of a number of industries. This includes industries like glass, cement, paper, textile, leather, dye etc. We also see huge applications of chemistry in industries like paints, pigments, petroleum, sugar, plastics, Pharmaceuticals.
It has also helped in the greater production of sulphuric acid, nitric acid and Ammonia, hydrogenated oils by providing suitable catalysts.
8. The Scope of Chemistry in War: Chemistry plays an important role in the discovery of highly explosive substances such as TNT, nitroglycerine and dynamite. It also plays a role in finding poisonous gases like mustard gas, Phosgene etc.
Q. List down some problems caused by Chemistry.
Ans. Nuclear energy is useful but disposal of nuclear waste poses a serious problem to humanity.
Phonograph records have added to our pleasure for listening to music but they are made of polyvinyl chloride. This is produced from vinyl chloride which can cause liver cancer in industrial workers.
Antibiotics have eliminated infectious diseases but the overuse is very harmful. Chemistry has given drugs like LSD, cocaine, brown sugar. These prove to be a curse to society.