# Clausius-Mossotti Equation

The Clausius-Mossotti equation is a fundamental equation in physical chemistry that relates the dielectric constant of a material to its molecular polarizability. It is used to explain the behavior of substances under the influence of an external electric field.

Let a substance of molecular weight 'M', density 'd' and dielectric constant 'ϵ', present between two plates having charges per unit area, +q and −q of a condense.

Then the number of molecules per c.c. = N.d/M

The field of force due to charges be F which act on the molecules of substances so as to produce an average induced moment 'μ' per molecule.

Hence, Induced moment per c.c.

z = (μ.N.d)/M = (α.F.N.d)/M (As μ = α.F) -----Equation:1

Where, N = Avogadro Number

Now, let a thin slice of the dielectric of thickness 'x' and cross section 'a' be placed between the plates of a condenser.

The induced moment = a.x.z

But induced moment = Charge x Distance

Hence, Charge on the slice surface = ± (a.x.z)/x = ± a.z

or, Charge density = ± a.z

If the slice of a substance is large enough to cover the entire space between the plates then the charge on the plates = ±q and the charge on the surface of the dielectric adjoining the plates = ±z. Hence, the effective charge density = q − z.

Two forces are acting on the unit charge- the force F_{1} due to the charge (q − z) on the plate charge interface and F_{2} exerted by the layers of molecules surrounding it. In order to calculate F_{2} , let the unit charge be enclosed in a sphere of induced charges and let the surface of surrounding sphare be divided into strips.

The area of the strip laying between the angle θ and (θ + dθ) = 2𝜋 r cosθ.r.dθ

The strip makes an angle θ to the field, then the charge density = z sinθ

Hence, the total charge on the strip = 2𝜋 r^{2} cosθ.sinθ.dθ

Thus, force on unit charge = (1/r^{2}) x 2𝜋 z cosθ sinθ dθ = 2𝜋 z cosθ sinθ dθ

The force exerted on the unit charge paralled to the field = 2𝜋 z sinθ cosθ dθ x sinθ

So, the force exerted by the entire spherical surface

The force due to plate charge, F_{1} = 4𝜋(q − z)

Since, F = F_{1} + F_{2}

or, F = 4𝜋(q − z) + 4𝜋z/3

or, F = (12𝜋q − 12𝜋z + 4𝜋z)/3

or, 3F = 12𝜋q − 8𝜋z

or, 12𝜋q = 3F + 8𝜋z

or, q = (3F + 8𝜋z)/12𝜋

and 12𝜋q − 12𝜋z = 3F − 4𝜋z

or, q − z = (3F − 4𝜋z)/12𝜋

Therefore, dielectric constant,

This is called the **Clausius-Mossotti Equation**. Since N and α do not depend on temperature. Hence, P_{m} does not depend on temperature should be determined only by the nature of molecules. Again, ϵ is a dimensionless. Hence, the polarization is expressed in units of volume. Knowing the molecular weight and density, the molar polarization in a given field can be calculated.

## Limitations of the Clausius-Mossotti Equation

Clausius-Mossotti relation is derived based on following assumptions.- Polarization is considered as proportional to the field.
- The polarizable molecules are isotropic.
- Absence of short-range interaction.