Real gases - PetroWiki


At low pressures and relatively high temperatures, the volume of most gases is so large that the volume of the molecules themselves may be neglected. Also, the distance between molecules is so great that the presence of even fairly strong attractive or repulsive forces is not sufficient to affect the behavior in the gas state. However, as the pressure is increased, the total volume occupied by the gas becomes small enough that the volume of the molecules themselves is appreciable and must be considered. Also, under these conditions, the distance between the molecules is decreased to the point at which the attractive or repulsive forces between the molecules become important. This behavior negates the assumptions required for ideal gas behavior, and serious errors are observed when comparing experimental volumes to those calculated with the ideal gas law.