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PHY1500H F generalStatistical Mechanics

Course Title PHY1500H F general
Session fall
Year of Study 1st year
Time and Location Time: M1, T12
Location: MP1115
Course Homepage Link to Course Homepage

Sajeev  John


Official Description

Statistical mechanics is the study of laws that govern the behavior of macroscopic systems, i.e. systems formed of very large number of individual particles or systems interacting with large reservoir (environment). The broad applicability of these laws from understanding magnetism to white dwarfs stars exemplifies the fact that these laws transcend the individual degrees of freedom forming the system and its environment.

Specific topics in this course include:

A. Some essential quantum mechanics

Energy spectra, quantum ladders, Identity and symmetry,

Large systems, density of states


B. Basics of statistical mechanics

Ensembles and probability distributions, Ergodic and mixing behavior

Entropy, definition and fundamental properties

Constraints and entropy maximum principle

Open systems, The canonical and grand canonical ensembles

Partition function and free energy, Illustrations


C. Survey of Thermodynamics

Statistical definitions of thermodynamic quantities

Statistical meaning of equilibrium, The Thermodynamic laws

Equations of state for gases

Perfect gases, including internal degrees of freedom

Imperfect gases, Phase and chemical equilibria


D. Application of statistical mechanical methods

Bose gas, Fermi gas, Photons, Phonons, Magnetism



    Textbook Statistical Mechanics 3rd Edition
    R.K. Pathria and P.D. Beale
    Elsevier 2011