Courses Catalogue

Syllabus of the course: Statistical Physics

In this web page we provide the syllabus of the course Statistical Physics, offered by the Department of Physics.
The list of the courses offered during the current accademic year is available here.
The list of all courses offered by the Department of Physics is available here.

InstructorG. Tsironis
ProgramTuesday, 9:00-11:00, 2nd floor seminar room
Thursday, 9:00-11:00, 2nd floor seminar room
Web page
Goal of the courseGraduate as well as advanced undergraduate students may register for this course on Statistical Mechanics that includes also a short review of Thermodynamics. The course focuses on fundamental principles of of Statistical Physics, a detailed exposition of ensemble theory, density matrix approach as well as the standard applications of Fermi and Bose statistics, quantum gases etc. Additional topics such as phase transitions, Ising model and Brownian motion are also included.
SyllabusReview of Thermodynamics, first and second laws, Carnot engine, applications to gases. Statistical basis of Thermodynamics, microscopic and macroscopic states, number of microscopic states compatible with macroscopic states, entropy, thermodynamic materials. Classical ideal gas, Gibbs paradox, correct counting. Microcanonical, canonical and grand canonical ensembles.

Formulation of quantum statistics, density matrix, simple quantum gases. Ideal Fermi gas, magnetic properties, Pauli paramagnetism and Landau diamagnetism. Electron gas in metals, white dwarf stars. Ideal Bose gas, black body radiation, Bose-Einstein condensation.

First and second order phase transitions, Clapeyron equation, Ising model, solution in one dimension, Curie-Weiss mean field theory, spherical spin model.

Brownian motion, diffusion, Langevin and Fokker-Planck equations.
Bibliography1. «Statistical Mechanics» – R. K. Pathria (Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1996)
2. Statistical Mechanics, K. Huang, Wiley, New York (1963)
3. A modern Course in Statistical Physics, L. E. Reichl, Willey-VCH, Weinheim (2009)

University of Crete - Department of Physics - P.O Box 2208 - GR-71003 Heraklion, Greece
phone: +30 2810 394300 - fax: +30 2810 394301