Statistical Mechanics and its applications to Chemistry


3-0-0 (9)


Courses with significant overlap with this course:

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Course Contents:

Thermodynamics, Statistical Mechanics of noninteracting systems, interacting systems, and nonequilibrium systems.


Equilibrium Thermodynamics: Thermodynamic Equilibrium state, laws of thermodynamics, axiomatic formulation of thermodynamics, thermodynamic potentials, stability criteria, phase equilibria (4 lectures)\

Ensembles in Statistical Mechanics: Ensemble postulate and ergodicity, mi-crocanonical, canonical and grand canonical ensembles, quantum and classical partition functions, phase space, fluctuations (6 lectures)

Noninteracting systems: Factorization of the partition function, quantum cor-relations, collective modes, occupation numbers, collections of fermions, bosons, photons, classical deal gas of spinless particles, molecular partition functions, ideal paramagnets. (6 lectures)

Interacting Systems 1: Classical Liquids Interparticle potentials, Configurational Partition functions, distributions, pair correlation function, neutron scattering experiments, Virial equation, Meyer cluster diagrams (6 lectures)

Interacting Systems 2: Computer Simulations Ensemble averages, ergodicity, random numbers, Monte Carlo methods, Molecular Dynamics, constant temperature MD. (5 lectures)

Interacting Systems 3: Phase Transitions in Lattice models Lattice gas, Ising Model, order parameter, Mean Field theory, Renormalization group theory (6 lectures)

Nonequilibrium Statistical Mechanics (6 lectures) Linear Response theory, fluctuation dissipation theorem, time correlation functions, applications to transport phenomena.


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  1. D.A. McQuarrie, Statistical Mechanics

  2. David Chandler, Introduction to Modern Statistical Mechanics

  3. K.L. Huang, Statistical Mechanics

  4. B. Widom, Statistical Mechanics: A concise introduction for chemists



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