# Statistical Physics 1

Course
2024-2025

Prior knowledge of Klassieke Mechanica a, Elektrische en Magnetische Velden, Analyse 1 (NA), Analyse 2 (NA) en Lineare Algebra 1 (NA)

## Description

Statistical Physics builds a bridge between the microscopic world of atoms, molecules, objects, and the resulting collective behavior at the macroscopic level, be it a material, an organism, the universe. Using probability theory we will develop the notion of entropy. The principle of maximum entropy allows us to develop the statistical physics of systems in equilibrium, and define temperature as a physical quantity. Thermodynamics will be presented as emergent description of the concepts of statistical physics. The concepts are applied to gases, and to other examples in solid materials, biophysics, and astonomy.

## Course objectives

After finishing the course you are able to analyze unknown problems by applying statistical physics concepts:

• Probability theory, phase space

• Entropy, thermal equilibrium

• Microcanonical ensemble, canonical ensemble, grand canonical ensemble

• Ensemble equivalence

• Classical and quantum harmonic oscillator

• Thermodynamic potentials, energy representation

• Helmholtz free energy, Gibbs free energy

• Ideal gas law, heat engine, Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution

• Mean field approximation, Ising model

• Phase transitions

## Timetable

Schedule
For detailed information go to Timetable in Brightspace

In MyTimetable, you can find all course and programme schedules, allowing you to create your personal timetable. Activities for which you have enrolled via MyStudyMap will automatically appear in your timetable.

Additionally, you can easily link MyTimetable to a calendar app on your phone, and schedule changes will be automatically updated in your calendar. You can also choose to receive email notifications about schedule changes. You can enable notifications in Settings after logging in.

Questions? Watch the video, read the instructions, or contact the ISSC helpdesk.

Note: Joint Degree students from Leiden/Delft need to combine information from both the Leiden and Delft MyTimetables to see a complete schedule. This video explains how to do it.

## Mode of instruction

Lectures, self-study of written material, self-study of video material, tutorial sessions, weekly homework sets. The course is taught in English.
See Brightspace

## Assessment method

Written exam with open questions. Bonus points are earned from homework problems.

R.H. Swendsen, 'An Introduction to Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics', Oxford University Press.

## Registration

As a student, you are responsible for enrolling on time through MyStudyMap.

In this short video, you can see step-by-step how to enrol for courses in MyStudyMap.
Extensive information about the operation of MyStudyMap can be found here.

There are two enrolment periods per year:

• Enrolment for the fall opens in July

• Enrolment for the spring opens in December

Note:

• It is mandatory to enrol for all activities of a course that you are going to follow.

• Your enrolment is only complete when you submit your course planning in the ‘Ready for enrolment’ tab by clicking ‘Send’.

• Not being enrolled for an exam/resit means that you are not allowed to participate in the exam/resit.

## Contact

Lecturer:Prof. dr. T Schmidt

## Remarks

Software
Starting from the 2024/2025 academic year, the Faculty of Science will use the software distribution platform Academic Software. Through this platform, you can access the software needed for specific courses in your studies. For some software, your laptop must meet certain system requirements, which will be specified with the software. It is important to install the software before the start of the course. More information about the laptop requirements can be found on the student website.