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Atomic and Molecular Physics



We discuss the electronic structure of atoms and molecules, as well as basic concepts of their interaction with light.
The course consists of 3 parts. In the first part on atoms, we build up the shell structure of a n-electron atom, discussing the central-field approximation, the L-S and j-j couplings, and the effect of static magnetic or electric fields on the level structure.
Part 2 on molecules starts from the electronic structure of simple diatomic molecules to discuss rotations and vibrations of more complex molecules.
In part 3, we discuss the interaction of a two-level system with a coherent electromagnetic field, the formalism behind magnetic resonance and coherent optics. We derive the (spin or optical) Bloch equations and discuss some experiments using their solutions under steady-state or time-dependent conditions.

Programme form

Lectures and excercises


Physics of Atoms and Molecules, B. H. Bransden & C.J. Joachain




The final grade is determined via a quiz (2 hour duration) at half-course and an exam (3 hour duration) at the end of the course. The final grade © will be calculated from the results of the quiz (t) and the exam (T) according to the following formulas: if T>t, C=T; if T


Quantummechanica 1 and Quantummechanica 2

More info

Contact details lecturer: Prof.dr. M. Orrit (Michel)

More information will be available on Blackboard (which requires a ULCN account).