# The principles of statistical mechanics

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## Principles of Statistical Mechanics

A very important book in statistical mechanics. Tolman dedicated the book to J. Robert Oppenheimer with whom all aspects of the text have been discussed. The Principles of Statistical Mechanics. Richard Chace Tolman. Classic treatment of a subject essential to contemporary physics. Classical and quantum statistical mechanics, plus application to thermodynamic behavior.

Statistical mechanics is the branch of science that aims to bridge the vast gap between our everyday macroscopic experience and the microscopic laws of physics, deduced from experimental observations, that we believe to be apply to matter at the atomic scale. Observations in the macroscopic world are concerned with quantities such as pressure, volume, temperature, energy, etc Thermodynamics unifies our understanding of mechanical energy and heat energy through the first law, and furthermore identifies a macroscopic quantity called "entropy", S, which is related to heat by for reversible processes. Historically, this operational, and somewhat non-intuitive, concept of macroscopic entropy was thus developed first, before Boltzmann provided a microscopic interpretation in terms of randomness. Microscopically on the atomic-scale , we have learned that nature held the surprise that Newtonian classical mechanics was no longer an adequate description, and that everything, including matter and light, behaves in "quantum mechanical" way. How many does it take?

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Add to Wishlist. By: Richard C. Book Reg. Product Description Product Details Referred to by every later author, used by thousands of students in the over forty years since publication, and recommended with great enthusiasm by those same students who are now professors, The Principles of Statistical Mechanics is widely recognized as the classic treatment of a subject essential to contemporary physics. After a brief introduction, the text begins with a concise exposition of classical statistical mechanics, including such topics as Hamilton's principle, the Lagrangian function, canonical equations of motion, the fundamental theorem of Liouville, conditions for statistical equilibrium, the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution law, collisions as a mechanism of change with time, and Boltzmann's H -theorem. There follows a thorough elucidation of quantum statistical mechanics: historical remarks, the postulates, theorems illustrating the nature of quantum mechanics, transformation theory, applications, statistical ensembles, the Maxwell-Boltzmann, Einstein-Bose, and Fermi-Dirac distributions, the change in quantum mechanical systems with time, and the quantum mechanical H -theorem. The self-contained treatment of quantum mechanics is almost a book within a book!

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Statistical mechanics is one of the pillars of modern physics. It is necessary for the fundamental study of any physical system that has many degrees of freedom. The approach is based on statistical methods, probability theory and the microscopic physical laws. It can be used to explain the thermodynamic behaviour of large systems. This branch of statistical mechanics, which treats and extends classical thermodynamics, is known as statistical thermodynamics or equilibrium statistical mechanics. Statistical mechanics shows how the concepts from macroscopic observations such as temperature and pressure are related to the description of microscopic state that fluctuates around an average state. It connects thermodynamic quantities such as heat capacity to microscopic behavior, whereas, in classical thermodynamics , the only available option would be to measure and tabulate such quantities for various materials.

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