Statistical and Thermal Physics
With Computer Applications
Harvey Gould & Jan Tobochnik
This textbook carefully develops the main ideas and techniques of statistical and thermal physics and is intended for upper-level undergraduate courses. The authors each have more than thirty years' experience in teaching, curriculum development, and research in statistical and computational physics.
Statistical and Thermal Physics begins with a qualitative discussion of the relation between the macroscopic and microscopic worlds and incorporates computer simulations throughout the book to provide concrete examples of important conceptual ideas. Unlike many contemporary texts on thermal physics, this book presents thermodynamic reasoning as an independent way of thinking about macroscopic systems. Probability concepts and techniques are introduced, including topics that are useful for understanding how probability and statistics are used. Magnetism and the Ising model are considered in greater depth than in most undergraduate texts, and ideal quantum gases are treated within a uniform framework. Advanced chapters on fluids and critical phenomena are appropriate for motivated undergraduates and beginning graduate students.
- Integrates Monte Carlo and molecular dynamics simulations as well as other numerical techniques throughout the text
- Provides self-contained introductions to thermodynamics and statistical mechanics
- Discusses probability concepts and methods in detail
- Contains ideas and methods from contemporary research
- Includes advanced chapters that provide a natural bridge to graduate study
- Features more than 400 problems
- Programs are open source and available in an executable cross-platform format
- Solutions manual (available only to teachers)
Harvey Gould is Professor of Physics at Clark University and Associate Editor of the American Journal of Physics. Jan Tobochnik is the Dow Distinguished Professor of Natural Science at Kalamazoo College and Editor of the American Journal of Physics. They are the coauthors, with Wolfgang Christian, of An Introduction to Computer Simulation Methods: Applications to Physical Systems.