University of Pittsburgh Department of Physics & Astronomy

PHYSICS 2541: Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics (I)

Spring Term 2012

Instructor: W. Vincent Liu, associate professor

Office Address: 317 Allen Hall
Phone: 412-624-9023
Web: W. Vincent Liu's Homepage

Time of Class: 9:30-10:45am  Tue Thu
Place: 105 Allen Hall

Course Plan

  1. Thermodynamics:
  2. Probability: 
  3. Kinetic theory of gases:
  4. Classical statistical mechanics
  5. Interacting particles
  6. Quantum statistical mechanics
  7. Ideal quantum gases

* In case of a class that needs stronger coverage of basic subjects (or if time is too short for any other reason), the subjects marked with a* would be sacrificed.


Mehran Kardar, Statistical Physics of Particles,  Cambridge University Press, 2007. (required)

Supplementary texts:

  1. Mehran Kardar, Statistical Physics of Fields, Cambridge University Press, 2007 (recommended)
  2. L.D. Landau and E. M.  Lifshitz, Statistical Physics  --- a valuable reference
  3. R.K. Pathria and P. D. Beale, Statistical Mechanics, 3rd edition, 2011 --- a widely used textbook.