The table below provides information on the course’s lecture (L), recitation (R) and exam (E) sessions.

I. Thermodynamics
L1 Fundamental Definitions, The Zeroth Law, The First Law  
L2 The Second Law, Carnot Engines and Thermodynamic Temperature, Entropy  
L3 Approach to Equilibrium and Thermodynamic Potentials, Useful Mathematical Results  
L4 Stability Conditions, The Third Law  
II. Probability
L5 General Definitions, One Random Variable, Some Important Probability Distributions  
R1 Recitation  
L6 Many Random Variables, Sums of Random Variables and the Central Limit Theorem, Rules for Large Numbers, Information, Entropy, and Estimation Problem set 1 due
III. Kinetic Theory of Gases
L7 General Definitions, Liouville’s Theorem  
L8 The Bogoliubov-Born-Green-Kirkwood-Yvon Hierarchy, The Boltzmann Equation  
L9 The H-Theorem and Irreversibility, Equilibrium Properties  
R2 Recitation  
E1 In-class Exam 1  
R3 Recitation  
L10 Conservation Laws Problem set 2 due
L11 Zeroth Order Hydrodynamics, First Order Hydrodynamics  
IV. Classical Statistical Mechanics
L12 General Definitions, The Microcanonical Ensemble, Two-Level Systems  
R4 Recitation  
L13 The Ideal Gas, Mixing Entropy and Gibbs’ Paradox, The Canonical Ensemble Problem set 3 due
L14 Examples, The Gibbs Canonical Ensemble, The Grand Canonical Ensemble  
V. Interacting Particles
L15 The Cumulant Expansion  
R5 Recitation  
E2 In-class Exam 2  
L16 The Cluster Expansion  
L17 The Second Virial Coefficient and Van der Waals Equation, Breakdown of the Van der Waals Equation, Mean Field Theory of Condensation  
L18 Variational Methods, Corresponding States, Critical Point Behavior  
VI. Quantum Statistical Mechanics
L19 Mean field theory of condensation, Corresponding states, Critical point behavior (from L17 & L18)  
R6 Recitation  
L20 Dilute Polyatomic Gases, Vibrations of a Solid, Black-body Radiation Problem set 4 due
L21 Quantum Microstates, Quantum Macrostates  
VII. Ideal Quantum Gases
L22 Hilbert Space of Identical Particles  
R7 Recitation  
R8 Recitation Problem set 5 due
E3 In-class Exam 3  
L23 Canonical Formulation, Grand Canonical Formulation  
L24 The Degenerate Fermi Gas  
R9 Recitation  
L25 The Degenerate Bose Gas Problem set 6 due
L26 Superfluid He4  
E4 Final Exam  

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2013
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Videos
Problem Sets
Lecture Notes