PHYS 663


Statistical Mechanics (PHYS 663)

Instructor: Prof. Bogdan Dabrowski, Physics Department, NIU. You can find me in my office (La

Tourette Hall 216; phone: 753-6474) or in my labs La Tourette Hall 215 and FR 110 (phone:

753-6472) on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. You can also reach me on

Thursdays and Fridays at Argonne National Laboratory (phone: 630-252-5541) or at email [email protected]

Course meeting time and place: 12:30 to 1:45 PM on Mondays and Wednesdays at La Tourette

Hall 227.

Office hours: on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1:45 to 2:45 PM at La Tourette Hall 216.

The required textbook: Gene Mazenko,

Equilibrium Statistical Mechanics

, (John Wiley & Sons,

Inc. 2000) NIU Coursepack for PHYS 663.

Chapters and topics we will study:

Ch. 1.1

– 1.16: General Principles of Statistical Mechanics (9 classes)

Ch. 2.1

– 2.4: Principles of Thermodynamics (3 classes)

Midterm Exam: (1 class)

Ch. 2.5

– 2.9: Principles of Thermodynamics (5 classes)

Ch. 3.1

– 3.13: Quantum Statistical Mechanics (9 classes)

Catch up / Review (1 class)

Final Exam: May 7

If time allows we will cover also Ch. 5.1

– 5.5: Equilibrium Properties of Dielectric and Magnetic


I may be out of town on for a conference on Jan. 27 and/or 29. As homework for this time period

I ask you to read/review Ch.1

– 7 of

Statistical and Thermal Physics

by Reif, the textbook used by Prof. Lurio in his class PHYS 463/563 Thermodynamics, Kinetic Theory, and Statistical

Mechanics. After return from conference I will spend additional time during following classes to compensate for missed time. If necessary, additional classes will be scheduled to catch scheduled topics.

There will be several problems solved in class for every chapter we study. Additional problems will be assigned as homework every week. I will collect and grade these problems the following week

– there is no substitute for solving problems on your own. There will be closed-books midterm and final exams.

The grades will be based on the total amount of points you would accumulate during the course

(homework 30%, mid-term exam 30%, and final exam 40%):

A: 85

– 100%

B: 70

– 84%

C: 55

– 69%

D: 45

– 54%