Statistical Physics
Subject PHYC30017 (2016)
Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.
Credit Points:  12.5  

Level:  3 (Undergraduate)  
Dates & Locations:  This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016: Semester 2, Parkville  Taught on campus.
Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.  
Time Commitment:  Contact Hours: 2 to 4 hours per week, 36 in total, lectures and problemsolving classes Total Time Commitment: 170 hours total time commitment.  
Prerequisites: 
Physics Both of Subject Study Period Commencement: Credit Points: And Mathematics Subject Study Period Commencement: Credit Points: And at least one of Subject Study Period Commencement: Credit Points:  
Corequisites:  None  
Recommended Background Knowledge:  None  
Non Allowed Subjects:  None  
Core Participation Requirements: 
For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry. It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/disability 
Subject Overview: 
Statistical mechanics, the microscopic basis of classical thermodynamics, is developed in this subject. It is one of the core areas of physics, finding wide application in solid state physics, astrophysics, plasma physics and cosmology. Using fundamental ideas from quantum physics, a systematic treatment of statistical mechanics is developed for systems in equilibrium. The content of this subject includes ensembles and the basic postulate; the statistical basis of the second and third laws of thermodynamics; canonical, microcanonical and grandcanonical ensembles and associated statistical and thermodynamic functions; ideal quantum gases; black body radiation; the classical limit and an introduction to real gases and applications to solid state physics. 

Learning Outcomes: 
Students completing this subject should be able to:

Assessment: 
Two assignments each equivalent to 1500 words during the semester (10% each) and a 3hour written examination in the examination period (80%). 
Prescribed Texts:  D J Amit and Y Verbin, Statistical Physics: An Introductory Course, World Scientific 
Recommended Texts:  K Huang, Introduction to Statistical Physics, Taylor and Francis 
Breadth Options:  This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses: You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects. 
Fees Information:  Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date 
Generic Skills: 
A student who completes this subject should be able to:

Notes: 
This subject is available for science credit to students enrolled in the BSc (both pre2008 and new degrees), BASc or a combined BSc course. 
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: 
Chemical Physics (specialisation of Physics major) Mathematical Physics Physics Physics Physics Physics Physics (specialisation of Physics major) Sciencecredited subjects  new generation BSCI and BENG. 
Download PDF version.