# PX366 - Statistical Physics

• Module code: PX366
• Module name: Statistical Physics
• Department: Physics
• Credit: 7.5

## Module content and teaching

###### Principal aims

The module will illustrate the important concepts of modern statistical physics using simple examples. It should give an appreciation of the fundamental role played by fluctuations in nature.

###### Principal learning outcomes

At the end of the module you should: Have been reminded about those aspects of equilibrium thermodynamics most often referred to in this module; Understand the physics of diffusive processes. Know the origin of the Langevin and Diffusion equations and the key elements of these two descriptions; Have been introduced to the statistical mechanics of long chain molecules (polymers).Appreciate that this is an example of a system driven by configurational entropy rather than energy; Appreciate the importance of phase transitions via simple examples, primarily the paramagnetic-ferromagnetic transitIon; Understand the motivation behind the Ginzburg-Landau theory of continuous symmetry breaking phase transitions and have seen how it is solved; Understand the origin of the law of equipartition of energy and see how it may be used to solve real problems where we are interested in the statistics of fluctuations.

###### Timetabled teaching activities

15 Lectures

http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/physics/teach/syllabi/year3/px366

###### Other essential notes

Fluctuations play an essential role in nature. Statistical mechanics is, in essence, a description of the role played by these fluctuations. The module studies the physics of such seemingly diverse problems as diffusion, phase transitions and Fermi-Dirac and Bose-Einstein statistics. It also uses examples from Polymer physics where the behaviour of the polymer chains is driven by configurational entropy, rather than energy.

## Module assessment

Assessment group Assessment name Percentage
7.5 CATS (Module code: PX366-7.5)
B (Examination only) 1.5 hour exam (Summer) 100%
VA (Visiting students only) 100% assessment visiting/exchange PART-YEAR ONLY 100%

## Module availability

This module is available on the following courses:

N/A

N/A

###### Optional
• Undergraduate Physics (BSc) (F300) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Physics (with Intercalated Year) (F301) - Year 4
• Undergraduate Physics (BSc MPhys) (F304) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Mathematics and Physics (BSc MMathPhys) (FG33) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Mathematics (BSc) (G100) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Mathematics with Intercalated Year (G101) - Year 4
• Undergraduate Mathematics (MMath) (G103) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Mathematics (MMath) (G103) - Year 4
• Undergraduate Master of Mathematics (with Intercalated Year) (G105) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Master of Mathematics (with Intercalated Year) (G105) - Year 4
• Undergraduate Master of Mathematics (with Intercalated Year) (G105) - Year 5
• Undergraduate Mathematics (MMath) with Study in Europe (G106) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Mathematics (MMath) with Study in Europe (G106) - Year 4
• Undergraduate Mathematics and Physics (BSc) (GF13) - Year 3
• Undergraduate Mathematics and Physics (with Intercalated Year) (GF14) - Year 4