Register to reply 
Statistical mechanics 
Share this thread: 
#1
Apr911, 01:37 PM

P: 2

why phase transitions and points in phase diagrams important?



#2
Apr911, 01:45 PM

Sci Advisor
P: 8,519

Phase transitions are qualitative changes (sharp boundaries between different phases) like boiling a liquid into gas, or a solid melting into liquid.



#3
Apr1011, 05:57 AM

P: 307

Also, its at phase transitions where you can classify systems. I'm just starting to learn about this but the way a phase transition occurs involves the notion of a critical exponent and this can be used to determine 'universality' classes. So very different systems can act exactly the same at a phase transition. Presumably this helps us organize and understand diverse phenomena. For example I saw a talk last fall suggesting that evolution was in the same class as the BoseEinstein Condensate (if that surprised you it surprised most other folks there as well).



Register to reply 
Related Discussions  
Is it possible to take statistical mechanics without quantum mechanics?  Academic Guidance  5  
Statistical mechanics  Advanced Physics Homework  2  
Statistical Mechanics  Advanced Physics Homework  2  
Statistical Mechanics  Classical Physics  0  
Statistical Mechanics  Advanced Physics Homework  0 