Suggestion on books for Thermal Physics and Statistical Mechanics

  • #1
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I am planing to study thermal physics on my own as I got an incompetent faculty who doesn't know anything about this subject. I want to have a detailed understanding about the topic. So can somebody suggest me which book I should follow from the following list.


1. Schroeder, Thermal physics

2. Kittel & Kromer's Thermal Physics

3. Seddon and Gale's Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics

4. An Introduction to Thermal Physics by Daniel V. Schroeder

5. Statistical Physics by Franz Mandl

6. Thermodynamics: Foundations and Applications by Elias P. Gyftopoulos (Author), Gian Paolo Beretta (Author)

7. Statistical Physics: Berkeley Physics Course by F. Reif

8. Concepts of Thermal Physics by Blundell and Blundell.

9. Stowe's An Introduction to Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics

10. Thermal Physics by Ralph Baierlein

11. Introduction to Statistical Thermodynamics by Terrell Hill

12. Statistical Physics (Manchester Physics Series) by F. Mandl, John Wiley and Sons Ltd
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
vanhees71
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I don't know at which level you want to study thermodynamics and statistics. My favorite as a first introduction is

Callen, H. B.: Thermodynamics and an Introduction to Thermostatistics, 2 edition, John Wiley&Sons, 1985

When I studied it the first time, I used

Reif, F.: Fundamentals of statistical and thermal physics, McGraw Hill Book Company, 1965

which is also good but to my taste sometimes has a bit too much text ;-)).

Another brillant book is vol. V of Landau/Lifshitz's textbook series on theoretical physics:

http://books.google.de/books?id=VzgJN-XPTRsC&dq=Landau+Lifshitz+vol.+5&sitesec=reviews

For statistical physics, I also like the information-theoretical approach (Shannon-Jayne's principle), for which I can recommend

Katz, Amnon: Principles of Statistical Mechanics, W. H. Freeman and Company, 1967

and

Hobson, Arthur: Concepts in Statistical Mechanics, 2 edition, Gordon and Breach Science Publishers, 1987
 
  • #3
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I am on undergraduate level and this is my first thermodynamics course. I am looking for a book which has a detail explanation
 
  • #4
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I think Schroeder is great for a casual introduction to thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, ideal for an introduction. The level is gentle and accessible, and there are many thought-provoking exercises.

I have also heard good things about Blundell.

If you want a "detailed understanding" you should probably continue with Kittel/Kroemer or Landau/Lifshitz, but these are more advanced and probably require stronger preparation in quantum mechanics (so are typically inappropriate for an introduction).
 
  • #5
vanhees71
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For the very first encounter from my list the book by Callen is great. I used it when I had the introductory lecture on the subject, and it helped me a lot :-).
 
  • #6
atyy
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My suggestion is to follow closely the recommended text for your course, and dip into many other books when there is a point you don't understand. It is really only by reading a wide range of viewpoints and synthesizing them for yourself that you can understand the subject.

I like
Adkins Equilibrium Thermodynamics
Peliti Statistical Mechanics in a Nutshell
Kardar Statistical Physics of Particles
Kardar Statistical Physics of Fields

Excellent lecture notes online are
Huan
http://www.spms.ntu.edu.sg/PAP/courseware/statmech.pdf
Cross
http://www.pma.caltech.edu/~mcc/Ph127/a/ [Broken]
http://www.pma.caltech.edu/~mcc/Ph127/b/ [Broken]
http://www.pma.caltech.edu/~mcc/Ph127/c/ [Broken]
Kardar
http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/physics/8-333-statistical-mechanics-i-statistical-mechanics-of-particles-fall-2007/ [Broken]
http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/physics/8-334-statistical-mechanics-ii-statistical-physics-of-fields-spring-2008/ [Broken]
 
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  • #8
jasonRF
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I second the suggestion of Schroeder - I self-studied from Reif and wish Schroeder had been around back then...


Other free resources online:
Fitzpatrick:
http://farside.ph.utexas.edu/teaching.html
Here you can find notes (really books!) on many topics, including undergrad statistical physics.

Gould:
http://stp.clarku.edu/notes/
Written for undergrads and includes simulations

Sethna:
http://pages.physics.cornell.edu/~sethna/StatMech/
portions were written for "honors" intro physics, otherwise is at grad level. Is great reading; problems can be long, but he tells you explicitly which problems are easy and which are hard.

For a very easy introduction to some aspects of statistical mechanics a nice book is Elements of statistical thermodynamics by Nash
https://www.amazon.com/dp/0486449785/?tag=pfamazon01-20&tag=pfamazon01-20
Was written for freshman chemistry students. Is worth a look if it is in your library.

jason
 
  • #9
DrDu
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One of my favourites is
Peter T. Landsberg, Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics, Dover
Specifically, Landsberg has worked actively on the field of phenomenological thermodynamics and therefore the presentation of it is very modern and free of historical ballast which makes other text hard to follow.
 

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