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What should be my first QFT book? I'm an experimentalist ^_^

  1. Jul 19, 2007 #1
    Hi all,

    I am wondering if anyone out there could give your recommendation as to what my first QFT book should be considering that I'm an experimentalist interested in particle physics.

    Having said that, obviously the goal is to quickly understand the "derivations" of Feynmann rules and be able to calculate cross sections and decay rates as pertain to particle physics.

    I generally like theories, but only at the adequate amount, just well enough to be able to converse with a theorists.

    Any recommendation?

    Thank you and I really appreciate your help!

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 19, 2007 #2

    George Jones

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    You might try http://www.oup.com/uk/catalogue/?ci=9780198520740#contents" [Broken] by Michele Maggiore. If this doesn't have enought detail, then An Introduction to Quantum Field Theory by Peskin and Schroeder is a standard text for grad QFT courses. Quantum Theory in a Nushell by Zee is nice book for learning *about* quantum field theory, but probably isn't a good book for learning how to do calculations.

    I was going to tell you to have a look first at your library's copy of Maggiore, but I just checked, and someone already has it out.

    Hopefully, other people will chime in with further suggestions and comments.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2017
  4. Jul 19, 2007 #3
    The references given by George are already quite good.

    To suggest further ones, I know of Quarks and Leptons: Introductory Course in Modern Particle Physics, by Francis Halzen, Alan D. Martin, or Introduction to Elementary Particles by David Griffiths which are very popular. Diagrammatica by Martinus Veltman is more rigourus to derive the rules.

    In fact, there are so many references that it is difficult to provide an objective "best" choice.
  5. Jul 19, 2007 #4

    I've just read Griffiths...and I've heard Martin's text is roughly at about the same level as Griffiths. I think I'm ready to go a step higher now and I'd like to learn QFT in a semi-formal sense.

    I did some research about the book by Peskin/Schroeder. At amazon.com, it doesnt seem to receive good reviews and many simply call it a "good reference if you know the stuff, but terrible for beginners".

    I recently checked out a book by Mandl/Shaw, it seems pretty good at first sight.

    Does anyone have this book or is it your first QFT book? Any opinions as to whether or not I should begin with this book?
  6. Jul 19, 2007 #5
  7. Jul 19, 2007 #6

    Dr Transport

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    Mandel & Shaw or Aitcheson & Hey are both good texts for QFT, I used them both while I was in grad school.
  8. Jul 20, 2007 #7


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    I would recommend Srednicki's book. A draft version if available for free online:

  9. Jul 23, 2007 #8
    Go to the FNAL and CERN webcast sites,and stay there.The streaming videos from FNAL are wonderful.The series of lectures by R.Kleiss from the CERN Webcast service,although not the highest quality,are very good on focusing on the field theory that particle physicists need.Good stuff,...
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