Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics. It's 100% free.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

In the literature one often finds covariant relativistic generalizations of classical non equilibrium statistical equations (Boltzmann, Vlasov, Landau, Fokker-Planck, etc...) but I wonder what is the meaning of the time which is used. As far as I know, one can only write the interaction between two relativistic charged particles by doing the computation in the proper space-time frame of one of the particles. With three relativistic charged particles I am already wondering about how to tackle the problem of proper time, so for N close to a mole...I am lost. Since non-equilibrium statistical mechanics is derived from Hamiltonian mechanics, I can reformulate my question as follows. What is the Hamiltonian of N relativistic interacting charged particles ?

share|cite|improve this question "Classical relativistic system of N charges. Hamiltonian description, forms of dynamics, and partition function" looks as if it answers exactly your question. – John Rennie Jul 18 '12 at 12:08
Exactly what I was looking for. Thank's a lot – Shaktyai Jul 18 '12 at 13:32
@JohnRennie perhaps you could post that as an answer? (with a brief statement of what the article actually says that answers the question) – David Z Jul 19 '12 at 6:40
@DavidZaslavsky a quick glance at the article convinced me that a brief description would be hard! The fact I found it is more a testament to my Google skills than my deep knowledge of relativistic statistical thermodynamics :-) – John Rennie Jul 19 '12 at 6:55
The paper is quite complex, so far my researches to solve the problem has only brought back this paper:… I am not sure I understand how they have avoided the retarded time for each particle ... – Shaktyai Jul 20 '12 at 11:18

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.