I'm a mathematician studying quantum mechanics. I noticed I lack some statistical physics prerequisites. However, because I am in a rush, I'd like to learn just as much of it as I need to understand some basic facts like the ultraviolet catastrophe, but not much more or I will never get down to business. I accept suggestions on other notions that I absolutely must have to understand QM. Do you have any books or parts thereof or lecture notes to suggest?


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  • $\begingroup$ have you tried a search of this site to see if the question has been asked and answered? I seem to recall several related instances in recent months... $\endgroup$ – niels nielsen Sep 4 '18 at 22:03
  • $\begingroup$ I'd like to have an answer to my exact question, rather than just something similar. $\endgroup$ – Marc Sep 4 '18 at 22:07
  • $\begingroup$ @Karl I would honestly advise you to skip the UV catastrophe entirely. It's very interesting background, but it doesn't really help you understand the postulates of quantum mechanics. If you're in a rush and don't care about history, you can reasonably skip all of the background material, like the photoelectric effect, compton scattering, and the UV catastrophe. Really, appealing to the double slit experiment should be sufficient justification for a theory of quantum mechanics. $\endgroup$ – Jahan Claes Sep 4 '18 at 22:19
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    $\begingroup$ Possibly useful. $\endgroup$ – rob Sep 4 '18 at 22:29
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    $\begingroup$ "Understanding QM" and "understanding blackbody radiation" are quite different things. What is it you actually need to achieve? $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 4 '18 at 22:52

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