Questions tagged [statistical-mechanics]

The study of large, complicated systems by means of statistics and probability theory, in order to extract average properties and to provide a connection between mechanics and thermodynamics.

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21
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5answers
580 views

Connections and applications of SLE in physics

In probability theory, the Schramm–Loewner evolution, also known as stochastic Loewner evolution or SLE, is a conformally invariant stochastic process. It is a family of random planar curves that are ...
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How is the “negative dispersion” derived?

I'm looking at Kopfermann H., Ladenburg R., Nature, 122, 338-339 (1928) and it appears Ladenburg in Ladenburg R., Z.Physik, 4, 451-468 (1921) was the first to discover the phenomenon of "negative ...
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1answer
869 views

Mermin-Wagner theorem in the presence of hard-core interactions

It seems quite common in the theoretical physics literature to see applications of the "Mermin-Wagner theorem" (see wikipedia or scholarpedia for some limited background) to systems with hard-core ...
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Nonextensive statistical mechanics

I know that the Tsallis($S_q$) entropy is called nonextensive information measure in the sense that if $P$ and $Q$ are two probability distributions then $S_q(P\times Q)=S_q(P)+S_q(Q)+(1-q)S_q(P)S_q(Q)...
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Does entropy measure extractable work?

Entropy has two definitions, which come from two different branches of science: thermodynamics and information theory. Yet, they both are thought to agree. Is it true? Entropy, as seen from ...
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Paramagnet: Negative specific heat?

for a simple paramagnet ($N$ magnetic moments with values $-\mu m_i$ and $m_i = -s, ..., s$) in an external magnetic field $B$, I have computed the Gibbs partition function and thus the Gibbs free ...
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What are the justifying foundations of statistical mechanics without appealing to the ergodic hypothesis?

This question was listed as one of the questions in the proposal (see here), and I didn't know the answer. I don't know the ethics on blatantly stealing such a question, so if it should be deleted or ...
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1answer
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$(\mu,P,T)$ pseudo-ensemble: why is it not a proper thermodynamic ensemble?

While teaching statistical mechanics, and describing the common thermodynamic ensembles (microcanonical, canonical, grand canonical), I usually give a line on why there can be no $(\mu, P, T)$ ...
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Transforming a sum into an integral

I posted this in the mathematical forums. Maybe you will help me. I found an hard article http://prola.aps.org/abstract/PR/v105/i3/p776_1 of yang huang and luttinger. The authors begins with the sum: $...
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482 views

Tsallis entropy and other generalizations

Questions: If I am given a system, which I might have to describe using a generalized entropy, like the "$q$-deformed" Tsallis entropy, do I have to fit $q$ from experiment or might I know it ...
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How do you prove $S=-\sum p\ln p$?

How does one prove the formula for entropy $S=-\sum p\ln p$? Obviously systems on the microscopic level are fully determined by the microscopic equations of motion. So if you want to introduce a law ...
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Surface tension of solutions and mixtures

The inspiration for this question is over on cooking.stackexchange, asking more about actual measurements for commonly consumed liquids, but I'm interested more generally as well. What determines the ...
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Is this Landau's other critical phenomena mistake?

There was an old argument by Landau that while the liquid gas transition can have a critical point, the solid-liquid transition cannot. This argument says that the solid breaks translational symmetry, ...
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1answer
575 views

Cross-field diffusion from Smoluchowski approximation

I'm reading An Introduction to Stochastic Processes in Physics by Don S Lemons. Problem 10.2 leads to a pair of equations: $dV_x = -\gamma V_xdt+V_y\Omega dt-V_y\sqrt{2\gamma dt}N_t(0,1)$ $dV_y = -\...
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976 views

Lee-Yang circle theorem

what is Lee-Yang circle theorem and what is it used for ?? , i mean given a measure how can you know that is Ferromagnetic and hence all its zeros lie on a Circle ?? the Lee-Yang circle theorem proof ...
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1answer
222 views

Heuristic argument for the temeprature dependence of specific heat in the “low” temperature regimes

Here by "low temperature" I meant it in the scale of the characteristic $\hbar \omega$ of the system. One can calculate and show that in the low temperature regime $C_V$ of phonons goes like $T^3$ ...
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2answers
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Identifying a critical phenomena?

I have a system with a number of measurables (in time). Some measurables are discrete some are continuous (within the measurement accuracy). How can I determine whether my system experiences ...
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2answers
473 views

Proof that Statistical Mechanics is a model of Themodynamics

The laws of thermodynamics are essentially four axioms of a mathematical theory. The expectation values of a statistical ensemble are supposed to satisfy the axioms of thermodynamics (under the ...
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1answer
491 views

Can somebody provide some sort of crash course on random walk and its problems at the level of a beginning undergraduate student in physics? [closed]

I really need some very simple discussions of random walk (probability). Couldn't get anything from class, more so from Reif. Thanks!
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1answer
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Repulsive classical identical particles on a square lattice

I am not sure whether it is some well-known named model in statistical physics. I could not find it in any standard text-book that I know of. Let there be $N$ identical classical particles ...
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1answer
426 views

Force curve associated with squeezing a worm-like chain (WLC) between two parallel plates

Let's say I have a polymer, of contour length $L_p$ and persistence length $P$, positioned between two parallel plates separated by a distance $z$. I slowly squeeze the plates together until only two-...
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1answer
265 views

Is this geometrical 'derivation' of Brownian motion legitimate?

Here's a simple 'derivation' of the Brownian motion law that after N steps of unit distance 1, the total distance from the origin will be sqrt(N) on average. It's certainly not rigorous, but I'm ...
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Applying the Maxwell–Boltzmann statistics to astrophysical objects

Quoting Wikipedia: In statistical mechanics, Maxwell–Boltzmann statistics describes the statistical distribution of material particles over various energy states in thermal equilibrium, when the ...
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Number density of LO and LA phonons as a function of temperature?

I'd like to know the how the number density of longitudinal optical (LO) and longitudinal acoustic (LA) phonons varies as a function of temperature of the material. Is there a simple expression for ...
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Is there any proof for the 2nd law of thermodynamics?

Are there any analytical proofs for the 2nd law of thermodynamics? Or is it based entirely on empirical evidence?
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1answer
995 views

Statistical physics of molecular dissociation of a diatomic gas

Say there are $N$ atoms of type $A$ in a box of volume $V$ and they are undergoing a reversible association-dissociation reaction $A + A = A_2$. Let an $A$ atom have mass $m$, and hence the molecule $...
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3answers
562 views

Is there any physics behind flocking?

There are many articles published in physics journals about flocking. Is there a physical reason for these phenomena or is it just because physics methods are being used to study collective motion? ...
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Can the entropy density of a spacelike singularity arbitrarily exceed the inverse Planck volume?

For the purpose of this question, let's restrict ourselves to BKL singularities. BKL cosmologies are homogeneous Bianchi type XIII and IV cosmologies which exhibit oscillatory chaotic behavior, ...
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1answer
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Calculating the derivative of the average number of particles by the chemical potential

This should be a trivial calculation but somehow I have managed to get myself confused about this. The grand partition function is: $\mathcal Z = \sum_{N=1}^\infty \sum_{r(N)} {\text e}^{-\beta E_r ...
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Imaginary time in quantum and thermodynamics

The following question is about chapter 2 of Sakurai's Modern Quantum Mechanics. In the section about propagators and Feynman path integrals (p. 113 in my edition) he gives the following example: $$ \...
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1answer
291 views

Are black hole states completely mixed?

A completely mixed state is a statistical mixture with no interference terms, and (QMD, McMahon, pg 229): $$\rho = \dfrac{1}{n}I$$ $$Tr(\rho^2) = \dfrac{1}{n}$$ Are black hole quantum states ...
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1answer
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Proving that the free energy is extensive

If I have two system of an Ideal gas $A$ and $B$ each of these system has a partition function: $Z_{A,B} = \left ( \frac{V_{A,B}}{\lambda_T} \right )^{N_{A,B}}$ Where: $\lambda_T = \left ( \frac{m}...
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Once a quantum partition function is in path integral form, does it contain any operators?

Once a quantum partition function is in path integral form, does it contain any operators? I.e. The quantum partition function is $Z=tr(e^{-\beta H})$ where $H$ is an operator, the Hamiltonian of the ...
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975 views

How do I derive the critical temperature for bose condensation in two dimensions?

In class we derived the 3D case, but there's a step I don't understand: $$ N = g \cdot {V \over (2 \pi \hbar)^3} \cdot \int\limits_{0}^{\infty}{1 \over{e^{\left( E_p \over{K_B T}\right)}-1}} d^3 p = ...
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'A' butterfly effect

If a butterfly did not flap its wings some time ago, but instead decided to slide for that millisecond, can this cause a tornado on the other side of the earth if we just wait long enough? Does this ...
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1answer
982 views

Derivation of relativistic energy

The concept of relativistic energy comes from it's conservation in relativistic mechanics for an elastic collision. It seems to me that another possible derivation could equate the energy of a single ...
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3answers
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Collision time of Brownian particles

Let's assume two spherical particles $p_1$ and $p_2$ of finite radius $r_1$ and $r_2$, which are at locations $(\pm\frac{d}{2},0,0)$ a distance $d$ apart at initial time $t$. These particles diffuse ...
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1answer
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Chemical potential interpretation

Something that has bothered me for a while regards the interpretation of chemical potential for different statistics. While I understand its meaning in metals (and its relation with the Fermi surface),...
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2answers
460 views

What does this observation of instantaneous velocity in Brownian particles mean?

I read this artice: Physicists Prove Einstein Wrong with Observation of Instantaneous Velocity in Brownian Particles “We’ve now observed the instantaneous velocity of a Brownian particle,” says ...
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Chemical potential

This is something probably very basic but I was led back to this issue while listening to a recent seminar by Allan Adams on holographic superconductors. He seemed very worried to have a theory at ...
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224 views

Applicability of Baxter's method for IRF models

In a interaction-round-a-face model of $n^2$ particles in a lattice, a weight $W(a,b,c,d)$ is assigned to each face in the lattice based on the spins $a,b,c,d$ (listed say from the bottom-left corner ...
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Efficiency of Metropolis algorithm

Context is 1D Ising model. Metropolis algorithm is used for simulate that model. Among all possible spins configurations (states) that algorithm generates only states with the desired Boltzmann ...
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A die versus a quantum experiment

Let suppose you roll a die, and it falls into a hidden place, for example under furniture. Then although the experiment has already been made (the die already has a number to show), that value can not ...
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3answers
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How Non-abelian anyons arise in solid-state systems?

Recently it has been studied non-abelian anyons in some solid-state systems. These states are being studied for the creation and manipulation of qubits in quantum computing. But, how these non-...
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trying to understand Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC)

I am a computer scientist interested in network theory. I have come across the Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC) because of its connections to complex networks. What I know about condensation is the ...
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1answer
658 views

Is there a fully quantum-field theoretic treatise of Planck's Law for black-body radiation?

I recall from my undergraduate statistical mechanics and QM classes that Planck's Law may be derived fairly straight-forwardly by considering the density of states of EM radiation in thermal ...
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What happens in string theory beyond the Hagedorn temperature?

What happens in string theory when the temperature exceeds the Hagedorn temperature? Is that even possible? If yes, what is the nature of the phase transition and the phase beyond that? What happens ...
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Please clarify how entropy increases when matter gravitationally coalesces

On John Baez's website, http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/entropy.html, he discusses the problem of how entropy increases when a cloud of ideal gas collapses gravitationally (no black holes - keeping it ...
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Can a single classical particle have any entropy?

recently I have had some exchanges with @Marek regarding entropy of a single classical particle. I always believed that to define entropy one must have some distribution. In Quantum theory, a single ...
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487 views

Shaking a jar of balls

A jar is filled with two types of balls, red and green. Red balls have radius $r_1$ and mass $m_1$, green balls have radius $r_2$ and mass $m_2$. If initially the balls are randomly placed throughout ...