Spring 2022 - PHYS 445 D100

Statistical Physics (3)

Class Number: 1085

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo, We, Fr 9:30 AM – 10:20 AM
    AQ 5008, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Apr 14, 2022
    7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
    AQ 5039, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    PHYS 344 or CHEM 360, with a minimum grade of C-. Recommended: PHYS 385.



Postulates of statistical mechanics, partition functions, applications to gases, paramagnetism and equilibrium. Quantum statistics and applications. Quantitative.


  1. Introduction to Statistical Mechanics: probability, random walks and entropy
  2. Ensembles: microcanonical, canonical and grand canonical ensembles, examples and connections to thermodynamics
  3. Liouville's Theorem and Ergodicity
  4. Kinetic Theory of gases
  5. Quantum Statistical Mechanics: fermions and boson
  6. Fermions: Fermi energy, Metals, White Dwarf Star
  7. Bosons: photons, blackbody radiation, Bose Einstein Condensation and Superfluidity, phonons and Debye model
  8. Ordering and phase transitions: Ising model, mean field theory, Landau theory


  • Problem Assignments 40%
  • Midterm 15%
  • Final exam 45%



Required: Essential Statistical Physics, Kennett, M.P., Cambridge University Press.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

Students who cannot write their exam during the course's scheduled exam time must request accommodation from their instructor in writing, clearly stating the reason for this request, within one week of the final exam schedule being posted.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2022 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with safety plans in place.  Some courses will still be offered through remote methods, and if so, this will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the spring 2022 term.