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Since the publication of the first edition over 50 years ago, this title has been the standard solid state physics text for physics students.
The principle of least action originates in the idea that, if nature has a purpose, it should follow a minimum or critical path. This simple principle, and its variants and generalizations, applies to optics, mechanics, electromagnetism, relativity, and quantum mechanics, and provides an essential guide to understanding the beauty of physics. This unique text provides an accessible introduction to the action principle across these various fields of physics, and examines its history and fundamental role in science. It includes – with varying levels of mathematical sophistication – explanations from historical sources, discussion of classic papers, and original worked examples. The result is a story that is understandable to those with a modest mathematical background, as well as to researchers and students in physics and the history of physics.
This book explains in detail the key concepts, calculations and applications elucidating quantum tunnelling mediated by instantons, using the Feynman path integral.
Instantons, or pseudoparticles, are solutions to the equations of motion in classical field theories on a Euclidean spacetime. Instantons are found everywhere in quantum theories as they have many applications in quantum tunnelling. Diverse physical phenomena may be described through quantum tunnelling, for example: the Josephson effect, the decay of meta-stable nuclear states, band formation in tight binding models of crystalline solids, the structure of the gauge theory vacuum, confinement in 2+1 dimensions, and the decay of superheated or supercooled phases. Drawing inspiration from Sidney Coleman’s Erice lectures, this volume provides an accessible, detailed introduction to instanton methods, with many applications, making it a valuable resource for graduate students in many areas of physics, from condensed matter, particle and nuclear physics, to string theory.
Anomalous diffusion has been detected in a wide variety of scenarios, from fractal media, systems with memory, transport processes in porous media, to fluctuations of financial markets, tumour growth, and complex fluids. Providing a contemporary treatment of this process, this book examines the recent literature on anomalous diffusion and covers a rich class of problems in which surface effects are important, offering detailed mathematical tools of usual and fractional calculus for a wide audience of scientists and graduate students in physics, mathematics, chemistry and engineering. Including the basic mathematical tools needed to understand the rules for operating with the fractional derivatives and fractional differential equations, this self-contained text presents the possibility of using fractional diffusion equations with anomalous diffusion phenomena to propose powerful mathematical models for a large variety of fundamental and practical problems in a fast-growing field of research.
Following years of experience in software development and teaching university physics courses, Professor Hu and his team have developed this software to facilitate teaching of undergraduate level introductory physics courses. It is difficult to teach students how to master key knowledge points without the provision of physical images. Unlike traditional figures or animations, this software calculates and displays physical images and dynamic process in a dynamic, interactive, and accurate manner. By changing the parameters, situations, and viewpoints, the resultant images, dynamic processes, and results are automatically recalculated and displayed simultaneously. Not only does this save class time by removing the need to set up apparatus, but it also helps to demonstrate physical images and processes that cannot be directly observed. It is useful and easy for students to establish the correct physical images and to understand underlying physical concepts. Most of the classic experiments and concepts in teaching mechanics, thermal physics, electromagnetism, wave optics, special relativity, and quantum physics at introductory level university physics are included.
The Physics of Energy provides a comprehensive and systematic introduction to the scientific principles governing energy sources, uses, and systems. This definitive textbook traces the flow of energy from sources such as solar power, nuclear power, wind power, water power, and fossil fuels through its transformation in devices such as heat engines and electrical generators, to its uses including transportation, heating, cooling, and other applications. The flow of energy through the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans, and systems issues including storage, electric grids, and efficiency and conservation are presented in a scientific context along with topics such as radiation from nuclear power and climate change from the use of fossil fuels. Students, scientists, engineers, energy industry professionals, and concerned citizens with some mathematical and scientific background who wish to understand energy systems and issues quantitatively will find this textbook of great interest.
“This is a popular science book exploring the limits of scientific explanation. In particular, it debates if all sciences will ultimately be reducible to physics. The journey starts with physics itself, where there is a gap between the micro (quantum) and the macro (classical) and moves into chemistry, biology and the social sciences. Written by a practising scientist, this volume offers a personal perspective on various topics and incorporates the latest research”–
My friendship with Freeman Dyson goes back over a half century. My first contact with him goes back to the late 1950s, when I was at the Institute for Advanced Study, and then evolved when I was a consultant at General Atomics in La Jolla, California. Freeman was then trying to design a space ship the Orion which would be propelled by atomic bombs. When I left the Institute, Freeman and I continued our correspondence and I saved his letters. They are written in an almost calligraphically elegant handwriting. It is hard to see how you could make a mistake in a mathematical computation if you wrote that clearly. The letters show his human side and his enormous range of knowledge. There are then two essays involving the physicist Fritz Houtermans who was an extraordinarily colorful character. There is a brief essay on Einstein’s collaboration with a fraud. There is even an essay on the Titius-Bode law and the new exo-planets. Because of my enduring interest in nuclear weapons, the reader will find essays devoted to that. There is also a bit of fiction at the end.
Readership: General public, students and academicians who are interested in issues related to science, technology and society.
International Young Physicists’ Tournament (IYPT), is one of the most prestigious international physics contests among high school students. This book is based on the solutions of 2015 IYPT problems. The authors are undergraduate students who participated the CUPT (Chinese Undergraduate Physics Tournament). It is intended as a college level solution to the challenging open-ended problems. It provides original, quantitative solutions in fulfilling seemingly impossible tasks. The young authors provide quantitative solutions to practical problems in everyday life.
This is a good reference book for undergraduates, advanced high school students, physics educators and curious public interested in the intriguing phenomenon in daily life.
A revision of the defining book covering the physics and classical mathematics necessary to understand electromagnetic fields in materials and at surfaces and interfaces. The third edition has been revised to address the changes in emphasis and applications that have occurred in the past twenty years.
This comprehensive text provides an introduction to basic nuclear physics, including nuclear decays and reactions and nuclear structure, while covering the essential areas of basic research and practical applications. Its emphasis on phenomonology and the results of real experiments distinguish this from all other texts available. Discussions of theory are reinforced with examples which illustrate and apply the theoretical formulism, thus aiding students in their reading and analysis of current literature. The text is designed to provide a core of material for students with minimal background in mathematics or quantum theory and offers more sophisticated material in separate sections.
Richard Feynman was one of the most famous and important physicists of the second half of the twentieth century. Awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1965, celebrated for his spirited and engaging lectures, and briefly a star on the evening news for his presence on the commission investigating the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger, Feynman is best known for his contributions to the field of quantum electrodynamics. The Character of Physical Law, drawn from Feynman’s famous 1964 series of Messenger Lectures at Cornell, offers an introduction to modern physics — and to Feynman at his witty and enthusiastic best.
In this classic book (originally published in 1967), Feynman offers an overview of selected physical laws and gathers their common features, arguing that the importance of a physical law is not “how clever we are to have found it out” but “how clever nature is to pay attention to it.” He discusses such topics as the interaction of mathematics and physics, the principle of conservation, the puzzle of symmetry, and the process of scientific discovery. A foreword by 2004 Physics Nobel laureate Frank Wilczek updates some of Feynman’s observations — noting, however, “the need for these particular updates enhances rather than detracts from the book.” In The Character of Physical Law, Feynman chose to grapple with issues at the forefront of physics that seemed unresolved, important, and approachable.