With the basic principles of thermodynamics introduced in part I, we now move on to the more statistical side of things. For many systems we can describe interesting properties using a statistical/probabilistic approach, intuitively linked to entropy and the occupation of states, such as certain energy states. Much of our time will be spent deriving distribution functions that underpin the relation between micro and macroscopic properties of systems, following in the steps of the greats like Einstein and Fermi. Using these tools we embark on attacking a wide variety of problems, from describing classical and quantum gases to exotic phenomena such as super-fluids and white dwarf stars.


Thermo and Statistical Mechanics II (ID: 014203) takes place in the spring/summer semester. Lectures will be provided via Moodle/ELMS, with seminars based on the same material following the usual lecture slot. The normal lecture+seminar time slots for these are from 13:00 - 14:30 (3rd period) and 14:45 - 16:15 (4th period) Thursday.

If you wish to contact me my email address is:, and you can also message me via the ELMS/Moodle page for the course.

Lecture slides

Part 1 [2 sessions]: Introduction and statistics.

Part 2 [2 sessions]: Boltzmann statistics, equipartition theorem.

Part 3 [2 sessions]: Canonical ensemble, partition functions and velocity distributions.

Part 4 [1 session]: The grand canonical ensemble.

Part 5 [3 sessions]: Quantum statistical distributions.

Part 6 [3 sessions]: Photons and phonons.

Part 7 [2 sessions]: Interactions.

Exam: tentatively on 20/09/2020