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February 20 , 2010

Equilibrium Thermodynamics


This textbook provides an exposition of equilibrium thermodynamics and its applications to several areas of physics with particular attention to phase transitions and critical phenomena. The applications include several areas of condensed matter physics and include also a chapter on thermochemistry. Phase transitions and critical phenomena are treated according to the modern development of the field, based on the ideas of universality and on the Widom scaling theory. For each topic, a mean-field or Landau theory is presented to describe qualitatively the phase transitions. These theories include the van der Waals theory of the liquid-vapor transition, the Hildebrand-Heitler theory of regular mixtures, the Griffiths-Landau theory for multicritical points in multicomponent systems, the Bragg-Williams theory of order-disorder in alloys, the Weiss theory of ferromagnetism, the Néel theory of antiferromagnetism, the Devonshire theory for ferroelectrics and Landau-de Gennes theory of liquid crystals. This textbook is intended for students in physics and chemistry and provides a unique combination of thorough theoretical explanation and presentation of applications in both areas. Chapter summaries, highlighted essentials and problems with solutions enable a self sustained approach and deepen the knowledge.
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