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'Statistical physics: an entropic approach' by Professor Ian Ford-out now!

23 May 2013

Statistical physics: an entropic approach by Professor Ian Ford

This book grew out of the lecture notes for Professor Ford's course taught at UCL. Rather than following the usual appeal to the growth of disorder and decay; the notion that everything is crumbling away or in some sense going wrong, the idea of entropy is firmly anchored to the development of uncertainty in an underspecified dynamical system. Irreversible, entropy-generating processes are the norm; it is reversibility which is exceptional.

Professor Ian Ford

Professor Ian Ford writes "I think I have been more confused about the nature of entropy than almost anything else I've encountered in physics, and I don’t think I'm alone. The solution to this unease was to teach statistical thermodynamics and to decide firmly what message I was to deliver. Students would inevitably ask `what is entropy?', and I needed to have a simple answer, and the word `disorder' was not going to do.

The material is largely suitable for undergraduates, supplemented by chapters on stochastic dynamics and the so-called fluctuation relations that place the generation of entropy within a clear framework, where the emphasis is on disorderly behaviour leading to uncertainty, rather than on the disorder of the untidy room."

Published by Wiley on the 20th May 2013, this book can be purchased from any good book retailer - see here to buy from Amazon.