Skip to content
Register Sign in Wishlist
Statistical Mechanics

Statistical Mechanics
A Concise Introduction for Chemists


  • Author: B. Widom, Cornell University, New York
  • Date Published: April 2002
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521009669

£ 59.99

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Request inspection copy

Lecturers may request a copy of this title for inspection

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • Statistical mechanics is the theoretical apparatus used to study the properties of macroscopic systems - systems made up of many atoms or molecules - and relates those properties to the system's microscopic constitution. This book is an introduction to statistical mechanics, intended to be used either by advanced undergraduates or by beginning graduate students. The first chapter deals with statistical thermodynamics and aims to quickly derive the most commonly used formulas in the subject. The remainder of the book then illustrates the application of these formulas in traditional areas such as the ideal gas and less traditional areas such as the quantum ideal gas. Highly illustrated with numerous exercises and worked solutions, it provides a concise treatise of statistical mechanics ideal for use on an 8-12 lecture course.

    • Ideal for use on a one-semester statistical mechanics course
    • Large selection of exercises with worked solutions
    • Concise and up-to-date
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    'Textbooks of statistical thermodynamics for chemists are notoriously thin on the ground as the subject, being so mathematical, is not to the taste of most chemists. Professor Widom has written a survey that many chemists will find accessible, useful, and modern. … The strengths of this excellent text are its accessibility, its authority, the range of topics treated, and its pedagogical style.' Peter Atkins, University of Oxford

    '… Ben Widom's writing style, like his lecture style, is absolutely compelling in its freshness and apparent simplicity … an important foundational textbook and instant classic in the field of Statistical Mechanics.' Dor Ben-Amotz, Purdue University

    '[Those] who need to learn statistical mechanics can hardly find a better introduction … wonderful …'. Jeffrey Kovac, Journal of Chemical Education

    'The text is an excellent read. Every paragraph contains reflective insights on the physical significance of the formulae and their underlying motivation. This makes a subject that is notorious for its difficulty seem simple. … the simplicity, depth of insight and the unusual range of topics in Benjamin Widom's Statistical Mechanics should make it compulsory reading for educators and students alike when they seek to go beyond the first steps of statistical mechanics.' Trevor Rayment, The Times Higher Education Supplement

    See more reviews

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2002
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521009669
    • length: 182 pages
    • dimensions: 247 x 175 x 9 mm
    • weight: 0.39kg
    • contains: 60 b/w illus. 27 exercises
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. The Boltzmann Distribution Law and statistical thermodynamics
    2. The ideal gas
    3. Chemical equilibrium in ideal-gas mixtures
    4. Ideal harmonic solid and black-body radiation
    5. Third law
    6. Non-ideal gas
    7. The liquid state
    8. Quantum ideal gas.

  • Author

    B. Widom, Cornell University, New York
    Benjamin Widom is Goldwin Smith Professor of Chemistry at Cornell University, New York. He received his PhD in Physical Chemistry from that University (where he studied with S. H. Bauer) in 1953, and was a postdoctoral associate with O. K. Rice at the University of North Carolina, before joining the Cornell chemistry faculty in 1954. Professor Widom's research speciality is statistical mechanics and thermodynamics, particularly as applied to problems of phase equilibria, critical phenomena, and interfacial structure and thermodynamics. He is co-author with Professor Sir John Rowlinson, of the University of Oxford, of the research monograph Molecular Theory of Capilliarity (1982). Professor Widom has held numerous prestigious visitorships, including ones at Amsterdam (van der Waals Professor), Oxford (IBM Visiting Professor of Theoretical Chemistry), Leiden (Lorentz Professor), and Utrecht (Kramers/Debye Professor). He has had many awards in recognition of his research in statistical mechanics, including the Boltzmann Medal of the IUPAP Commission on Statistical Physics and the Onsager Medal of the University of Trondheim. He has honorary degrees from the University of Chicago and the University of Utrecht, and has been elected to membership or fellowship of several scholarly academies including the US National Academy of Sciences and the American Philosophical Society.

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×
warning icon

Turn stock notifications on?

You must be signed in to your Cambridge account to turn product stock notifications on or off.

Sign in Create a Cambridge account arrow icon

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.