Quantum Mechanics in a Nutshell

Princeton University Press
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Covering the fundamentals as well as many special topics of current interest, this is the most concise, up-to-date, and accessible graduate-level textbook on quantum mechanics available. Written by Gerald Mahan, a distinguished research physicist and author of an acclaimed textbook on many-particle physics, Quantum Mechanics in a Nutshell is the distillation of many years' teaching experience.

Emphasizing the use of quantum mechanics to describe actual quantum systems such as atoms and solids, and rich with interesting applications, the book proceeds from solving for the properties of a single particle in potential; to solving for two particles (the helium atom); to addressing many-particle systems. Applications include electron gas, magnetism, and Bose-Einstein Condensation; examples are carefully chosen and worked; and each chapter has numerous homework problems, many of them original.

Quantum Mechanics in a Nutshell expertly addresses traditional and modern topics, including perturbation theory, WKBJ, variational methods, angular momentum, the Dirac equation, many-particle wave functions, Casimir Force, and Bell's Theorem. And it treats many topics--such as the interactions between photons and electrons, scattering theory, and density functional theory--in exceptional depth.

A valuable addition to the teaching literature, Quantum Mechanics in a Nutshell is ideally suited for a two-semester course.

  • The most concise, up-to-date, and accessible graduate textbook on the subject

  • Contains the ideal amount of material for a two-semester course

  • Focuses on the description of actual quantum systems, including a range of applications

  • Covers traditional topics, as well as those at the frontiers of research

  • Treats in unprecedented detail topics such as photon-electron interaction, scattering theory, and density functional theory

  • Includes numerous homework problems at the end of each chapter

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About the author

Gerald D. Mahan is Distinguished Professor of Physics at Pennsylvania State University. He is the author of two previous physics textbooks, Many-Particle Physics and Applied Mathematics.
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Additional Information

Princeton University Press
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Published on
Dec 29, 2008
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Science / Physics / Atomic & Molecular
Science / Physics / Condensed Matter
Science / Physics / General
Science / Physics / Quantum Theory
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Since it was first published, Quantum Field Theory in a Nutshell has quickly established itself as the most accessible and comprehensive introduction to this profound and deeply fascinating area of theoretical physics. Now in this fully revised and expanded edition, A. Zee covers the latest advances while providing a solid conceptual foundation for students to build on, making this the most up-to-date and modern textbook on quantum field theory available.

This expanded edition features several additional chapters, as well as an entirely new section describing recent developments in quantum field theory such as gravitational waves, the helicity spinor formalism, on-shell gluon scattering, recursion relations for amplitudes with complex momenta, and the hidden connection between Yang-Mills theory and Einstein gravity. Zee also provides added exercises, explanations, and examples, as well as detailed appendices, solutions to selected exercises, and suggestions for further reading.

The most accessible and comprehensive introductory textbook available Features a fully revised, updated, and expanded text Covers the latest exciting advances in the field Includes new exercises Offers a one-of-a-kind resource for students and researchers Leading universities that have adopted this book include:
Arizona State University Boston University Brandeis University Brown University California Institute of Technology Carnegie Mellon College of William & Mary Cornell Harvard University Massachusetts Institute of Technology Northwestern University Ohio State University Princeton University Purdue University - Main Campus Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Rutgers University - New Brunswick Stanford University University of California - Berkeley University of Central Florida University of Chicago University of Michigan University of Montreal University of Notre Dame Vanderbilt University Virginia Tech University

Reviews from the First Edition:

"An excellent text ... The postulates of quantum mechanics and the mathematical underpinnings are discussed in a clear, succinct manner." (American Scientist)

"No matter how gently one introduces students to the concept of Dirac’s bras and kets, many are turned off. Shankar attacks the problem head-on in the first chapter, and in a very informal style suggests that there is nothing to be frightened of." (Physics Bulletin)

Reviews of the Second Edition:

"This massive text of 700 and odd pages has indeed an excellent get-up, is very verbal and expressive, and has extensively worked out calculational details---all just right for a first course. The style is conversational, more like a corridor talk or lecture notes, though arranged as a text. ... It would be particularly useful to beginning students and those in allied areas like quantum chemistry." (Mathematical Reviews)

R. Shankar has introduced major additions and updated key presentations in this second edition of Principles of Quantum Mechanics. New features of this innovative text include an entirely rewritten mathematical introduction, a discussion of Time-reversal invariance, and extensive coverage of a variety of path integrals and their applications. Additional highlights include:

- Clear, accessible treatment of underlying mathematics

- A review of Newtonian, Lagrangian, and Hamiltonian mechanics

- Student understanding of quantum theory is enhanced by separate treatment of mathematical theorems and physical postulates

- Unsurpassed coverage of path integrals and their relevance in contemporary physics

The requisite text for advanced undergraduate- and graduate-level students, Principles of Quantum Mechanics, Second Edition is fully referenced and is supported by many exercises and solutions. The book’s self-contained chapters also make it suitable for independent study as well as for courses in applied disciplines.

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