Physics 540 Fall 2005 -- Advice for the final exam

I expect you to be able calculate numerical answers, without being given values of fundamental constants.  A simple calculator is permitted.  A list of constants that you should know is posted.

The final exam will cover Kittel's book through page 158, omitting section 24 (negative temperatures).  In addition there are a few other things.  The basic mean-field theory of phase transitions, both microscopic (for magnets anyway) and macroscopic (Landau theory) was covered in handouts from books by Yeomans and Chaikin and Lubensky.  Section 26 on quasithermodynamic theory of fluctuations was also supplemented by a handout from Chaikin and Lubensky about nucleation of a first-order phase transition.

I briefly covered some elementary thermodynamics, and will expect you to know the classical version of the first and second laws, as covered in standard introductory undergraduate texts.  For example, you should know the material in Young and Freedman's text University Physics (11th ed.) Ch. 17-20.

I will look for thermodynamic data in the published literature and construct at least one problem where you will need to understand the data and make deductions from the data using ideas from the course.

The exam is 2.5 hours long.  Probably there will be 5 problems.

Good luck!

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