Kinetic Theory and Transport Phenomena

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Oxford University Press, Oct 20, 2016 - Science - 300 pages
One of the questions about which humanity has often wondered is the arrow of time. Why does temporal evolution seem irreversible? That is, we often see objects break into pieces, but we never see them reconstitute spontaneously. This observation was first put into scientific terms by the so-called second law of thermodynamics: entropy never decreases. However, this law does not explain the origin of irreversibly; it only quantifies it. Kinetic theory gives a consistent explanation of irreversibility based on a statistical description of the motion of electrons, atoms, and molecules. The concepts of kinetic theory have been applied to innumerable situations including electronics, the production of particles in the early universe, the dynamics of astrophysical plasmas, quantum gases or the motion of small microorganisms in water, with excellent quantitative agreement. This book presents the fundamentals of kinetic theory, considering classical paradigmatic examples as well as modern applications. It covers the most important systems where kinetic theory is applied, explaining their major features. The text is balanced between exploring the fundamental concepts of kinetic theory (irreversibility, transport processes, separation of time scales, conservations, coarse graining, distribution functions, etc.) and the results and predictions of the theory, where the relevant properties of different systems are computed.
 

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Contents

1 Basic concepts
1
2 Distribution functions
15
3 The Lorentz model for the classical transport of charges
39
4 The Boltzmann equation for dilute gases
63
5 Brownian motion
95
6 Plasmas and selfgravitating systems
115
7 Quantum gases
143
8 Quantum electronic transport in solids
169
10 Numerical and semianalytical methods
209
A Mathematical complements
225
B Tensor analysis
230
C Scattering processes
236
D Electronic structure in crystalline solids
242
References
250
Index
255
Copyright

9 Semiconductors and interband transitions
199

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About the author (2016)

Rodrigo Soto gained his PhD in physics at the Universidad de Chile, finishing in 1998. He was a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre Européen de Calcul Atomique et Moléculaire in Lyon, France. Since 2015 he is Full Professor in the Physics Department at the Universidad de Chile. He has been Visiting Professor at the Universidad Complutense in Madrid, Spain; Ecole Supérieure de Physique et Chimie Industrielles de la Ville de Paris, France; and at the University of Oxford, UK. His has worked on different subjects of non-equilibrium statistical mechanics, mainly on the dynamics of granular materials, in the dynamical Casimir effect, and in active fluids.

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