By Eric Bertin

This concise primer (based on lectures given at summer season faculties on complicated platforms and on a masters measure direction in advanced structures modeling) will offer graduate scholars and rookies to the sector with the elemental wisdom of the innovations and techniques of statistical physics and its power for program to interdisciplinary topics.

Indeed, lately, statistical physics has all started to draw the curiosity of a vast group of researchers within the box of complicated procedure sciences, starting from biology to the social sciences, economics and machine technology. extra regularly, more and more graduate scholars and researchers think the necessity to study a few easy options and questions originating in different disciplines with no unavoidably having to grasp the entire corresponding technicalities and jargon. commonly conversing, the objectives of statistical physics might be summarized as follows: at the one hand to review platforms composed of a big variety of interacting ‘entities’, and at the different to foretell the macroscopic (or collective) habit of the method thought of from the microscopic legislation ruling the dynamics of the person ‘entities’. those ambitions are, to a point, additionally shared through what's these days referred to as ‘complex structures technology’ and for those purposes, structures studied within the framework of statistical physics will be regarded as one of the easiest examples of advanced systems—allowing moreover a slightly good built mathematical remedy.

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**Extra resources for A Concise Introduction to the Statistical Physics of Complex Systems**

**Example text**

In contrast, if ln 2 − ε2 /J 2 < 0, which corresponds to |ε| > ε0 , n(E) is exponentially small with N. This means that in most samples, there are no configurations at energy density |ε| > ε0 . The non-zero, but small value of n(E) comes from the contribution to the average value of very rare samples, which include some configurations with exceptionally low (or high) energy. We can now evaluate the partition function of the REM, defined as 2N e−E α /T . 125) α=1 As all the energies E α are random variables, the partition function Z is also a random variable, which fluctuates from one realization of the disorder to another.

169) As a is small, one can expand p(x ± a, t) to second order in a, leading to p(x ± a, t) = p(x, t) ± a a2 ∂ 2 p ∂p (x, t) + (x, t) + O(a 3 ). 170) The linear terms in a appearing in Eq. 171) which is called the diffusion equation. This equation appears in numerous problems in physics, like the diffusion of heat in a material, or the diffusion of dye in water for instance. The coefficient 21 νa 2 has to take a finite value D > 0 for the equation to be well-defined. As the lattice spacing a goes to zero, it is thus necessary that ν simultaneously goes to infinity, which means that the ‘microscopic’ process appears very fast on the scale of observation.

To be more specific, let us call a the lattice spacing (which was set above to a = 1). At large time t 1/ν, the distribution Pn (t) is expected to vary over spatial scales much larger than the lattice spacing a; in other words, one has |Pn+1 (t) − Pn (t)| Pn (t). 167) Plotting Pn (t) as a function of space, it thus appear essentially continuous. We thus postulate the existence of a distribution p(x,t) of the continuous variable x, such that the discrete-space distribution can be approximated as Pn (t) ≈ ap(na, t).