Physics 516: Electron Correlations (Spring 2010)

MWF 9:15-11:05, 502 Reiss and Physics lobby (MWF)

Prof. Jim Freericks

Office: 552 Reiss
Office Hours: T Th 11:30-12:00, or by appointment. I am in most times except Mondays 3-4:30, Wednesdays, and Fridays 1-5.
Telephone: (202) 687-6159

Course Description

This course is an introduction to the more advanced ideas of quantum mechanics. We will begin with the raising and lowering operators of a simple harmonic oscillator, a review of nondegenerate perturbation theory, and a development of degenerate perturbation theory. We then describe time-dependent phenomena in quantum mechanics, including time-ordered products, evolution operators, and perturbation theory. We also briefly describe Fermi's golden rule, the sudden approximation, and the creation of light from atomic hydrogen. Then we move onto Fermionic problems, starting with the creation and annihilation operators and how they apply to simple bandstructure calculations, followed by a thorough discussion of the Hubbard model, which illustrates many different correlated phenomena ranging from antiferromagnetism to ferromagnetism.

View this syllabus at

Quantum Mechanics Developers we will meet in this course

Rayleigh Schroedinger Dirac Wigner Brillouin Fermi Dyson Lieb

Some Advice

This course will have six homework assignments and a final. The final is on May 12. Most of the readings come from Harrison's Applied Quantum Mechanics, excerpts from other selected texts (Gottfried's Quantum Mechanics I: Fundamentals and Ziman's Elements of Advanced Quantum Theory), and original research articles. Assigned reading must be completed before the lecture where the material will be presented. Note that we will be using more of a tutorial than lecture style for the class. In order to deliver the material in a more relaxed fashion, we will meet informally after the lecture period in the Physics lobby to complete lecture materials, discuss homework problems, and answer questions. Come prepared to think.


Homework Schedule

Grading Policy

Last modified March 1, 2010

Jim Freericks, Professor of Physics,