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Atomic and Molecular Physics

A primer
Professor Luciano Colombo


This book introduces the fundamental quantum physics of atoms and molecules. Divided into three parts, the first provides a historical perspective, which leads to the contemporary view of atomic and molecular physics, outlining the principles of non-relativistic quantum mechanics. The second part covers the physical description of atoms and their interaction with radiation, whilst the third part deals with molecular physics.

This is the first volume of a series of three, focusing on a selected set of topics whilst also providing substantial, in-depth coverage of atomic, molecular, solid-state and statistical physics. Emphasis is given to the underlying physical basis or principle for each topic, and pedogogical features include conceptual layout sections that define the goals of each chapter, a simplified but rigorous mathematical apparatus and a thorough discussion of approximations are used to develop the adopted physical models. 

About Editors

Luciano Colombo is a professor of theoretical condensed matter physics at the University of Cagliari and fellow of the Istituto Lombardo Accademia di Scienze e Lettere. He has been doing theoretical and computational research on materials physics for more than 30 years, publishing more than 250 scientific papers and leading several research projects.  

Table of Contents


Hardback ISBN: 9780750322584

Ebook ISBN: 9780750322607

DOI: 10.1088/2053-2563/ab2df2

Publisher: Institute of Physics Publishing


This book is a good introduction to quantum mechanics applied to atomic and molecular systems. It is composed of three parts that present the concepts of quantum mechanics, their applications to atomic physics and to molecular physics. The section about atomic physics constitutes roughly half of the book. In addition, eight appendices give substantial details about formal derivations and numerical calculations. As the title indicates, this book is a primer and the bibliography, which refers to more than 30 textbooks, will allow the reader to delve further into the subject.
With this book, Professor Colombo gives a very interesting overview of basic atomic and molecular quantum mechanics which would be useful for undergraduate students in physics, chemistry, earth sciences and material sciences. It could also interest graduate students in chemistry and in other fields wishing to become familiar with the world of quantum mechanics. One great quality of this book is that it is verypleasant to read. Moreover, it makes the subject seem easy even when the topic is rather complex. A few mathematical calculations have been skipped; it would have been of interest to find them in the appendices but, overall, the various steps are detailed and very well presented. I am convinced that students will enjoy this book. What's more, it will give them a strong motivation to learn more about this topic.

Claude Millot 2020 Acta Crystallographica Section A: Foundations and Advances, Wiley

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