Statistical mechanics and the partitions of numbers

Auluck, F. C. ; Kothari, D. S. (1946) Statistical mechanics and the partitions of numbers Mathematical Proceedings of the Cambridge Philosophical Society, 42 (3). pp. 272-277. ISSN 0305-0041

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1. The properties of partitions of numbers extensively investigated by Hardy and Ramanujan (1) have proved to be of outstanding mathematical interest. The first physical application known to us of the Hardy-Ramanujan asymptotic expression for the number of possible ways any integer can be written as the sum of smaller positive integers is due to Bohr and Kalckar (2) for estimating the density of energy levels for a heavy nucleus. The present paper is concerned with the study of thermodynamical assemblies corresponding to the partition functions familiar in the theory of numbers. Such a discussion is not only of intrinsic interest, but it also leads to some properties of partition functions, which, we believe, have not been explicitly noticed before. Here we shall only consider an assembly of identical (Bose-Einstein, and Fermi-Dirac) linear simple-harmonic oscillators. The discussion will be extended to assemblies of non-interacting particles in a subsequent paper.

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