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FSG3136 Statistical mechanics for engineers 5.0 credits

Course offering missing for current semester as well as for previous and coming semesters
Headings with content from the Course syllabus FSG3136 (Autumn 2018–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

In this course, the statistical mechanics approach is introduced and examples of applications to micro- and nano-fluidics problems are discussed. The first part of the course is dedicated to the Hamilton formalism and the Louville equations. Then, the classical statistical mechanics is introduced (microcanonical and canonical ensemble). Ideal gas thermodynamics is derived using the canonical ensemble. The last part of the course is dedicated to example of application of statistical mechanics to fluid dynamics problem such as, wetting, Brownian motion of a colloid and particle transport in nanofluidic devices. Finally, we will provide an introduction to Molecular Dynamics simulations for the different applications mentioned.

Intended learning outcomes

After completing this course the student should manage to: 

  • describe the classical statistical mechanics framework and its connection with thermodynamics
  • derive and apply the equipartition theorem
  • discuss the ideal gas in the framework of classical statistical mechanics
  • describe the Brownian motion of a colloid
  • discuss application of statistical mechanics to micro and nanofluidics (e.g. electrohydrodynamics, transport in narrow pores, wetting)

Course disposition

No information inserted

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

The course assumes that the students have an undergraduate knowledge of Thermodynamics and Newtonian mechanics. 

Recommended prerequisites

The course assumes that the students have an undergraduate knowledge of Thermodynamics and Newtonian mechanics. 


No information inserted


--Huang, Kerson. "Statistical Mechanics, 2nd." Edition (New York: John Wiley & Sons) (1987).

Cap 1, 6, 7.1,7.2

--San Miguel, Maxi, and Raul Toral. "Stochastic effects in physical systems." Instabilities and nonequilibrium structures VI5 (2000): 35-127. Cap 1, 2.1

--Your own lecture notes and other distributed course material 

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

P, F


  • PRO1 - Project, 2.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • TEN1 - Examination, 3.0 credits, grading scale: P, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Other requirements for final grade

Project work with final presentation in groups of 2. Oral exam. 

PRO1 - Project, 2. Grade scale: P, F

TEN1 - Examination, 3, grade scale: P, F

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

No information inserted

Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

No information inserted


Profile picture Luca Brandt

Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course web

Further information about the course can be found on the Course web at the link below. Information on the Course web will later be moved to this site.

Course web FSG3136

Offered by


Main field of study

This course does not belong to any Main field of study.

Education cycle

Third cycle

Add-on studies

No information inserted


Outi Tammisola (

Postgraduate course

Postgraduate courses at SCI/Mechanics