Content The course aims to provide basic knowledge about the structure of atoms and molecules. The systems will be treated with a gradually increasing degree of complexity. The hydrogen atom is treated first, then helium, alkali atoms and other atoms. A concrete application of interference counts, and of quantum mechanics in general, is given as the treatment proceeds from the central field approximation, and gradually introduces angular momentum, spin, spin-orbit interaction, nuclear effects and influence of external fields. Diatomic molecules are then considered. Binding mechanisms such as ionic and covalent bonding are introduced using quantum mechanics. Vibration and rotation structures are reviewed. The Born-Oppenheimer approximation is reviewed. The course concludes with complicated polyatomic molecules.
Atomic and molecular physics, along with spectroscopic analysis methods, have a wide range of applications. This includes basic measurement techniques, important in e.g. science, environment and infrastructure.
Expected study results After completing the course, the student should be able to: To fulfil the goals of knowledge and understanding, the student should be able to:
apply quantum mechanics and interference calculations to solve simple atomic structure,
describe how the hydrogen atom, the helium atom and the alkali atoms are structured,
explain what the spin-orbit interaction and fine structure are,
explain the concept of LS coupling and atomic terms,
account for nuclear effects such as hyperfine structure and isotope shifts,
describe basic molecular potentials and the Born-Oppenheimer approximation,
describe how two atoms can form a diatomic molecule through different bonding mechanisms,
explain what vibrations and rotations in molecular systems are,
describe key elements such as polyatomic molecules and different vibrational modes,
describe how the structure of atoms and molecules is affected by external fields.
Forms of instruction The teaching is conducted in the form of lectures, problem solving sessions, and supervision during laboratory work.
Examination The exam on the course theory part is done individually in the form of a written exam at the end of the course. For the written examination one of the grades Fail (U), Pass (G) or Pass with Distinction (VG) will be set. The examination on the course's computer lab module is done individually through written reports and oral presentations. On the written reports and oral presentations one of the grades Fail (U) or Pass (G) will be set.
For the course, one of the grades Fail (U), Pass (G) or Pass with Distinction (VG) is set. To be pass for the course, all parts must be passed. Provided that all parts are passed, the grade on the entire course will be the same as on the theory part. Students who have passed the exam can not take another exam in order to get a higher grade.
Literature Foot Christopher J. Atomic physics Oxford : Oxford University Press : 2005 : xiii, 331 p. : ISBN: 0-19-850695-3 (inb.)
Molecular physics : theoretical principles and experimental methods Weinheim : Wiley-VCH : 2005 : xiv, 470 p. : ISBN: 3-527-40566-6
90 credits including Quantum Mechanics 1 or equivalent. Swedish for basic eligibility for higher education programmes and English A/5. Requirements for Swedish only apply if the course is held in Swedish.
Applicants in some programs at Umeå University have guaranteed admission to this course. The number of places for a single course may therefore be limited.
Application deadline was
15 April 2021.
Please note: This second application round is intended only for EU/EEA/Swiss citizens.