# CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM STATISTICAL PHYSICS

# CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM STATISTICAL PHYSICS

This chapter provides a simple physical interpretation to the formal continuum limit that has led, from an integral over position variables corresponding to discrete times, to a path integral. It shows that the integral corresponding to discrete times can be considered as the partition function of a classical statistical system in one space dimension. The continuum limit, then, corresponds to a limit where the correlation length, which characterizes the decay of correlations at large distance, diverges. This limit has some universality properties in the sense that different discretized forms lead to the same path integral. In this statistical framework, the correlation functions that have been introduced earlier appear as continuum limits of the correlation functions of classical statistical models on a one-dimensional lattice. Thus, the path integral can be used to exhibit a mathematical relation between classical statistical physics on a line and quantum statistical physics of a point-like particle at thermal equilibrium.

*Keywords:*
continuum limit, classical statistical physics, quantum statistical physics, path integral, correlation functions, partition function, discrete times, one-dimensional lattice

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .