Skip to content

Home > Programs > Majors > Atoms, Molecules and Optics

Atoms, Molecules and Optics

The physics of atoms and molecules, which constitutes the subject matter of this course rests on a long history of discoveries, both experimental and theoretical. Far from giving a complete account of the historical development, this introductory course aims to give an understanding of both theoretical foundations and key steps, which have occurred in this field. As a direct application of quantum mechanics it includes materials on basic atomic and molecular physics with discussion on structure, spectra and interaction with electric and magnetic field.

Syllabus : " Atoms, Molecules and Optics "

- Lectures 25 hours, Tutorials 15 hours (1st Semester) -

(Nouari Kébaïli)

Outline of the lectures:

  • Introduction : Key steps on electrons, photons and atoms studies
  • Elements of quantum mechanics
  • One-electron atoms : Schrodinger equation for one-electron atoms
  • Special hydrogenic systems
  • Interaction with electromagnetic radiation
  • Fine structure and hyperfine structure
  • Interaction with external fields
  • Many-electron atoms
  • Central field approximation
  • The periodic system of the elements
  • Corrections to the central field approximation : L-S and j-j coupling
  • Interaction with electromagnetic radiation and with static fields
  • Molecular structure
  • The Born-Oppenheimer approximation
  • Molecular orbital theory
  • The calculation of electronic structure
  • Molecular rotations and vibrations
  • Molecular electronic transitions

Location / Access

Ecole Polytechnique X – Amphi Sauvy (Main Building).

- Take the RER B train to Massy-Palaiseau station; from Massy-Palaiseau, use bus lines 91-06B, 91-06C or 91-10 (bus stop alongside the RER B track) to station « Ecole Polytechnique (D128) ».
- Use the buses 91-06 and 91-10 from Paris Saclay station.

Busses run frequently, week days, 7:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Hickers may use station “Lozère” rather than Massy-Palaiseau and go for a 20 minutes uphill walk.

IMPORTANT: ID or Passport is required for entrance Access Procedure.