Physics of Scale Activities

Physics of Scale Documents




If you would like to help us build this archive as a resource for historians and scientists, please email us.

We are particularly looking for unpublished and rare materials. Some of the pivotal documents now available include:


  • Freeman J. Dyson's lecture notes for a course in Advanced Quantum Mechanics given at Cornell University in the fall of 1951.
  • Fritz Rohrlich's lecture notes, Applied Quantum Electrodynamics, given at Princeton University in the spring of 1953.
  • Proceedings of the 1965 conference on critical phenomena held at the National Bureau of Standards edited by M. Green and J. Sengers.
  • Cyril Domb's brief historical survey on critical phenomena (1985).
  • Transcripts of a 1993 roundtable on "Physics in Transition" held at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, Mass.


We are currently preparing various other documents, and soliciting permission for their reproduction online. Among them are the following.


  • Julian Schwinger's lectures on "Quantum Theory of Fields, A New Formulation." Notes. The concluding portions of Julian Schwinger's course on quantum field theory at Harvard University in the late 1940s featured the new formulation of renormalization methods in quantum electrodynamics. In the summer of 1950, his student Marvin Goldberger compiled his notes from Schwinger's course into a mimeograph text that included material not yet published by Schwinger.
  • Cyril Domb, "Some recent developments in the theory of magnetic transitions," Proceedings of the 1966 Low Temperature Calorimetry Conference, ed. O. V. Lounasmaa, Ann. Acad. Sci. Fennicae A VI, No. 210 (1966): 167-179.
  • H. Eugene Stanley, "Critical Phenomena in Heisenberg Models of Magnetism." PhD thesis (January 1967), Physics Department, Harvard University. The thesis was written under the guidance of J. H. Van Vleck and Thomas A. Kaplan.
  • Michael E. Fisher's 1967 review in Reports on Progress in Physics.
  • P. K. Kuo and Don R. Yennie, "Renormalization Theory" While working at the Laboratory of Nuclear Studies at Cornell University in [late 1960s], Kuo and Yennie wrote up lectures. These pages are the typewritten notes.
  • K.G. Wilson spoke in Ben Widom and Michael Fisher's seminar at Cornell in the fall of 1970. These seminars were a turning point in Wilson's approach to critical phenomena but he did not keep his notes. We are attempting to reconstruct them from notes kept by members of the audience.
  • Abdullah Sadiq, "Transport Coefficients from Computer Experiments: A Stochastic Ising Model" Ph.D. thesis, submitted on June 1971. Sadiq was a student of Leo P. Kadanoff at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Professor Kadanoff contributed a copy of Sadiq’s thesis to the PoS project.
  • Kenneth G. Wilson, "notes on statistical mechanics and field theory." Wilson kept several pages of handwritten notes from the early 1970s on statistical mechanics and field theory.
  • Proceedings of the 1973 conference on the Renormalization Group in Critical Phenomena and Quantum Field Theory held at Temple University, Philadelphia.
  • Steven Weinberg, "Critical Phenomena for Field Theorists," in Understanding the Fundamental Constituents of Matter, edited by Antonio Zichichi (New York and London: Plenum Press, 1978).


Last updated on August 23, 2004.