The Physical Basis of

The Direction of Time

H. D. Zeh

The fifth edition has now appeared in the Frontiers Collection
(Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg NewYork).

ISSN 1612-3018
ISBN 978-3-540-68000-0
Attention: Several book shops still offer older editions of the book (all soft cover) - often without even mentioning the fifth edition (available only as hard cover)!

Some sample texts of the fifth edition are available at this site for a test reading:

Preface and Contents  (4 pages)

Sample from Chapter 2 (8 pages)

Sample from Chapter 3 (10 pages)

Sample from Chapter 4 (a) (9 pages)

Sample from Chapter 4 (b) (14 pages) - new!

Sample from Chapter 4 (c) (3 pages) - former 4(b)

Sample from Chapter 5 (5 pages)

Sample from Chapter 5 (b) (7 pages)

Sample from Chapter 6 (7 pages)

Sample from Chapter 6 (b) (5 pages)

Index (5 pages)

Contents of the fifth edition:

1. The Physical Concept of Time
2. The Time Arrow of Radiation
    2.1 Retarded and Advanced Forms of the Boundary Value Problem
    2.2 Thermodynamical and Cosmological Properties of Absorbers
    2.3 Radiation Damping
    2.4 The Absorber Theory of Radiation
3. The Thermodynamical Arrow of Time
    3.1 The Derivation of Classical Master Equations
        3.1.1 mu-Space Dynamics and Boltzmann's H-Theorem
        3.1.2 Gamma-Space Dynamics and Gibbs' Entropy
    3.2 Zwanzig's General Formalism of Master Equations
    3.3 Thermodynamics and Information
        3.3.1 Thermodynamics Based on Information
        3.3.2 Information Based on Thermodynamics
    3.4 Semigroups and the Emergence of Order
    3.5 Cosmic Probabilities and History
4. The Quantum Mechanical Arrow of Time
   4.1 The Formal Analogy
        4.1.1 Application of Quantization Rules
        4.1.2 Master Equations and Quantum Indeterminism
    4.2 Ensembles versus Entanglement
    4.3 Decoherence
        4.3.1 Trajectories
        4.3.2 Molecular Configurations as Robust States
        4.3.3 Quantum Computers
        4.3.4 Charge Superselection
        4.3.5 Classical Fields and Gravity
        4.3.6 Quantum Jumps
    4.4 Quantum Dynamical Maps
    4.5 Exponential Decay and `Causality' in Scattering
    4.6 The Time Arrow of Various Interpretations of Quantum Theory
5. The Time Arrow of Spacetime Geometry
    5.1 Thermodynamics of Black Holes
    5.2 Thermodynamics of Acceleration
    5.3 Expansion of the Universe
        5.3.1 Instability of Homogeneity
        5.3.2 Inflation and Causal Regions
        5.3.3 Big Crunch and a Reversal of the Arrow
    5.4 Geometrodynamics and Intrinsic Time
6. The Time Arrow in Quantum Cosmology
    6.1 Phase Transitions of the Vacuum
    6.2 Quantum Gravity and the Quantization of Time
        6.2.1 Quantization of the Friedmann Universe
        6.2.2 The Emergence of Classical Time
        6.2.3 Black Holes in Quantum Cosmology
Appendix: A Simple Numerical Toy Model
Subject Index

Other books on this subject:

  • P.C.W. Davies: The Physics of Time Asymmetry (University of California Press, 1977)
  • Physical Origins of Time Asymmetry (Proceedings "Mazagon 1992")
  •  J.J. Halliwell, J. Pères-Mercader, and W.H. Zurek, edts.         (Cambridge UP, 1994)

  • H. Price: Time's Arrow & Archimedes' Point (Oxford UP, New York, 1996)
  • .
  • L. Schulman: Time's Arrow and Quantum Measurement (Cambridge UP, 1997)

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