Quantum Field Theory of Many-Body Systems

Module PH2161

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Basic Information

PH2161 is a semester module in English language at Master’s level which is offered in summer semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • General catalogue of special courses
  • Specific catalogue of special courses for condensed matter physics

If not stated otherwise for export to a non-physics program the student workload is given in the following table.

Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
300 h 110 h 10 CP

Responsible coordinator of the module PH2161 is Wilhelm Zwerger.

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


The module provides an introduction to classic and current topics in many-body physics at the graduate level. The following topics are covered:
I) Fermi Liquid Theory
1) Basics and thermodynamic properties
2) Dynamics and transport
3) Fermi polaron, Anderson’s orthogonality catastrophe
II) Quantum Phase Transitions
1) Landau-Ginzburg-Wilson model
2) Superfluid-Mott-Insulator transition
3) Hertz-Millis theory for itinerant magnetism
III) Quantum Hall Effect
1) Incompressibility, Laughlin wave functions
2) Chern-Simons theory and chiral edge states
3) Abelian and non-abelian quasi-particles, Moore-Read state
IV) Topological Phases
1) Topological insulators
2) Majorana Fermions
3) Spin-Ice and ’magnetic monopoles’

Learning Outcome

no info


It is assumed that students are familiar with Quantum Mechanics I+II, Statistical Physics/Thermodynamics and also the
basic concepts in Solid State Physics.

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VU 6 Quantenfeldtheorie von Vielteilchensystemen Zwerger, W.
Mitwirkende: Rath, S.
einzelne oder verschobene Termine

Learning and Teaching Methods

no info


no info


  • X. G. Wen:  Quantum Field Theory of Many-Body Systems, Oxford Graduate Texts, 2007

further special literature will be given during the lecture

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

In an oral exam the learning outcome is tested using comprehension questions and sample problems.

In accordance with §12 (8) APSO the exam can be done as a written test. In this case the time duration is 90 minutes.

Exam Repetition

There is a possibility to take the exam at the end of the semester.

Condensed Matter

When atoms interact things can get interesting. Fundamental research on the underlying properties of materials and nanostructures and exploration of the potential they provide for applications.

Nuclei, Particles, Astrophysics

A journey of discovery to understanding our world at the subatomic scale, from the nuclei inside atoms down to the most elementary building blocks of matter. Are you ready for the adventure?


Biological systems, from proteins to living cells and organisms, obey physical principles. Our research groups in biophysics shape one of Germany's largest scientific clusters in this area.