Enric Canadell, Marie-Liesse Doublet, Christophe Iung
Oxford University Press
2012 | 364pp | £45 (HB)
ISBN 9780199534937

The electronic structure of solids is an important topic in many branches of science, including chemistry, physics, materials science and engineering. Chemists will be familiar with using orbital interaction arguments to describe electronic structure, while physicists will be more accustomed to using band theory, and this book aims to bridge the gap between the two schools of thought. 

Orbital approach to the electronic structure of solids builds on a book originally published by two of the authors in French in 1997. It contains 12 chapters, beginning with two introductory chapters. The first covers the free electron model and the conductivity of real materials and the second describes the use of symmetry to explain electronic structure. Chapters 3–8 are concerned with one-dimensional systems: the important concepts are developed within three of the chapters and then highlighted in the other three by using trans-polyacetylene, polyacene and inorganic chains as examples. The last chapters extend the description to two– and three–dimensions.

This is primarily a teaching book (it would make rather hard-going bedtime reading!) and as such contains a series of exercises at the end of each chapter. Solutions are given at the end of the book and although some are only brief, they are much more complete than in many other books.

Due to the complexity of the subject matter, this book contains a substantial amount of mathematics, but it is written in an approachable style. It contains clear equations and diagrams and important points within the text are often highlighted by the use of italics.

Writing as a materials scientist, I do feel that this book will be most accessible and useful to chemists, but it would nevertheless be a valuable source of information for researchers from a variety of backgrounds working in this field.

Purchase this book from Amazon.co.uk. RSC members can obtain this book direct from the publishers for a 25% discount on the RRP. See the RSC member benefits page for details.