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# Fermi-Dirac statistics

/ferr"mee deuh rak"/, Physics.
quantum statistics defining the possible arrangements of particles in a given system in terms of the exclusion principle.
Also, Fermi statistics. Cf. fermion.
[1925-30; named after E. FERMI and A. M. DIRAC]

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In quantum mechanics, one of two possible ways (the other being Bose-Einstein statistics) in which a system of indistinguishable particles can be distributed among a set of energy states.

Each available discrete state can be occupied by only one particle. This exclusiveness accounts for the structure of atoms, in which electrons remain in separate states rather than collapsing into a common state. It also accounts for some aspects of electrical conductivity. This theory of statistical behaviour was developed first by Enrico Fermi and then by P.A.M. Dirac (1926–27). The statistics apply only to particles such as electrons that have half-integer values of spin; the particles are called fermions.

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in quantum mechanics, one of two possible ways in which a system of indistinguishable particles can be distributed among a set of energy states: each of the available discrete states can be occupied by only one particle. This exclusiveness accounts for the electron structure of atoms, in which electrons remain in separate states rather than collapsing into a common state, and for some aspects of electrical conductivity. The theory of this statistical behaviour was developed (1926–27) by the physicists Enrico Fermi and P.A.M. Dirac, who recognized that a collection of identical and indistinguishable particles can be distributed in this way among a series of discrete (quantized) states.

In contrast to the ), (Bose-Einstein statistics) the Fermi-Dirac statistics apply only to those types of particles that obey the restriction known as the ). (Pauli exclusion principle) Such particles are named fermions (fermion), after the statistics that correctly describe their behaviour. Fermi-Dirac statistics apply, for example, to electrons, protons, and neutrons.

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Universalium. 2010.

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• Fermi-Dirac statistics — /ˌfɜmi dəræk stəˈtɪstɪks/ (say .fermee duhrak stuh tistiks), /ˌfɛəmi / (say .fairmee ) noun the branch of quantum statistics used with systems of identical particles whose wave function changes sign if any two particles are interchanged. {from… …   Australian English dictionary

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