This book aims to provide a compact and unified introduction to the most important aspects in the physics of n-equilibrium systems. It first introduces stochastic processes and some modern tools and concepts that have proved their usefulness to deal with n-equilibrium systems from a purely probabilistic angle. The aim is to show the important role played by fluctuations in far-from-equilibrium situations, where ise can promote order and organization, switching among n-equilibrium states, etc. The second part adopts a more historical perspective, retracing the first steps taken from the purely thermodynamic as well as from the kinetic points of view to depart (albeit slightly) from equilibrium. The third part revisits the path outlined in the first one, but w undertakes the mesoscopic description of extended systems, where new phemena (patterns, long-range correlations, scaling far from equilibrium, etc.) are observed.This book is a revised and extended version of an earlier edition published in 1994. It includes topics of current research interest in far-from-equilibrium situations like ise-induced phemena and free energy-like functionals, surface growth and roughening, etc. It can be used as an advanced textbook by graduate students in physics. It also covers topics of current interest in other disciplines and interdisciplinary approaches in engineering, biophysics, and ecomics, among others. The level of detail in the book is eugh to capture the interest of the reader and facilitate the path to more learning by exploring the modern research literature provided. At the same time, the book is also complete eugh to be self-contained for those readers who just need an overview of the subject.
Horacio Sergio Wio, Juan Manuel Lopez, Roberto Raul Deza