*Acta Cryst.* (1993).
A**49**, 213-214

## Kristallphysik und Symmetrie.

### By
I. S.
Zheludev

**Pp. 224.
Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 1990**

Price £10.00. ISBN
3-05-500688-7

This book is a German
translation of a Russian text originally published in 1987. It provides
an interpretation of some of the phenomena of crystal physics in terms
of symmetry.

The opening chapters
give a very full account of symmetry groups, including those not
normally discussed in textbooks on the subject. Thus, for example, the
sphere with mirror planes is discussed separately from that in which
those elements have been removed, and the rotating cylinder and cone are
similarly distinguished from their stationary counterparts.

There follows a treatment of scalars, vectors and tensors that
concentrates particularly on their relationships with the point
groups.

A chapter on the symmetry of space and time includes a brief
account of the symmetry theory of elementary particles as well as a
discussion of the relative motions of galaxies in terms of space-like
and time-like intervals. These highly theoretical topics of modern
physics may seem out of place in a book bearing such a title as this
one, but they serve to underline the thesis that all phenomena
determined by conditions of symmetry are dependent on invariance with
respect to the inversion of time. The stability of elementary particles
is further discussed in an Appendix.

The book goes on to consider phase transitions in crystals. The
symmetry relations that determine these are discussed in detail, as are
the phenomena of pyroelectricity and piezoelectricity. Finally, some
aspects of the optical properties of crystals form the subject of a
separate section.

Throughout the book, the treatment is very theoretical and relies
greatly upon fundamental considerations. The point is made strongly that
natural phenomena can occur only if symmetry relationships permit them,
but that not all changes so allowed will necessarily happen in practice.
The exposition is clear, and the book should be useful to those wishing
to gain an insight into this fascinating subject.

**M. Kapel**

*
Procter Department*

University of
Leeds

Leeds
LS2 9JT

England

**Copyright © 1997 International Union of Crystallography**

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