Distribution functions in physics: Fundamentals Academic Article uri icon


  • This is the first part of what will be a two-part review of distribution functions in physics. Here we deal with fundamentals and the second part will deal with applications. We discuss in detail the properties of the distribution function defined earlier by one of us (EPW) and we derive some new results. Next, we treat various other distribution functions. Among the latter we emphasize the so-called P distribution, as well as the generalized P distribution, because of their importance in quantum optics. 1984.

published proceedings

  • Physics Reports

altmetric score

  • 1.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Hillery, M., O'Connell, R. F., Scully, M. O., & Wigner, E. P.

citation count

  • 2363

complete list of authors

  • Hillery, M||O'Connell, RF||Scully, MO||Wigner, EP

publication date

  • April 1984