Physics 301 (Classical Mechanics)
Text: Classical Mechanics (JR Taylor)
-- -- -- note there are errata at the textbook
website,
Supplementary: Marion, Morin, Spiegel, Wells, Symon, Boas
(reserved
in Undergraduate Library)
Mathematical formulae: Dwight (QA310.D5), Prudnikov
(QA308.P7813) (reference shelf in Science Library Annex)
Before we start, here is a sure strategy to get the best grade
possible
-- it never fails:
All exams: (3-4 problems)
open notes (only your own hand-written notes -- no photocopies)
Grades: approximately 20% hw problems and 80% exams
Expected mathematical skills:
(1) second order ordinary differential equations
(2) integral and differential calculus on several variables
(3) Fourier expansions
(4) matrix eigenvalues and eigenvectors
(All will be introduced as needed with
no background or reinforcement.)
week of | chapter | topics, main themes covered in lectures | problems due Friday at noon |
Jan 8 | 2 - 4 | Review of Conservation Laws and Newtonian methods | (2.14, 3.20, 4.9) |
Jan 13 | 5 | Linear oscillators, driven damped systems, phase space | 4.8, 4.23, 36 |
Jan 20 | 12 | Fourier series, nonlinearity, real pendula, chaos, fractals | 5.13, 18, 45 |
Jan 27 | 7.1 - 7.5 |
Hamilton's Principle, Lagrangian dynamics, Energy equation | 12.23, 25, 34 |
Feb 3 | 7.6 - 7.10, (13) | Feynman (YHWH ?), connections to quantum mechanics | homework Lag 1 |
Feb 5 | 2-5, 12 | Test 1 | |
Feb 10 | 8.1 - 8.5 | Central Forces, Reduced mass | homework Lag 2 |
Feb 17 | 8.6 - 9.5 | Kepler's laws, Rotating reference frames | homework Orbits |
Feb 24 | 9.6 - 10 | Fictitious forces, Foucault's pendulum | homework Noninertial |
Mar 3 | 10.1 - 4 | Rigid Rotations, Inertia tensor, Principal moments | homework Rot 1 Due March 16 by noon |
Mar 5 | 7 - 9 | Test 2 | |
Mar 10 | ---------- | Spring Break (go find cherry blossoms) | |
Mar 17 | 10.5 - 10 | Euler's equations, Free rotation of a symmetrical top | homework Rot 2 |
Mar 24 | 11.1 - 4 | Coupled oscillators, Normal modes | homework modes 1 |
Mar 31 | 11.5 - 7 | Normal coördinates, Weighted strings | homework modes 2 |
Apr 7 |
16.1 - 3 | Continuous systems, Waves on strings | this week's problems, |
Apr 14 | 16.4 | Classical field theory and Heisenberg's principle | more wave problems |
Apr 21 |
-- | Review, Continuous systems, etc | |
Apr 28 | Final Exam, 12pm |
Other "books" from the web that you might find useful:
Kupferman's lecture notes,
Arovas's lecture notes,
There is a (stolen) simulator for a driven pendulum for anyone
who wants to
play with it. It's flexible, but slow.
and a "textbook" on
chaos
For those who can be discrete, here are the pages from Baierlein's book on the relationship between the Lagrangian and quantum mechanics.
A parable about solving physics problems: It is a creative activity at its best, not a rote process of following instructions
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