PHYS 411
Classical Mechanics Fall 2024
Division III Quantitative/Formal Reasoning

Class Details

This course will explore advanced topics in classical mechanics. Central ideas include the calculus of variations, the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formulations of mechanics, phase space, central-force motion, non-inertial reference frames (including implications for physics on a rotating Earth), rigid-body rotations, and non-linear dynamics & chaos, with additional topics from continuum and fluid mechanics as time permits. Numerical and perturbative techniques will be developed and used extensively. We will also examine the ways in which classical mechanics informs other fields of physics. In addition to weekly tutorial meetings the class will meet weekly as a whole to introduce and discuss new material.
The Class: Format: tutorial
Limit: 30
Expected: 24
Class#: 1620
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: weekly problem sets, tutorial participation, presentations, a final project, and a final exam, all of which have a substantial quantitative component
Prerequisites: PHYS 202 and PHYS/MATH 210 or MATH 309
Enrollment Preferences: majors
Distributions: Division III Quantitative/Formal Reasoning
QFR Notes: weekly problem sets requiring substantial quantitative reasoning using analytical and numerical methods.

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