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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Physics and Astronomy : Undergraduate (School of Physics and Astronomy)

Undergraduate Course: Physics of Fields and Matter (PHYS08046)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Physics and Astronomy CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Course typeStandard AvailabilityAvailable to all students
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) Credits20
Home subject areaUndergraduate (School of Physics and Astronomy) Other subject areaNone
Course website None Taught in Gaelic?No
Course descriptionThis course is designed for pre-honours physics students. It provides an introduction to electromagnetic fields and the properties of matter. It serves both as a preparation for further study in physics-based degree programmes, and as a standalone course for students of other disciplines, including mathematics, chemistry, geosciences, computer science and engineering. The course consists of lectures to present new material, and workshops to develop understanding, familiarity and fluency.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Physics 1A: Foundations (PHYS08016) OR Classical and Modern Physics (PHYS08044)
Co-requisites It is RECOMMENDED that students also take Dynamics and Vector Calculus (PHYS08043)
Prohibited Combinations Students MUST NOT also be taking Physics of Fields (PHYS08047)
Other requirements None
Additional Costs None
Information for Visiting Students
Displayed in Visiting Students Prospectus?No
Course Delivery Information
Delivery period: 2013/14 Semester 2, Available to all students (SV1) Learn enabled:  No Quota:  None
Web Timetable Web Timetable
Class Delivery Information 4 lectures per week and 1 out of 3 workshops.
Course Start Date 13/01/2014
Breakdown of Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 44, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Summative Assessment Hours 3, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 131 )
Additional Notes
Breakdown of Assessment Methods (Further Info) Written Exam 80 %, Coursework 20 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)3:00
Resit Exam Diet (August)3:00
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course it is intended that student will be able to:
- State the basic principles of electromagnetism and condensed matter physics
- Apply these principles in conjunction with elementary mathematical techniques to solve simple problems in electromagnetism and condensed matter physics
- Present a solution to a physics problem in a clear and logical written form
- Assess whether a solution to a given problem is physically reasonable
- Locate and use additional sources of information (to include discussion with peers where appropriate) to facilitate independent problem-solving
- Take responsibility for learning by attending lectures and workshops, and completing coursework
Assessment Information
20% Coursework
80% Examination
To pass course it is required to obtain a weighted average of 40% AND to obtain 40% in the examination.
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus Physics of Fields (20 lectures)

- Introduction and why electromagnetism is important. (1)

- Electric charge, Coulomb's Law. (1)

- Electric field from changes, dipoles and charge distributions. (2)

- Gauss's Law in integral form and briefly in div form. (1)

- Electrostatic potential from point changes and charge distributions and link to work. (2)

- Capacitors, dielectric materials, energy stored in electric fields. (2)

- Current, resistance, RC circuits. (1)

- Magnetic field, Lorentz force of charges and current, magnetic moment and torque on current loops. (2)

- Ampere's Law in integral form, mangetic field in solenoid and toriods. (2)

- Induction, magnetic Flux, Faraday's Law, Lenz's Law (2)

- Inductance, current in inductor, RL circuits, energy in magnetic field. (2)

- Magnetic materials. Dia/Para/Ferro-magnetism. The Earth's magnetic field (1)

- LC and LRC circuit, forced LRC and resonance. (2)

- Maxwell's equations in integral form and discussion of physical implications. (1)

Physics of Matter (20 lectures)

- Basic concepts. Phases; equation of state; P-V-T surface and projections. (1)

- Elementary thermal physics. Origin of phase transitions; basic thermodynamics: equilibrium (0th law); contributions to the internal energy (1st law), heat capacities and latent heat; brief mention of free energy; entropy and its statistical interpretation (2nd law). (2)

- Ideal gases. Kinetic theory; Maxwell-Boltzmann velocity distributions; sedimentation/barometric height distribution; degrees of freedom and equipartition theorem. (3)

- Non-ideal gases. Lennard-Jones type interaction; van der Waals approach; instability in PV isotherms; appearance of the liquid below Tc; phase coexistence and critical phenomena. (2)

- Liquid phase. Radial distribution function; vapour pressure; surface tension. (1)

- Flow and transport phenomena. Bernoulli¿s equation; viscosity; Reynolds number; thermal and electrical conductivity. (2)

- Crystalline phase. Bonding types; types of order; unit cells and basis; symmetry; centring; Miller indices; crystal planes, Bragg¿s law; reciprocal space, Fourier analysis, Structure Factor, scattering of electrons, neutrons and X-rays; electronic band structure. (4)

- Semiconductors. Doping. p-n junctions. Transistors. (1)

- Noncrystalline solids. Amorphous solids and glasses. (1)

- Elasticity and deformations. Young¿s modulus; sound waves; bulk modulus; shear stress and dislocations; cracking. (2)

- Other phases of matter. Liquid crystals. Magnetic materials. (1)
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list Physics of Fields section:
Resnick, Halliday & Walker, "Fundamentals of Physics" Edition 6,7,8 or 9 (chapters 22 - 32 approx)

Physics of Matter section:
D Tabor, "Gases, Liquids and Solids", Cambridge University Press, 1991.
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
Course organiserDr Will Hossack
Tel: (0131 6)50 5261
Course secretaryMiss Jillian Bainbridge
Tel: (0131 6)50 7218
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