- ARCHIVE as at 1 September 2014

University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Physics and Astronomy : Undergraduate (School of Physics and Astronomy)

Undergraduate Course: Introductory Dynamics (PHYS08052)

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) Credits10
Home subject areaUndergraduate (School of Physics and Astronomy) Other subject areaNone
Course website None Taught in Gaelic?No
Course descriptionIt provides a suitable preparation for classical mechanics in JH, in particular Lagrangian dynamics, Electromagnetism and relativity, and for Principles of quantum mechanics.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Physics 1A: Foundations (PHYS08016) AND Mathematics for Physics 2 (PHYS08036)
Prohibited Combinations Students MUST NOT also be taking Dynamics and Vector Calculus (PHYS08043)
Other requirements Direct-entry students reuqire Physics and Maths with A grades in Advanced Highers or A-levels (or equivalent)
Additional Costs None
Information for Visiting Students
Displayed in Visiting Students Prospectus?No
Course Delivery Information
Delivery period: 2014/15 Semester 1, Available to all students (SV1) Learn enabled:  Yes Quota:  None
Web Timetable Web Timetable
Course Start Date 15/09/2014
Breakdown of Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 22, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 22, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Summative Assessment Hours 12, Revision Session Hours 3, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 37 )
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 S1 (December)Introductory Dynamics2:00
Resit Exam Diet (August)Introductory Dynamics2:00
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
- Understand the foundational principles of Newtonian dynamics and how they relate to broader physical principles.
- Understand in detail energy, momentum and angular momentum conservation, and their relation to symmetry.
- Develop a working knowledge of the elements of several variable calculus, and the usage of different co-ordinate systems.
- Be able to formulate and solve elementary dynamical problems involving motion in potentials, simple harmonic motion, and coupled oscillators, in one, two and three dimensions.
- Devise and implement a systematic strategy for solving a simple problem by breaking it down into its constituent parts.
- Use the experience, intuition and mathematical tools learned from solving physics problems to solve a wider range of unseen problems.
- Resolve conceptual and technical difficulties by locating and integrating relevant information from a diverse range of sources.
Assessment Information
80% exam 20% coursework
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus - Introduction to dynamics: Newton's laws, examples of forces, conservative and non-conservative, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, momentum conservation, and their origin in translational symmetry in one dimension. [2]
- Introduction to differential equations: classification, initial conditions, first-order equations, existence and uniqueness theorem, separable equations and substitution, first-order linear equations and integrating factors. [3]
- Simple harmonic motion, equation of motion, kinetic and potential energy, turning points, period. Simple pendulum (in the small angle approximation). Hooke's law. Large oscillations: oscillatory motion in a general one-dimensional potential. [2]
- Damped harmonic oscillator, principle of superposition. Homogeneous second-order equations with constant coefficients. Forced damped harmonic oscillator. Inhomogeneous second-order equations (with constant coefficients). [3]
- Coupled oscillators, normal models (requires knowledge of eigenvalues and eigenfunctions), transverse and longitudinal oscillations, coupled pendulums, double pendulum. [2]
- Second and higher order equations, existence and uniqueness, reduction of order, trial functions. Variable mass problems, the mass accretion equation. [2]
- Introduction to several variable calculus: partial derivatives, change of variables, polar cylindrical and spherical polar co-ordinates, Jacobians. [2]
- Dynamics in two and three dims: Newton's Laws in vector form, conservative forces, momentum and energy conservation in three dimensions and their origin in translational symmetry. Cartesian basis, polar basis, angular momentum conservation and rotational symmetry. Resisted motion in 2 dimensions. [3]
- Central forces and motion in a plane, angular momentum conservation, effective potential, closed and open orbits. The orbit equation and its solutions. Kepler's laws. [2]
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list RD Gregory, Classical Mechanics (Cambridge) - first choice
KF Riley and MP Hobson, Essential Mathematical Methods for the Physical Sciences (CUP)
GR Fowles and GL Cassiday, Analytical Mechanics (Saunders)
TWB Kibble, FH Berkshire, Classical Mechanics (Imperial College Press)
WD McComb, Dynamics and Relativity (Oxford)
KF Riley and MP Hobson, Essential Mathematical Methods for the Physical Sciences (CUP)
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
Course organiserDr Einan Gardi
Tel: (0131 6)50 6469
Course secretaryMrs Bonnie Macmillan
Tel: (0131 6)50 5905
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information
© Copyright 2014 The University of Edinburgh - 29 August 2014 4:37 am