Undergraduate Course: Physics of Fields and Matter (PHYS08046)
Course Outline
School  School of Physics and Astronomy 
College  College of Science and Engineering 
Credit level (Normal year taken)  SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) 
Availability  Available to all students 
SCQF Credits  20 
ECTS Credits  10 
Summary  This course is designed for prehonours physics students. It provides an introduction to electromagnetic fields and the properties of matter. It serves both as a preparation for further study in physicsbased 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. 
Course description 
Physics of Fields (22 lectures)
 Introduction and why electromagnetism is important.
 Electric charge, Coulomb's Law.
 Electric field from charges, dipoles and charge distributions.
 Gauss's Law in integral form.
 Electrostatic potential from point charges and charge distributions and link to work.
 Capacitors, dielectric materials, energy stored in electric fields.
 Current, resistance, RC circuits.
 Magnetic field, Lorentz force on charges and current, magnetic moment and torque on current loops.
 Ampere's Law in integral form, magnetic field in solenoids and toroids.
 Induction, magnetic flux, Faraday's Law, Lenz's Law.
 Inductance, current in inductors, RL circuits, energy in magnetic field.
 Magnetic materials. Dia/Para/Ferromagnetism. The Earth's magnetic field.
 Maxwell's equations in integral form and discussion of physical implications.
Physics of Matter (22 lectures)
 Basic concepts. Phases; equation of state; PVT surface and projections,
 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),
 Ideal gases. Kinetic theory; MaxwellBoltzmann velocity distributions; sedimentation/barometric height distribution; degrees of freedom and equipartition theorem,
 Nonideal gases. LennardJones type interaction; van der Waals approach; instability in PV isotherms; appearance of the liquid below Tc; phase coexistence and critical phenomena,
 Liquid phase. Radial distribution function; vapour pressure; surface tension,
 Flow and transport phenomena. Bernoulli's equation; viscosity; Reynolds number
 Crystalline phase. Bonding types; types of order; unit cells and basis; symmetry; centring; Miller indices; crystal planes, Bragg's law; scattering of electrons, neutrons and xrays.
 Electronic properties. Metals, semiconductors, insulators.
 Elasticity, plasticity, and fracture. Young's modulus; sound waves; bulk modulus; shear stress and dislocations; cracking.

Information for Visiting Students
Prerequisites  None 
High Demand Course? 
Yes 
Course Delivery Information

Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1)

Quota: 0 
Course Start 
Semester 2 
Timetable 
Timetable 
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 )

Assessment (Further Info) 
Written Exam
80 %,
Coursework
20 %,
Practical Exam
0 %

Additional Information (Assessment) 
20% Coursework 80% Examination
To pass course it is required to obtain a weighted average of 40% AND to obtain 40% in the examination. 
Feedback 
Not entered 
Exam Information 
Exam Diet 
Paper Name 
Hours & Minutes 

Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)   3:00   Resit Exam Diet (August)   3:00  
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
 State the basic principles of electromagnetism and materials physics, and apply these principles in conjunction with elementary mathematical techniques to solve simple problems in electromagnetism and matter physics.
 Present a solution to a physics problem in a clear and logical written form and 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 problemsolving and take responsibility for learning by attending lectures and workshops, and completing coursework

Reading List
Physics of Fields section:
Principles of Physics (Extended International Edition; 10th Edition, authors: Halliday, Resnick and Walker, publisher: Wiley,
Physics of Matter section:
Blundell & Blundell, "Concepts of Thermal Physics", Oxford
D Tabor, "Gases, Liquids and Solids", Cambridge University Press, 1991.
AJ Walton, "Three Phases of Matter", Oxford, 1983 
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 
Not entered 
Additional Class Delivery Information 
4 lectures per week and 1 out of 3 workshops. 
Keywords  PFM 
Contacts
Course organiser  Dr Ross Galloway
Tel:
Email: ross.galloway@ed.ac.uk 
Course secretary  Mr Kieran Brodie
Tel:
Email: v1kbrodi@exseed.ed.ac.uk 

