Course Meeting Times
Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1 hour / session
Recitations: 1 session / week, 1 hour / session
This course is a broad, theoretical treatment of classical mechanics, useful in its own right for treating complex dynamical problems, but essential to understanding the foundations of quantum mechanics and statistical physics.
Classical Mechanics Power Tools
- How to solve the really hard problems with relative ease through Lagrangian Mechanics
Preparation for Statistical Mechanics and Quantum Physics
- The theoretical foundation for advanced physics lies in Hamiltonian Mechanics
Landau, Lev D., and Evgenij M. Lifshitz. Mechanics: Course of Theoretical Physics. Vol. 1. 3rd ed. Butterworth-Heinemann, 1976. ISBN: 9780750628969. [Preview with Google Books]
Thornton, Stephen T., and Jerry B. Marion. Classical Dynamics of Particles and Systems. Cengage Learning India, 2012. ISBN: 9788131518472.
Goldstein, Herbert, John Safko, and Charles P. Poole. Classical Mechanics. Pearson, 2013. ISBN: 9781292026558.
|7–10||Orbits and Scattering|
There are 4 problem sets. Doing them is critical to getting the most of this class. Try them alone, then in a group, then ask an upperclassman, then email the Teaching Assistant.
The project problem should look impossible given only 8.01 Physics I, but will not be so bad by week 2 or 3! Do it alone (without help from the internet) whenever you like. Turn it in with the last problem set or earlier for bonus credit).
Seventy percent of the class grade is based on the Assignments and 30% on the Project.