This is an advanced course in classical mechanics that introduces techniques that are applicable to contemporary pure and applied research. The material covered provides a basis for a fundamental understanding of not only quantum and statistical mechanics but also nonlinear mechanical systems. Topics include the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formulation of classical mechanics, Euler’s rigid body equations of motion, Hamilton-Jacobi theory, and canonical perturbation theory. These methods are applied to force-free motion of a rigid body, oscillations of systems of coupled particles, and central force motion including the Kepler problem and scattering in a Coulomb potential. Applications are emphasized through in-class examples and homework.

Course prerequisites: 

Intermediate mechanics and 615.441 Mathematical Methods for Physics and Engineering.

Course instructor: 
Freund

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