2.5 Physics Core Courses

PHY101: Mechanics

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Course Outline

• Review of calculus, vectors, rotations, polar co-ordinates. Velocity and acceleration in polar co-ordinates. Newton’s laws of motion. Configuration space and phase space. Notion of system Hamiltonian.
• Frames of reference. Inertial and accelerated frames. Centrifugal and Coriolis forces. Foucault’s pendulum. Galilean transformations.
• Conservation laws. Conservation of energy, momentum and angular momentum. Their connection with symmetry principles.
• Central Force problem. Inverse-square law force. Derivation of orbit equation. Kepler’s laws.
• Oscillations. Harmonic oscillator. Damped oscillations. Driven damped oscillations. Coupled oscillations and normal modes of motion.
• Motion of rigid bodies. Angular momentum, angular velocity, moment of inertia, product of inertia, principal axes. Euler’s equations. Examples with fixed axis of rotation.
• Special theory of relativity. Relativistic kinematics. Lorentz transformations. Length contraction, time dilation. Velocity addition. Four-vectors. Doppler effect.

• C. Kittel et.al., Mechanics Volume 1 Berkeley Physics Course, 02nd edition(Special Indian Edition), Tata-McGraw Hill Ltd New Delhi (2008).
• D. Kleppner and R. Kolenkow, An Introduction to Mechanics, McGraw Hill Inc USA (1973).
• R. Resnick, D. Halliday and K. S. Krane, Physics Vol 1, 4th edition, John Wiley, (1991).
• A. P. French, Newtonian Mechanics (M.I.T. Introductory Physics Series), CBS Publishers and distributers, New Delhi (1987).

PHY111: Physics Laboratory I

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Course Outline

• This lab is designed to serve as an introductory course on hands-on physics experiments, built around the theme of Mechanics. The lab proceeds in tandem with the Mechanics course offered in the same semester. Experiments in this course include: exploring simple harmonic motion through different pendulum setups such as Kater’s pendulum, compound pendulum and torsion pendulum, measuring g by free fall, estimating Young’s modulus by Searle’s method and bending of beam method, gyroscope motion. Concepts taught in this course include measurements, quantitative estimation of physical quantities, the different types of error that can arise in an experiment.

PHY102: Electromagnetism

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Course Outline

• Electrostatics: charges and fields. Charge distributions. Gauss’s Law.
• The electric potential, the physical meaning of the divergence and the curl. Work and energy in electrostatics.
• Electric fields around conductors. Capacitors and capacitance. The Uniqueness Theorem. The Boundary-value problem.
• Electric fields in matter. Polarization. Bound charges. Field inside a dielectric. Linear dielectrics. Boundary value problems.
• Electric currents. Charge transport and current density. Electrical conductivity and Ohm’s law. Energy dissipation.
• Fields of moving charges: From Oersted to Einstein. Magnetic forces. Electric field measured in different frames of reference. Force on a moving charge. The Magnetic field. Vector potential. How fields transform.
• Magnetic fields in matter. Diamagnets, paramagnets and ferromagnets. Torques and forces on magnetic dipoles. Bound currents. Auxiliary field. Linear and nonlinear media. Ferromagnetism, susceptibility and permeability.
• Electrodynamics: Electromagnetic induction and Faraday’s law. Energy and momentum in electrodynamics. The Displacement Current. Maxwell’s equations.

• E. M. Purcell, Electricity and Magnetism (Berkeley Physics Course Vol 2), 02nd edition, Tata-McGrawHill (2008).
• R. P. Feynman, R.B. Leighton, and M. Sands, The Feynman Lectures of Physics Vol 2, Narosa Publishing House (2008).
• D. J. Griffiths, Introduction to Electrodynamics, 03rd edition, Dorling Kindersley (2007).

PHY112: Physics Laboratory II

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Course Outline

• This lab course is designed to help students understand the physics of everyday electromagnetic phenomena. The lab proceeds in tandem with the Electromagnetism course offered in the same semester. The experiments in this course include: parallel plate capacitor, random sampling of an AC source, thermistor, em induction in a coil, characteristics of an AC and DC motor, eddy currents in a pipe, measurement of torque on a current carrying conductor in a magnetic field etc.

PHY201: Waves and optics

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Course Outline

• Mechanical Waves. Review of oscillators and systems of coupled oscillators. Waves on a string and membrane. Waves in an elastic medium: Pressure waves and shear waves. Acoustic resonators. Speed of a wave and wave impedance, shock waves.
• Electromagnetic waves: Review of Maxwell’s equations. Wave solutions to Maxwell’s equations. Energy and momentum of electromagnetic radiation. Poynting theorem and conservation laws.
• Reflection and refraction of waves from interfaces. Fresnel Coefficients. Interference of light: interferometers and devices based on two-beam interference.
• Diffraction of light: Scalar wave approximation. Kirchoff integral, Kirchoff-Fresnel boundary conditions. Fraunhoffer diffraction, Babinet principle, diffraction gratings.
• Lorentz model for dispersive media. Pulse propagation in a dispersive medium.
• Coherence theory: basic ideas of coherence. Temporal coherence, bandwidth of light. Spatial coherence, basic ideas of intensity correlations.

• A. P. French, Vibrations and Waves (The M.I.T. Introductory Physics series), CBS Publishers and distributers, New Delhi (1987).
• H. J. Pain, The physics of vibration and waves, 6th edition, Wiley and Sons Ltd. New Delhi (2005).
• E. Hecht, Optics, 4th edition, Pearson Education Inc., New Delhi (2007).
• F. S. Crawford Jr., Waves (Berkeley Physics Course Vol. 3), Special Indian Ed., Tata McGraw Hill Co. New Delhi (2008).
• M. V. Klein and T. E. Furtak Optics, 2nd edition, Wiley (1986).

PHY211: Physics Laboratory III

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Course Outline

• This lab course is designed to encourage students to explore the physics behind waves and optics phenomena. The lab proceeds in tandem with the Waves & Optics course offered in the same semester. The experiments in this course include: measuring fundamental modes in a vibrating string using a sonometer, exploring the physics of sound and music on a CRO, Melde’s setup for standing waves, prism spectrometer, constant deviation spectrometer, Newton’s rings setup, polarimeter to measure specific rotation, Fresnel’s biprism, diffraction grating using a laser source and measuring the wavelength of sodium source using interference observed with a Michelson interferometer setup.

PHY202: Thermodynamics and statistical physics

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Course Outline

• Macroscopic and microscopic point of view, scope of thermodynamics, thermal equilibrium and zeroth law, equation of state. Hydrostatic systems. Examples.
• Intensive and extensive coordinates, Quasi-static process, work for hydrostatic systems, PV diagrams, path dependence of work, exact differentials.
• Work and heat, internal energy function, First law, differential form, heat capacity, heat reservoirs.
• Second law, Carnot cycle, Carnot theorem, Kelvin-Planck statement, Clausius statement, entropy and second law, entropy of ideal gas, principle of increase of entropy.
• Entropy maximum principle, energy minimum principle, Legendre transforms, thermodynamic potentials.
• Physical interpretation of entropy, two-level systems, deviation from most probable state, canonical formalism.