Module Identifier MP21010
Module Title RELATIVITY & MECHANICS
Co-ordinator Dr Eleri Pryse
Semester Semester 1
Other staff Professor Keith Birkinshaw
Pre-Requisite Core Physics Modules at Level 1 or MP14010, MA11010 and MA11210
Course delivery Lecture   20 x 1-hour lectures
Seminars / Tutorials   2 x 1-hour seminars/workshops/exercise classes; 2 x 1-hour tutorials
Assessment
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours written examination  70%
Semester Assessment Course Work: 2 Example Sheets. 30%
Supplementary Exam2 Hours written examination  100%

#### Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:
1. Describe the basic principles of the special and general theories of relativity;
2. Solve problems in relativity by application of the basic principles and by the selection and use of appropriate mathematical techniques;
3. Provide mathematical models for problems on damped and forced oscillatory systems, simple coupled systems and rotating bodies, solve the mathematical problems and interpret the results in the physical context.

#### Brief description

Classical mechanics has proved very successful in explaining and predicting the behaviour of bodies moving at low speeds but not at speeds approaching that of light, while relativity deals with the latter situations. This module develops the fundamental concepts and techniques of both of these theories, providing a sound mathematical basis in each case.

#### Aims

To gain understanding of the classical theory of mechanics and the theory of relativity fundamental to modern physics. The application of mathematics throughout this module ensures that it is suitable as a core module for many honours degree schemes in Mathematics.

#### Content

RELATIVITY

Special theory
Lorentz transformation; relativistic interval; Minkowski diagram; causality.
Transformation of velocities.
Relativistic optics: aberration of light; Doppler effect.
Relativistic dynamics: E=mc2; energy-momentum transformations and four-vector.
Compton scattering.

General theory
Inertial and gravitational mass; Principle of Equivalence.
Gravitational redshift; Clocks in a gravitational field.
Einstein's theory of gravity; geodesics; non-Euclidean space-time.
The Schwarzschild solution; black holes.

MECHANICS

Harmonic motion: revision of simple harmonic motion, damped and forced harmonic motion.
Coupled oscillators.
Rotational motion: angular momentum and torque, moment of inertia; conservation of angular momentum, gyroscopic motion.