Module Identifier PH23520  
Academic Year 2007/2008  
Co-ordinator Dr Sian A Jones  
Semester Intended for use in future years  
Next year offered N/A  
Next semester offered N/A  
Other staff Professor Neville Greaves, Dr Rudolf Winter  
Pre-Requisite Core Physics Modules at Level 1  
Co-Requisite None  
Mutually Exclusive None  
Course delivery Lecture   30 Hours.  
  Seminars / Tutorials   4 Hours. 4  
  Practical   Incorporated into PH25010, PH24520 and PH25520  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours  70%
Semester Assessment Example sheets. deadlines are detailed in the Year 2 Example Sheet Schedule distributed by the Department.  30%

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

Brief description

Building on Year 1 20 credit modules on Electromagnetism, Oscillations and Waves (PH12020) and on Dynamics Relativity and Quantum Mechanics (PH14020), this Year 2 20 credit module develops the classical physics of Optics that operates on macroscopic dimensions in conjunction with the Quantum Physics of the microscopic world. The first part of the course is devoted to the principles of geometric and physical optics which are introduced alongside the principles of polarisation and birefringence. These are illustrated with reference to simple optical instruments and techniques. The principles of diffraction are described and the limits these set on the optical resolution that is measured. Next the mathematical equivalence and physical distinction between the Wave Equation and Schrondinger'r Equation are emphasised at the macroscopic and quantum level. Photons, electrons and neutrons are described and the consequences of the Uncertainty Principle emphasised. Quantisation, scattering and tunneling phenomena are covered in the context of the particle in a well and the simple harmonic oscillator. The quantum solution of the hydrogen atom is given and the concept of spin is extended to the understanding of magnetic properties. Throughout the module illustrative numerical problems are given relating to optics and wave phenomena and quantum mechanics and wave-particles.



Relection and refraction, lenses, aberrations, optical instruments. Polarisation, birefringence, uniaxial crystals.

Wave properties of light. Interference, two-beam intereference, then film interference and its applications. Michelson interferometer, multiple-beam intereference, Fabry-Perot etalon. Diffraction, Fraunhofer, single slit, double slit, diffraction grating, resolution limits of diffraction on optical instruments.


Recap of wave-particle duality.
De Broglie relationships and Schrodinger's equation.
Operators, dynamical variables and possible results of a measurement. Expectation values.
Solution of Schrodinger's equation for an infinite well.
Degeneracy. Correspondence Principle. Symmetric and anti-symmetric solution.
Zero-point energy and specific heat at low temperatures. Uncertainty Principle.
Potential well with ion lattice. Symmetry argument for valence and conduction bands. Insulators, conductors and semi-conductors.
Symmetric and anti-symmetric solution. Bosons and Fermions.
Scattering by a finite well and Ramsauer effect.
Barrier penetration (approximate solution). Field-emission microscope and scanning microscope.
Quantum representation of angular momentum.
Hydrogen atom.
Spin, magnetism and NMR.

Reading Lists

** Essential Reading
Jenkins and White Fundamentals of Optics 0073853460
P.A. Tipler Physics for Scientists and Engineers W. H. Freeman 1999 1572596732
** Recommended Text
Anthony J.G. Hey & Patrick Walters The Quantum Universe Cambridge University Press 0521318459
A P French & E F Taylor An Introduction to Quantum Physics Chapman and Hall
J.E. House Fundamentals of Quantum Mechanics Academic Press 1998 0123567750


This module is at CQFW Level 5