CCNY - MECHANICS - PHYS 35100 - Fall 2021


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Required Textbook:

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Course Description

Newton's laws; Systems of particles; Small oscillations; Central forces and planetary motion; Rotations and rotating coordinate system; Introduction to rigid body motion; Lagrangian dynamics; Introduction to Hamiltonian dynamics. Prereq: PHYS 20800; MATH 39100; Co-req: MATH 34600 (required for Physics majors). 4 hr./wk.; 4 cr.


Achievements in the course will be assessed according to the following breakdown.


Homework will be assigned bi-weekly

In Class Questions

There will be work sheets and other in class activities that will graded on a participation basis.

Midterms and Final

Exams will be held during class period.


A written report/project will be due by the last day of class. The project will involve turning a static figure or plot into something dynamic and interactive using simple programming. To be discussed further.

Academic Integrity

The university has a published policy on academic integrity that may be found at: Ignorance of this policy is no excuse. A student who cheats or plagiarizes may incur academic and disciplinary penalties, including failing grades, suspensions, or expulsion.

Policies specific for this course and some clarifications regarding what constitutes unacceptable academic dishonesty: For homework, you may work with classmates but you will be required to submit your own homework. Posting HW questions verbatim (word for word) to online homework helping sites or forums (Chegg, Yahoo answers for example) in the hopes of having someone else provide you with a solution is considered unacceptable behavior. This can and will lead to adverse actions including removal from the course.

Attendance Policy

Students are expected to attend every class session of each course in which they are enrolled and to be on time. The professor has the right to drop the student from the course for excessive absences. For this course, two weeks of unexcused absences will constitute an excess of absences. When a student is dropped from the course due to excessive absences, the Registrar will enter the grade of WU.


To stay within the guidelines of FERPA, we will only reply to your official ccny or cuny mail. Please do not use your yahoo or gmail or other personal accounts to communicate regarding course activities. Also, be professional in your communications. Include your name, course number, and EMPLID if you expect administrative actions to be needed.

Disability Statement

In compliance with CCNY policy and equal access laws, appropriate academic accommodations are offered by the AccessAbility Center. Students who are registered with the AccessAbility office and are entitled to specific accommodations must arrange to have the Office notify the Professor in writing of their status at the beginning of the semester. If specific accommodations are required for a test, students must present the instructor with a form from the Accessibility Office at least one week prior to the test date in order to receive their accommodations.

Course Objectives:

After successfully completing this course, students should be able to

  1. understand basic Newtonian dynamics using vectors and vector calculus
  2. understand linear oscillations, Fourier series
  3. understand gravitation, gravitational potential
  4. develop a working knowledge of the calculus of variations
  5. understand Hamilton's variational principle, how it applies to classical dynamics
  6. How to construct the Lagrangian and apply Lagrangian dynamics to various problems
  7. understand the motion of planets and other central force examples
  8. understand notions of center of mass and relative coordinates
  9. understand rotations and motion in non-inertial frames
  10. understand rotational motion of rigid bodies and Euler's equations
  11. understand coupled oscillations
  12. understand how continuous systems can be described as limits of systems of particles
  13. Elements of special relativity, Lorentz transformations

Topics Covered

  1. Matrices, vectors and vector calculus
  2. Newtonian Mechanics of a single particle
  3. Linear oscillations
  4. Nonlinear oscillations and chaos
  5. Gravitation
  6. Calculus of variations
  7. Hamilton's principle, Lagrangian Mechanics
  8. Central force motion
  9. Systems of particles
  10. Dynamics in noninertial frames
  11. Rigid body dynamics
  12. Coupled oscillations
  13. Continuous systems and waves
  14. Special theory of relativity