Lectures: Disque 704, Tu Th 10:00 am - 11:20 pm (001), 11:30 am - 12:50 pm (002) Office: Disque 816 (McMillan/001), 805 (Vallieres/002) Office Hours: by appointment Phone: (215) 895-2709, (215) 895-2714 Fax: (215) 895-2940 e-mail: steve (at) physics.drexel.edu, vallieres (at) physics.drexel.edu course: phys105 (at) physics.drexel.edu sysadmin: sysadmin (at) physics.drexel.edu

This is the first in a series of hands-on "computational labs" designed to complement the traditional lecture/lab/recitation Physics instructional sequence. It is intended to be taken immediately after the first two parts of the Contemporary Physics sequence, or their equivalent (for example, the "Fundamentals of Physics" PHYS 101/102 sequence would also serve as a suitable introduction). Students will be introduced to basic scientific programming techniques and problem-solving strategies using examples and case studies drawn from the material presented in the introductory Physics courses (see course outline).

**Learning Outcomes**

After completing this course, students should be able to:

- explain why computational methods must often be used in theoretical physics to extend traditional analytical techniques
- write a simple program to calculate the motion of a particle in a given force field
- discuss the relative merits of different types of integration scheme, and explain why time reversibility is important to the long-term stability of a numerical method
- apply numerical methods to compute planetary motion in the solar system, adapting to the large range of time scales involved

**Topics**

- Introduction to Linux
- Simple programming and graphics using C++ and python
- Uniformly accelerated motion in 1 and 2 dimensions
- Non-uniformly accelerated motion
- Numerical determination of trajectories
- Example: Projectile motion with air resistance
- Example: Simple harmonic motion
- Example: Orbital motion

- Numerical integration of functions
- Conservation of energy
- Force and potential energy
- Conservative and non-conservative motion
- Friction and viscosity

- Dynamical systems with variable forces, dissipative forces, and complex geometries

There is no set text for this course. Material will be drawn as needed from the Contemporary Physics syllabus, and distributed via this Web page.

**Evaluation**

Grading will be based on 7 __homeworks__, accounting for 80% of the
total grade. The final homework will take the form of a limited-time,
__take-home examination__ and will carry 20% of the total; the
other homeworks will carry 10% each. There will also be an in-class
__mid-term examination__, worth 20% of the total grade and based on
the in-class exercises, on Thursday, May 7 (week 6). The final
project will begin during the last class period and will be due the
next day -- no exceptions!

**Homework Format**

Homeworks will be assigned on the course Web page, and are expected to
be turned in electronically, via e-mail to
`phys105@physics.drexel.edu`. Homeworks will
involve writing programs to solve problems, printing out the
solutions, and possibly plotting graphs of the results. To ensure
that all of your work is clearly presented, your solution should begin
with a __cover page__ containing the homework number and your
name(!), and a brief description of the material that follows. Your
solution to each problem should begin by presenting all of the written
answers and numerical solutions requested, followed by graphs, tables,
programs, etc., in the order listed on the cover page. All answers
should be clearly marked, and all graphs and program listings should
be clearly labeled. More detailed instructions on preparing and
formatting your homework are presented in the course web pages.