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Course Information

Instructor Info:Frederick Wirth
Office Extension x5572
TA Info:Larry Pope
Term: 2012F
Meeting Info: Tuesday Thursday
12:30 PM - 01:50 PM Cole Science Center 3-OPEN
12:30 PM - 01:50 PM Cole Science Center 3-OPEN
02:00 PM - 04:30 PM Cole Science Center 3-PHYC

The beginning of a three-semester sequence in Physics, this course will concentrate mainly on mechanics with applications to astronomy. Topics will include, kinematics and dynamics in one and two dimensions, planetary motion, conservation of energy and momentum, rigid bodies and rotation, and relativity. The course is calculus based and makes heavy use of computer modeling to develop realistic examples. It is highly recommended that students take calculus in the same semester that they begin this course. Weekly laboratory/field work is required. The labs are grouped into three major projects. Evaluations will be based on class participation, problem sets, and laboratory project reports. Book is: "Fundamentals of Physics"  Halliday Resnick and Walker 8th Edition (Extended)

Course Objectives:

To gain familiarty with and, ultimately, mastry of, selected topics in classical mechanics. To understand the mathematical and calculational underpinnings of classical physics. To gain experience in using computer programming to solve knotty numerical problems. To gain hands on experienc in a realistic (somewhat open ended, somewhat poorly defined, quite long and complex) physics lab. Writing and editing multifaceted lab reports. Producing clear and readable problem sets.

Evaluation Criteria:

Evaluations will be based on class participation, progress in producing problem sets, facility with "R" programming, and Lab reports. All work may be resubmitted after evaluation and improvement. Deadlines may change as the class rate of progress becomes clear. You may ask for (and likely recieve) permission to hand in work past its due date. Work submitted late without prior consent will not be evaluated. Too much missing or unevaluated work will result in no evaluation for the course.