Physics 821

Spring 2015


Instructor:       Uwe Thumm


Office:             Cardwell Hall, Rm 212


Office hours:   by appointment




Home page:


Text book (required):  Goldstein, 'Classical Mechanics', 3rd edition, Addison-Wesley 2002


Supplementary books (not required):


Arya, ’Introduction to Classical Mechanics’, Prentice Hall 1990.

Landau, Lifshitz, ‘Mechanics’, 3rd edition, Pergamon 1989.

Gutzwiller, ‘Chaos in Classical and Quantum Mechanics’, Springer 1990.

Bergé, Pomeau, Vidal, ‘Order within Chaos’, Herman 1984.

Schuster, ‘Deterministic Chaos’, 2nd edition, VCH 1988.

Cvitanović, ‘Universality in Chaos’, 2nd edition, IOP Publishing Ltd. 1989.



Topics:             Basic Principles of Newtonian Mechanics

                        Lagrange's Equations

                        Central Force Problems, Scattering

                        Hamilton’s Equations of Motion

                        Canonical Transformations

                        Hamilton-Jakobi Theory

                        Special Relativity

                        Dynamical Systems and Chaos



Credit  :           Exam 1                        200 points

                        Exam 2                        200 points

                        Final Exam                  300 points

                        Homework/Project      300 points



Grades:            A         > 849               points

                        B         700-849           points

                        C         550 - 699         points

                        D         450 - 549         points

                        F          < 450               points 








University policy requires that the following statements appear on this syllabus:


1.                  Academic Honesty

Kansas State University has an Honor System based on personal integrity, which is presumed to be sufficient assurance that, in academic matters, one's work is performed honestly and without unauthorized assistance. Undergraduate and graduate students, by registration, acknowledge the jurisdiction of the Honor System. The policies and procedures of the Honor System apply to all full and part-time students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate courses. The honor system website can be reached via the following URL: A component vital to the Honor System is the inclusion of the Honor Pledge which applies to all assignments, examinations, or other course work undertaken by students. The Honor Pledge is implied, whether or not it is stated: "On my honor, as a student, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid on this academic work." A grade of XF can result from a breach of academic honesty. The F indicates failure in the course; the X indicates the reason is an Honor Pledge violation.


2.         Statement Regarding Students with Disabilities

Students with disabilities who need classroom accommodations, access to technology, or information about emergency building/campus evacuation processes should contact the Student Access Center and/or their instructor.  Services are available to students with a wide range of disabilities including, but not limited to, physical disabilities, medical conditions, learning disabilities, attention deficit disorder, depression, and anxiety.  Contact the Student Access Center at, 785-532-6441.


3.         Expectations for Classroom Conduct

All student activities in the University, including this course, are governed by the Student Judicial Conduct Code as outlined in the Student Governing Association By Laws, Article V, Section 3, number 2. Students who engage in behavior that disrupts the learning environment may be asked to leave the class.