Classical mechanics refers to the classical (i.e., non-relativistic, non-quantum) study of physics. Three major formulations of classical mechanics are newtonian mechanics, lagrangian mechanics, and hamiltonian mechanics. The latter two are rather useful in extensions to Classical Mechanics; ...

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What's the real fundamental definition of energy?

Some physical quantities like position, velocity, momentum and force, have precise definition even on basic textbooks, however energy is a little confusing for me. My point here is: using our ...
0
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2answers
380 views

FWHM in resonance amplitude square derivation

Consider a linear harmonic oscillator subject to a periodic force: $$ \ddot x + 2 \beta \dot x + \omega _0 ^2x = f_0\cos \omega t$$ The solution tends to: $$A \cos (\omega t - \delta)$$ where: ...
5
votes
1answer
254 views

Mechanical shock resistance as a function of shape

I have a system where I'm dropping glass tubes filled with some sample from a certain height, along a track. I can apply a back-pressure of air to push them down faster, and in general the faster they ...
3
votes
2answers
252 views

Conservation of Linear Momentum at the point of collision

This is a pretty basic conceptual question about the conservation of linear momentum. Consider an isolated system of 2 fixed-mass particles of masses $m_1$ and $m_2$ moving toward each other with ...
3
votes
1answer
176 views

Calculating the path of a ball with spin moving across a table

A ping pong ball is rolling over a smooth (but not frictionless) table. During its travel, a clockwise spin is placed on the ball. The ball's path is changed to move to the right (in perspective from ...
0
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4answers
526 views

How do you tell what forces do no work?

The total mass of the children and the toboggan is 66 kg. The force the parent exerts is 58 N (18 degrees above the horizontal). What 3 forces/ components do no work on the toboggan? I said the ...
2
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1answer
166 views

Is there a geometrical way to obtain a relationship between these vectors?

Suppose we have a setup like this. Here $a_1,a_2,b_1,b_2$ are acceleration magnitudes($b_1,b_2$ being relative) and $P,Q,R,S$ are not pulley/blocks but are points on the rope. If I use a geometrical ...
3
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1answer
448 views

Intuition behind classical virial theorem

I am continuing to brush up my statistical physics. I just want to gain a better understanding. I have gone through the derivation of the classical virial theorem once more. I have thought about it, ...
3
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1answer
211 views

Intuition behind Work

I have a doubt in understanding the intuition behind the concept of work. First of all, I think this isn't duplicate, I've searched on the site, and the closest thing I've found was this post which is ...
7
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1answer
243 views

Reference Request: Classical Mechanics with Symplectic Reduction

I am trying to find a supplement to appendix of Cushman & Bates' book on Global aspects of Classical Integrable Systems, that is less terse and explains mechanics with Lie groups (with dual of Lie ...
6
votes
5answers
5k views

Why does higher acceleration minimize a car's fuel consumption?

I generally try to optimize my car's fuel consumption when driving, using my car's real-time MPG gauge and average-trip MPG indicator. Until recently, I believed the slower the acceleration, the ...
1
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1answer
70 views

kinetic energy of the stone

Suppose we have a man traveling in an open car (roof open) with speed $v$ towards right (man faces right). He throws a stone (mass $m$) towards right, in his frame-forward with speed $V$. In the ...
1
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1answer
110 views

Deriving equations of motion of polymer chain with Hamilton's equations

This is related to a question about a simple model of a polymer chain that I have asked yesterday. I have a Hamiltonian that is given as: $H = \sum\limits_{i=1}^N \frac{p_{\alpha_i}^2}{2m} + ...
3
votes
2answers
182 views

Universe Expansion and two tennis balls

Clear the universe of all matter except for two tennis balls. Place the two tennis balls in the same inertial frame 1 Mpc apart. Are the tennis balls getting further apart? Will the tennis balls ...
2
votes
1answer
163 views

Hamiltonian of polymer chain

I'm reading up on classical mechanics. In my book there is an example of a simple classical polymer model, which consists of N point particles that are connected by nearest neighbor harmonic ...
0
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0answers
301 views

Maximum Shear on a Beam - beam with fixed support on one end and hinge on other end

A beam $\displaystyle 3m$ long with fixed support on one end and hinge on the other end is subjected to a uniform load of $10\ kN/m$. What is the maximum shear of this beam? The solution is this one: ...
3
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2answers
300 views

Cantilever Beam - Maximum Shear of the Beam

A cantilever beam $3\ \text{m}$ long is subjected to a moment of $10\ \text{kNm}$ at the free end. Find the maximum shear of the beam. The answer is "There is no vertical load, shear is zero" ...
3
votes
3answers
393 views

Relating generalized momentum, generalized velocity, and kinetic energy: $2T~=~\sum_i p_{i}\dot{q}^{i}$

According to equation (6) on the first page of some lecture notes online, the above equation is used to prove the virial theorem. For rectangular coordinates, the relation $$ 2T~=~\sum_i ...
2
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0answers
165 views

Classical scattering of two particles by a Yukawa potential

A point-like particle $A$, coming from minus spatial infinity, heads at another one, $B$, with an impact parameter of $b$. Initial momenta are $p_A$ and $p_B=0$. They repel each other via a Yukawa ...
4
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1answer
254 views

Finding the acceleration of a cart rolling on a table

The cart is rolls frictionless on the table. It has a mass of $1 kg$. Attached to it are 2 strings, that go through two frictionless sheaves. The weights have masses as in the picture. ...
-1
votes
1answer
231 views

Lagrangian formulation for relativistic quantum fields

The Lagrangian for a real scalar field is: $$\mathcal{L}=\frac{1}{2}\eta^{\mu \nu}\partial_{\mu}\phi\partial_{\nu}\phi-\frac{1}{2}m^2\phi^2 $$ How can I derive the dynamics of this field from this ...
3
votes
2answers
361 views

A partial differential equation for kinetic energy

The kinetic energy of a point particle of mass $m$ and speed $v$ is $K = \frac{1}{2}mv^2$. An elementary mathematics textbook I saw asked one to show that $$ \frac{\partial K}{\partial ...
2
votes
1answer
159 views

Why is $dL = L d\epsilon$?

Let's say there's a random elastic material. It's length is $L$ and it's tensile strain $\epsilon= (L-L_0)/L_0$ Now, when one pulls on it the following is true: $dW_{tot}=FdL =\sigma AdL=\sigma A L ...
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vote
3answers
438 views

Must the Lagrangian always be known for the Euler-Lagrange equations to be of any use?

When studying classical mechanics using the Euler-Lagrange equations for the first time, my initial impression was that the Lagrangian was something that needed to be determined through integration of ...
1
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1answer
110 views

Measure density with the help of buoyancy

I am trying to derive a formula to calculate the density of a irregulary shaped object. I can measure the (false) weight of the object in pure air (of known density), and the (false) weight of the ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Drag on a spinning ball in fluid

I am a physics newbie (high school level) and I am wondering what happens when a spherical object is spinning on the spot in a bunch of gas (no gravity here, just an imaginary physics sandbox). Am I ...
2
votes
1answer
161 views

Atomic physics through classical resonance?

I have a rather general question regarding the theory of Quantum Mechanics. To preface this question, consider a violin string. When a violinist exposes the string to a bow, this is exposing the ...
1
vote
2answers
104 views

What fraction of peak horsepower do typical 4 door passenger vehicles use?

I was surprised when I looked at the power rating of the engine used on a Humvee. It's only ~190 horsepower, which is exceeded by many sedan engines. So an obvious question is why doesn't my Camry SE ...
1
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1answer
118 views

Lego Blender and gear ratios

I bought the Lego Kit LEGO Crazy Contraptions. It allows the learner to build a blender. My son, the engineer, said something to our grandson, his son, about a gear ratio. Can someone translate?
1
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4answers
368 views

Bat hitting a ball

When a bat hits a ball, consider two cases: 1) The batsman goes for a defense, and stonewalls it, to reduce its speed. 2) the batsman goes for a shot, e.g. a home-run, etc. in which case will the ...
1
vote
3answers
245 views

Is a quantum system mandatory for generating true random sequence?

Is a quantum system necessary if we want to generate true random sequence? The mathematical framework used for classical mechanics doesn't involve any random value. But the mathematical framework of ...
2
votes
4answers
449 views

Pseudo force in rotating frames

A bug of mass $m$ crawls out along a radial scratch of a phonographic disc rotating at $\omega$ angular velocity. It travels with constant velocity $v$ with respect to the disc. What are the forces ...
1
vote
1answer
191 views

Choosing the right point when calculating moments

A body is composed of two straight pins that are joined at a right angle. They have lengths $a$ and $b$ and the mass per unit length is $\rho$. When the body is balanced on a flat surface, as shown, ...
7
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2answers
272 views

Liouville's theorem and gravitationally deflected lightpaths

It is customary in gravitational lensing problems, to project both the background source and the deflecting mass (e.g. a background quasar, and a foreground galaxy acting as a lens) in a plane. Then, ...
8
votes
3answers
517 views

When does $\hbar \rightarrow 0$ provide a valid transition from quantum to classcial mechanics? When and why does it fail?

Lets look at the transition amplitude $U(x_{b},x_{a})$ for a free particle between two points $x_{a}$ and $x_{b}$ in the Feynman path integral formulation $U(x_{b},x_{a}) = \int_{x_{a}}^{x_{b}} ...
3
votes
3answers
367 views

Are quantum mechanics and determinism actually irreconcilable? [closed]

As a preface, I am not a physicist. I'm simply interested in abstract physics and fundamental principles of the universe and such. As such, if you can provide an answer for the layman (as ...
2
votes
2answers
409 views

distance of electron from proton

An electron is projected, with an initial speed of $1.10 \times 10^5 \text{m/s}$, directly towards a proton that is essentially at rest. If the electron is initially a great distance from the ...
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votes
1answer
305 views

Work done to tighten a screw [closed]

We use a wrench to turn nuts on bolts because they require less force. Consider a hexagonal nut 1 cm in diameter. We can tighten this nut with one of two wrenches, wrench A with lever arm 10 cm and ...
4
votes
4answers
409 views

Wheel locks and spinout

Imagine driving in a straight line on a ice lake, when you hit the brakes, if your goal is to stay in straight path with no spinout, which wheels would you choose to have locked: front or rear? ...
3
votes
1answer
820 views

Differences of behaviour of a particle in a box in quantum theory between that in classic physics

Can anyone help me enlist 3 major differences between the quantum and classical physics of the behaviour of a particle in a box? I would like some insight into the differences without solving PDEs ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Constants of motion vs. integrals of motion

Since the equation of mechanics are of second order in time, we know that for $N$ degrees of freedom we have to specify $2N$ initial conditions. One of them is the initial time $t_0$ and the rest of ...
1
vote
1answer
529 views

Do all black holes spin in the same direction?

My question is as stated above, do all black holes spin the same direction? To my knowledge, the spin in the direction of the spin of the matter that created them. Another similar question was asked ...
2
votes
2answers
347 views

Foucault pendulum

The equations of motions for a Foucault pendulum are given by: $$\ddot{x} = 2\omega \sin\lambda \dot{y} - \frac{g}{L}x,$$ $$\ddot{y} = -2\omega \sin\lambda \dot{x} - \frac{g}{L}y.$$ What are the ...
2
votes
3answers
210 views

Condition for closed orbit [closed]

I'd like to know when an orbit is closed. I know that, to have a closed orbit, there is a ratio that must be a rational number, but I don't know other things..
6
votes
2answers
198 views

Are Poisson brackets of second-class constraints independent of the canonical coordinates?

Say we have a constraint system with second-class constraints $\chi_N(q,p)=0$. To define Dirac brackets we need the Poisson brackets of these constraints: $C_{NM}=\{\chi_N(q,p),\chi_M(q,p)\}_P$ . Is ...
4
votes
2answers
245 views

Why is the Lagrangian quadratic in $\dot{q}$? [duplicate]

My teacher said we only consider Lagrangians which are quadratic in $\dot{q}$, and we don't take other Lagrangians. I couldn't understand why. Can anyone please explain this?
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2answers
443 views

Can a student with a heavy math background start learning physics with Goldstein's “Classical Mechanics”? [duplicate]

Can a student with a heavy math background start learning physics with Goldstein's "Classical Mechanics"? Or is the book too obtuse with basic physics that I need to start elsewhere?
4
votes
3answers
223 views

Virtual differentials approach to Euler-Lagrange equation - necessary?

I'm currently teaching myself intermediate mechanics & am really struggling with the d'Alembert-based virtual differentials derivation for the Euler-Lagrange equation. The whole notion of, and ...
2
votes
0answers
160 views

Internal moment in the hull of a pressure vessel

This question is related to the course structural analysis. As part of our exam grade every student has been given different multiple homework assignments which we have to solve. One of the problems ...
1
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0answers
193 views

Limitations on the choice of axis of rotation regarding rolling wheels

Consider a situation where a wheel is rolling without friction on a level surface. Call the center of the wheel $C$, the point where the wheel contacts the ground $G$, and some arbitrary other point ...