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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Can a particle with non-zero angular momentum pass through the center of a spherical potential?

Suppose you have a particle of mass $m$ moving in a potential $V(r) = -\frac{k}{r^2}$, with $r^2 = x^2+y^2+z^2$ and $k > 0$. Since the angular momentum $l$ is conserved, the particle will move in a ...
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155 views

Racing balls question

My question is related to simulation of racing ball demonstration. http://www.phy.ntnu.edu.tw/ntnujava/index.php?topic=142 One ball goes on a straight path, while another one goes on a curved path. ...
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359 views

When motion begins, do objects go through an infinite number of position derivatives?

This might be a very vague and unclear question, but let me explain. When an object at rest moves, or moves from point $A$ to point $B$, we know the object must have had some velocity (1st derivative ...
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2k views

Two hanging masses connected by springs

I had this problem for a candidacy exam, but wasn't able to get the complete answer. Their spring constants and masses are not the same, find the equilibrium position and frequencies of the system. ...
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4k views

Why does friction cause a car to turn?

I've had a lot of difficulty conceptually understanding the physics of how a car turns on an unbanked curve, so I'm hoping you could help me out. When a car is moving in uniform circular motion, we ...
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1answer
376 views

Primary constraints for Hamiltonian field theories

I am currently trying to carry out the construction of the generalised Hamiltonian, constraints and constraint algebra, etc for a particular field theory following the procedure in Dirac's "Lectures ...
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1answer
94 views

Vector Summation [closed]

When two vectors are sketched from a single point, the angle between them is θ. Show that the size of their vector summation is given in the expression: $ \sqrt{A^2 + B^2 +2ABcosθ} $. Any ...
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951 views

How do you derive Lagrange's equation of motion from a Routhian?

Given a Routhian $R(r,\dot{r},\phi,p_{\phi})$, how do you derive Lagrange's equation for $r$? Do you just solve the following for $r$? $$\frac{d}{dt}\frac{∂R}{∂\dot{\phi}}-\frac{∂R}{∂\phi}=0$$ And ...
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682 views

Virtual displacement and generalized coordinates

I have a doubt regarding the expression of a virtual displacement using generalized coordinates. I will state the definitions I'm taking and the problem. The system is composed by $n$ points with ...
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206 views

Friction From an Object On-Top of a Sliding Object

Consider a block $A$ lying on a flat and frictionless table, and a block $B$ lying on top of block $A$. A horizontal force $F$ is applied to block $A$. If there is no friction between blocks $A$ and $...
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projectile that splits into two fragments of equal mass

I am studying for an exam, and this is part of a problem in my book. A projectile is launch from level ground and is intended to hit a target 100m away. Instead, it explodes into two fragments of ...
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319 views

Relation between (super)integrability and closed orbits

Inspired by this recent question, I would like to understand from a more general and mathematical perspective why closed orbits are only found for the Kepler ($V(r) \sim 1/r$) or harmonic ($V(r) \sim ...
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797 views

Friction forces and sliding slabs

I have 2 questions, one generalizing the other. Question 1: Suppose we have 2 slabs resting horizontally on a table. Assume there is friction between the 2 slabs as well as between the bottom slab ...
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0answers
302 views

At what angle do billiard balls scatter if they collide off center?

The angle defined by joining a line from the centers of the balls must be important. But do they follow this angle when viewed in the rest frame of one of the balls or in the CM frame? The spheres ...
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1answer
47 views

Decrease in Intensity [closed]

A beam of particles pass through a target made of thin foil of a very small thickness $\Delta x$ having $N$ particles per unit volume. Let the collision cross section be $\sigma$ . If the intensity of ...
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1answer
140 views

Landau Lifshitz energy for uniform rotation

Landau Lifshitz claim in their Mechanics book (39.11) that for a uniform rotation we have $ E = \frac{mv^2}{2} - \frac{m}{2} (\omega \times r)^2 + U,$ where the rotation is given by $v' = v + \omega ...
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1answer
488 views

Time it takes two oppositely charged particles to collide

I think this is supposed to be a simple problem but I am having a hang up converting it to a one-body problem. It's one-dimensional. +q and -q a distance d apart, held stationary then let go at t=0. ...
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2answers
508 views

Pendulum Hits a Mass and Spring

I think this problem’s solution is on the web but after a few days of searching, I can not find it. Can anyone give me a reference? Thanks in advance. A mass and spring are resting on a frictionless ...
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320 views

Uniform constant magnetic field and traditional attractive force

Why uniform constant magnetic fields can not exert net force on a piece of iron whatever strong it might get?
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159 views

How are fictitious forces related to my feeling?

This question arises when I am studying fictitious forces in an undergrad introduction to physics course. Suppose I am standing in an elevator with an acceleration $a$ directed upward. From the ...
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1answer
530 views

A thought experiment to understand (literal) bootstrapping

The common explanation of why you can't lift yourself off the ground by pulling your feet up with your hands, or in more cliched terms "pull yourself up by your own bootstraps", is that if you ...
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2answers
294 views

Why does a stationary force affect the conservation of momentum, but not the conservation of energy?

Let's say I have two positive charges approaching one another at the same speed with only their mutual forces acting on one another. Total momentum (= 0) and energy is conserved and the charges ...
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1answer
368 views

Axial shortening of a torsion rod loaded with pure torque

If you have a torsion rod and stress it with pure torsion you expect an axial shortening, too. If you have a lateral contraction property in your material (e.g. steel) I anyhow cannot calculate the ...
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Is there a proof from the first principle that the Lagrangian L = T - V?

Is there a proof from the first principle that for the Lagrangian $L$, $$L = T\text{(kinetic energy)} - V\text{(potential energy)}$$ in classical mechanics? Assume that Cartesian coordinates are ...
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1answer
452 views

Why is kinetic energy only “often $(1/2)mv^2$”?

I am reading the first few pages of Nakahara and refreshing my memory on physics I learned a while ago as a physics math undergrad. Nakahara defines a field $F$ to be conservative if it's the gradient ...
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188 views

Why isn't the product rule used in the definition of mechanical work?

Mechanical power is normally defined as $P = \mathrm{d}W/\mathrm{d}t$, and work is normally defined as $W = \vec F \cdot \vec x$. Today an undergrad pointed out a confusion he had from Griffiths' E&...
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356 views

Stable equilibrium given force

If a particle moves under the influence of a resistive force proportianal to velocity and a potential $U$, $$F(x,\dot x)=-b\dot x-\frac {\partial U}{\partial x}$$ Where b>0 and $U(x)=(x^2-a^2)^...
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3answers
6k views

Normal force of loop-the-loop at the side of the circle

In the loop-the-loop ride a car goes around a vertical, circular loop at a constant speed. The car has the mass of 230 kg and moves with the speed of 300 m/s. The loop-the-loop has a radius R=20 m. ...
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818 views

Deriving the Lorentz force from velocity dependent potential

We can achieve a simplified version of the Lorentz force by $$F=q\bigg[-\nabla(\phi-\mathbf{A}\cdot\mathbf{v})-\frac{d\mathbf{A}}{dt}\bigg],$$ where $\mathbf{A}$ is the magnetic vector potential and ...
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Why do we use operators in quantum mechanics?

In classical mechanics, physical quantities, such as, e.g. the coordinates of position, velocity, momentum, energy, etc, are real numbers, but in quantum mechanics they become operators. Why is this ...
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200 views

Is it possible to deduce the Archimedes' law of the lever using only the laws of conservation of the physics?

Is it possible to deduce the Archimedes' law of the lever using only the laws of conservation of the classical mechanics? I never saw (which is strange), but I think that it's possible.
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202 views

Extremizing a Hamilton-Jacobi Equation

How can one make sense of the idea of extremizing a Hamilton-Jacobi equation? In Schrödinger's paper "Quantisation as a Problem of Proper Values I" (Annalen der Physik (4), vol. 79, 1926, p. 1, ...
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275 views

Is there valid physics behind the bodybugg?

The bodybugg is a faddish gadget whose marketers claim it can measure your body's daily energy expenditure. Their sales literature says: As reported in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, 2008 ...
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1answer
240 views

Force on bolt holding up jet engine on plane

I am to solve the following: A jet engine of mass $m$ is fastened to the fuselage of a passenger jet by a bolt. During flight, the plane encounters turbulence, which suddenly imparts an upward ...
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2answers
259 views

Physics textbooks that distinguish between laws and definitions?

Often when I am learning physics I start to think about whether the laws I'm learning are mere definitions or experimentally determined, and usually the textbook does not make this clear. As Thomas ...
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2answers
464 views

Classical Rutherford scattering (partial) derivation

I am having trouble answering the following question, please could you help! Thank you in advance for any assistance you can give. Consider classical Rutherford scattering of a particle with mass $m$ ...
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1answer
83 views

Couple Masses - Change in Basis

I'm having trouble with the linear algebra used to solved a coupled mass problem. $\ddot{x}_1 = -(2k/m)x_1 + (k/m)x_2$ and $\ddot{x}_2 = (k/m)x_1 - (2k/m)x_2$ Shankar then sets the equation up in ...
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1answer
129 views

Is it possible to project a problem of mechanics in a lower dimensionality?

I had the intuition that, in classical mechanics, when the trajectory of a body is known, then analysis of its motion can be done in the linear space of that trajectory, if all forces are projected on ...
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2answers
6k views

Two boxes that are connected pushed by force - what happens between two boxes?

So when two boxes are connected together, and force is applied, two boxes move with the same acceleration. (assuming force is constant.) My question is, how are forces between two boxes get cancelled ...
3
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0answers
267 views

Classical models with unbounded particle number

Is there any classical model which deals with the birth, life and death of particles? What application could it have? I am talking about a 'billiard-ball' kind of model, but the kind in which balls ...
3
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3answers
8k views

Why should fluids be confined for Pascal's Law to be applicable

When is Pascal's law about fluid pressure propagation applicable? Is it applicable to a closed circular pipe with a pump rotating the fluid, but not to a tub of water. Most statements require only ...
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1answer
830 views

Ensemble of harmonic oscillators

I have some problems with problem 2.3 from Reif's Fundamentals of statistical and thermal physics: Consider an ensemble of classical one-dimensional harmonic oscillators. a) If we assume ...
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0answers
143 views

Single particle trajectory in a quadrupole potential

I am wondering if there are any studies of a single (classical) particle trajectory in quadrupole potential: $$ V(x,y,z)=A\sqrt[]{\frac{x^2 + y^2}{a} + \frac{z^2}{b}} $$
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1answer
445 views

A rock connected to one end of string in circular motion gets released.. and what happens?

I know this is a basic question, but question: A rock is connected to one end of string and is in circular motion with the center being the other end of the string. Now the string gets released at ...
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3answers
714 views

Probability density in Hamiltonian Mechanics

I am currently studying Liouville's theorem compare wikipedia and there this mysterious probability density $\rho$ appears and I was wondering how one can determine this quantity analytically for a ...
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1answer
185 views

Doubt in law of mutual interaction

Book: Classical mechanics (textbook) by Douglas Gregory (cambridge publications) Law of mutual interaction states that when two particle (let it be P1 and P2) interacts, the particle (P1) induces an ...
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1k views

Conservation of linear momentum magnitude along a trajectory

I was once criticized for "taking angular momentum as momentum going in a circle". I was loosely trying to state, in classical mechanics, that in using conservation of momentum, one can switch between ...
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2answers
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Why does a ball bounce forever?

In short: Do bouncing balls keep bouncing forever? If not, does it have to do more with energy than velocity? Learner.org: Energy If energy is conserved, why do bouncing balls, pendulums,...
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107 views

Differential Equations - Waves (Physics self-study suggestions) [closed]

I apologize ahead of time, in case this post is not allowed. After taking a few courses at a community college, I've taken the fall 2013 semester off (I was accepted into a university for the spring ...
2
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1answer
116 views

Two interacting particles on sphere drift to sphere poles

Suppose we have two particles which can move on sphere of radius $r$, and they attract to each other so that their potential energy is $g(d)=ad$ where $d$ is distance between them. I've found ...