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1
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7answers
372 views

Can velocity be an undefined quantity?

We have the image below displaying the uniform velocity by time-distance graph. At every point velocity is constant but what if distance and time both become zero as at origin in the graph is? The ...
14
votes
2answers
629 views

Symbols of derivatives

What is the exact use of the symbols $\partial$, $\delta$ and $\mathrm{d}$ in derivatives in physics? How are they different and when are they used? It would be nice to get that settled once and for ...
0
votes
2answers
83 views

How does covariant derivative act on Christoffel Symbols?

the question is how the covariant derivative acts on the following? $\nabla_\nu(\Gamma^\alpha_{\mu\lambda}R^{\beta\lambda})=?$ and ...
2
votes
1answer
28 views

a problem on finding acceleration by differentiation

The displacement of particle along the $x$ and $y$ axis is \begin{cases} x(t)=\omega t-\sin\omega t\\ y(u)=1-\cos\omega t \end{cases} Upon differentiation, the velocity is \begin{cases} ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Time derivative of time-translation Killing vector

I'm working with the spherically symmetric, static black hole metric. In the problem I'm working on, I'm told that $K$ is the time-translation Killing vector, $\frac{\partial}{\partial t}$ or $K = (1, ...
-2
votes
1answer
70 views

Finding solution to this differential equation

In this paper http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/9506035 equation (3.11) was written as: $$\frac{\partial L}{\partial u}\frac{\partial L}{\partial v} = -1$$ The author then said p.9 that "approximate ...
0
votes
1answer
54 views

Gradient of two-particle system

I'm working on problem 5.1a from Griffiths Intro to QM and given that: $$\mathbf R \equiv \frac{m_1\mathbf{r_1} + m_2 \bf r_2}{m_1+m_2}$$ and $\bf r \equiv \bf r_1 - \bf r_2$ I need to show that, ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Derivation of velocities in the Coriolis force

In Fitzpatrick's Newtonian Dynamics book on the Coriolis force, he states \begin{align} v_{x'}&\simeq V_0\cos\theta-2\Omega t V_0\sin\lambda~\sin\theta \tag{433}\\ ...
4
votes
2answers
187 views

Why doesn't this multiplication of Grassmann variables give the expected result?

Would anyone be able to tell me how srednicki goes from step $(44.29)$ to $(44.30)$? Here is the paragraph: Now let us introduce the notion of complex Grassmann variables via $$\begin{align} ...
2
votes
1answer
70 views

Why do derivatives act on vector fields on a worldsheet?

The covariant derivative of a vector $A^{\mu}$ at a point $x$ is defined as $$D_z A^{\mu}=\partial_zA^{\mu}+\Gamma^{\mu}_{\rho\sigma}(x)\partial_{z}x^{\rho}A^{\sigma}$$ where Greek symbols are ...
1
vote
4answers
142 views

Rotation systems. Problem interpreting an equation

In this equation: $$ \mathbf a_i\overset{\rm def}{=}\left(\frac{d^2\mathbf r}{dt^2}\right)_i=\left(\frac{d\mathbf ...
1
vote
1answer
130 views

Total and partial derivatives in thermodynamics and Maxwell relations

Consider the expression $$dS=\left(\frac{\partial S}{\partial T}\right)_VdT+\left(\frac{\partial S}{\partial V}\right)_TdV$$ I'm trying to understand how to derive an expression for $\left( ...
1
vote
0answers
237 views

Why discrepancies in the Schrödinger equation? [duplicate]

Why is there seemingly two definitions of the Schrödinger equation? \begin{equation} i\hbar\frac{\partial}{\partial t}\Psi=\hat H\Psi. \end{equation} And \begin{equation} i\hbar ...
1
vote
2answers
135 views

Why is $\nabla\cdot(\hat{\bf r}/r^2)$ giving 0 as answer? [closed]

While I was reading I encountered the statement $\nabla\cdot(\hat{\bf r}/r^2)$ (r cap divided by $r$ square) is 0. Can anyone explain proof of the statement why is it giving 0?
1
vote
2answers
90 views

Derivation of the Riemann tensor confusion

I'm trying to understand the derivation of the Riemann curvature tensor as given in Foster and Nightingale's A Short Course In General Relativity, p. 102. They start by giving the covariant derivative ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

Want to know about divergence [duplicate]

Can anyone please explain how to know whether a vector field has divergence or not by seeing its diagram? I have read that a vector field must change for having divergence but why is divergence zero ...
2
votes
1answer
58 views

Is this covariant derivative identity true?

Trying to work through a textbook derivation of the geodesic deviation equation, I've calculated this identity:$$u_{;\beta}^{\alpha}u_{\alpha}=u_{\alpha;\beta}u^{\alpha}.$$ If this is true, I'm ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

Covariant derivative of stress-energy tensor for a scalar field [closed]

In order to prove that $$\nabla ^\mu T_{\mu\nu} =0$$ I want to find the covariant derivative of $$T_{\mu\nu} = \partial_\mu\phi \partial_\nu \phi -\frac{1}{2}g_{\mu\nu}(g ...
2
votes
0answers
65 views

Problems while doing $\dfrac{\partial}{\partial(\partial_\mu \phi)}$ and $\dfrac{\partial}{\partial(\partial_\mu A_\mu)}$

In David Tong's lectures, he gives two Lagrangians as examples to derive the equations of motion: $$\mathcal{L} = \dfrac{1}{2}\eta^{\mu\nu}\,\partial_\mu\phi\,\partial_\nu \phi-\dfrac{1}{2}m^2\phi^2, ...
2
votes
4answers
699 views

Why can't impulse be instantaneous?

We know from 2nd law of motion that $$\vec{F} = \frac{d\vec{p}}{dt}.$$ Now, a rate of change can be instantaneous. So, rate of change of momentum is instantaneous. But I doubt how can there be ...
3
votes
2answers
83 views

Physical meaning of harmonic function?

In complex numbers, we define a harmonic function as a twice continuously differentiable function such that the Laplace operator acting on it gives zero. Can anybody explain me the physical ...
3
votes
2answers
147 views

Why and when do we differentiate or integrate equations in physics? [closed]

I'm an engineering student and none of my professors ever explained why do we use derivations and/or integrations in physics. So I have this task, it goes like: The object is moving in a positive ...
2
votes
1answer
62 views

Total vs partial time derivative of action

I'm following Ref. 1 in my reasoning, struggling with action as a function of time. Consider a Lagrangian $$L=\dot x^2-x^2.\tag1$$ Solving the corresponding equations of motion with initial ...
2
votes
2answers
61 views

Determining Acceleration Based On Graph

I understand how to solve this problem, but I am unsure how to generate an equation for the graph (below). My current attempt involves using the mass provided along with the derivative of the line ...
1
vote
5answers
219 views

What is divergence?

What is divergence? I was learning about Maxwells equations and don't understand the divergence part of it. Can someone give an intuition of what divergence is in relation to maxwells equation. To ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

Geometric meaning of parallel transport

The definition of parallel transport of a vector $v^b$ along a curve $C$ with tangent field $\it{t}^a$ is given by Wald's GR as $$t^a \nabla_a v^b = 0$$ Is it correct to think of $\nabla_a v^b$ as ...
0
votes
1answer
50 views

Finding the divergence of this force [closed]

I've got to find the divergence of this force, $$ \mathbf F=\left(x^2+y^2+z^2\right)^n\left(x\hat e_x+y\hat e_y+z\hat e_z\right) $$ I would know how to do it if the $n$ superscript wasn't there. Any ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

Can these two terms cancel out?

In trying to prove that $$\Gamma_{\mu\nu\lambda} = \eta_{ab}J^a_bJ^b_{\nu\lambda}.$$ The author canceled out while expanding the first equation $$J^a_{\mu\lambda}J^b_\nu$$ with ...
1
vote
2answers
234 views

Differentiation in general relativity

If we have: $$ \frac{d\phi^a}{d\tau}= \frac{\partial \phi^a}{\partial x^\mu} \frac{dx^\mu}{d\tau} \tag{1}$$ Differentiating it, we get: $$ \frac{\partial \phi^a}{\partial ...
2
votes
4answers
207 views

Poincare invariant Lagrangians

The Lagrangian density of a Poincare invariant theory should not depend explicitly on the space-time coordinates. Does this mean $$ \partial_\mu \mathcal{L}=0~? $$ If this is the case doesn't the ...
1
vote
2answers
136 views

Time derivative of angular velocity in rotating reference frame

I am going through a section in a textbook regarding the Newton Euler equations for a system of rigid bodies (robotics text). There is a particular line in the derivation I don't understand, I've ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

The vector r points from $P'(x',y',z')$ to $P(x,y,z)$ [closed]

For some reason this question is giving me a hard time :( The vector $r$ points from $P'(x',y',z')$ to $P(x,y,z)$. (a) Show that if $P$ is fixed and $P'$ is allowed to move, then ...
3
votes
1answer
69 views

Why do we need the material derivative?

I'm studying fluid mechanics, and I got the impression that the material derivative is nothing more than "differentiating along a path" and so I got confused on why do we need it. Basically, let ...
2
votes
1answer
81 views

Relationship between Connection and Material Derivative

Suppose $D\subset \Bbb R^3$ contains a fluid and that $f : D\times \mathbb{R}\to \mathbb{R}$ is a time dependent function defined on the fluid region. In that case, the material derivative is defined ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

How to calculate electric force between two tubes?

Let's say the electric field due to a charged tube is $E$,length of the charged tube is $l$, radius is $r$ and the surface charge density is $\lambda$. I know that to calculate the electric force ...
0
votes
2answers
97 views

Is there a difference in handwritten nabla $\vec{\nabla}$ with an overset arrow and typeset nabla $\nabla$?

According to some physicist at KIT it is usual to write the following when using pen and paper: whereas in typeset texts you write $\nabla$. Is that true? Are there sources for this convention?
0
votes
4answers
113 views

Dot product of vector and its derivative with respect to time? How does $L \cdot\frac{dL}{dt} = \frac{1}{2}\frac{d(L^2)}{dt}$? [closed]

How does: $$L \cdot\frac{dL}{dt} = \frac{1}{2}\frac{d(L^2)}{dt}$$ where L is a vector (I dunno how to make it bold in the equation). How do they reach to this right hand side equation? And what is ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Why does the power in an inductor equal what it does?

I understand that power is that rate at which work is done and that because of this the power in an inductor is equal to $$P=\frac{d}{dt} \left(\frac12Li^2\right).$$ I also understand that the power ...
5
votes
2answers
206 views

A confusion about notation in Goldstein

On treating systems of particles, Goldstein starts with the consideration that whenever there are $k$ particles on a system, the $i$-th one obeys the relation $$\dfrac{d}{dt}{\bf p}_i = {\bf ...
3
votes
1answer
94 views

Why do we do partial and not covariant differentiation with $x^{\nu}$?

Why when taking the velocity vector we make $$u^{\nu}=\frac{d}{d\tau}x^{\nu}$$ and not $$u^{\nu}=\frac{\nabla}{d\tau}x^{\nu}$$ where in the last equation I meant the covariant derivative. Why?
1
vote
1answer
215 views

How to get the time derivative of an expectation value in quantum mechanics?

The textbook computes the time derivative of an expectation value as follows: $$\frac{d}{dt}\langle Q\rangle=\frac{d}{dt}\langle \Psi|\hat Q\Psi\rangle=\langle \frac{\partial\Psi}{\partial t}|\hat ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

1D Smoluchowski diffusion equation in a linear potential

I am interested in solving a 1D Smoluchowski diffusion equation in a linear potential $U(x) = cx$ for a constant force $c$. This problem follows chapter 4 of the theoretical biophysics script by ...
2
votes
3answers
60 views

Can we measure rates in real time?

I know what it means to say that my position is "X" at a particular moment in time. I can easily take a picture of my motion and observe my exact location at the instant the picture was taken. That is ...
2
votes
2answers
164 views

Any difference between thermodynamic double-derivative and derivative “at constant” value?

Reading about the Maxwell relations has left me confused, and I want a basic sanity check regarding the notation. The Wikipedia article breezes over the following switch of notation without really ...
0
votes
3answers
72 views

Why there is added a partial time derivative in formula for time derivative of potential energy? [duplicate]

In proving the total energy in conservative field is constant we have this equation(picture) why it added partial derivative? Why? I mean where it did come from?
1
vote
0answers
40 views

Partial derivatives in Lagrangian formalism [duplicate]

Suppose I have a function $f = xy$. A partial derivative of $f$ with respect to $x$ implies holding $y$ constant: $$ \frac{\partial f}{\partial x} = y $$ Does this mean that in order to evaluate ...
2
votes
2answers
113 views

Covariant derivative of a covariant tensor wrt superscript

Is it true that when you take the covariant derivative of a covariant tensor, do you always have to do with a subscript? What if you do it wrt a superscript?Does the first term (with the partial ...
4
votes
2answers
132 views

Conventions regarding partial derivatives

Look at this expression: $$\frac{\partial}{\partial t} (V-\mathbf{v}\cdot\mathbf{A}).$$ This expression occurs in Griffiths EM book (4th ed, p.444). $V=V(\mathbf{r},t)$is the scalar potential, ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

Taylor series: Epsilon not differentiated? [closed]

Why isn't epsilon differentiated with respect to time? (see my question on the right)
1
vote
3answers
189 views

Apparent dimensional mismatch after taking derivative

Suppose I have a variable $x$ and a constant $a$, each having the dimension of length. That is $[x]=[a]=[L]$ where square brackets denote the dimension of the physical quantity contained within them. ...