For questions involving the Lagrangian formulation of a dynamical system. Namely, the application of an action principle to a suitably chosen Lagrangian or Lagrangian Density in order to obtain the equations of motion of the system.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

2
votes
1answer
41 views

Coupling a spinor field to a preexisting scalar field?

So I'm not a physicist, but I'm thinking about a mathematical problem where I think physical insight might be useful. We're working on a Riemannian manifold $(M,g)$ (positive definite metric) with a ...
1
vote
2answers
48 views

How do I find the linear components of acceleration in a pendulum?

I have managed to derive the equation of motion of a simple pendulum under the influence of gravity using the Lagrangian, but since that only tells me what the angular acceleration is, I now want to ...
-1
votes
1answer
60 views

Why is angular acceleration of a pendulum always negative?

I was trying to derive using the Lagrangian the equations of motion of a simple pendulum under the influence of gravity. Eventually, I was brought to this conclusion: $$\alpha = -(g\sinθ)/l$$ where ...
4
votes
1answer
142 views

Locality defined in terms of the Lagrangian density

I've been reading through Matthew Schwartz's book "Quantum Field Theory and the Standard Model" and in chapter 24 there is a section on locality (section 24.4). In it he defines locality in terms of ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

Quantum field theory with constraint: energy-momentum conservation?

Suppose I have a 2-form field $B$ and a Lagrange multiplier field $\lambda$, then the Lagrangian $S = \int (B \wedge \delta B + \lambda \delta B \wedge \delta B)$ with a Lie derivative operator ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Calculating the moment of inertia in bifilar pendulums

I'm an A2 student, and I've been looking into how experimental and theoretical determined mass moments of inertia differ. I came across a method (search Youtube for Measuring Mass Moment of Inertia - ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

What is the relationship between local and global symmetries? [on hold]

A global symmetry has a few different meanings. The obvious one is that for $g = e^{-i\theta}$ if $\theta$ is contant in space then a field $\phi$ transforms $\phi' = e^{-i\theta}\phi$ so that ...
0
votes
0answers
40 views

Determining the Lagrangian of a double pendulum [on hold]

Ok, I'm reading up on Lagrangian mechanics, and there is a problem that I don't really understand: the double pendulum (in this case, without a gravitational field). So, I want to take it step by step ...
-1
votes
1answer
49 views

Understanding standard model and symmetry

I just want to know whether my understanding regarding standard model and symmetry is correct or utter nonsense. The standard model is the (yet incomplete) Lagrangian of the universe. The ...
1
vote
1answer
98 views

Polyakov From Nambu-Goto Directly, for Strings?

The following derivation, for a classical relativistic point particle, of the 'Polyakov' form of the action from the 'Nambu-Goto' form of the action, without any tricks - no equations of motion or ...
6
votes
1answer
377 views

Determinant for a coupled fluctuation Lagrangian

Lets consider a bosonic physical system in variables $t, x$ and $y(x)$ ($x$ dependent) with a classical Lagrangian $L$. To first order in fluctuations $x \to x+\xi_1$ and $y \to y+\xi_2$ the ...
2
votes
2answers
218 views

How to find the rank of the matrix $\frac{\partial ^2\mathcal{L}}{\partial \dot{X^\mu} \partial \dot{X^\nu} }$ for the Nambu-Goto string Lagrangian?

In this case $$\mathcal{L}~=~-T\sqrt{-\dot{X^2}X'^2+(\dot{X}\cdot X')^2}.$$ I was reading some books and papers about the constraints in the Nambu-Goto action, and all of them say something like ...
3
votes
1answer
357 views

Reduction of Nambu Goto action to true degrees of freedom

First consider the particle $$S=m\int\sqrt{-\dot{X}^2}d\tau$$ if you choose the static gauge $\tau=X^0$ and replace it in the action you get $$=m\int\sqrt{1-\dot{X}^j\dot{X}^j}d\tau$$ So now, you ...
0
votes
0answers
32 views

How to find potential energy(PE) of a system in order to write Lagrangian? Is there is any unique way to write PE for different system?

for simple pendulum or spring system its very easy . we use mgl and mgh. What I need is the unique way which will help to write PE to all the systems.
6
votes
2answers
94 views

When is stress-energy tensor defined as variation of action with respect to metric conserved?

In General Relativity Einstein's equation implies that stress-energy tensor on its RHS is conserved (has vanishing divergence), due to the Bianchi identity. Considering variational principles leading ...
1
vote
2answers
482 views

Kepler's laws to determine radius of circular orbit

"In nonrelativistic limit of general relativity there is a correction to the Newtonian gravitational potential energy $−h/r^3$ with $h = αL^2/(mc)^2$, where $c$ is the speed of light, $α = GMm$ ...
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Galilean invariance and the Lagrangian

My textbook says that in a time invariant space with translational and rotational symmetry the Lagrangian only depends on the magnitude of the velocity. The galilean invariance says that a Lagrangian ...
-1
votes
1answer
47 views

Force and energy relation: in case of time dependent force

The equivalent problems are also found in Marion problem 7-22, and other formal classical mechanics textbook. Here what i want to know why instructor solution and some websites gives this kinds of ...
3
votes
1answer
39 views

Problem books for concept building in applications of Riemannian and other geometries to mechanics

As a student of physics I have learned solving Euler equations for rigid bodies by solving examples and exercises in self-contained books rather than understanding the proofs of Euler equations (I ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Variables in the Dirac Equation Lagrangian [duplicate]

(Warning: I'm a student of mathematics with no training in physics.) In derivations of the Dirac equation from an action principle, one encounters the action $$S= \displaystyle\int\,d^4x ...
-1
votes
0answers
50 views

From Lagrangian to Feynman diagrams [closed]

Consider the the following Lagrangian of the $\phi ^4$ theory: $$\begin{align} \mathcal{L} = \frac{1}{2} [\partial ^{\mu} \phi \partial _{\mu} \phi - m^2 \phi ^2] - \frac{\lambda}{4!} \phi ^4 ...
4
votes
1answer
635 views

Point of Lagrange multipliers

I am trying to understand how for a constrained system the introduction of Lagrange multipliers facilitates the incorporation of the holonomic constraints. I am using Classical Mechanics by John ...
3
votes
1answer
45 views

Why does the 'Jacobian of at least one combination of $n$ functions shall be different from zero'?

I've started reading The Variational Principles of Mechanics by Cornelius Lanczos; here is the concerned excerpt from p. 11: The generalized coordinates $q_1,q_2,\ldots, q_n$ may or may not have a ...
23
votes
4answers
1k views

The Lagrangian as a metric

My question is, can the (classical) Lagrangian be thought of as a metric? That is, is there a meaningful sense in which we can think of the least-action path from the initial to the final ...
4
votes
1answer
235 views

What are the equations of motion for the scalar field in the tetrad formalism?

The action of a massless scalar field in curved spacetime is given by: \begin{equation} S(\phi)=\int d^{4}x \sqrt{-g}\left(g^{\mu\nu}\phi_{,\mu}\phi_{,\nu}\right) \end{equation} Now the action can ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Lagrangian Equations of Motion, Conservative Forces

I'm new to this topic so please bear with me. Here on wikipedia we have the Lagrangian equations of motion: $$ \frac{d}{dt}\left(\frac{\partial T}{\partial \dot{q}}\right) - \frac{\partial ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

Momentum equation in a Lagrangian configuration

When writing the momentum equation in a lagrangian configuration is the the stress tensor used the first Piola-Kirchhoff stress tensor or the nominal stress tensor (which is the transpose of the 1st ...
0
votes
0answers
23 views

Are time-$t$ maps of a Hamiltonian system with 1 degree of freedom typically twist?

If we take a typical Hamiltonian system $H(q,p)$ with one degree of freedom, and look at its time-$1$ map $(q(0),p(0)) \mapsto (q(t),p(t))$, will it generically satisfy the twist property, e.g. ...
0
votes
1answer
68 views

How are Lagrangians in QFT constructed?

Various particle equations (like the K-G equation, the Dirac equation, the Proca equation etc.) in QFT are derived by applying the Euler-Lagrange equations to the Lagrangian density. But how are these ...
1
vote
2answers
56 views

Is there any general theorem which specifies conditions where the critical solution of an action is unique (for given boundary conditions)? [duplicate]

Consider a classical mechanical system with generalized coordinates $q_i$, $i \in \{1,\dots\,n\}$. And Lagrangian $L$. Given a path $\gamma$ (with coordinates $\gamma_i$) and two times $t_1$ and $t_2$ ...
3
votes
2answers
45 views

Variation of Lagrangian density $\mathcal{L}$ w.r.t $x_\mu$

If a function $f(x(t),y(t))$ has no explicit dependence on the variable $t$, then $\frac{\partial f}{\partial t}=0$. In quantum field theory, the Lagrangian density ...
3
votes
2answers
81 views

Lagrange Multipliers and Virtual Work: Are Joos & Freeman wrong?

I have come to suspect that the treatment of virtual work in configuration space using Lagrange multipliers given here "Theoretical Physics, by Georg Joos & Ira M. Freeman, pg 114" is not correct. ...
4
votes
2answers
78 views

Total derivatives in GR

Without gravity we can easily switch between terms in a Lagrangian, such as $\partial\phi\partial\bar{\phi}$ and $\phi\Box\bar{\phi}$, since total derivative vanishes. But in GR we have additional ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

Equivalence between Hamiltonian and Lagrangian Mechanics

I'm reading a proof about Langrangian => Hamiltonian and one part of it just doesn't make sense to me. The Lagrangian is written $L(q, \dot q, t)$, and is convex in $\dot q$, and then the Hamiltonian ...
3
votes
1answer
44 views

Supersymmetrizing bosonic actions at higher orders

Given only the bosonic terms of a supersymmetric action, using a knowledge of the (local) supersymmetry transformations, is there a systematic way of reconstructing the fermionic terms? More ...
10
votes
2answers
679 views

What do the derivatives in these Hamilton equations mean?

I have a Hamiltonian: $$H=\dot qp - L = \frac 1 2 m\dot q^2+kq^2\frac 1 2 - aq$$ In a system with one coordinate $q$ (where $L$ is the Lagrangian). One of the Hamilton equations is: $$\dot q ...
0
votes
0answers
26 views

How to get the canonical momentum from the velocity when doing a Legendre transform?

For a Lagrangian $$L=\frac{1}{2}m\dot{q}^2-\frac{1}{2}m\omega^2 q^2$$ the Hamiltonian is defined as $$H=p\dot{q}-L$$ where $p$ is the canonical momentum, which is defined as $p=\frac{\partial ...
2
votes
2answers
51 views

Where is the BRST symmetry?

When quantizing YM we start from the gauge fixed path integral (to remove redundancy of integrating over Gauge symmetric configurations) $$\int \mathcal{D}A \delta(G(A)) \text{det} \Delta_{FP}e^{i\int ...
4
votes
1answer
43 views

What kind of fields can couple naturally to a $p$-form gauge fields in a Lagrangian?

Ordinary $U(1)$ gauge fields can naturally couple to classical fields such as spin-$1/2$ fields via the Dirac Lagrangian, or to complex spin-$0$ fields via the obvious covariant derivative coupling, ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Classical Yang Mills vacuum

What is the vacuum of classical Yang Mills theory $$\mathcal{L} = - \frac14 F^{a \mu \nu} F^a_{\mu \nu}~?$$ Is it simply $A^a_\mu=0$ for all its components?
4
votes
1answer
190 views

Determine path of point mass using the Hamilton's principle

I am very new in this field but I try to solve a problem by using the Hamilton's principle and afterwards I want to compare the solution by solving the same problem using conservation laws. What I ...
8
votes
1answer
136 views

When is numerical value of Lagrangian evaluated on-shell a full differential?

I noticed recently that for many field equations, Lagrangian evaluated on-shell (i.e. using equations of motions) is a full derivative- a divergence or something, or in other words a boundary term. ...
-3
votes
1answer
45 views

Lagrangian in polar coordinates [closed]

$$L=\frac{1}{2}mv^2=\frac{1}{2}m(\dot{x}^2+\dot{y}^2)$$ $$L=\frac{1}{2}mv^2=\frac{1}{2}m(\dot{r}^2+r^2\dot{φ}^2)$$ I dont get this part. ...
3
votes
1answer
369 views

How do I treat the Lagrangian in the case of a rigid body?

Here's Exercise 1.11 from Goldstein's Classical Mechanics 3rd edition (the first one after having derived the Lagrangian basically): Exercise 1.11: Consider a uniform thin disk that rolls without ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Inconsistent Mass matrix in Euler Lagrange dynamics

I am trying to derive Euler Lagrange dynamics of a two body system that is translating and rotating in a plain. First body is given by $(x,z,\theta)$ where $(x,z)$ is position of the center of first ...
1
vote
1answer
34 views

Spinning top fixed point

I have seen many explanations about the movement of a spinning top. The explanations were in a varied level, from basic newtonian mechanics to Lagrangian formalism. But I do not understand why some ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Advantages of Lagrangian Mechanics over Newtonian Mechanics [closed]

Here, I'm going to pose a very serious list of doubts I have on Lagrangian Mechanics. Can we learn Lagrangian Mechanics without studying Newtonian Mechanics? Does Lagrangian help in solving problems ...
6
votes
2answers
196 views

Why are there only 3 Additive Integrals of Motion?

1. I was reading Landau & Lifschitz's book on Mechanics, and came across this sentence on p.19: "There are no other additive integrals of the motion. Thus every closed system has seven such ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

Infinitesimal gauge invariance of Yang--Mills Lagrangian

Under an infinitesimal gauge transformation $g(x) = 1 - i\alpha{}_i(x)T{}^i$, where $[T{}^a, T{}^b] = if{}^{ab}{}_c T{}^c$, I want to know what happens to the Lagrangian $\mathcal{L} = ...
3
votes
3answers
89 views

Field equations of a given action

Provided an action: $$S[A_\nu] = \int\left(\frac{1}{4\mu_0}(A_{\gamma,\mu}-A_{\mu,\gamma})(A_{\zeta,\alpha}-A_{\alpha,\zeta})\eta^{\gamma\zeta}\eta^{\mu\alpha}+\frac{1}{2}\nu^2A_\mu A_\gamma -\beta ...