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.

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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 ...
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31 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 \,\bar\psi(x)...
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119 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 ...
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1answer
54 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 ...
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1answer
52 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 ...
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1answer
98 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 T}{\...
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1answer
42 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 ...
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24 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. $\...
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1answer
73 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 ...
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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 $\mathcal{L}(\phi,\partial_\mu\phi)...
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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 $t_2$ ...
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90 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. ...
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83 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 $e\...
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27 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 L}{\...
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2answers
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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 ...
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1answer
57 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?
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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, ...
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1answer
141 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. ...
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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. $$\frac{d}{dt}\left(\frac{\partial{L}}{\partial{\dot{φ}}}\...
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0answers
37 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 ...
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1answer
39 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 ...
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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 ...
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1answer
47 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 generally,...
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1answer
54 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} = F{}_{a\mu\nu}F{}...
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1answer
44 views

Why is the Virial Theorem not a Special Case of the Ergodic Theorem? What is their Relationship?

The virial theorem involves the time-averages of the potential and kinetic energies if the motion of the system is bounded to a finite region of space. An ergodic theorem relates the time and space ...
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2answers
204 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 ...
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1answer
60 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 P-...
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3answers
92 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 A_\...
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1answer
98 views

Spring pendulum system [closed]

Find the Lagrangian and the equations of motion for the system described by the figure using the Lagrange multipliers method. The mass $m$ can slide frictionless along the massless rigid rod of the ...
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0answers
25 views

How can I prove that the Euler-Bernoulli beam PDE is Hamiltonian?

How can I prove that the Euler-Bernoulli beam PDE is Hamiltonian? I'm having trouble with the above. I have the Hamiltonian: how can I prove this is Hamiltonian in structure?
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2answers
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Derivation of Euler-Lagrange equation from principle of least action

When deriving the Euler-Lagrange equation for a field $\phi$ the term $$ \int\textrm{d}x^{\mu}~\partial_{\mu}\left( \dfrac{\partial \mathcal{L} }{\partial(\partial_{\mu}\phi)}\right)\delta\phi $$ is ...
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0answers
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Scale invariance and stress energy tensor

I have seen in a paper [1] that in a quantum field theory scale invariance takes place provided the stress energy tensor is traceless. How this is true? References: "INFINITE CONFORMAL SYMMETRY IN ...
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2answers
944 views

Question about the apparent loophole in principle of least action

In Lagrangian formalism, given two points $(x_1,t_1)$ and $(x_2,t_2)$, we ask the question which paths $x(t)$ make the action $S=\displaystyle \int_{t_1}^{t_2}L\ \mathrm dt$ stationary and satisfy the ...
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2answers
57 views

Classical Klein-Gordon theory is a free relativistic theory

The classical Klein-Gordon theory for a real scalar field is called a relativistic free theory. It is called a free theory because the dynamics of the degrees of freedom in the momentum space of the ...
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1answer
49 views

What are the assumptions behind the Lagrangian derivation of energy?

What are the assumptions behind the Lagrangian derivation of energy? I understand that we're searching for a function $L$ that describes a set of physics so that solving the energy minimization ...
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60 views

Physical motivation for Lagrangian formalism

This is more of a request for clarification of understanding and intuition rather than a question, but I hope people can help me with it. I have learned calculus of variations and have subsequently ...
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0answers
50 views

How to calculate the second functional derivative of the action of a one-particle system?

Given the Lagrangian $$L(q,\dot{q})=m\dot{q}^2/2-V(q)$$ and the corresponding action $$S[q]\equiv\int_0^t dt' (m\dot{q}^2/2-V(q)),$$ I need to be able to evaluate the second functional derivative $\...
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1answer
64 views

Electromagnetism theory and complex scalar field

I've got the following problem for classical field theory lecture: Find equations of motion (equations of field?), canonical and symmetrical tensor of energy-momentum in electromagnetic field ...
2
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1answer
66 views

Hamiltonian or free energy corresponding to 2+1D Kuramoto-Sivashinsky model

I am trying to understand if the deterministic 2+1D Kuramoto-Sivashinsky equation $$ \partial_t h = -\nu \nabla^2 h - K \nabla^4 h + \frac{\lambda}{2} (\nabla h)^2, $$ where $\nu$, $K$, $\lambda$ ...
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2answers
93 views

Higher than Lagrangian/action?

When you begin learning physics, you start with equations of motion applied to various physics systems. In classical mechanics course you learn, that exists Lagrangian/action of a system, which gives ...
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1answer
104 views

Why is a theory Lorentz invariant if the Lagrangian is Lorentz invariant?

For if I started by trying to make the Hamiltonian Lorentz invariant, I would have failed. Indeed, the Hamiltonian is part of a covariant tensor. But how do I know that the Lagrangian is not a part of ...
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41 views

Build Hamiltonian function

Suppose we have three-point system Points A and B are connected with rod of fixed length $r_0$. Point C rotates around rod, vector R begins at rod's centre of mass. There is a potential of general ...
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0answers
94 views

Simple real life applications of Euler-Lagrange equations of motion

If you read some introductory mechanics text like David Morin's Introduction to Classical Mechanics about Euler Lagrange Equations you get a large amount of simple examples like the "moving plane" (...
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Must there exist a Lagrangian for any 2nd order ordinary derivative equation?

We know if there exist a Lagrangian of some ODE, then it must exist many equivalent Lagrangian. My question: Then must there exist a Lagrangian for any 2nd order ODE? If not, do we have some ...
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Inequivalent matter actions with the same stress-energy tensor in general relativity

In general relativity, suppose as usual that we have the following action for the matter fields \begin{equation} S_{\mathrm{matter}} = \int_M d^4 x \sqrt{-g} L_{\mathrm{matter}} , \end{equation} ...
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Quantization of non-variational systems?

In undergraduate courses the introduction to Hamiltonian mechanics usually starts from a Newtonian view point. One has equations of motions of the form (not sure if it is ok to use covariant notation ...
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Euler-Lagrange equations in General Relativity

When obtaining the Euler Lagrange equations for a scalar field with higher order derivatives in curved space is it the same to use $$ -\partial_\nu\partial_\mu\frac{\partial \sqrt{-g} \mathcal{L}}{\...
3
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2answers
68 views

How does SUSY avoid to create non-Lorentz interactions?

A three-legs fermion interaction or boson absorbing a fermion are things we do not see in QFT because the corresponding terms in the Lagrangian are not Lorentz invariant. But in susy, naively, such ...
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0answers
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Is a lagrangian with a background field interaction renormalizable ? If yes, when?

Consider the Lagrangian, $$ L = -\partial_{\mu} \chi \partial_{\nu} \chi^{\dagger} - m^2 \chi \chi^{\dagger} + g\chi \chi^{\dagger}\phi,$$ where $\phi$ is a background field and $\chi$ is a complex ...