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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1answer
43 views

“Normalisation” in the unitary gauge

I will use the example of the Abelian Higgs model to explain my problem. Consider the Lagrangian: $ \mathcal{L} = - \frac{1}{4} F^{\mu \nu}F_{\mu \nu} + \left(D^\mu \phi\right)^\dagger \left( D_\mu \...
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0answers
65 views

Einstein equations from the Palatini action [closed]

I am trying to obtain the usual form of vacuum Einstein's equations $$ R_{\mu \nu} - \frac{1}{2} R g_{\mu \nu} + \Lambda g_{\mu \nu} = 0 $$ from the first-order (Palatini) tetradic action $$ S[\...
2
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1answer
149 views

A mass hanging under a table: a problem from Goldstein [closed]

I'm trying to solve Problem 1.19 from Goldstein's Chapter 1 (2nd edition), and am getting bogged down in trigonometry (?). Please help me figure out what I'm doing wrong! Two mass points of mass $...
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5answers
345 views

In the Principle of Least Action, how does a particle know where it will be in the future?

In his book on Classical Mechanics, Prof. Feynman asserts that it just does. But if this is really what happens (& if the Principle of Least Action is more fundamental than Newton's Laws), then ...
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0answers
25 views

Computing the value of an Action given some boundary conditions

Having being dealing with Actions for a while I have come across a question in which I am required to calculate the value for $S$ an action in the form of a function for some given boundary conditions....
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0answers
52 views

Expression of Noether current corresponding to Lorentz transformation of scalar fields

I find the derivation of Noether current given in the post http://physics.stackexchange.com/a/56905/45429 very clear. However, following a similar logic, I am having problems deriving the Noether ...
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1answer
54 views

Derivation Of The Equation Of Motion Of String from Polyakov action

I'm stuck at a step in the derivation of the equations of motions of a string using the Polyakov action. In Polchinski's textbook in String Theory , Page 14 ; Equation ( 1.2.25 ) , Varying the ...
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1answer
56 views

Build rotational Hamiltonian based on Lagrangian of general form

I've been told that one could build rotational Hamiltonian based on Lagrangian of general form: $\mathcal{L} = \mathcal{L} (\vec{\Omega})$. By introducing Euler angles one could rewrite Lagrangian in ...
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0answers
14 views

Isolated system and mutual interaction potential

We know that the total linear momentum of a closed (isolated) system is conserved due to homogeneity of space (Landau and Liftshitz, page 15, Mechanics). Hence for an isolated system of two bodies ...
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0answers
41 views

How do you derive the Dirac Lagrangian density for spinor fields?

I know the how the Dirac Lagrangian is written but I don't understand how to derive it from the general definition $L=T-V$. So I guess I would also like to know what the Kinetic and Potential energies ...
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0answers
39 views

In what cases do we use the Routh Function? [duplicate]

As many of you, I studied Lagrangian Mechanics and Hamiltonian Mechanics, with the so famous functions called Lagrangian $\mathcal{L}$ and Hamiltonian $\mathcal{H}$ related by: $$\mathcal{H}(q_i, p_i,...
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2answers
98 views

Path Integral Quantization in General Relativity

In Ref. 1 I have seen that the action must contain only the first derivative of the metric as required by the path integral approach. I don't understand why. I mean why the path integral approach of ...
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0answers
29 views

General approach to Mechanics? [duplicate]

So, I know that this question may be tough to answer, but I am asking this question in all seriousness, and I don't consider myself a newbie... Lately, I am trying to find a way to "generalize" my ...
4
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1answer
66 views

Usage of total time derivative within first Euler-Lagrange equation

As one key argument in Introductoryt QM Class, we've been taught to use a Lagrangian and Hamiltonian generalized description of a dynamic systems, which follows the Euler-Lagrange or Hamilton equation ...
4
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3answers
106 views

Gauge invariance in classical electrodynamics

I think that I don't fully understand concept of gauge invariance. Suppose we have a Lagrangian for classical ED which is: $$\mathcal{L} = -\frac{1}{4} (F_{\mu \nu})^2 - j^{\mu}A_{\mu}.$$ First part ...
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1answer
84 views

Why can you make $V$ stationary with respect to a parameter of the field in Derrick's theorem?

I'm going over Coleman's derivation of Derrick's theorem for real scalar fields in the chapter Classical lumps and their quantum descendants from Aspects of Symmetry (page 194). Theorem: Let $\...
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0answers
47 views

Good books for understanding Lagrangian formulation of classical fields?

I want to understand Lagrangian formulation for classical fields and apply it to understand constrained dynamics. Currently I am referring to "A modern approach: Classical Mechanics" by ECG Sudarshan, ...
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0answers
43 views

Gravity as a gauge theory - Cartan-Killing form?

First, let me state the form of Lagrangian for YM and GR \begin{align} L_{YM} = \alpha \textrm{tr}(F^2), \qquad L_{GR} = \beta R \end{align} I heard, YM is a gauge theory but GR isn't a really gauge ...
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1answer
78 views

A question regarding $f(R)$ Lagrangians

Consider the class of Lagrangian known as $f(R)$ Lagrangians where the Lagrangian is some function $f(R)$, \begin{equation} S=\int\sqrt{g}d^4x\ f(R) \end{equation} assuming there are no (or ignoring)...
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1answer
34 views

Calculating motion of equation in tensor form

for the Lagrangian density $$\mathscr{L}=\frac{1}{2}(\partial_{\mu}A^{\mu})^2$$ how can I get this $$\frac{\partial{\mathscr{L}}}{\partial(\partial_{\mu}A_\nu)}=(\partial_\rho A^\rho)\eta^{\mu\nu}$$ ...
2
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1answer
83 views

Non-holonomic constraints in Dirac-Bergmann theory

The Dirac-Bergmann algorithm effectively isolates the physical degrees of freedom of a system, by changing from Poisson brackets $\{\cdot,\cdot\}_\mathrm{PB}$ to Dirac brackets $\{\cdot,\cdot\}_\...
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0answers
51 views

QFT: prove Dirac lagrangian is invariant under C, P, T separately

As it is stated in Peskin, $\mathcal{L}=\bar\Psi(i\gamma_{\mu}\partial^{\mu}-m)\Psi$ is invariant under C,P and T transformation separately. I have some problems to see how the partial derivative is ...
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1answer
51 views

Principle of Stationary Action and Euler-Lagrange Equation

Principle of Stationary Action: Given a mechanical system, there exists an action $S$ such that it is extremitized, or $\delta S=0$, for the actual motion of the system. $$S = \int_{t_1}^{...
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0answers
47 views

Confused about something in Landau classical mechanics

On page 7 in Landau and Lifshitz Mechanics He writes: We have $L'=L(v'^2)=L(v^2+2ve+e^2)$ now the confusing part comes (for me): He writes: Expanding this expression in powers of e and neglecting ...
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0answers
61 views

Lagrangian Mechanics + Account for friction of block

$\newcommand{\dd}{\mathrm{d}}$ I am trying to work out the Lagrangian mechanics for a pendulum problem in order to animate it. I'm working on one of the examples in the Wikipedia page on Lagrangian ...
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0answers
68 views

Are there any conditions under which the Christoffel symbols can be treated as a damping term in a harmonic oscillator?

(Mathjax did not seem to be working as I composed this question. Hopefully it will kick into action once I post.) Note I am a novice at tensor notation. I am working with the following Lagrangian (...
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0answers
19 views

Max & inflection point in the principle of least action [duplicate]

Short question: What is the physics interpretation of max & inflection points in the principle of least action? Long question: If $$L(q_1,q_2;t)=K-V$$ then let $$S = \int^{t_1}_{t_2} L(q_1,...
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0answers
30 views

kinetic energy in analytical mechanics

I have a question about the derivation of kinetic energy in analytical mechanics. What is the physical diffrence bettwen the 3 components (T0 T1 and T2), and when should we use those components ...
1
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1answer
106 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 ...
4
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2answers
160 views

Does the conservation of the Wronskian follow from Noether's principle?

Noether's principle is the paradigm that symmetries of Hamiltonian and Lagrangian systems correspond to conservation laws of various kinds. Consider a one-dimensional harmonic oscillator $$\tag{*} \...
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1answer
119 views

Use partial or covariant derivatives when deriving equations of a field theory?

I feel like this question has been asked before but I can't find it. would the Euler Lagrange equation for, say, the standard model Lagrangian be $$\frac{\partial L}{\partial \phi}=\partial_\mu \frac{\...
3
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2answers
133 views

Finding geodesics: Lagrangian vs Hamiltonian

I have a question referring to how to compute geodesics of a given spacetime (say, Kerr). I know that the direct way is via the geodesic equation $$\frac{d^{2}x^{\mu}}{d\lambda^{2}}+\Gamma^{\mu}_{\...
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3answers
77 views

How simultaneous information of coordinates and velocities sufficient to completely determine the subsequent motion of a mechanical system?

I somehow could not find the answers to the question in Why are coordinates and velocities sufficient to completely determine the state and determine the subsequent motion of a mechanical system? to ...
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4answers
627 views

Why is the Lagrangian approach preferred over the Hamiltonian approach in QFT? [duplicate]

Going from non-relativistic quantum mechanics(QM) to QFT there is a marked change in the approach used. QM almost exclusively uses Hamiltonains. Lagrangian based methods like the path-integrals are ...
3
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0answers
47 views

Friction in Lagrangian Method [duplicate]

A uniform, flexible chain of length $l$, mass $m$, hangs off a frictionless table-top of height greater than $l$. The length of the part of rope hanging off is $x$. Gravity accelerates the part of the ...
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0answers
36 views

Finding the constraint equation

I am trying to solve a problem on Constraint equations for a triple pendulum model, but was not able to derive a constraint equation for the last mass. I solved constraint equations for Masses 1 ...
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1answer
29 views

Hamilton's equations of motion

One of hamilton's equations is $(\frac{\partial H}{\partial q} )_t = -(\frac{\partial p}{\partial t}) _q$. But isn't it $\frac{\partial L}{\partial q} = \frac{dp}{dt}$? If H = L(i.e. V = 0), what ...
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0answers
68 views

Are there (interesting) Poincare-invariant QFTs with non-invariant Lagrangian densities?

In all QFTs I know, the Lagrangian density is completely invariant under the Poincare group, $$ \mathcal L \to \mathcal L. $$ On the other hand, the action would be invariant even if the Lagrangian ...
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1answer
40 views

How to scale variables in a classical Hamiltonian?

So I looked at some research articles where one has a classical Hamiltonian $H(p,q,t) = p^{2}/2 + V(q,t)$. If one introduces the scaling transformation $$t \mapsto t/\sqrt{s}, \quad H \mapsto Hs, \...
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1answer
69 views

How did he find the “lambda” value in this question? [closed]

There is a pdf i found when searching about Lagrangian Multpliers, but i was not able to understand how he derived lambda from two differential equations. If anyone can walk me through it, i would be ...
0
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1answer
65 views

How do I derive geodesic equation using variational principle? [duplicate]

I am trying to derive the geodesic equation using variational principle. My Lagrangian is $$ L = \sqrt{g_{jk}(x(t)) \frac{dx^j}{dt} \frac{dx^k}{dt}}$$ Using the Euler-Lagrange equation, I have got ...
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1answer
33 views

Relation between homotopy theory and symmetry transformation of the Lagrangian

What is the relation between the symmetry transformations of the Lagrangian and homotopy theory? If yes, how? Not sure if this is a math or physics questions. References would be very helpful.
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1answer
95 views

Why can the bra and ket be varied independently?

Given a functional which depends on a function (ket), and its complex conjugate (bra), e.g. $$F[\varphi] = \langle \varphi|\hat{F}|\varphi\rangle = \int \varphi^{*}(\mathbf{r}) \hat{F} \varphi(\...
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0answers
54 views

What is the path taken by a “cable car”?

A well known result in variational calculus & Lagrangian Mechanics is the solution to the "brachistochrone" problem, where it is found the path connecting two points, A & B such that the time ...
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0answers
67 views

Eigenfrequencies of a truss

I want to calculate the eigenfrequencies of a 3D truss using the finite element method. The beams should be modelled as Timoshenko beams and I want to use arbitrary shape functions. I know how to ...
4
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1answer
103 views

Superficial degree of divergence on Weinberg

Reading volume 1 of Weinberg's QFT book, chapter 12, page 505 he says that if you consider a diagram with degree of divergence $D\geq{}0$, its contribution can written as a polynomial of order $D$ in ...
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0answers
26 views

How can intuitively guess what conserved quantities has the system that I am studying?

I'm taking a course in Classical Electrodynamics and in one problem my teacher introduced us to a triplet of fields ($\phi^a$) invariant under internal rotations, i.e. transformations like: $$\phi'^...
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1answer
76 views

How to calculate the effective action in general?

Considering the scalar field, we have the effective action $$\tag 1 \Gamma[\phi_{cl}]=\int d^4x\mathcal{L}_1[\phi_{cl}]+\frac{i}{2}\log\det\left[-\frac{\delta^2\mathcal{L}_1}{\delta\phi\delta\phi}\...
0
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1answer
40 views

Complex Coordinate change

I have a simple question where I must change the coordinates of a system however I am unsure whether I am correct. I am changing from Cartisian to complex coordinates. Let's say I only have $x$ and $...
4
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2answers
98 views

Anomalous Slavnov-Taylor identity

I will be happy if someone could clarify the mystery here. Consider the following derivation of the anomalous Slavnov-Identity. It's based on lecture notes by Adel Bilal. Suppose we have an action ...