School of Chemical and Physical Sciences

Faculty of Natural Sciences

For academic year: 2020/21 Last Updated: 08 August 2020

PHY-10020 - Oscillations and Waves

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This Level 4 module runs in the second semester. It explores the physical principles and mathematical description of oscillatory and wave phenomena, which find application in many areas of classical and modern physics and astrophysics. The module requires a firm grasp of material covered in Level 4 Mechanics, and it sets the stage for the treatment of more advanced topics in optics, quantum mechanics, and electromagnetism at Levels 5 and 6. A mathematics component is included, in which fundamental techniques routinely used in physics are taught and practised. There is also a laboratory component, which involves bench work, computing and communication exercises.

To introduce and develop the basic concepts of oscillation and wave theory, which underpin many topics in physics, and the mathematics necessary to achieve this understanding. To develop the transferable, practical and computational skills that are required by the practising physicist or astrophysicist.

http://lists.lib.keele.ac.uk/modules/phy-10020/lists

Solve the equations of motion for simple harmonic, damped, and forced oscillators. Formulate these equations and understand their physical content in a variety of applications, will be achieved by assessments.

Understand the mathematical description of travelling and standing waves. Recognise the one-dimensional classical wave equation and solutions to it. Understand the principle of superposition and its relevance to physical phenomena such as standing waves, interference, and diffraction. Appreciate the role and importance of basic wave concepts in quantum mechanics, will be achieved by assessments.

Solve first- and second-order linear differential equations. Use these and other mathematics techniques, including series and approximations, to solve physical problems. Use complex numbers and partial differentiation in physics applications, will be achieved by assessments.

Perform practical work and keep accurate accounts of it, including professionally maintained records of purpose, methodology, and results. Communicate the process and results of practical work in formal, written presentations. Enter, manipulate, and present data with the aid of computer tools. Develop algorithms and write simple computer programmes, at a level sufficient to assist in laboratory work at Levels 2 and 3, will be achieved by assessments.

Understand the mathematical description of travelling and standing waves. Recognise the one-dimensional classical wave equation and solutions to it. Understand the principle of superposition and its relevance to physical phenomena such as standing waves, interference, and diffraction. Appreciate the role and importance of basic wave concepts in quantum mechanics, will be achieved by assessments.

Solve first- and second-order linear differential equations. Use these and other mathematics techniques, including series and approximations, to solve physical problems. Use complex numbers and partial differentiation in physics applications, will be achieved by assessments.

Perform practical work and keep accurate accounts of it, including professionally maintained records of purpose, methodology, and results. Communicate the process and results of practical work in formal, written presentations. Enter, manipulate, and present data with the aid of computer tools. Develop algorithms and write simple computer programmes, at a level sufficient to assist in laboratory work at Levels 2 and 3, will be achieved by assessments.

Lectures: 24 hours

Problem Classes: 6 hours

Laboratory Sessions: 12 hours

Computing Classes: 6 hours

Maths Support Classes: 5 hours

Maths Problem Classes: 4 hours

Maths Class Test/Unseen Exam: 1 hour

Completion of Lab Reports: 12 hours

Directed Reading/Independent Study: 60 hours

Problem Sheets: 18 hours

Examination: 2 hours

Problem Classes: 6 hours

Laboratory Sessions: 12 hours

Computing Classes: 6 hours

Maths Support Classes: 5 hours

Maths Problem Classes: 4 hours

Maths Class Test/Unseen Exam: 1 hour

Completion of Lab Reports: 12 hours

Directed Reading/Independent Study: 60 hours

Problem Sheets: 18 hours

Examination: 2 hours

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2-hour unseen written examination

Exam paper has three sections: Section A - 10 short questions total marks 40/100; Section B - choice of 1 out of 2 long questions worth 30/100 marks; Section C - choice of 1 out of 2 long questions worth 30/100 marks.

1-hour unseen Mathematics examination

Laboratory and Computing Sessions

Continuous assessment of a laboratory diary containing several experiments (weight 30%). Assessment of a formal lab report (weight 60%). Assessment of a computer programming exercises (weight 10%).

Problem sheets

Three assessed problem sheets.

Problem Classes

Tutor-moderated classes in which students complete assigned problems on Maths and Oscillations and Waves, with assistance given as necessary. Assessment is based on weekly attendance and engagement.