2016 Fundamentals of Mechanics 2

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Basic science and technology courses
Somiya Kentaro 
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Course description and aims

Following Fundamentals of Mechanics 1, this course teaches particle motion observed in a coordinate system undergoing acceleration as well as the mechanics of systems of interacting particles and rigid bodies (defined as systems of particles in which the distances between particles is fixed).

Mechanics is important for understanding nature, and is essential for the study of science, engineering, life sciences, and other specialized courses. On the basis of the mechanics of single particle, students will learn particle motion in coordinate systems undergoing accelerated motion as well as inertial forces. Moreover, students will learn the mechanics of systems of interacting particles, as well as the motion and balance of rigid bodies. From this, students will be able to solve general problems in mechanics.

Student learning outcomes

By completing this course, students will be able to:
1) Understand the concepts of inertial forces (Coriolis force and centrifugal force) correctly, and describe them mathematically.
2) Understand the concepts of momentum, angular momentum, energy, etc. in systems of particles and the center of mass, moment of inertia, etc. in rigid bodies, correctly, and describe them mathematically.
3) Understand motion and equilibrium of rigid bodies correctly, and solve actual mechanical problems by applying the appropriate mathematical formulas.
4) Find mathematical solutions to problems in mechanics, expressed by the appropriate equations, and explain the physical meaning of said solutions.


coordinate transform, inertial force, Coriolis force, centrifugal force, relative coordinates, reduced mass, center of mass, momentum, angular momentum, energy, rigid body, equilibrium, moment of inertia

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Two-thirds of each class are devoted to fundamentals and the rest to advanced content or application. To allow students to get a good understanding of the course contents and practice application, problems related to the contents of this course are provided in Exercises in Physics I.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Example potentials Become able to formulate potentials in various situations.
Class 2 Planetary motion 1 Become able to express a motion in the polar coordinate.
Class 3 Planetary motion 2 Understand how to calculate a planetary motion.
Class 4 Angular momentum Become able to formulate a rotational equation of motion.
Class 5 Motion of a rigid body Understand the equations of motion for a rigid body
Class 6 Moments of inertia Understanding the concept of moment of inertia. Become able to calculate moments of inertia for various rigid body shapes.
Class 7 Motion in an accelerated coordinate system Be able to compare and contrast the Coriolis force with the centrifugal force.
Class 8 Thermodynamics, waves, and energy utilization Understand the basics of the Carnot cycle and the one-dimensional wave equation.


Morikazu Toda
Iwanami Publication

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Not in particular

Assessment criteria and methods

Learning achievement is evaluated by a final exam.

Related courses

  • LAS.P105 : Exercises in Physics I

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

No prerequisites.

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