Classical Mechanics
5th Edition

Classical Mechanics
5th Edition

Tom W.B. Kibble Frank H. Berkshire
Imperial College London


Imperial College Press

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Kibble, T. W. B. Classical mechanics / Tom W. B. Kibble, Frank H. Berkshire, -- 5th ed. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 1860944248 -- ISBN 1860944353 (pbk). 1. Mechanics, Analytic. I. Berkshire, F. H. (Frank H.). II. Title QA805 .K5 2004 531'.01'515--dc 22


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This book, based on courses given to physics and applied mathematics students at Imperial College, deals with the mechanics of particles and rigid bodies. It is designed for students with some previous acquaintance with the elementary concepts of mechanics, but the book starts from first principles, and little detailed knowledge is assumed. An essential prerequisite is a reasonable familiarity with differential and integral calculus, including partial differentiation. However, no prior knowledge of differential equations should be needed. Vectors are used from the start in the text itself; the necessary definitions and mathematical results are collected in an appendix. Classical mechanics is a very old subject. Its basic principles have been known since the time of Newton, when they were formulated in the Principia, and the mathematical structure reached its mature form with the works of Lagrange in the late eighteenth century and Hamilton in the nineteenth. Remarkably enough, within the last few decades the subject has once again become the focus of very active fundamental research. Some of the most modern mathematical tools have been brought to bear on the problem of understanding the qualitative features of dynamics, in particular the transition between regular and turbulent or chaotic behaviour. The fourth edition of the book was extended to include new chapters providing a brief introduction to this exciting work. In this fifth edition, the material is somewhat expanded, in particular to contrast continuous and discrete behaviours. We have also taken the opportunity to revise the earlier chapters, giving more emphasis to specific examples worked out in more detail. Many of the most fascinating recent discoveries about the nature of the Earth and its surroundings — particularly since the launching of artificial satellites — are direct applications of classical mechanics. Several of these are discussed in the following chapters, or in problems.


Classical Mechanics

For physicists, however, the real importance of classical mechanics lies not so much in the vast range of its applications as in its role as the base on which the whole pyramid of modern physics has been erected. This book, therefore, emphasizes those aspects of the subject which are of importance in quantum mechanics and relativity — particularly the conservation laws, which in one form or another play a central role in all physical theories. For applied mathematicians, the methods of classical mechanics have evolved into a much broader theory of dynamical systems with many applications well outside of physics, for example to biological systems. The first five chapters are primarily concerned with the mechanics of a single particle, and Chapter 6, which could be omitted without substantially affecting the remaining chapters, deals with potential theory. Systems of particles are discussed in Chapters 7 and 8, and rigid bodies in Chapter 9. The powerful methods of Lagrange are introduced at an early stage, and in simple contexts, and developed more fully in Chapters 10 and 11. Chapter 12 contains a discussion of Hamiltonian mechanics, emphasizing the relationship between symmetries and conservation laws — a subject directly relevant to the most modern developments in physics. It also provides the basis for the later treatment of order and chaos in Hamiltonian systems in Chapter 14. This follows the introduction to the geometrical description of continuous dynamical systems in Chapter 13, which includes a discussion of various non-mechanics applications. Appendices from the fourth edition on (A) Vectors, (B) Conics, (C) Phase-plane analysis near critical points are supplemented here by a new appendix (D) Discrete dynamical systems — maps. The writing of the first edition of this book owed much to the advice and encouragement of the late Professor P.T. Matthews. Several readers have also helped by pointing out errors, particularly in the answers to problems. We are grateful to the following for permission to reproduce copyright material: Springer–Verlag and Professor Oscar E. Lanford III for Fig. 13.20; Cambridge University Press for Fig. 13.22 and, together with Professors G.L. Baker and J.P. Gollub, for Fig. D.5; Institute of Physics Publishing Limited and Professor M.V. Berry for Figs. 14.11, 14.12 and 14.13; the Royal Society and Professors W.P. Reinhardt and I. Dana for the figure in the answer to Appendix D, Problem 13. T.W.B. Kibble F.H. Berkshire Imperial College London

Conservation of Energy . .10 Conservative Forces. . . . .3 2. . . . . . . . . . . . .2 2. . . . . . . . . vii xv xvii 1 2 5 10 13 13 17 . . . the Green’s Function Method . . Introduction 1. . The Concepts of External Forces Summary . . . . . . Linear Motion 2. . . . . .1 2. . . The Law of Conservation of Energy . . . . . . . .5 2. . . . . .9 2. . . .7 2. . . . . Collision Problems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . General Periodic Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 20 24 25 27 30 34 37 39 42 2.6 2. . . . . . Summary . . . Impulsive Forces. . . . .Contents Preface Useful Constants and Units List of Symbols 1. . . . Oscillator under Simple Periodic Force . . . . .4 1. . . . . . ix . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Damped Oscillator . .4 2. .8 2. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 1. . . . . . . . Mass and Force . . . Motion near Equilibrium. .5 Space and Time Newton’s Laws . . . . . .3 1. . . . . . . . the Harmonic Oscillator Complex Representation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. .3 4. . Mean Free Path . . . . . . Hamilton’s Principle. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Projectiles . . . . The Calculus of Variations .4 4. . . . Larmor Effect . . . . . The Inverse Square Law . . . . . . . . . .5 6. . . . . . . . .3 6. . . . 73 76 78 84 90 94 96 98 105 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lagrange’s Equations . . . . . . . . . .2 3. . . . . . . . . . . .7 6. . .4 5. . . . . . . . Rutherford Scattering . . . . . . . Rate of Change of a Vector Particle in a Uniform Magnetic Field . . . Summary . . . . . . .3 3. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Spherical Charge Distributions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5. .1 3. . . . . . . . . . . . Conservation of Angular Momentum . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 5. . Central Forces. . . . . . The Dipole and Quadrupole . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Field Equations . Angular Momentum . . . . . . . . . . Apparent Gravity . Scattering Cross-sections .4 3. . . . . . . . .5 3. . . Conservative Forces . . . . . .1 6. . 6. . . . . . . . . Polar Co-ordinates . . .6 6. . . . . . . . 49 49 51 53 55 57 59 62 66 73 . . . .6 5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . .4 6. . . . . . .1 4. . Potential Theory 6. . Central Conservative Forces 4. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 6. . . . . . . . . . Acceleration. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Moments. .7 Angular Velocity. . . . .2 5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Tides . . . .1 5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Energy and Angular Momentum 3. . . . .8 Gravitational and Electrostatic Potentials . .5 4.2 4. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105 108 111 114 120 121 124 129 . . . . Rotating Frames 5. . . . . . . . .7 3. . . . . . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . . . . . .6 3. . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . . . . .8 The Isotropic Harmonic Oscillator The Conservation Laws . . .8 Energy. . . . . . . Orbits . Angular Momentum and the Larmor Effect . . . . . . . . . . . Expansion of Potential at Large Distances The Shape of the Earth . . . . . . . . .6 4. . . . . . . . .7 4. . . . . . . . Coriolis Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 5. . 129 131 134 137 140 144 148 152 4. . . .x Statistical Mechanics Made Simple 3. . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . The Stretched String . . . . . . . . . Perpendicular Components of Angular Momentum .4 10. . . . Precession of a Symmetric Top . . . .8 9. . . . Holonomic Systems . . . . .1 10. . . . . 197 198 203 205 208 211 216 218 221 225 231 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 8. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 231 233 236 238 241 244 248 253 8. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 7. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Effect of a Small Force on the Axis . . . . . . .1 8. . . . .4 7. . . . . . . . . . Principal Axes of Inertia . . . . . . Conservative Forces . . . . . . . .5 8. . . . . . . . . . . . . Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 11. . Lagrange’s Equations . . . . . . . . . . . Centre-of-mass Motion . . .5 Centre-of-mass and Relative Co-ordinates The Centre-of-mass Frame . . . Euler’s Angles . . . . .2 7. . . . . . . . . . . . . .Contents xi 7. Calculation of Moments of Inertia . Lagrangian Mechanics 10. . The Two-Body Problem 7. . .4 9. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . . . .5 10. .3 9. 177 181 183 188 190 192 197 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Angular Momentum. . . . Central Internal The Earth–Moon System . . . . 10. . . . . . . . 159 159 162 165 168 173 177 . . Rotation about a Principal Axis . . 11.1 7. . .3 10. . . . . . . . . .2 9. . 9. . . . . . . . . . . . . CM and Lab Cross-sections . . . . . . . . . . . . .6 10. . . . . . . . . . . . Rigid Bodies 9. . . . . . . . Summary . Lagrange’s Equations . . . . . . . .7 Generalized Co-ordinates.1 Orthogonal Co-ordinates .2 10. . . . . . . . . Instantaneous Angular Velocity . . . . Pendulum Constrained to Rotate about an Axis Charged Particle in an Electromagnetic Field . . . . . . 253 . . . .5 9. . .6 Momentum. . . .7 9. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 9. .10 Basic Principles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Elastic Collisions . . . .6 9. . . . . . . . .9 9. . . . . . . . Energy. . . Forces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 8. Rotation about an Axis . .2 8. . . . . . . . Many-Body Systems 8. . . Summary . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . First-order Systems — the Phase Line (n = 1) . Competing-species Systems and War Limit Cycles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 12. . .2 12. . . .4 13. . . . . . . Prey–Predator. . . . Slow Change of Parameters — Adiabatic Invariance Near-integrable Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . . . . . Vectors A. . . . Coupled Oscillators . . Symmetries and Conservation Laws . . . . . . . . Surfaces of Section . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 13. . . Summary . Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 14. General Motion of the Symmetric Top Liouville’s Theorem . . . . . . . . . 347 351 354 359 369 372 374 381 Appendix A. 381 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 307 309 312 318 324 329 337 340 347 14. .8 Hamilton’s Equations . . . . . Summary . . . . . . . Sensitivity to Initial Conditions and Predictability . . .5 14. . . Action/Angle Variables . . . . . .1 Definitions and Elementary Properties . . . . . . . . . .1 14. .1 12. . . .6 14. . . . . . . . . . .3 13. Oscillations of Particles on a String . . . .3 11. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Normal Modes of a Stretched String . . . . . . . . . . . Some Hamiltonian Systems which Exhibit Chaos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xii Statistical Mechanics Made Simple 11. . . . . . Hamiltonian Mechanics 12. . Galilean Transformations .6 11. . Conservation of Energy .7 13. .5 13. .2 11. . . .7 12. . . . . . . . . .4 11. . . . . . . .4 14. . . .1 13. . . . .7 Equations of Motion for Small Oscillations Normal Modes . . . . . . . . . . .6 12. . . . . . . . . .7 Integrability . . . . . . . .6 13. . . . . . . . Second-order Systems — the Phase Plane (n = 2) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 277 280 282 285 289 291 295 300 307 13. . . . . . . . . . . . Ignorable Co-ordinates . . . . . .5 12. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Phase Space and Phase Portraits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 14. . . . . . Systems of Third (and Higher) Order . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 256 258 261 266 269 272 277 12. . . . .4 12.2 13. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 14. . . . . . . . . . . . .5 11.

Gradient. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 433 Twist Maps and Torus Breakdown . . . . . . .1 C. . Tensors . . . . . . . 384 385 388 390 393 397 398 401 403 409 Appendix B. . . . . .2 Cartesian Form . . .3 A. . . . . . .10 The Scalar Product . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 B. .7 A. . . . . . . . . . . 415 Almost Linear Systems . . . . . . . . . . . Electromagnetic Potentials . . . . . . . . . . 409 Polar Form . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 421 Systems of Third (and Higher) Order . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 412 415 Appendix C.6 A. . . .5 A. . . . . . . . Diagonalization of a Symmetric Tensor . . . . . .2 C. . . . .Contents xiii A. .3 Linear Systems and their Classification . .9 A.1 D. . . 437 445 463 465 Answers to Problems Bibliography Index . . . . . . . . . 423 425 Appendix D. . . . . . . . . . . Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps D. . . . . . . . . . . . . Eigenvalues.2 D. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Phase Plane Analysis near Critical Points C. . . . .4 A. . .8 A. . . . . . . . . . . Curvilinear Co-ordinates . . . The Vector Product . . . . . . . . . . Conics B. . . . . . . . .2 A. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 425 Two-dimensional Maps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Divergence and Curl . . . . . Differentiation and Integration of Vectors . .3 One-dimensional Maps . . . . . . . . . . . . Integral Theorems .

xiv Statistical Mechanics Made Simple .

602 18 × 10−19 C −12 F m−1 0 = 8.013 25 × 105 Pa = 1.8 km 6378.997 924 58 × 108 m s−1 G = 6.013 25 bar Properties of Earth mass radius (polar) (equatorial) 2 (mean)[= (Re Rp )1/3 ] semi-major axis of orbit eccentricity of orbit orbital period (sidereal year) mean orbital velocity surface escape velocity (mean) rotational angular velocity xv M GM Rp Re R a e τ v ve ω = = = = = = = = = = = 5.Useful Constants and Units Physical constants speed of light gravitational constant Planck’s constant/2π mass of hydrogen atom mass of electron charge of proton permittivity of vacuum permeability of vacuum Defined standard values standard gravitational acceleration normal atmospheric pressure c = 2.9860 × 1014 m3 s−2 6356.854 19 × 10 −7 −1 µ0 = 4π × 10 H m gn = 9.054 57 × 10−34 J s mH = 1.495 98 × 108 km 0.109 38 × 10−31 kg e = 1.155 75 × 107 s 29.0 km 1.1 km 6371.18 km s−1 7.785 km s−1 11.974 × 1024 kg 3.016 722 3.806 65 m s−2 1 atm = 1.2921 × 10−5 s−1 .673 52 × 10−27 kg me = 9.673 × 10−11 N m2 kg−2 = 1.

candela and mole are not used in this book.xvi Classical Mechanics Properties of Sun and Moon mass of Sun mass of Moon semi-major axis of lunar orbit lunar orbital period (sidereal month) MS = = GMS = MM = = aM = τM = 1.3606 × 106 s SI units kilogramme (kg): mass of the international standard kilogramme kept at S`vres in France.) Subsidiary units newton 1N = joule 1J = watt 1W = coulomb 1C = 1 kg m s−2 1Nm 1 J s−1 1As pascal ton(ne) bar hertz 1 Pa 1t 1 bar 1 Hz = = = = 1 N m−2 103 kg 105 Pa 1 s−1 British and American units foot 1 ft = 0.329 5 × 105 M 1.012 300 M 3.8440 × 105 km 2. equivalently.989 × 1030 kg 3.348 × 1022 kg 0. so that the constant µ0 has the precise value 4π × 10−7 N A−2 ). (The kelvin. mF = 0 in the ground state of 133 Cs.327 12 × 1020 m3 s−2 7. each carrying a current of 1 A is 2 × 10−7 N m−1 (or. e second (s): 9 192 631 770 oscillation periods of the hyperfine transition between the levels F = 4.3048 m pound 1 lb = 0.452 592 37 kg Prefixes denoting multiples and submultiples 103 kilo (k) 10−3 milli (m) 6 mega (M) 10−6 micro (µ) 10 giga (G) 10−9 nano (n) 109 10−12 pico (p) 1012 tera (T) 10−15 femto (f) 1015 peta (P) 18 exa (E) 10−18 atto (a) 10 . metre (m): distance travelled by light in vacuum in (1/299 792 458) s. mF = 0 and F = 3. ampere (A): defined so that the force per unit length between two infinitely long parallel wires of negligible cross section 1 m apart in vacuum.

8.3. A.2 9. The figures refer to the section in which the symbol is defined.5 6. a a a a B b b c c c d E E e e e e1 . 8.4.5 10. 11.2 2. 3.1 4.1 14.5 5.3. Aα A a.4.5 6.4. F ij Fα F Fi f complex amplitude vector potential acceleration amplitude of oscillation semi-major axis of orbit equatorial radius magnetic field semi-minor axis of orbit impact parameter polar radius propagation velocity control parameters dipole moment total energy electric field base of natural logarithms (minus) electron charge eccentricity of orbit principal axes force generalized force phase-space velocity constants of the motion particle flux xvii 2.1 4.5 .7 4. B. F i .1. B. It includes symbols of frequent occurrence or special importance.2. 4.1 3.2.List of Symbols The following list is not intended to be exhaustive.7 1. B.6 13.4 2.1 e3 F .1. A.2 13.1 6.7 4. 10.7 4. 6. A. e2 . A.1.3 A.2 4.10 1.

Ixx Ixy Ii .1 7. 6.4.1 1.3 9. 8. 12.7. g g∗ H I I.2 3. A.3 1.3 3.1.4 1.3.xviii Classical Mechanics G G G g.3. 8.1 1. 7.4.2 4. 6. 8. pα p Q Q q.1.2.1. 11.1. k J.7. 8.2 3.1 10.3 2.1 2.1 A. 1.5 14.2.1 14.7 5.3 7.3.2 7.3 9.1 5.3 12. 6.2. p∗ pi .2. kαβ k L l ln M M M m. j.1 3.1 3. B.1. 8. mi N n P p.2. 6.7 9. Ii∗ Ii i i i. 10. pi . qi qi qα R R r gravitational constant moment of force generator of transformation gravitational acceleration observed gravitational acceleration Hamiltonian function action integral moment of inertia product of inertia principal moment of inertia action variables √ −1 particle index unit vectors angular momentum oscillator constant inverse square law constant Lagrangian function semi-latus rectum of orbit natural logarithm total mass Jacobian matrix invariant torus mass number of particles number of degrees of freedom total momentum momentum generalized momentum exponential rate coefficient quality factor quadrupole moment electric charge curvilinear co-ordinate generalized co-ordinate radius of Earth position of centre of mass radial co-ordinate 1.2.1 14.2 4.1 3.2.2. J ∗ k.1 3.1 1. 7. 9. 9.8 10.5 6.5 . 4.1 4.2 2.3 12.7. 8.

1. z x. 9. v i dW. 8. 3. 7. xi .1. T ∗ T. Y.1 4.1 D.1. 1. A. 9. D.7 3. x. 12.1 7. Euler angle angle variables Euler angle 1. Y x. y xn . T t U V v. 8.5. λi λi µ µ0 ξ.2. C.9 . yn α γ δ δ 0 θ Θ.1 7.4.3 2.1 6. A. 8. ξ.3 1.1. η π ρ ρ σ. 4.2. A. D. Z X.2.2. y.1 1.5 6.1 D.2.9 14.1. 7.2 D.5 2.5 3.1 A.1.5 1.7.2 2.1.1 6. 3.6 D.1 A.1.1 13.7 3.9 4.2. r ij r∗ i T.1 3. 13.3 9.3 13. θ.5 D.7 13.4 6. 7.2. A.4.List of Symbols xix r.3 1.1.2 C.4 2.2 10. δW X.3 2. θ∗ λ. dσ τ Φ φ ϕ φi ψ position vector relative position position in CM frame kinetic energy twist map time effective potential energy function potential energy velocity work done in small displacement co-ordinates of centre of mass R fixed points of maps Cartesian co-ordinates phase-space co-ordinates iterates of maps rotation number damping constant small variation Feigenbaum number oblateness permittivity of free space polar angle. Euler angle scattering angle Lyapunov exponent eigenvalues reduced mass permeability of free space linearized phase-space co-ordinates circumference/diameter ratio of circle cylindrical polar co-ordinate mass or charge density cross-section period gravitational potential electrostatic potential azimuth angle. 13. r i r. 10.5.

5 A.1. 9.3 14. Ω ω ωi ∇ a·b a∧b solid angle angular velocity angular frequency natural angular frequencies vector differential operator scalar product of a and b vector product of a and b 4.2.2.xx Classical Mechanics dΩ ω.2 A.1 A. 9.5 5.7 2. 11.3 .

It must be remembered however that. they are unquestionably valid. For this reason. and so on — have become very much a part of our everyday modes of thought. which are suggested by our observations. then the hypotheses gradually acquire the status of ‘laws of nature’. or neglected effects that may be significant. we try to modify the hypotheses to restore the agreement with observation. we can never claim for these laws a universal validity. If many such tests are made and no serious disagreement emerges. Its basic concepts — mass. Since they were first 1 . The laws of classical mechanics are no exception.Chapter 1 Introduction Classical mechanics is one of the most familiar of scientific theories. but represent an idealization of them. as they often do. they have been modified in Einstein’s theory of gravitation (‘general relativity’). On any ordinary scale. acceleration. When persistent discrepancies are found. We may only be confident that they provide a good description of that class of phenomena for which their predictions have been adequately tested. One of the earliest examples is provided by Euclid’s axioms. we tend to look for other possible explanations — for simplifying assumptions we have made that may be wrong. force. no matter how impressive the evidence may be. So we may easily regard their physical meaning as more obvious than it really is. Indeed. The theory is then tested by checking the predictions deduced from these hypotheses against experiment. a large part of this introductory chapter will be devoted to a critical examination of the fundamental concepts and principles of mechanics. When results that apparently contradict well-established laws appear. but we are not entitled to assume that they should necessarily apply on either a cosmological or a sub-microscopic scale. Every scientific theory starts from a set of hypotheses.

of universal validity. we shall take them for granted. Here. Indeed. These assumptions have been somewhat modified in quantum mechanics and relativity. Moreover. In ‘classical’ physics. and that there is no limit in principle to the accuracy with which we can measure all positions and velocities. In particular. it is a remarkably successful theory. For the description of the small-scale phenomena of atomic and nuclear physics. their range of known validity has been enormously extended. by relativity. and concentrate our attention on the more specific assumptions of classical mechanics. the tides and the motion of a gyroscope.1 Space and Time The most fundamental assumptions of physics are probably those concerned with the concepts of space and time. 1. and. Thus the fact that these theories have been confirmed actually reinforces our belief in the correctness of classical mechanics within its own vast range of validity. the conservation laws of energy. Indeed both quantum mechanics and the special and general theories of relativity are extensions of classical mechanics in the sense that they reproduce its results in appropriate limiting cases. and that there are universal standards of length and time (in the sense that observers in different places and at different times can make meaningful comparisons of their measurements). that it is meaningful to say that an event occurred at a specific point in space and a specific instant of time. even outside this range. We assume that space and time are continuous. . so far as we yet know. there is as yet no compelling evidence that we have reached the limits of their range of validity. classical mechanics has been superseded by quantum mechanics. but in two directions they have been found to be inadequate. These assumptions are common to the whole of physics. that the geometry of space is Euclidean. we assume further that there is a universal time scale (in the sense that two observers who have synchronized their clocks will always agree about the time of any event). many of the results of classical mechanics still apply. momentum and angular momentum are. This is not to say that classical mechanics has lost its value. though all are being challenged. however. which provides a coherent and satisfying account of phenomena as diverse as the planetary orbits.2 Classical Mechanics formulated by Galileo and by Newton in his Principia. and for phenomena involving speeds approaching that of light.

however. To specify positions and time. Acceleration. it is impossible in principle to decide which of them is at rest. and position in space has an absolute meaning. If we are sitting inside an aircraft. air. Thus position has a meaning only relative to the Earth. Inertial frames It is useful at this point to introduce the concept of a frame of reference. (In Einstein’s theory of general relativity. since it is experimentally possible to distinguish between motion with uniform velocity (i. to which it tends to return unless forcibly prevented from so doing. The relativity principle asserts that all unaccelerated observers are equivalent. each observer may choose a zero of the time . they must arrive at the same results. In just the same way. constant in magnitude and direction) and accelerated motion. In Newtonian mechanics. It makes no difference whether it is performed on the ground or in a smoothly travelling vehicle. at least on a small scale. an accelerated observer who performs the experiment may well get a different answer. velocity has only a relative significance. the fact that heavy bodies fall downwards was explained by supposing that each element (earth.e. the central point plays a special. to an observer in a confined region of space. distinguished role. on the other hand. water) has its own appointed sphere. This statement.Introduction 3 The relativity principle In Aristotle’s conception of the universe.. still retains an absolute meaning. tends to get as close as it can to the centre of the Universe. Given two bodies moving with constant relative velocity. even acceleration becomes a relative concept. it says nothing about accelerated observers. the effects of being accelerated and of being in a gravitational field are indistinguishable. which is of fundamental importance. in particular. The element earth. or to some other body. bodies fall downward because they are attracted towards the Earth. This is made possible by the fact that. is the principle of relativity. However. we can easily detect its acceleration. In this kind of explanation. and therefore forms a sphere about this point. but we cannot measure its velocity — though by looking out we can estimate its velocity relative to objects outside. rather than towards some fixed point in space.) If two unaccelerated observers perform the same experiment. and which moving. fire.

however. as we discuss later. and in which the Sun (or more precisely the centre of mass of the solar system) moves with uniform velocity. This is of course an idealized definition. For all practical purposes. an inertial frame may be defined to be one with respect to which any isolated body. choose some point of the body as the origin. the frames of reference used by different unaccelerated observers are completely equivalent. and take the axes to be rigidly fixed to it (though. identical with the laws expressed in terms of the co-ordinates used by an accelerated observer. The position and time of any event may then be specified with respect to this frame by the three Cartesian co-ordinates x. for example. We have not yet said how we can tell whether a given observer is unaccelerated.4 Classical Mechanics scale. We shall refer to these collectively as a frame of reference. They are not. z and the time t. in this case the . rotating) frame. and a set of three Cartesian co-ordinate axes. Indeed. A quantity which is specified by a magnitude and a direction is called a vector. z . an origin in space. The frames used by unaccelerated observers are called inertial frames. It is generally convenient to use only inertial frames. y. y. however. this frame is not quite unaccelerated). but there is no necessity to do so. z. an inertial frame is one whose orientation is fixed relative to the ‘fixed’ stars. we shall discuss in Chapter 5 the use a frame rigidly fixed to the rotating Earth. we may. y . Vectors It is often convenient to use a notation which does not refer explicitly to a particular set of co-ordinate axes. would move with uniform velocity. The laws of physics expressed in terms of our x. If we are located on a solid body. It is an essential assumption of classical mechanics that such frames exist. In view of the relativity principle. t . Instead of using Cartesian co-ordinates x. far removed from all other matter. For example. Formally. y. We need a criterion to distinguish inertial frames from the others. Sometimes it proves convenient to use a non-inertial (in particular. in which the laws of mechanics take on a more complicated form. this assumption (together with a definition of inertial frames) is the real physical content of Newton’s first law (a body acted on by no forces moves with uniform velocity in a straight line). such as the Earth. since in practice we can never get infinitely far away from other matter. z we may specify the position of a point P with respect to a given origin O by the length and direction of the line OP . t must be identical with those of someone else’s x .

y-. Throughout this book. z-axes will be denoted by of r. vectors will be denoted by boldface letters (like a). k.2 Newton’s Laws Classical mechanics describes how physical objects move. 1. to fluids too. Only in the idealized case of point particles (which do not exist in nature) does this concept have an intuitively obvious meaning. The magnitude of the vector will be denoted by the corresponding letter in ordinary italic type (a). Many other physical quantities are also vectors: examples are velocity and force. how their positions change with time. or by the use of vertical bars (|a|). in classical hydrodynamics. They are to be distinguished from scalars — like mass and energy — which are completely specified by a magnitude alone. both because of the mathematical simplicity thereby attained. When we come to deal with large extended bodies. (We shall also need to make some assumptions about the nature of the internal forces between these particles. We shall use r to denote the unit vector in the direction ˆ = r/r. however. can be specified by a position vector r(t). at time t. We shall therefore consider first only small bodies which can be effectively located at a point. so that r = xi + yj + zk. so that the position of each. each of which may be treated as a point particle. what is meant by the ‘position’ of a large object of complex shape.) We shall then find . and because the physical ideas behind the mathematical formalism are often much clearer in terms of vectors. The unit vectors along the x-. we shall make the additional assumption that any such body may be divided up into a large number of very small bodies. It is not immediately obvious.Introduction 5 position vector r of P with respect to O. if not. r i. Its basic laws may be applied to objects of any size (above the atomic level) and of any shape and internal structure. and. j. they will find a discussion which includes all the results we shall need in Appendix A. The scalar and vector products of two vectors a and b will be written a · b and ˆ a ∧ b respectively. We shall use the vector notation in formulating the basic laws of mechanics. We assume here that readers are familiar with the ideas of vector algebra. in Chapter 8.

If we denote the force on the ith body due to the jth body by F ij . By saying that the system is isolated.1) where F i is the total force acting on the body. such as a planet.2) is a vector sum. and defer to the following section a discussion of the physical significance of the concepts involved. its mass mi . this equation incorporates the ‘parallelogram law’ of composition of forces. then N F i = F i1 + F i2 + · · · + F iN = F ij . we may often legitimately treat it as a point particle located at the centre of mass of the body. . we mean that all other bodies are sufficiently remote to have a negligible influence on it. (1. N . For example ˙ r≡ dr . since there is no force on the ith body due to itself.2) where of course F ii = 0. 2. where the dots denote differentiation with respect to the time t. which we label by an index i = 1. Its momentum pi is defined to be mass × velocity: pi = m i v i . This force is composed of a sum of forces due to each of the other bodies in the system. Note that since the sum on the right side of (1.6 Classical Mechanics that if we are interested in the overall motion of even a very large object. The equation of motion. Its velocity and acceleration are ˙ v i (t) = r i (t). dt Each body is characterized by a scalar constant. j=1 (1. . ˙ ¨ ai (t) = v i (t) = r i (t). Each of the N bodies is assumed to be small enough to be treated as a point particle. . . The position of the ith body with respect to a given inertial frame will be denoted by r i (t). Let us consider an isolated system comprising N bodies. The laws themselves prescribe the meaning of the ‘position’ of an extended body. . We shall begin by simply stating Newton’s laws. particularly those of mass and force. which specifies how the body will move is Newton’s second law (mass × acceleration = force): ˙ pi = mi ai = F i .

no such forces are known. in general.1) we can predict the future motion of the bodies. It would be perfectly possible to include also. (1. and the relative velocity v ij = v i − v j . we can solve these equations (analytically or numerically) to find their positions at a later time. F ij is a function of the positions and velocities (and internal structure) of the ith and jth bodies.1). It is now recognized (see Chapters 13. three-body forces. the force can in fact depend only on the relative position rij = r i − rj (see Fig.1 If the forces are known. but is unaffected by the presence of the other bodies.) Because of the relativity principle. . However. and their inclusion would be an inessential complication. false. then from (1. we shall assume that our solution can be effected. 14) that this assumption is. (It can be argued that this is an unnecessarily restrictive assumption. for the time being. 1.3) Moreover. which asserts that ‘action’ and ‘reaction’ are equal and opposite. leading to a loss of predictability.Introduction 7 The two-body forces F ij must satisfy Newton’s third law. 1. which depend on the positions and velocities of three particles simultaneously. There is here an implicit assumption of perfect knowledge and infinite precision of calculation. as functions of the positions and velocities. say. within the realm of validity of classical mechanics. F ji = −F ij . Given their initial positions and velocities. ^ r ij ri rij rj Fig. However.

Note the enormous difference in the orders of magnitude of the constants G and 1/4π 0 when expressed in SI units. 4π 0 rij 0 (1. and have the form ˆ F ij = rij f (rij ). proportional in magnitude to the product of their masses. (1. They appear significant to us only because we happen to live close to a body of very large mass. there is a force of this type between every pair of bodies.5) where G is Newton’s gravitational constant. and therefore the electrostatic force may be repulsive or attractive according to the relative sign of qi and qj . where qi and qj are the electric charges. directed inwards.987 55 × 109 N m2 C−2 . 2 rij (1. It is given by (1. r ij is the unit vector in the direction of r ij and f (rij ) is a scalar function of the relative distance rij . Since the masses are always positive. there is an electrostatic Coulomb force given by f (rij ) = qi qj 2 .4) ˆ where. it is an attractive force. if the bodies are electrically charged. If f (rij ) is positive the force F ij is a repulsive force directed outwards along the line joining the bodies. as usual. which depend only on the relative positions of the two bodies. whose value is G = 6. According to Newton’s law of universal gravitation. conservative forces.854 19 × 10−12 F m−1 . and 0 = 8. if f (rij ) is negative. = 8.6) is another constant. The most important class of forces consists of the central. This serves to illustrate the fact that gravitational forces are really exceptionally weak. In addition.4) with f (rij ) = − Gmi mj . this force is always attractive. because positive .673 × 10−11 N m2 kg−2 .8 Classical Mechanics All that then remains is to specify the precise laws by which the twobody forces are to be determined. Note that the analogue of Newton’s constant G is 1/4π 0 Electric charges may be of either sign. Correspondingly large charges never appear.

namely the energy of the system. we may regard central. if there is a distribution of electric charge within each body. leaving macroscopic bodies with a net charge close to zero. More serious is the existence of electromagnetic forces. which are of great importance even in the realm of classical physics. for there is still an apparent contradiction between this classical electromagnetic theory . as we shall see in Chapter 2. but after an interval of time sufficient for a light signal to propagate from one to the other. and does not even satisfy Newton’s third law (1. i. conservative forces between their constituent parts can evidently give rise to forces which are still conservative (i. this does not completely remove the difficulty. for example. in a less obvious way.. we need quantum mechanics. They can also give rise. conservative forces as the norm. By supposing that the field itself can carry energy and momentum. we can reinstate the conservation laws. The force between two charges in relative motion is neither central nor conservative. The effect of a disturbance of one charge is not felt immediately by the other. In a sense. Then we may suppose that one charge does not act directly on the other. which are independent of velocity. but on the field in its immediate vicinity. This particular difficulty may be resolved by introducing the concept of the electromagnetic field. However. Frictional forces have the effect of transferring some of this energy from the large-scale motion of the bodies to small-scale movements in their interior. This is a consequence of the finite velocity of propagation of electromagnetic waves. The chief distinguishing feature of conservative forces is the existence of a quantity which is conserved.6). but on its past history.e.. to non-conservative. therefore. velocity-dependent forces.e. and so on. This can happen. the concepts of classical mechanics cannot be applied to the really small-scale structure of matter. however. central. The force on one charge depends not only on the instantaneous position of the other. and satisfy some further conditions that need not worry us here — see §3. but which cannot readily be accommodated in the framework of classical mechanics. and therefore appear non-conservative on a large scale.. In bodies with structure. It would be wrong to conclude.Introduction 9 and negative charges largely cancel out.3). whose total value never changes.e. For that. that we can explain everything in terms of them.1 and §A. but no longer central (i. Many resistive and frictional forces can be understood as macroscopic effects of forces which are really conservative on a small scale. In the first place. which are among the most important consequences of Newton’s laws. this in turn affects the field further out. not directed along the line joining the bodies).

which appears in (1. from which he deduced that in a vacuum all bodies would fall equally fast) rather than an a priori assumption. To verify the law. which appears in Newton’s second law. to show that these are measurable quantities.10 Classical Mechanics and the principle of relativity discussed in §1. Let us consider first the measurement of mass. It is important to realize that we are discussing here the inertial mass. Classical electromagnetic theory and classical mechanics can be incorporated into a single self-consistent theory. we must be able to measure each kind of mass separately. therefore. The two are of course proportional. but it may clarify the status of these concepts to reformulate the laws in such a way as to isolate their definitional element. for example. Thus the operational definitions of mass and force — the prescriptions of how they may be measured — which are required to make the laws physically significant. we have to specify a way of comparing the masses of two given bodies. Since the units of mass are arbitrary. at least in principle. because any experiment designed to measure these quantities must necessarily involve Newton’s laws themselves in its interpretation. the use of a balance.e. 1..1) and not the gravitational mass.5). but also the new concepts of mass and force. are actually contained in the laws themselves. be measured. which can be measured by measuring distances and times. This arises from the fact that if the speed of light is constant with respect to one inertial frame — as it should be according to electromagnetic theory — then the usual rules for combining velocities would lead to the conclusion that it is not constant with respect to a relatively moving frame. To give the laws a physical meaning we have. Now. This is not quite as trivial as it might seem.1. . (1. This is by no means an unusual or logically objectionable situation. ‘special’ relativity).3 The Concepts of Mass and Force It is an important general principle of physics (though not universally applied!) that no quantity should be introduced into the theory which cannot. but only by ignoring the relativity principle and sticking to one ‘preferred’ inertial frame. This paradox can only be resolved by the introduction of Einstein’s theory of relativity (i. Newton’s laws involve not only the concepts of velocity and acceleration. This rules out. in contradiction with the statement that all inertial frames are equivalent. but this equivalence principle is a physical law derived from experimental observation (in particular from Galileo’s observations of falling bodies.

1) and (1. (1. for two given bodies. the constants kij satisfy k31 = k32 k21 . a constant independent of their positions. If we allow two small bodies to collide. Note that for consistency. and compare their mutually induced accelerations. (Such collisions will be discussed in detail in Chapters 2 and 7.7). If we choose the first body to be a standard body. However there is one case in which we do know this. we must have k12 = 1/k21 . analogous to the law of composition of forces. (1. where the scalar k21 is.2). and inversely proportional to the masses. If we isolate the two bodies from all other matter. because of Newton’s third law. then we may define the mass of the second to be k21 in units of this standard mass (here m2 = k21 kg). Clearly. we need one which deals with systems containing more than two bodies. we can compare the inertial masses of two bodies by subjecting them to equal forces and comparing their accelerations.3). we obtain consistent results: For any three bodies. and we may treat them approximately as an isolated system. This may be stated as follows: .) The mass ratio can then be determined from measurements of their velocities before and after the collision.7) or its immediate consequence. the law of conservation of momentum. then according to (1. we may adopt as a fundamental axiom the following: In an isolated two-body system.Introduction 11 which compares gravitational masses.8) If we wish to separate the definition of mass from the physical content of equation (1. and conventionally assign it unit mass (say m1 = 1 kg). To complete the list of fundamental axioms.7) so that the accelerations are oppositely directed. velocities and internal states. the accelerations always satisfy the relation a1 = −k21 a2 . m1 v 1 + m2 v 2 = constant. by using (1. but this does not help unless we have some way of knowing that the forces are equal. We must also assume of course that if we compare the masses of three bodies in this way. It then follows that for any two bodies. k32 is the mass ratio: k32 = m3 /m2 . (1. then during the collision the effects of more remote bodies are generally negligible in comparison with their effect on each other. m1 a1 = −m2 a2 .

Now. m2 a2 = F 21 + F 23 . Let us take a three-body system. as stated in the previous section. finally. (1. If we add these equations. by defining it through Newton’s second law. (1.7). In that case. and is unaffected by the presence of other bodies. velocities and internal structure.3). they are essentially determined by a single function.1).12 Classical Mechanics The acceleration induced in one body by another is some definite function of their positions.9) which is the generalization of (1. which appear in a rather unfamiliar form. It can of course be introduced. Since the mutually induced accelerations of two given bodies are always proportional. and it is useful to introduce the more symmetric concept of force. it is remarkable that we have been able to reformulate the basic laws without mentioning this concept. the equations of motion for the three bodies are m1 a1 = F 12 + F 13 . In a many-body system. then.10) (1. in view of (1. the terms on the right cancel in pairs. returning to the notation of the previous section. the acceleration of any given body is equal to the sum of the accelerations induced in it by each of the other bodies individually. we get m1 a1 = −(m2 + m3 )a2 . In view of the apparently fundamental role played by the concept of force in Newtonian mechanics.7). their accelerations must be equal: a2 = a3 .3). and we are left with m1 a1 + m2 a2 + m3 a3 = 0. (1. . The utility of this definition arises from the fact that forces satisfy Newton’s third law. m3 a3 = F 31 + F 32 . It is interesting to note. These laws. if we suppose that the force between the second and third is such that they are rigidly bound together to form a composite body. are actually completely equivalent to Newton’s laws. (1. while accelerations satisfy only the more complicated law. Then. that one consequence of our basic laws is the additive nature of mass. which shows that the mass of the composite body is just m23 = m2 + m3 . for which this becomes obvious.

we are really concerned with the satellite alone. In Chapter 6. we consider. If. we have to determine the forces acting on each body.4 External Forces To find the motion of the various bodies in any dynamical system. we are concerned with the motions of a small body. we shall consider the motion of a particle under a known external force. and in that case the two problems can be separated. velocity and time. In the latter problem. in terms of which others are to be defined. we can solve separately the problem of its motion. The Earth enters simply as a known external influence. given the positions and velocities at any one instant of time. From this point of view. we return to the more complex type of problem in which the system of immediate interest cannot be taken to be merely a single particle. taking the force as known. as functions of position. given the forces acting. these two problems are inextricably bound up with each other. then we can often neglect its effect on other bodies. First. We have chosen to regard position and time (relative to some frame of reference) as basic. which we suppose to be known in advance. Typically. or group of small bodies. In a general case. and to represent the effect of everything outside this by external forces.5 Summary To some extent. Second. Since the motion of the Earth is already known. therefore. 1. and must be solved simultaneously. it is useful to concentrate our attention on a small part of a dynamical system. Later. The first law contains the definition of an inertial . in Chapter 7. we have to solve two closely interrelated problems. In many cases. For example. Then. we can clearly ignore its effect on the Earth. we have to compute the new positions and velocities after a short interval of time has elapsed. in discussing the motion of an artificial satellite.Introduction 13 1. is a matter of choice. the complementary problem of determining the force from a knowledge of the positions of other bodies. This is the kind of problem with which we shall be mainly concerned in the next few chapters. the selection of a group of basic concepts. for the gravitational and electrostatic cases. we can calculate the force on the satellite as a function of its position and (if atmospheric resistance is included) its velocity. Newton’s laws must be regarded as containing definitions in addition to physical laws. however.

Problems Note. (Here v is a constant.7). ω.4) hold in the original frame. are regarded as forming a composite body of mass 2m located at the mid-point r = 1 (r2 +r3 ).) How does a relative position vector r ij transform? How do momenta and forces transform? Show explicitly that if equations (1. then they also hold in the new one. with what velocity would they then move? 2. starred problems are somewhat harder. Here and in later chapters. whose motion is described by (1. (Proton charge = 1.6 × 10−19 C. Find the ratio of their masses.) 3. what is the correct definition of the position of the composite (2 + 3) that will make (1.9).14 Classical Mechanics frame. A body of mass 50 kg is suspended by two light. where each position vector r i is replaced by r i = r i − vt. What is the force on the composite body due to particle 1? Show that the equations agree with (1.7) still hold? 4. each of mass m. provide the equations from which we can determine the motion of any dynamical system. Consider a system of three particles.1) to (1.) 5. while the second and third laws contain definitions of mass and force. supplemented by the laws of force. Consider a transformation to a relatively uniformly moving frame of reference. An object A moving with velocity v collides with a stationary object B. These laws. A is moving with velocity 2 v and B with velocity 3 2 v. 1. 1 After the collision. When the masses are unequal. such as the law of universal gravitation. instead of bouncing apart. inextensible cables of . The two components of a double star are observed to move in circles of radii r1 and r2 . If particles 2 and 3.7 × 10−27 kg. proton mass = 1. Find the distance r between two protons at which the electrostatic repulsion between them will equal the gravitational attraction of the Earth on one of them. 6. What is the ratio of their masses? (Hint: Write down their accelerations in terms of the angular velocity of rotation. the relative velocity of the two frames. even though not rigidly bound together. If. together with the physical assertion that such frames exist. find the equations describing the motion 2 of the two-body system comprising particle 1 and the composite body (2+3). the two bodies stuck together after the collision.

Take g = 10 m s−2 . The wind is from the east at a speed of 30 m s−1 .5 m directly behind the midpoint of the line joining the other two. On what compass heading should the pilot fly? How long will the flight take? If the wind speed increases to 50 m s−1 . for a spherical object. with feet 0.) *Discuss the possibility of using force rather than mass as the basic quantity. in Chapter 6. (This latter assumption will be justified. lengths 15 m and 20 m from rigid supports placed 25 m apart on the same level. Find the height of the tripod. along the direction of the leg) and that the legs themselves have negligible weight. by modelling the mountain as a sphere of radius 500 m and density 2. (Take g = 10 m s−2 . How should one then define and measure the mass of a body? The first estimate of Newton’s constant was made by the astronomer Nevil Maskelyne in 1774 by measuring the angle between the directions of the apparent plumb-line vertical on opposite sides of the Scottish mountain Schiehallion (height 1081 m. This and the following two problems are applications of vector addition. (Hint: Choose a convenient origin and axes and write down the lengths of the legs in terms of the position vector of the top. 8.7 × 103 kg m−3 . 10. and in what direction? *The two front legs of a tripod are each 1.Introduction 15 7.5 m long. and its foot is 1. Its airspeed is 800 km h−1 .. how far from its destination will the aircraft be at its expected arrival time. assuming they are purely compressional (i. The third leg is 1. 9. chosen for its regular conical shape). (Note that by convention ‘light’ means ‘of negligible mass’. but no allowance is made for this change.8 m apart. taking for example a standard weight (at a given latitude) as the unit of force.e. and assuming that its gravitational effect is the same as though the total mass were concentrated at its centre. Find the tensions in the cables. and the wind backs to the north-east.4 m long.) . find the forces in the legs.) Given that the tripod carries a weight of mass 2 kg.) *An aircraft is to fly to a destination 800 km due north of its starting point. Find a rough estimate of the angle through which a plumb line is deviated by the gravitational attraction of the mountain. and the vectors representing the positions of its three feet relative to the top.

16 Classical Mechanics .

a function of x and x whose value is constant in time. Integrating with respect to time. (2. under a force which is given as a function of its position. Then the equation of motion (1. we find for its rate of change ˙ T = mx¨ = F (x)x.2) Differentiating. we can always find a ‘first integral’.1). Conservation of Energy We consider first a particle moving along a line.1) Since this equation is of second order in the time derivatives. ˙x ˙ using (2. Thus the solution will contain two arbitrary constants that may be fixed by specifying the initial values of x and x. F (x).4) . we find T = F (x)x dt = ˙ 17 (2.1) is m¨ = F (x).3) F (x) dx. 1 ˙ T = 2 mx2 . ˙ When the force depends only on x. (2. 2. Let us consider the ˙ kinetic energy.1 Conservative Forces. we shall have to integrate twice to find x as a function of t.Chapter 2 Linear Motion In this chapter we discuss the motion of a body which is free to move only in one dimension. x (2. The problems discussed are chosen to illustrate the concepts and techniques which will be of use in the more general case of three-dimensional motion.

the motion is confined to the region where V (x) ≤ E. Note that (2. Since the kinetic energy is obviously positive. An example may help to explain this. A great deal of information about the motion can be obtained from this conservation law.4).5) T + V = E = constant.6) is the law of conservation of energy. Then (2. There is a corresponding arbitrariness up to an additive constant in the total energy E. corresponding to the arbitrary additive constant of integration in (2. (We choose a rod rather than a string so that we may consider motion above the point of support. By ‘light’ we mean ‘of negligible mass’. If the initial position and velocity are given. x0 (2. dx (2. Example: The simple pendulum A simple pendulum comprises a bob of mass m supported by a light rigid rod of length l.18 Classical Mechanics If we define the potential energy. is called a conservative force.4) in the form F (x ) dx . What kinds of motion are possible for different values of v? . depending only on x.6) in the form 1 ˙2 2 mx = E − V (x) (2. x V (x) = − we can write (2. even without integrating again to find x explicitly as a function of t.8) gives the velocity of the particle (except for sign) when it is at any given position x. (2.6) Here x0 is an arbitrary constant.) The bob starts with velocity v from the equilibrium position.7) The equation (2. A force of this type.5) can be inverted to give the force in terms of the potential energy: F (x) = − dV ≡ −V (x). we can calculate the value of the constant E.

In this case. i. These are the points where the kinetic energy vanishes. The motion is an oscillation of amplitude θ0 . Since we have chosen the arbitrary constant in V so that V (0) = 0. 1 − cos θ0 = v 2 /2gl.9) It is plotted in Fig. the potential energy function is V = mgl[1 − cos(x/l)] = mgl(1 − cos θ). (Note that the points θ = π and θ = −π may be identified. if the bob is pushed so hard that E > 2mgl (E(2) in the figure).1.1 π θ Initially θ = 0.Linear Motion 19 The distance moved by the bob is x = lθ. 2. where θ is the angular displacement from the downward vertical. 2. namely 2 1 2 mv 1 = E − 2mgl = 2 mv 2 − 2mgl. and the bob is moving with velocity v. (2. the motion is a continuous rotation rather than an oscillation. the total energy is E = 1 mv 2 . then the kinetic energy will never vanish.e. When the bob reaches the upward vertical. so that the pendulum bob is instantaneously at rest.) V E(2) E(1) 1 −mv′ 2 2 −π −θ 0 θ0 Fig. . Corresponding to the restoring force F = −mg sin θ = −mg sin(x/l). On the other hand. the motion will be 2 confined between the two angles ±θ0 where V (θ0 ) = E. it still has positive energy. Now if E < 2mgl (E(1) in the figure).

Without loss of generality. F (x) = −kx. (2. approximately. with decreasing speed as it approaches x = 0 and then increasing speed. namely x = ±a.2). On the other hand. 2. that the potential energy curve is horizontal at the position of the particle. (2. Thus near x = 0 we can write.11) The motion is an oscillation between these two points.20 Classical Mechanics 2.2(a)). where the primes denote differentiation with respect to x. 2. If E < 0 the particle may approach to some minimum distance. Since we have chosen V (0) = 0. In this case. there are two points where V (x) = E. 1 V (x) = 2 kx2 .7). the curve is an inverted parabola (see Fig. k = V (0). and choose the arbitrary constant in V so that V (0) = 0.) Because motion near almost any point of equilibrium is described approximately by this potential energy function. the linear term is absent also. by (2. we may choose the equilibrium point to be the origin. 2. the constant term is absent. The potential energy curve here is a parabola (see Fig. (2.2(b)). if k < 0. where it comes momentarily to rest before reversing direction (E(2) in figure). x = 0.12) . If we are interested only in small displacements.2 Motion near Equilibrium.10) (We assume for simplicity that V (0) does not also vanish. it has enough energy to surmount the barrier and will never come to rest: it will continue moving in the same direction for ever. it is remarkably ubiquitous. Let us now consider the motion of a particle near a position of equilibrium.7). For a conservative force this means. we may expand V (x) in a Maclaurin–Taylor series. Thus for k > 0 and any energy E > 0 (Fig. the Harmonic Oscillator A particle can be in equilibrium only if the total force acting on it is zero. 1 V (x) = V (0) + xV (0) + 2 x2 V (0) + · · · . two kinds of motion are possible. a= 2E/k. But if E > 0 (E(1) in figure). The force corresponding to the potential energy function (2. and since the equilibrium condition is V (0) = 0. by (2.10) is. It will therefore be useful to analyze it in some detail. it plays as important a role in quantum mechanics as in classical mechanics.

2. (2. m¨ + kx = a1 (m¨1 + kx1 ) + a2 (m¨2 + kx2 ) = 0.Linear Motion 21 V V E(1) x E(2) E −a (a) a x (b) Fig. according as k > 0 or k < 0. Such equations have the important property that their solutions satisfy the superposition principle: if x1 (t) and x2 (t) are solutions.13) This equation is very easy to solve.14) However. it will be useful to discuss an alternative method of solution that can be adapted later to other examples. x (2. since we shall encounter a number of similar equations later. where a1 and a2 are constants. that is. proportional to displacement from the point of equilibrium. Solution of the harmonic oscillator equation Equation (2.15) . We could proceed directly from the energy conservation equation in the form (2. for. then so is any linear combination x(t) = a1 x1 (t) + a2 x2 (t).2 It is an attractive or repulsive force. clearly. one involving only linear terms in x and its derivatives.13) is a linear differential equation.8) and integrate again to obtain k 2E − x2 m m −1/2 dx = dt. x x x (2. The equation of motion may be written m¨ + kx = 0.

19) is x = a cos(ωt − θ). (2. Thus the equilibrium is unstable. and the general solution is therefore x = c cos ωt + d sin ωt. 2 (2. Thus the general solution is 1 x = 2 Aept + 1 Be−pt . (2. if x1 and x2 are linearly independent solutions (that is. and the general solution must therefore contain just two arbitrary constants of integration. We now turn to the case where k > 0 and V has a minimum at x = 0. a small displacement will in general lead to an exponential increase of x with time. it is a matter of con2 1 1 vention whether we call the arbitrary constants A and B or 2 A and 2 B. unless one is simply a constant multiple of the other).15) is actually the general solution.13) is of second order. For.13) becomes x + ω 2 x = 0.17) (We introduce the factor of 1 for later convenience. Then the potential energy function (2. then we easily find c = x0 .10) is that of a simple harmonic oscillator. (2. which continues until the approximation involved in (2. as we should expect when V has a maximum.13) can be written x − p2 x = 0.20) d = v0 /ω. since (2.22 Classical Mechanics Moreover. An alternative form of (2. So to find the general solution.19) The arbitrary constants c and d are to be determined by the initial conditions. so that V (x) has a maximum at x = 0. The equation of motion (2. . we could obtain its solution by integrating twice. then (2. If at t = 0 the particle is at x0 with velocity v0 .18) It is again very easy to check that the functions x = cos ωt and x = sin ωt are solutions. Then (2.16) It is easy to verify that this equation is satisfied by the functions x = ept and x = e−pt . Let us consider first the case where k < 0. (2. ¨ ω= k/m. all we have to do is to find any two independent solutions x1 (t) and x2 (t). ¨ p= −k/m.) Clearly.10) ceases to be valid.

(2. the period or frequency of small oscillations may always be found from the second derivative of the potential energy function at the equilibrium position. of period τ given by τ = 2π/ω.3 Notice that this discussion applies to the motion of a particle near a stable equilibrium point of any potential energy function. What is the period of small oscillations? .21) (See Fig. In particular. and defines the limits between which the particle oscillates. For sufficiently small displacements. It is identical to the constant introduced in (2. x = ±a. namely f= ω 1 = . fixed at x = ±a. The constant a is called the amplitude. Example: Charged particle between two fixed charges A particle of charge q is constrained to move along a line between two other equal charges q.) The frequency f is the number of oscillations per unit time.3. d = a sin θ. The motion is a periodic oscillation. τ 2π (2. 2.Linear Motion 23 where the constants a. 2. d by c = a cos θ.22) x a τ t −a Fig. θ are related to c.11). any system of this kind behaves like a simple harmonic oscillator.

in discussing periodic phenomena.16) and (2. to use complex numbers.23) Of course. of the previous section together. the force (in the region |x| < a) is F = q2 q2 − . if we use the polar form of a complex number. and we easily find q 2 a a2 + 3x2 q2 .19). is x = 0. p becomes purely imaginary.20). and τ = (2π/q) π 0 a3 m. x must be a real number. and use the relation eiωt = cos ωt + i sin ωt. B = c + id. k > 0 and k < 0. 2 4π 0 (a + x) 4π 0 (a − x)2 1 1 + a+x a−x q2 4π 0 2a a2 − x2 corresponding to the potential energy function V = q2 4π 0 = . so that A and B must be complex conjugates. then the solution in both cases is given by (2. If we write A = c − id. we obtain the solution in the form (2. In particular. A = ae−iθ . If we allow p to be complex.17) is x = 1 Aeiωt + 1 Be−iωt . p = iω. B = aeiθ .17). When k > 0. 2 2 (2. where V = 0. k = V (0) = 2. we recover the solution (2. the position of equilibrium. this allows us to treat both cases. and the solution (2. = π 0 (a2 − x2 )3 x=0 π 0 a3 √ Hence.3 Complex Representation It is often very convenient. ω 2 = q 2 /π 0 a3 m. Similarly. . Clearly.24 Classical Mechanics Here.

m¨ + kz = (m¨ + kx) + i(m¨ + ky) = 0.4 The Law of Conservation of Energy This law was originally derived from Newton’s laws for the case where the force is a function only of x. z = x + iy = Aeiωt . 2. The real part of the solution. we see that z moves in a circle around the origin with angular velocity ω (see Fig. This method of obtaining solutions will be useful later. . whose absolute value (the real amplitude a) is the radius of the circle. ω is usually called the y d c θ a z x Fig. and whose phase θ defines the initial direction of the vector from the origin to z. however. x = Re(z) and y = Im(z).4). a much wider application. z x y then its real and imaginary parts.13).4 angular frequency. may be regarded as the projection of this circular motion on the real axis. must separately each satisfy the equation. If we plot the complex solution.Linear Motion 25 It is also useful to note that if z = x + iy is a complex solution of (2. For this reason. 2. The constant A is a complex amplitude. It has. in the xy-plane. x. 2.

this energy is gradually distributed among the surrounding molecules. there is usually ˙ some loss of mechanical (kinetic or potential) energy to heat or other forms. For example. In each collision. the rate of change of the kinetic energy T is ˙ given by (2.) The work is therefore a measure of the amount of energy converted to kinetic energy from other forms. energy is conserved. chemical. Thus the increase in kinetic energy in a time ˙ interval dt. This increased energy appears macroscopically as heat. as we shall see later in Chapter 12.3): T = F x. as in an internal combustion engine.26 Classical Mechanics By introducing additional forms of energy (heat. we see that what happens is that the particle makes a series of collisions with the molecules of the medium. to the point where it is now recognized as one of the most fundamental of all physical laws. if we look at the situation on a sub-microscopic scale. and to increase the average energy of the molecules in the medium. Correspondingly. where dW = F dx (2. is dT = dW. Many non-conservative (or dissipative) forces may be regarded as macroscopic effects of forces which are really conservative on a small scale. there will be dissipative forces acting on the system. and results in a rise in the temperature of the medium. electromagnetic and so on). (Such collisions will be discussed in detail in Chapter 7. and of the laws of conservation of momentum and angular momentum. it experiences a force which is velocity-dependent. In a real mechanical system.) By means of further collisions. during which the particle moves a distance dx. and some of the kinetic energy of the incoming particle is transferred to the molecules with which it collides.25) (2.24) is called the work done by the force F in the infinitesimal displacement dx. (Thus for a conservative force. The net result is to retard the incoming particle. the potential energy V (x) is equal to minus the work done by the force in the displacement from the fixed point x0 to x. (Of course. when a particle penetrates a retarding medium.) . and the rate P of doing work (the power ) is defined as F x. However. and therefore non-conservative. is in fact closely related to the relativity principle. such as the atmosphere. The existence of such a law. For an arbitrary force F . it is also possible to convert heat to mechanical energy. it has been extended far beyond the field of mechanics.

energy. we obtain for p the equation mp2 + λp + k = 0.26).27) Note that ω0 is the frequency of the undamped oscillator. x ˙ (2.18). we may treat ˙ ˙ both x and x as small quantities. rather than losing.2 that a particle near a position of stable equilibrium under a conservative force may always be treated approximately as a simple harmonic oscillator.26) Equations of this form turn up in many branches of physics. whose roots are p = −γ ± where γ= λ . we must include in the equation of motion a force depending on the velocity. ˙ Thus we are led to consider the damped harmonic oscillator for which F = −kx − λx. resistance R and capacitance C in series are described by the equation L¨ + Rq + q ˙ 1 q = 0.5 The Damped Oscillator We saw in §2. as in (2. the oscillations of an electrical circuit containing an inductance L. m (2. xx and x2 in comparison. The equation (2. If λ were negative. For example. So we shall assume that λ is positive. Substituting in (2.Linear Motion 27 2. The equation of motion now becomes m¨ + λx + kx = 0. ˙ where λ is another constant. (2. ˙ ˙ the particle would therefore be gaining. 2m and ω0 = k .26) may be solved as before by looking for solutions of the form x = ept .28) 2 γ 2 − ω0 . . C in which the variable q represents the charge on one plate of the condenser. So long as we are concerned only with small displacements from the equilibrium position. and neglect x2 . The rate at which work is done by the force −λx is −λx2 . If there is energy loss.

2 γ± = γ ± 2 γ 2 − ω0 . of the oscillator. Small damping Now let us consider the case where λ is small.29) where A and B are arbitrary constants. The general solution is then 1 x = 2 Ae−γ+ t + 1 Be−γ− t . B = aeiθ . or simply ‘Q’. (See Fig. (2. is 1/γ = 2m/λ. The time in which the amplitude is reduced by a factor 1/e.31) From the last form of (2. Then the two roots for p are complex conjugates. It is often convenient to introduce the quality factor. where A = ae−iθ . (2. and angular frequency ω. the dominant term is that containing in the exponent the smaller coefficient. so that γ < ω0 . p = −γ ± iω. γ− . (2. For large times. ω= 2 ω0 − γ 2 .32) Q= λ 2γ .) Note that ω is always less than the frequency ω0 of the undamped oscillator. defined as the dimensionless number ω0 mω0 = . then both roots for p are real and negative: p = −γ± .30) The general solution may be written in the alternative forms x = 1 Aeiωt−γt + 1 Be−iωt−γt 2 2 = Re(Aeiωt−γt ) = ae−γt cos(ωt − θ).28 Classical Mechanics Large damping If λ is so large that γ > ω0 .31) we see that this solution represents an oscillation with exponentially decreasing amplitude ae−γt .5. called the relaxation time of the oscillator. (2. Thus the characteristic time in which the displacement x is reduced by a factor 1/e is of order 1/γ− . Hence the displacement tends exponentially to zero. 2.

in a measuring instrument. 2. We need to find a second independent solution in this case. in which ω = 0 and the two roots for p coincide. so that the response time 1/γ− increases (see Fig. Critical damping The limiting case. is the case of critical damping.6). the characteristic time is 1/γ− . . that is for critical damping. Thus the general solution is x = (a + bt)e−γt .31) involves only one arbitrary constant. but too much damping would lead to a very slow response.29) or (2. or approximately e−π/Q . For example. the characteristic time of response is the relaxation time 1/γ. Then the solution (2. When the damping is less than critical (γ < ω0 ).Linear Motion 29 x t Fig. Thus the shortest possible response time is obtained by choosing γ = ω0 . as we noted above. In a single oscillation period. A + B. In fact. γ = ω0 . γ− decreases.33) Critical damping is often the ideal.5 If the damping is small then Q is large. which of course decreases as γ is increased.26) in this special case is also satisfied by the function te−pt . and cannot be the general solution. we want to damp out the oscillations of the pointer about its correct position as quickly as possible. 2. it is easy to verify by direct substitution that the equation (2. The number of periods in a relaxation time is roughly Q/π. (2. Let us assume that k is fixed and the amount of damping varied. when γ > ω0 . It is not hard to verify that as γ increases. the amplitude is reduced by the factor e−2πγ/ω . However.

.34) Now. then. Hence we only need to find one particular solution of this equation. x1 (t) + x0 (t) will be another solution of (2.) Let us consider first the case where the applied force is periodic in time. It is convenient to write this in the form F (t) = Re(F1 eiω1 t ). with the simple form F (t) = F1 cos ω1 t. However.6 Oscillator under Simple Periodic Force In an isolated system the forces are functions of position and velocity.35) where F1 and ω1 are real constants. as one can easily check by direct substitution. but not explicitly of the time. (This will be the general solution because it contains two arbitrary constants. F (t). Its general solution is then obtained by adding to this particular solution the general solution of the homogeneous equation (2. if x1 (t) is any solution of this equation. and x0 (t) is a solution of the corresponding homogeneous equation (2.30 Classical Mechanics γ± γ+ γ ω0 Fig.6 γ− γ 2. (2. we are often interested in the response of an oscillatory system to an applied external force. which is given as a function of the time.26) for the unforced oscillator. x ˙ (2. Then we have to deal with the equation m¨ + λx + kx = F (t).34). 2.26).

the corresponding particular solution of our original equation (2.39) If F1 > 0. (2.40) . 2 2 (ω0 − ω1 )a1 = (F1 /m) cos θ1 . m¨ + λz + kz = F1 eiω1 t . z = A1 eiω1 t = a1 ei(ω1 t−θ1 ) .37) Dividing by me−iθ1 and rearranging the terms gives 2 2 (ω0 + 2iγω1 − ω1 )a1 = F1 iθ1 e .35). We have found a particular solution of (2.36) Then the real part x of this solution will be a solution of the equation (2.36) which is periodic in time with the same period as the applied force. is simply x = a1 cos(ω1 t − θ1 ). The amplitude is found by squaring these equations and adding. where A1 = a1 e−iθ1 is a complex constant. Hence.34) with the force (2. (2. m where γ and ω0 are defined as before by (2. Substituting in (2. z ˙ (2. the correct choice between the two solutions for θ1 differing by π is the one lying in the range 0 < θ1 < π.38) Dividing one equation by the other yields the phase: tan θ1 = 2γω1 2 2. Its real part.Linear Motion 31 and to solve first the equation with a complex force. (2. 2γω1 a1 = (F1 /m) sin θ1 .36). ω0 − ω1 (2. we obtain an equation for A1 : 2 (−mω1 + iλω1 + k)A1 = F1 . equating real and imaginary parts.36). to give a1 = F1 /m 2 2 2 (ω0 − ω1 )2 + 4γ 2 ω1 . We now look for a particular solution of (2.34).28).

. on the other hand. the dependence of the amplitude a1 on the forcing frequency ω1 is of the form illustrated in Fig. of course. the maximum amplitude actually occurs for a frequency slightly lower than ω0 . that is. The width of the resonance. alone. the amplitude is a1 = F1 F1 = . Thus. If we fix γ and the forcing frequency ω1 . is obtained by adding to this particular solution the general solution of the corresponding homogeneous equation. If. 2mγω1 λω1 (2. if γ is small. we obtain x = a1 cos(ω1 t − θ1 ) + ae−γt cos(ωt − θ). that is the range of frequencies over which the amplitude is large.29) or (2. the displacement x will be given by the first term of (2. In the case where the damping is less than critical (γ < ω0 ).38) and (2. After a long time. 2. by (2.31). At resonance. (2. if the damping is small.41) Here. this does not differ much from ω0 .42) which can be very large if the damping constant λ is small.41). a1 and θ1 are given by (2. It is therefore called the transient.39). Note that the natural frequency ω of the oscillator lies between this resonant frequency and the frequency ω0 of the undamped oscillator. dies away exponentially with time. The second term in the general solution (2. However. the amplitude can become very large when the frequencies are almost equal. Near resonance.32 Classical Mechanics The general solution. no matter what initial conditions we choose. we fix the parameters γ and ω0 of the oscillator. but a and θ are arbitrary constants to be fixed by the initial conditions. the oscillations are ultimately governed solely by the external force. namely ω1 = 2 ω0 − 2γ 2 . namely (2. and vary the oscillator frequency ω0 . In this case. as we discussed above.41). not the period of the unforced oscillator.40). Note that their period is the period of the applied force. In particular. the amplitude is a maximum when ω0 = ω1 . which represents a free oscillation. we say that the system is in resonance.7(a). and vary the forcing frequency ω1 . Resonance The amplitude a1 and phase θ1 of the forced oscillations are strongly dependent on the angular frequencies ω0 and ω1 .

given by (2. The constant θ1 specifies the phase relation between the applied force and the induced oscillations. This led to problems for example with the original design of the Millennium Bridge in London. is approximately the . Therefore. Since quite small forces can set up large oscillations if the frequencies are in resonance. Notice the inverse relationship between the width and peak amplitude: the narrower the resonance.Linear Motion 33 a1 large Q γ F1 2 mω 0 θ1 π large Q π 2 small Q small Q ω0 (a) Fig.7 ω1 ω0 (b) ω1 √ is determined by γ. and θ1 ≈ 0. and is of great practical importance. ω1 is small. In that case. the higher is its peak. If the force is slowly oscillating. mω0 Thus the position x at any time t. Indeed.42).38) is a1 ≈ F1 F1 2 = k . 2. given by (2.38) become roughly equal.40). to the amplitude at ω1 = 0 (which describes the response to a time-independent force) is precisely Q. The phenomenon of resonance occurs with any oscillatory system. The quality factor Q = ω0 /2γ provides a quantitative measure of the sharpness of the resonance peak. the amplitude (2. great care must be taken in the design of any mechanical structure to avoid this possibility. the amplitude is reduced to 1/ 2 of its peak value when the two terms in the denominator of (2. and for small γ this occurs when ω1 = ω0 ± γ. so that the induced oscillations are in phase with the force. For. the ratio of the amplitude at resonance. γ is called the half-width of the resonance.

r (2.34).37). a simple periodic force may be written as a sum of two terms proportional to eiωt and e−iωt . negative and zero.7 General Periodic Force The solution we have obtained can immediately be generalized to the case where the applied force is a sum of periodic terms. 2. (In particular. This may easily be verified by direct substitution in (2. a1 ≈ F1 /mω1 and the oscillations correspond to those of a free particle under the applied oscillatory force. Each term in the sum is unchanged by the replacement t → t + 2π/ω. the corresponding solution is x= r Ar eiωr t + transient. which is called a Fourier series. If we are given F (t) it is easy to find the . and the oscillations are almost exactly 2 out of phase.) For very rapidly oscillating forces.45).44) where each Ar is related to the corresponding Fr by (2. so it is not really necessary to write Re in front of the sum. (2. F (t) = F1 eiω1 t + F2 eiω2 t + · · · = Fr eiωr t . 2. In particular. where τ = 2π/ω. In this limiting case. Note that the value of the damping constant is important only in the region near the resonance.46) In fact. positive. (2. Here ω represents a fundamental angular frequency and the frequencies nω are its harmonics. θ1 ≈ π.34). (2. the 1 phase shift is θ1 = 2 π. and the induced oscillations lag behind by a quarter period.34 Classical Mechanics equilibrium position under the force F1 cos ω1 t − kx. let us take F (t) = ∞ n=−∞ Fn einωt .43) We can always ensure that this force is real by including with each term its complex conjugate. any periodic force with period τ can be expressed in the form (2.45) where n runs over all integers. At resonance. (The variation of θ1 with ω1 is shown in Fig.7(b).) Because of the linearity of (2. so F (t) is clearly periodic in the sense that F (t + τ ) = F (t).

and given by F(t) F 0 −F Fig.48) Thus if we multiply (2. . Hence we obtain Fm = 1 τ τ 0 F (t)e−imωt dt. F. .8. Example: Square-wave force Find the position after a long time of an oscillator subjected to a force with the square-wave form shown in Fig.47) where δnm is Kronecker’s delta symbol defined by 1 if n = m. 0 if n = m.8 τ t F (t) = for r = 0. .Linear Motion 35 corresponding coefficients Fn . 2.49) A simple example involves a force with ‘square-wave’ form. the only term in the sum which survives is the one with n = m. . (2.45) by e−imωt and integrate over a period. 1 (r − 2 )τ < t ≤ rτ. 1 rτ < t ≤ (r + 2 )τ. . ±1. For one easily sees that 1 τ τ 0 ei(n−m)t dt = δnm . (2. δnm = (2. −F. ±2. 2.

As a matter of fact. this kind of treatment can be extended even further.37) that the 2 amplitudes An are Fn = An = 2F 2 iπnm(ω0 − n2 ω 2 + 2inγω) ∞ r=−∞ (n odd). we shall not pursue this method. because the expression in square brackets vanishes.45) by an integral over all possible angular frequencies ω. can be written in this form. . because we shall find in the next section an alternative method of solving the problem. After a long time. An and A−n will be much larger than the rest. we find F τ /2 −2πint/τ F τ −2πint/τ e dt − e dt τ 0 τ τ /2 F [1 − (−1)n ]. (This is the Fourier integral theorem. by replacing the sum in (2. The position of the oscillator is then given by x= A2r+1 ei(2r+1)ωt + transient.36 Classical Mechanics Since ω = 2π/τ . Note that if the damping is small and ω0 is close to one of the values nω. then one pair of amplitudes. In this way. = iπn Note that Fn = 0 for all even values of n. we find from (2. In general. and the oscillation will be almost simple harmonic motion at this frequency. for large n. Any force whatever. This happens because in addition to repeating after the period τ .) However.34) for an arbitrary periodic force. subject to some very general mathematical requirements. the amplitudes An decrease rapidly in magnitude as n increases. which is often simpler to use. For odd values of n. and the position is given by the sum alone. the transient can be ignored. so that we can obtain a good approximation to x by keeping only a few terms of the series. F (t) repeats with opposite sign after half this period: F (t + 1 τ ) = −F (t). one can obtain the solution to (2.

The resulting change of momentum of the particles is t+∆t ∆p = p(t + ∆t) − p(t) = F dt. If the oscillator is subjected to a series of blows. for example collisions. the effect of a sudden blow.Linear Motion 37 2. we find that the position is given by ⎧ ⎨0. We obtain in this way x(t) = r G(t − tr )Ir + transient. Here. and that at time t = 0 it experiences a blow of impulse I. in which very large forces act for very short times.8 Impulsive Forces. Inserting these initial conditions in the general solution (2. its position is still x = 0 (since the velocity remains finite. It is natural to consider an idealized situation in which the time interval ∆t tends to zero. (2.31) for the oscillatory case γ < ω0 . In other words. Immediately after the blow. Let us consider a force F acting on a particle during the time interval ∆t.52) . we shall consider the effect of an impulsive force on an oscillator.51). the position does not change discontinuously). t (2. and the whole of the impulse I is delivered to the particle instantaneously. mω (2. t > 0. x= ⎩ I e−γt sin ωt. we shall discuss some simple collision problems. this is a good description of. t < 0. we let ∆t → 0 and F → ∞ in such a way that the impulse I remains finite.51) This solution is illustrated in Fig. At the instant when the impulse is delivered the momentum of the particle changes discontinuously. its position may be found by adding together the corresponding set of solutions of the form (2. In the next section. of impulse Ir at time tr .9. we can immediately generalize this result to a sum of impulsive forces. while its velocity is v0 = I/m. for example. 2. Let us suppose first that the oscillator is at rest at its equilibrium position x = 0.50) The quantity on the right is called the impulse I delivered to the particle. the Green’s Function Method There are many physical situations. Although in reality the force must always remain finite. Just as in the case of periodic forces.

in which the interval between tr and tr+1 is ∆t and Ir = F (tr )∆t. it will be a good approximation to suppose that the whole of this impulse is delivered instantaneously at the time t.52). Moreover.38 Classical Mechanics G(t) t Fig. and we finally obtain t x(t) = t0 G(t − t )F (t ) dt + transient. 2. because it is an explicit solution requiring the evaluation of only one integral. The method is. we express it as a sum of impulsive forces.34) for an arbitrary force F (t). mω (2. If we divide the time scale into small intervals ∆t.52) goes over into an integral. (In other words. G(t − t ) = 1 −γ(t−t ) ⎩ e sin ω(t − t ). We can now use this result to obtain a solution to (2. Instead of expressing F (t) as a sum of periodic forces.53) The function G(t − t ) is called the Green’s function of the oscillator. In this limit. It represents the response to a blow of unit impulse delivered at the time t . t > t . Thus the solution should be given approximately by (2. complementary to Fourier’s. It is particularly . then the impulse delivered to the particle between t and t+∆t will be approximately F (t)∆t.54) is very useful in practice.) The solution (2. the sum in (2. The upper limit may be taken to be t because G(t − t ) vanishes for t > t. in a sense. and become exact in the limit ∆t → 0. if ∆t is short enough. The approximation will improve as ∆t is reduced. (2. blows subsequent to t do not affect the position at t.9 where ⎧ ⎨0.54) The lower limit t0 is the initial time at which the initial conditions determining the arbitrary constants in the transient term are to be imposed. t<t.

this tends as it must to the 2 displacement for a constant force F . F (t) = 0. Example: Step-function force An oscillator is initially at rest and is subject to a step-function force. F. we have been discussing the motion of a single particle under a known external force.54). ¨ m2 x2 = −F.56) . We now turn to the problem of an isolated system of two bodies moving in one dimension under a mutual force F which is given in terms of their positions and velocities. t < 0. p1 + p2 = P = constant. 2 [ω(1 − e mωω0 = 2 using γ 2 + ω 2 = ω0 . the sum of these two equations leads to the law of conservation of momentum. with F constant. What is the position at time t > 0? To perform the integration in (2. t > 0.Linear Motion 39 well adapted to numerical solution of the problem when F (t) is known numerically. ¨ (2.55) As we have already seen in Chapter 1. The equations of motion are then m1 x1 = F. 2.9 Collision Problems So far. it is convenient to write the sine function as the imaginary part of an exponential: t x(t) = 0 G(t − t )F dt = F mω t 0 Im e(−γ+iω)(t−t ) dt 1 − e−γt+iωt F Im mω γ − iω F Im (γ + iω) 1 − e−γt+iωt = mω(γ 2 + ω 2 ) F −γt = cos ωt) − γe−γt sin ωt]. namely x = F/mω0 . Note that for large t. (2.

So long as the initial kinetic energy is less than the height of the step. We are particularly interested in collision problems. with 1 T = 2 m1 x2 + 1 m2 x2 . in which the force is generally small except when the bodies are very close together. and rises very sharply for small values. ˙1 2 ˙2 (2. we know that the final value of the kinetic energy.57) and using (2.10(b)). one body will pass through the other.57) This may easily be verified by differentiating (2. when the bodies are again far apart. the potential step would have to be infinitely high. which is still (2.7). (See Fig. x = x1 − x2 and x = x1 − x2 .) From the law of conservation of energy. 2. The potential energy function is then a constant (say zero) for large values of x. ˙ ˙ ˙ When it is a function only of x the force is conservative. For completely impenetrable bodies. 2. and we can introduce a potential energy function V (x) as before.55) and the relation between V and F .10 (b) x a discontinuity or step (Fig. 2.10(a). (If the kinetic energy exceeds this value. the bodies will bounce off one another. The law of conservation of energy then takes the form T + V = E = constant. is the same as the .) An ideal impulsive conservative force corresponds to a potential energy function with V V x (a) Fig.40 Classical Mechanics According to the relativity principle. F must be a function only of the relative distance and relative velocity.

We can then divide the first equation by the second.58) Collisions of this type.60) Note that if the masses are equal. the result is v1 = m1 − m 2 u1 . Equation (2.11) m1 u1 initial m2 u2 m1 v1 final m2 v2 Fig. if the second body is initially at rest (u2 = 0). 2. In particular.Linear Motion 41 initial value well before the collision. . v1 + u1 = u2 + v2 . 1 2 m1 v1 − m1 u1 = m2 u2 − m2 v2 . m1 + m 2 (2. v2 .56) may be solved for the final velocities in terms of the initial ones. are known as elastic collisions. They are typical of very hard bodies. If we denote the initial velocities by u1 . We can easily derive a similar result for the case of two-body collisions. equivalently. with reduced velocity. (2. to obtain or. If m1 > m2 . 2. We saw earlier that a particle which bounces back from a potential barrier emerges with velocity equal (except for sign) to its initial velocity. like billiard balls. 1 2 2 2 2 (2. then the first body is brought to rest by the collision. and its velocity transferred to the second body. v2 − v1 = u1 − u2 .59) This shows that the relative velocity is just reversed by the collision. then (see Fig. m1 + m 2 v2 = 2m1 u1 . To do this we write the energy and momentum conservation equations in the forms 2 2 m1 v1 − m1 u2 = m2 u2 − m2 v2 . in which there is no loss of kinetic energy. the first body continues in the same direction. u2 and the final velocities by v1 .11 2 1 2 m1 v1 2 + 1 m2 v2 = 1 m1 u2 + 1 m2 u2 .59) and the momentum conservation equation (2.

the relative velocity will be reduced in magnitude by the collision. as we shall see in later chapters. unless some energy is released.42 Classical Mechanics whereas if m1 < m2 . e is approximately a constant for a wide range of velocities. T m1 + m 2 (2. m1 + m 2 v2 = (1 + e)m1 u1 .63) This shows. m1 + m 2 (2. Inelastic collisions In practice there is generally some loss of energy in a collision. The final velocities may again be found from (2. as for example by an explosion. after a simple calculation. We define the coefficient of restitution e in a particular collision by v2 − v1 = e(u1 − u2 ). They are valid quite generally for an isolated system. In that case. When u2 = 0. Substituting for the final velocities from (2. we get v1 = m1 − em2 u1 . In the limit where m2 is much larger than m1 .61) and the momentum conservation equation (2. it rebounds in the opposite direction. that e must always be less than one. for instance in the form of heat. and the collision is called perfectly inelastic (or. we have the case of very soft bodies that stick together on impact.61) The usefulness of this quantity derives from the experimental fact that. we obtain v1 = −u1 . 2. that the fractional loss of kinetic energy is (1 − e2 )m2 T −T = . The initial 1 2 kinetic energy is T = 1 m1 u2 . while the final kinetic energy is T = 2 m1 v1 + 1 2 1 2 2 m2 v2 . (2. At the other extreme.62) For e = 1 these reduce to the relations (2. Then e = 0.56). incidentally. more accurately perhaps. perfectly plastic).10 Summary The conservation laws for energy and momentum are among the most important consequences of Newton’s laws.62) we find. The energy loss in an inelastic collision is easily evaluated. for any two given bodies.60) for the case of an elastic collision. which agrees with the previous result for a particle rebounding from a fixed potential barrier. For a system which is .

If the force is velocity-dependent. Write down the potential energy function corresponding to the force −GM m/x2 experienced by a particle of mass m at a distance x from a . Find its position as a function of time. 3. A harmonic oscillator of angular frequency 2 s −1 is initially at x = −3 m. The weight is released from rest with the spring unextended. and the first at which x = 0. Find the first time at which x = 0. lies in the fact that any system with one degree of freedom behaves like a harmonic oscillator when sufficiently near to a point of stable equilibrium. For a single particle moving on a straight line. treated in detail in this chapter. A weight of mass m is hung from the end of a spring which provides a restoring force equal to k times its extension. to oscillations of very large amplitude.23). the equilibrium length is increased by 50 mm. Problems 1. A pendulum of period 2 s is released from rest at an inclination of 5◦ to the (downward) vertical. with x = 8 m s−1 . it is given an impulsive blow towards the vertical that increases the amplitude of swing to 10◦ . however. assuming negligible damping. The importance of the harmonic oscillator. there will be some loss of energy to the surroundings. (2. the phenomenon of resonance can occur in any system subjected to periodic forces. The methods we have discussed for solving the oscillator equation can therefore be applied to a great variety of problems. and leads.) ˙ 2. It occurs when there is a natural frequency of oscillation close to the forcing frequency. Find its subsequent angular position as a function of time.Linear Motion 43 only part of a larger system. there may be some transfer of energy and momentum from the system to its surroundings (or vice versa). 4. In particular. and subject to external forces. What is its angular velocity when it reaches the vertical? When it first returns to its starting point. The mass is then given a blow which starts it moving vertically at 200 mm s−1 . the total (kinetic plus potential) energy is conserved if the force is a function only of x.20) and (2. Write the solution in each of the three forms ˙ (2. When a mass is suspended from a spring. Find the period and amplitude of the resulting oscillations. assuming negligible damping. (A sketch of the solution may help.19). 5. if the damping is small.

what is its velocity when it reaches x = 0? Where in the subsequent motion does it instantaneously come to rest? A particle of mass m moves (in the region x > 0) under a force F = −kx+c/x. find the time it takes to reach x = a. The particle of Problem 9 with k = −mω 2 < 0 is initially in the region x < −a. The potential energy function of a particle of mass m is V = − 2 c(x2 − 2 2 a ) . and (c) − 1 ca4 < E < 0. use a substitution of the form x = constant × sin θ. What is the force when x > 0.44 Classical Mechanics 6. The particle is released from rest at a distance a from the centre of the planet. What is its speed when it strikes the surface? Evaluate this speed for a particle falling to the Earth from a = 2R. where a and k are constants. where c and a are positive constants.) 1 11. Given that the particle starts from this point . 2 12. 8. and GM/R2 = g = 10 m s−2 . moving to the right with velocity v. for |x| < a. A particle of mass m has the potential energy function V (x) = mk|x|. whose radius is R. If the particle starts from rest at x = −a. where k and c are positive constants. Determine the position of equilibrium. and falls under gravity. Sketch V as a function of x. and a > 0. and describe the possible types of motion in the three cases (a) E > 0. What is the force on the particle? Sketch the function V . where k is a positive constant. (Use R = 6400 km. (To do the required integral. A particle of mass m moves under a conservative force with potential energy function given by V (x) = 1 2 2 k(a 0 − x2 ) for |x| ≥ a. *The potential energy function of a particle of mass m is V = cx/(x2 + a2 ). where c and a are positive constants. If the particle starts from rest at x = −a. and describe the possible types of motion. Find the position of stable equilibrium. (b) 1 E < − 2 ca4 . planet of mass M ( m). for both cases k > 0 and k < 0.) A particle of mass m moves under a force F = −cx3 . 10. When it emerges into the region x > a. 9. where c is a positive constant. Sketch this function. and the period of small oscillations about it. Find the corresponding potential energy function. will it do so earlier or later than if it were moving freely under no force? Find an expression for the time difference. 7. and when x < 0? Sketch the function V and describe the motion. and the frequency of small oscillations about it. Find the potential energy function.

*For the pendulum described in §2. If its initial velocity at t = 0 is u. 18. If the particle is moving upwards. (b) escapes to −∞. where k ˙ is a constant. θ = π. To integrate again. in fact the derivative of zf .e. Show that if it is released from rest at a small angle to the upward vertical. i. then the time taken for the angular displacement to increase by a factor of 10 will be approximately l/g ln 20.) *A particle moves vertically under gravity and a retarding force proportional to the square of its velocity. 14. show that v = ∓g −kv 2 . z + γz = −gt. and the period of small oscillations about the position of stable equilibrium. Find the time it takes to reach a speed of 40 m s−1 . Write down the solution for θ as a function of time. with a suitable choice of origin and definition of γ (differing from (2. 15. The final stage requires an integration by parts.) If v is its upward or downward speed. and show that it will eventually reach a terminal velocity. (Take g = 10 m s−2 . [The equation of motion can be integrated once to give.1. if it starts from rest.Linear Motion 45 13. use an integrating factor. ˙ a function f (t) such that when the equation is multiplied by f (t) the left-hand side becomes an exact derivative. respectively.] The terminal speed of the particle in Problem 13 is 50 m s−1 . assuming that θ0 is small. and (c) escapes to +∞.28) by a factor of 2). Find its angular velocity as a function of θ. and its height then. [Note that ln always denotes the natural logarithm: ln x ≡ loge x. find the ranges of values of v for which it (a) oscillates. and the distance it has fallen in that time. Evaluate this time for . where z0 and t0 are integration constants. find the time at which it comes instantaneously to rest. You may find the identity ln cos x = − 1 ln(1 + tan2 x) useful. show that its position √ at time t is given by z = z0 + (1/k) ln cos[ gk (t0 − t)]. *A particle falling under gravity is subject to a retarding force proportional to its velocity.10. What is its limiting speed? How long does it take to hit the ground if dropped from height h? The pendulum described in §2. Find its position as a function of time. find the equation of motion for small displacements from the position of unstable equilibrium. (This is more appropriate than a linear relation for larger particles — see Problem 8. with velocity v.1 is released from rest at an angle θ0 to the downward vertical. 17.] 2 *Show that if the particle of the previous question falls from rest its √ speed after a time t is given by v = g/k tanh( gk t). 16.

as a function . transform to the variable y = x2 .] *For an oscillator under a periodic force F (t) = F1 cos ω1 t. 23. as ω0 is reduced to the critical value γ. a pendulum of period 2 s. Compare your answer with the angular deviation that would be induced by a constant force of this magnitude in a pendulum at rest. What is its new period? Given that the pendulum bob is of mass 0. 20. find the angular amplitude of the resulting forced oscillation. Its amplitude on each swing is observed to be half that on the previous swing. *Solve the problem of an oscillator under a simple periodic force (turned on at t = 0) by the Green’s function method. and is subjected to a periodic force of amplitude 0. 22.02 N and period 1 s. and verify that it reproduces the solution of §2.1 kg.4 m below the point of release. Write down the solution to the oscillator equation for the case ω 0 > γ if the oscillator starts from x = 0 with velocity v. write sin ωt as (eiωt − e−iωt )/2i. and hence verify that it 1 is equal to the average rate at which energy is dissipated against the resistive force. Show that the period of oscillation is independent of v. the solution tends to the corresponding solution for the critically damped oscillator. then add a constant to ‘complete the square’. 24. 21. find how close to the equilibrium position the particle is after 1 s.) 2 Show that the average power is P = mγω1 a2 . The particle starts from this point with velocity v. Find the position of equilibrium.) Repeat the calculation of Problem 2 assuming that the system is critically damped.) *A particle of mass m moves in the region x > 0 under the force F = −mω 2 (x − a4 /x3 ). and finally use a trigonometric substitution. Given that the final position of equilibrium is 0. and the period of small oscillations about it. (Assume that the push has negligible effect on its energy.6. What is its velocity when it reaches the point x? Given that t = 0 is the instant when it reaches x = 0. 25. and is given a small push to start it moving to the right. Find the limiting values of x in the subsequent motion. *A pendulum whose period in a vacuum is 1 s is placed in a resistive medium. Show that the power P is a maximum. calculate the power. Sketch the potential energy function. where ω and a are constants. the rate at which the force does work. To do the integral. (Neglect the transient.46 Classical Mechanics 19. Show that. [Assume that the damping is less than critical. and find the angular velocity of the pendulum when it reaches the downward vertical. (To do the integration. *The particle of Problem 11 starts from rest at x = −a. find its position as a function of time.

and find the values of ω1 for which it has half its maximum value. Find the velocity immediately after the first bounce. the middle one is moving with velocity 27 m s−1 . ¯ 26. ¯ show that when ω1 = ω0 the ratio W/E is related to the quality factor ¯ = 2π/Q. Show that the period of oscillation is x2 τ =2 x1 m dx. if V = 2 mω0 (x2 − bx4 ). 5 kg are arranged in that order on a straight line. show that the period for oscillations of amplitude a is τ= 2 ω0 a −a √ a2 − x2 dx 1 − b(a2 + x2 ) . *An oscillator with free period τ is critically damped and subjected to a force with the ‘saw-tooth’ form F (t) = c(t − nτ ) for 1 (n − 1 )τ < t ≤ (n + 2 )τ. Show that the ball finally comes to rest after a time 1+e 1−e 2h . 28. The coefficient of restitution at each bounce is e. and immediately after the nth bounce. A ball is dropped from height h and bounces. Three perfectly elastic bodies of masses 5 kg. Using the binomial theorem to expand in powers of b. g 29. and are free to move along it. 2 for each integer n (c is a constant).Linear Motion 47 of ω1 . *Find the average value E of the total energy of an oscillator under a periodic force. and verify that the final value of the kinetic energy is equal to the initial value. If W is the work done against friction in one period. and the others are at rest. Find the ratios of the amplitudes an of oscillation at the angular frequencies 2πn/τ . 30. Initially. at ω1 = ω0 . 1 kg. Q by W/E 27. Find how many collisions take place in the subsequent motion. and the substitution x = a sin θ. *A particle moving under a conservative force oscillates between x1 and x2 . 4 . 2[V (x2 ) − V (x)] 1 2 In particular. show that for small amplitude the period is approximately τ ≈ 2π(1 + 3 ba2 )/ω0 .

Use the result of the preceding question to obtain an estimate of the correction factor to the period of a simple pendulum when its angular 1 1 amplitude is 30◦ . . and is subjected from t = 0 to a force increasing linearly with time. (Write cos θ ≈ 1 − 2 θ2 + 24 θ4 . F = ct.) 32.48 Classical Mechanics 31. Use it to solve the problem of an oscillator that is initially in equilibrium. *Find the Green’s function of an oscillator in the case γ > ω0 .

Note that it is equal to the distance travelled. ˙ x ˙y ˙ ¨ (3.2) (3.1) by the equation of motion (1. 49 . |dr|.1 Energy.4) (3. we generalize the discussion of Chapter 2 to the case of motion in two or three dimensions.3) This is the three-dimensional expression for the work done by the force F in the displacement dr. (3. with dW = F · dr = Fx dx + Fy dy + Fz dz. multiplied by the component of F in the direction of the displacement.1). we shall be concerned with the problem of a particle moving under a known external force F . 3. 2 2 The rate of change of the kinetic energy is.Chapter 3 Energy and Angular Momentum In this chapter. Conservative Forces The kinetic energy of a particle of mass m free to move in three dimensions is defined to be ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ T = 1 mr 2 = 1 m(x2 + y 2 + z 2 ). The change in kinetic energy in a time interval dt during which the particle moves a (vector) distance dr is then dT = dW. therefore. ˙ ˙ ¨ ˙ T = m(x¨ + y¨ + z z ) = mr · r = r · F . Throughout this chapter.

and the potential energy V is a function of position. 2 2 (3. ∂y Fz = − ∂V . ∂x ∂y ∂z ˙ ˙ Thus.7). ˙ Since this must hold for any value of the velocity r of the particle.1). (3. F (r) = −∇V (r). in terms of the gradient of V .21)). In terms of components. we obtain ˙ r · (F + ∇V ) = 0. ˙ V (r) = ∂x ∂y ∂z or.6) ∂V ∂V ∂V +j +k .9) . which is the essential feature of a conservative force.2) and (3. (3. V (r). ∂z (3. the rate of change of the potential energy is ∂V ∂V ∂V ˙ x+ ˙ y+ ˙ z.8) For example.50 Classical Mechanics One might think at first sight that a conservative force in three dimensions should be defined to be a force F (r) depending only on the position r of the particle. ∂x Fy = − ∂V . by ˙ ˙ V = r · ∇V. However.5) where T is given by (3. and using (3.6) for T and V .e. suppose that V has the form V = 1 kr2 = 1 k(x2 + y 2 + z 2 ).7) This is the analogue for the three-dimensional case of (2. the quantity in parentheses must vanish.5). it reads Fx = − ∂V . (3. ∇V = i (see (A. Now. i. this is not sufficient to ensure the existence of a law of conservation of energy. differentiating (3. We require that T + V = E = constant.

81 m s−2 directed in the downward vertical direction. its curl vanishes (see (A.11) is a necessary condition for the force F (r) to be conservative.5).10) It is not hard to find the necessary and sufficient condition on the force F (r) to ensure the existence of a potential energy function V (r) satisfying (3. Then (3. (We ignore the small effects due to the Earth’s rotation. r (3.7) obeys the relation ∇ ∧ F = 0. the z component of (3. 3. which will be discussed in Chapter . Therefore.7). ∂x ∂y ∂y ∂x Thus (3. we can define the potential energy V (r) in terms of the force by a relation analogous to (2. Any vector function F (r) of the form (3.11) that is. then the work done by the force in a displacement from r 0 to r is independent of the path chosen between these points. ∂x ∂y and this is true because of (3. if the force F (r) satisfies this condition. (3.8) yields F = (−kx. is m¨ = mg.12) where g is the acceleration due to gravity. (3. More specifically.Energy and Angular Momentum 51 which describes a three-dimensional harmonic oscillator (discussed in more detail in Chapter 4). assuming that atmospheric friction is negligible. For instance.26)). It can be shown (see Appendix A) that it is also a sufficient condition.8) and the symmetry of the second partial derivative: ∂2V ∂ 2V = . −kz) = −kr. a vector of constant magnitude g = 9.11) is ∂Fx ∂Fy − = 0.2 Projectiles As a first example of motion in two dimensions let us consider a projectile moving under gravity. −ky. The equation of motion.

then it will do so always. then g = −gk.15) It is interesting to note that to maximize the range we should choose α = π/4. 2 (3.) If we choose the z-axis vertically upwards. x = v cos α.) The projectile will hit the ground when z = 0 again. i.e. 1 z = c + dt − 2 gt2 . ¨ z = −g. and is easily seen to be a parabola.14) yields for the range x = 2(v 2 cos α sin α)/g.. as well as the variation of g with height — see Chapter 6. the maximum value is xmax = v 2 /g. c. ¨ (3. and the time of launch as t = 0.13) If we choose the x. The solutions of (3.52 Classical Mechanics 5. ¨ y = 0. What is its range? We may choose the point of launch as the origin. where a. Substituting into the first of Eqs. ˙ z = v sin α. so that (3. At that instant. Thus the motion is effectively two-dimensional. As in Chapter 2. However. so that . let us consider the much less trivial problem of a projectile subject also to a resistive force. we assume that the retarding force is proportional to the velocity.12) takes the form x = 0. b. (3. (3.13) are x = a + bt. the explicit equation is not needed here. ˙ Thus the solution with the required initial conditions is x = vt cos α. z = vt sin α − 1 gt2 . Example: Projectile range A projectile is launched from the surface of the Earth (assumed flat) with velocity v at an angle α to the horizontal.14) (The trajectory in the xz-plane is obtained by eliminating t between these equations. d are constants to be fixed by the initial conditions.and y-axes so that initially the particle is moving in the xz-plane. such as atmospheric drag. at the time t = 2(v sin α)/g. Finally.

¨ ˙ z = −γ z − g. 0. there is a maximum value of x. Gx = yFz − zFy .18) The components of the vector G are the moments about the x-.3 Moments.17) A distinctive feature of this equation is that. Gz = xFy − yFx . It may be regarded as defining the axis about which the force tends to . but this equation nevertheless gives a reasonable qualitative picture of the motion. 3. If the initial velocity is v = (u. γ z= w g + 2 γ γ (1 − e−γt ) − gt . γ Eliminating t between these two equations yields the equation of the trajectory. Problem 13). ¨ ˙ These equations may be integrated by the use of integrating factors (see Chapter 2. (3. γu γ u (3. z → −∞. y.16) as x = −γ x.16) The actual dependence of atmospheric drag on velocity is definitely nonlinear. Angular Momentum The moment about the origin of a force F acting on a particle at position r is defined to be the vector product G = r ∧ F. Gy = zFx − xFz . r (3. even if the launch point is far above the ground. we may write (3. the required solution is x= u (1 − e−γt ). Thus the trajectory ends in a near-vertical drop. when all the forward momentum has been spent. Defining γ = λ/m. The projectile can never reach beyond x = u/γ. and as it approaches that value.Energy and Angular Momentum 53 the equation of motion becomes ˙ m¨ = −λr + mg. w). The direction of the vector G is that of the normal to the plane of r and F .and z-axes. z= g γx γw + g x + 2 ln 1 − .

1.20) is zero. obtained by differentiating (3.54 Classical Mechanics rotate the particle. y. are ˙ ˙ Jx = m(y z − z y). the first term in (3. By (1. Thus we obtain .) Now. (See Fig. Correspondingly. ˙ ˙ The momentum p is often called linear momentum when it is important to emphasize the distinction between p and J. dt (3. the angular momenta about the x-. we define the vector angular momentum (sometimes called moment of momentum) about the origin of a particle at position r. where θ is the angle between r and F . and moving with momentum p. and b is the perpendicular distance from the origin to the line of the force. as we shall see in Chapters 8 and 9. 3. provided that the order of the two factors is preserved. 3. The magnitude of G is G = rF sin θ = bF. (3.and z-axes. Jy = m(z x − xz).19) is d ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ¨ J = m (r ∧ r) = m(r ∧ r + r ∧ r).) Moments of forces G r b θ F Fig. to be ˙ J = r ∧ p = mr ∧ r.20) (Recall that the usual rule for differentiating a product applies also to vector products.1). because it is the vector product of a vector with itself. The rate of change of angular momentum. the second term is simply r ∧ F = G.19) Its components. ˙ ˙ Jz = m(xy − y x).1 play a particularly important role in the dynamics of rigid bodies.

vector. 3.3) depends on the choice of a right-hand screw convention. Hence. and. It really contains two statements: that the direction of J is constant. 3. since the normal component of velocity is initially zero.4 Central Forces. If we choose the origin to be this centre. the condition for a force F to be central is that its moment about the centre should vanish: G = r ∧ F = 0.21) ˙ This should be compared with the equation p = F for the rate of change of the linear momentum. the angular momentum is a constant: J = constant. A vector of this type is known as an axial vector. and that its magnitude is constant. (3. it must always remain zero. but the sense of rotation about it (see Fig. Axial vectors are often associated with rotation about an axis. This is obvious physically. . What is specified physically is not the direction along the axis. ˙ The direction of J is that of the normal to the plane of r and v = r.23) This is the law of conservation of angular momentum in its simplest form. or polar. Let us look at these in turn. called the centre of force. It is to be contrasted with an ordinary. §A. In other words. (3. Since the definition of the vector product (see Appendix. this means that F is always parallel to the position vector r. the motion of the particle is confined to the plane containing the initial position vector and velocity vector (see Fig. Conservation of Angular Momentum An external force is said to be central if it is always directed towards or away from a fixed point.21) it follows that if the force is central.22) From (3. (3. Since the vector product of two parallel vectors is zero. for. the statement that this direction is fixed implies that r and v must always lie in a fixed plane.Energy and Angular Momentum 55 the important result that the rate of change of the angular momentum is equal to the moment of the applied force: ˙ J = G. the directions of the vectors G and J also depend on this convention.1). 3. since the force is central.2). it has no component perpendicular to this plane.

Thus the radial and transverse components of the velocity are dr dθ rdθ r Fig. ˙ ˙ vθ = rθ.2 To understand the meaning of the second part of the law. (3. respectively (see Fig. (3.3). .56 Classical Mechanics J r v Fig. the constancy of the magnitude J of J . it is convenient to introduce polar co-ordinates r and θ in the plane of the motion. in which the co-ordinates change by amounts dr and dθ. 3. In a short time interval. We note that when the angle θ changes by an amount dθ.3 vr = r.24) The magnitude of the angular momentum is then ˙ J = mrvθ = mr2 θ. the distances travelled in the radial and transverse directions are dr and rdθ.25) It is now easy to find a geometrical interpretation of the statement that J is a constant. the radius vector sweeps out an area 1 dA = 2 r2 dθ. 3. 3.

In particular. although as we have seen it applies more generally to motion under any central force. is that the transverse component of the velocity. together give us a great deal of information about the motion of the particle. 2 dt 2m (3. 3. ϕ.23). 3.5 Polar Co-ordinates In problems with particular symmetries. This important special case is the subject of the next chapter. we may use cylindrical polar co-ordinates ρ. to a particle attached to the end of a string which is gradually being wound in towards the centre.25). or spherical polar co-ordinates r. These are related to Cartesian co-ordinates by z r θ x ϕ ρ y x Fig. It applies even if the force is non-conservative — for example. it is often convenient to use nonCartesian co-ordinates.4 θ z y . ϕ.26) One of the most important applications is to planetary motion. (3. which follows at once from (3. in the case of axial or spherical symmetry. and in that context.Energy and Angular Momentum 57 Thus the rate of sweeping out area is dA J ˙ = 1 r2 θ = = constant. z. An equivalent statement of the law. varies inversely with the radial distance r.5) and (3. θ. the constancy of the rate of sweeping out area is generally referred to as Kepler’s second law. the two conservation laws. vθ . When the force is both central and conservative.

and we get ˙ vr = r. ˙ ˙ (3.32) . analogous to (3.4. vϕ = r sin θ ϕ. and we obviously have ˙ vρ = ρ. ˙ (3.58 Classical Mechanics x = ρ cos ϕ = r sin θ cos ϕ. (This would not be true if the co-ordinates were oblique. 3. while r and ϕ are fixed. A curve along which only ϕ varies is a circle of radius ρ = r sin θ (corresponding to a parallel of latitude). vϕ = ρϕ ˙ vz = z. are still orthogonal in the sense that the three coordinate directions at each point are mutually perpendicular.) Hence from (3. 2 2 2 v 2 = vρ + vϕ + vz .27) (3. (See Fig. ˙ (3. a curve along which θ varies. ϕ = ϕ. is a circle of radius r (corresponding on the Earth to a meridian of longitude).30) we find 1 ˙ ˙ ˙ T = 2 m(ρ2 + ρ2 ϕ2 + z 2 ). it will be very useful to have expressions for the kinetic energy in terms of polar co-ordinates. (3. (3. for example. z =z = r cos θ. In the cylindrical polar case.30) For use later in this chapter. r dθ and r sin θ dϕ. y = ρ sin ϕ = r sin θ sin ϕ. These co-ordinates. though curvilinear.29) and (3.24). the co-ordinates ρ and ϕ are just plane polar co-ordinates in the xy-plane. ˙ vθ = rθ. Thus the elements of length in the three co-ordinate directions are dr.) The relation between the two is clearly z = r cos θ ρ = r sin θ.29) In the spherical polar case.31) and 1 ˙ T = 2 m(r2 + r2 θ2 + r2 sin2 θ ϕ2 ).28) It is easy to find the components of velocity in the various co-ordinate directions. Thus we can write.

This is a principle which states that some quantity has a minimum value. but the method we shall use to derive it can also be applied to less trivial examples — for instance. The distance dl between them is given by dl = dx2 + dy 2 = 1 + y 2 dx. 3. We could now go on and find expressions for the acceleration in terms of these co-ordinates. to consider the general kind of problem in which such methods are used. (3. y0 ) and (x1 . but also on the co-ordinates themselves.6 The Calculus of Variations Let us begin with what may seem a ridiculously simple example: what is the shortest path between two points in a plane? Of course we know the answer already. It may therefore be useful. y(x1 ) = y1 . Any curve joining them is represented by an equation y = y(x) such that the function satisfies the boundary conditions y(x0 ) = y0 . . and hence write down equations of motion. more generally. to find the shortest path between two points on a curved surface. Suppose the two points are (x0 . This we shall do in the next section. While it is not particularly hard to do this directly in these simple cases. A method of doing this that we shall use extensively later is due to the eighteenth-century mathematician Joseph– Louis Lagrange. particularly in quantum mechanics and in optics. it is very convenient to have a general prescription for writing down the equations of motion in arbitrary co-ordinates. like (3. Principles of this kind are used in many branches of physics. a stationary value. or.Energy and Angular Momentum 59 Note the characteristic difference between these expressions and the corresponding one for the case of Cartesian co-ordinates: here T depends not only on the time derivatives of the co-ordinates. before discussing the particular principle we shall require.31) or (3.33) Consider two neighbouring points on this curve. It can be done as soon as we have found the expression for the kinetic energy. y1 ).32). The simplest — though not the only — way of deriving Lagrange’s equations is to use what is known as a variational principle.

y1) δy(x) (x0 . it must be unchanged to first order by making a small variation in the function y(x). (3. we may be interested in finding the stationary values of an integral of the form x1 I= x0 f (y. All we shall do is to find the stationary values.34).) More generally.5 x δy(x0 ) = 0. (3.60 Classical Mechanics where y = dy/dx. but a function y(x). Thus the total length of the curve is x1 l= x0 1 + y 2 dx. y ) is a specified function of y and its first derivative.35) where f (y. This problem differs from the more familiar kind of minimum-value problem in that what we have to vary is not just a single variable or set of variables. subject to the condition that the values of y at the end-points are unchanged (see Fig. (We shall not be concerned with the problem of distinguishing maxima from minima. is to find that function y(x). Consider a small variation δy(x) in the function y(x). We shall solve this general problem. subject to the boundary conditions (3. therefore. (3. δy(x1 ) = 0.36) . 3.33). y ) dx. and then apply the result to the integral (3. we can still apply the same criterion: when the integral has a minimum value.5): y (x1 . y0) y(x) x Fig.34) The problem. that will make this integral a minimum. 3. However.

of finding the curves of shortest length (called geodesics) in a plane. In the second term.Energy and Angular Momentum 61 To first order. this variation δI must vanish for an arbitrary small variation δy(x) (subject only to the boundary conditions (3. the variation in f (y. It is in general a secondorder differential equation for the unknown function y(x). (3. whose solution contains two arbitrary constants that may be determined from the boundary conditions. The integrated term.35).36)). This is only possible if the integrand vanishes identically.36). . (3. We can now return to solving the problem we started with. we have to choose f = 1 + y 2 and.34) with (3. namely ∂f δy ∂y x1 . ∂y ∂f = ∂y y 1+y 2 . Hence we obtain x1 δI = x0 ∂f d − ∂y dx ∂f ∂y δy(x) dx. dx Thus the variation of the integral I is δI = x0 ∂f ∂f d(δy) δy + ∂y ∂y dx dx.38) This is known as the Euler–Lagrange equation. y ) is δf = ∂f ∂f δy + δy . in order that I be stationary. x0 vanishes because of the conditions (3.37) Now. ∂y ∂y x1 where δy = d(δy) . therefore. pretending for the moment that we don’t know the answer! Example: Geodesics on a plane What is the shortest path between two given points in a plane? In this case. ∂f = 0. Thus we require d ∂f − ∂y dx ∂f ∂y = 0. we may integrate by parts. comparing (3.

qn . So far. .62 Classical Mechanics Thus the Euler–Lagrange equation (3. . q2 . . n. n). . In order that the integral t1 I= t0 f (q1 . y. qn )dt ˙ ˙ be stationary. . . i = 1. . . . q2 .39) These n second-order partial differential equations determine the n functions qi (t) to within 2n arbitrary constants of integration. . .40) . and hence that y is a constant. it must be unchanged to first order by a variation in any one of the functions qi (t) (i = 1. 2. . . z). Thus we have proved that the shortest path between two points in a plane is a straight line! The constants a and b are of course fixed by the conditions (3. . This equation states that the expression inside the parentheses is a constant. but in the applications we consider later we shall be concerned instead with functions of the time t. . Its solutions are therefore the straight lines y = ax + b (a. . qn . b = constants). Thus we require the n Euler–Lagrange equations ∂f d − ∂qi dt ∂f ∂ qi ˙ = 0. q1 . . we have used x as the independent variable. . . . . 2. .7 Hamilton’s Principle. Lagrange’s Equations We shall now show that the equations of motion for a particle moving under a conservative force can be written as the Euler–Lagrange equations corresponding to a suitable integral. It is easy to generalize the discussion to the case of a function f of ˙ ˙ ˙ n variables q1 . We define the Lagrangian function ˙ ˙ ˙ L = T − V = 1 m(x2 + y 2 + z 2 ) − V (x. subject to the conditions δqi (t0 ) = δqi (t1 ) = 0. (3.33). 2 (3. 3.38) reads d dx y 1+y 2 = 0. . . qn and their time derivatives q1 .

we employ a set of curvilinear co-ordinates q1 . The action integral must then be ˙ ˙ ˙ stationary with respect to arbitrary variations δq1 . Thus the equation of motion px = Fx can be written in the form ˙ d dt ∂L ∂x ˙ = ∂L . .44) These are the equations of motion in terms of the co-ordinates q1 . which is relatively little used. to use this simple name for the commonly occurring function (3. δy. and has now become standard practice. q1 . However. ∂qi i = 1. ˙ ∂x ˙ ∂V ∂L =− = Fx . q3 . in which the term ‘action’ was used for a related but different quantity (the integral of twice the kinetic energy).Energy and Angular Momentum 63 (Note the minus sign — this is not the total energy. q2 . q2 . it is more convenient. q3 . 3. The importance of this principle lies in the fact that it can immediately be applied to any set of co-ordinates.42) But this has precisely the form of an Euler–Lagrange equation for the integral t1 I= t0 L dt. this terminology does not accord with the original. Thus we obtain Lagrange’s equations: d dt ∂L ∂ qi ˙ = ∂L . z. q2 . y.43) This is generally known as the action integral. instead of using Cartesian coordinates x. δq2 .41) with similar equations for the y and z components. ∂x ∂x (3. (3.) Its derivatives are ∂L = mx = p x .43). 2. then we can express the Lagrangian function L = T − V in terms of q1 . (3. ∂x (3. q2 . Thus we have arrived at Hamilton’s principle (named after the nineteenth-century Irish mathematician and physicist Sir William Rowan Hamilton): the action integral I is stationary under arbitrary variations δx. q3 and their time derivatives. δq3 . subject to the conditions that the variations are zero at the limits t0 and t1 . Strictly speaking. If. δz which vanish at the limits of integration t0 and t1 . q3 .

64 Classical Mechanics By analogy with (3. ∂θ . ∂L ∂ qi ˙ ∂L . Example: Simple pendulum revisited Find the equation of motion for a simple pendulum. Note that to find this equation of motion. that in general the pi and Fi are not components of the momentum vector p and the force vector F — we shall see this explicitly in the examples below. we have not needed expressions for the polar components of acceleration.5. we find 1 ˙ L = T − V = 2 ml2 θ2 − mgl(1 − cos θ).1. To see how this works in a simple case. let us return to the simple pendulum discussed in §2. We can also apply these equations to the polar coordinates discussed in §3.41).45) so that the equations (3. Using the potential energy function (2. however. as we would to derive it directly from Newton’s laws. ˙ ∂θ and Lagrange’s equation yields ¨ ml2 θ = −mgl sin θ. ˙ (3.44) read pi = Fi .46) It must be emphasized. ∂qi pi = and Fi = (3. we may define the generalized momenta and generalized forces. Thus ∂L ˙ = ml2 θ. In the cylindrical polar case. the derivatives of the kinetic energy ∂L = −mgl sin θ.9). nor have we needed to introduce the tension in the rod.

Jz . dt ∂z (3. using the derivatives of the kinetic energy function (3. whenever qi is an angle.31) are ∂T = mρ. then the second of Eqs. One must be careful.Energy and Angular Momentum 65 function (3. when using the notation pϕ to specify whether this is the ϕ component of the momentum vector p or the ϕ generalized momentum. ˙ dt ∂r d ∂V ˙ (mr2 θ) = mr2 sin θ cos θ ϕ2 − . rather than linear. It is easy to see that. ˙ ∂z ˙ ∂T = 0. ˙ ∂ρ ˙ ∂T = mρϕ2 . momentum. Proceeding in a similar way. we can write down the equations of motion in spherical polars. and is a constant if V is indepen˙ dent of ϕ. it is in fact the ϕ component of . the angular momentum Jz about the z-axis. Note that when the potential energy is independent of ϕ. Since it is equal to the radial distance r multiplied ˙ by the θ component of momentum. ˙ ∂ϕ ˙ ∂T = 0. ˙ dt ∂ϕ (3. The generalized momentum mr 2 θ also has the dimensions of angular momentum. We find ∂V d ˙ (mr) = mr(θ2 + sin2 θ ϕ2 ) − ˙ . ˙ dt ∂θ d ∂V (mr2 sin2 θ ϕ) = − . in fact.44) take the form d ∂V (mρ) = mρϕ2 − ˙ ˙ . the generalized momentum mρ2 ϕ is an angular momentum. mrθ. However. ∂ϕ ∂T = mz.47) expresses the fact that the component Jz of angular momentum is conserved. ˙ ∂ρ ∂T = mρ2 ϕ. the corresponding generalized momentum pi has the dimensions of angular. (3.47) The generalized momenta mρ and mz corresponding to the co-ordinates ˙ ˙ ρ and z are the components of the momentum vector p in the ρ and z ˙ directions. dt ∂ρ d ∂V (mρ2 ϕ) = − .32). ˙ dt ∂ϕ d ∂V (mz) = − ˙ . ∂z Hence Lagrange’s equations (3. the generalized momentum mr 2 sin2 θ ϕ is the component of ˙ angular momentum Jz about the z-axis.48) Once again.

T = r · F . if the particle is originally moving in the ‘equatorial’ plane. ϕ will always be zero. then by the ˙ third of Eqs.49) This shows incidentally that the magnitude of a central. and only if.) Thus the force will be purely radial if. then from the second equation it follows that θ is always 2 π . 3. it will be useful to discuss briefly the special case of a central conservative force.66 Classical Mechanics angular momentum. (3. as is the case for a central force. like the z-axis. The potential energy function (3. through the polar axis. Jϕ . the plane polar co-ordinates are r and ϕ. Jϕ is not in general a constant. V is independent of both angular variables θ and ϕ. If it is chosen so that ϕ = 0 initially. that even when V is independent of both angular variables θ and ϕ. and that the motion is confined to a plane. The force is conservative if it has the form . in which r and θ play the role of ˙ plane polar co-ordinates. r ∂θ Fϕ = − 1 ∂V . Note. In spherical polars.4 that the angular momentum vector J in this case is a constant.50). dr (3. conservative force depends only on r. not on θ or ϕ. however.9) of the three-dimensional harmonic oscillator is an example. (3. Similarly. The angular momentum J = Jϕ = mr2 θ is then a constant. Then we have F = −ˆ r dV (r) . In this case. the component Jϕ may vary. This is because the ϕ direction is not a fixed direction in space. Thus.48).8 Summary The rate of change of kinetic energy of a particle is the rate at which the ˙ ˙ force does work. r sin θ ∂ϕ (See (A. and the angular 2 ˙ momentum is J = Jz = mr2 ϕ. Before concluding this section. ˙ θ = π with θ = 0. which is treated in detail in the following chapter. even when J is a fixed vector.48). ∂r Fθ = − 1 ∂V . The equations of motion are considerably simplified by an appropriate choice of the polar axis θ = 0. but changes according to the position of the particle. We know from the discussion of §3. by the second of Eqs. the components of the force F (not the generalized forces) are given in terms of the potential by Fr = − ∂V . The motion is then in a plane ˙ ϕ = constant.

Repeat the calculations of Problem 2 for the force in 1(b). they provide all the information we need to determine the motion of the particle. 4. we shall see that the method can readily and usefully be extended to more complicated systems than a single particle. When the force is central. (f) F = a(a · r). J = r ∧ F . and for those that are find the corresponding potential energy function (a and b are constants. Fz = ax. (d) F = a ∧ r. The condition for the existence of such a function is that F should be a function of position such that ∇ ∧ F = 0. Fθ = ar cos θ sin ϕ. as soon as we have found the expressions for the kinetic energy and potential energy. Find which of the following forces are conservative. Fϕ = ar cos ϕ. Compute the work done in taking a particle around the circle x2 + y 2 = . Fy = az. and in that case the total energy T + V is a constant. Lagrange’s equations are of great importance in advanced treatments of classical mechanics (and also in quantum mechanics). We have seen that they can be used to write down equations of motion in any system of coordinates. Fz = ay + bz 2 . Then the motion is confined to a plane. and a is a constant vector): (a) Fx = ax + by 2 . the angular momentum is conserved.Energy and Angular Momentum 67 F = −∇V (r). 0): (i) by moving first along the x-axis and then parallel to the y-axis. The use of these conservation laws greatly simplifies the treatment of any problem involving central or conservative forces. and (ii) by going in a straight line. 3. Verify that the result in each case is equal to minus the change in the potential energy function. In later chapters. (b) Fx = ay. 2. evaluate the work done in taking a particle from the origin to the point (1. 1. Fy = az + 2bxy. When the force is both central and conservative. Given that the force is as in Problem 1(a). (c) Fr = 2ar sin θ sin ϕ. and the rate of sweeping out area in this plane is a constant. as we shall see in the following chapter. Problems 1. (e) F = ra. The rate of change of angular momentum of a particle is equal to the ˙ moment of the force.

7.68 Classical Mechanics a2 . A projectile is launched with velocity 100 m s−1 at 60◦ to the horizontal. *Show that in the limit of strong damping (large γ) the time of flight of a projectile (on level ground) is approximately t ≈ (w/g + 1/γ)(1 − e−1−γw/g ). Atmospheric drag is negligible. assuming negligible atmospheric resistance. you may use the zeroth-order approximation for the angle. and (b) F = xi. (Note that this requires terms up to order γ 3 in the logarithm. What do you conclude about these forces? (Use the parametrization x = a cos ϕ. (Hint : In the term containing γ.) 5. show that the range of the projectile (measured horizontally) is x= 2v 2 sin(α − β) cos α . The other end of the string is passed through a small hole and is . Given that the ground slopes at an angle β. 20◦ and 10◦ . 6. z = 0. where c is a constant. y = a sin ϕ.17). *By expanding the logarithm in (3. and also in spherical polars. 10. For a projectile launched at 800 m s−1 with γ = 0. g 3g 2 and hence that to maximize the range for given launch speed v the angle √ of launch should be chosen to satisfy cos 2α = 2γv/3g. z = 0 if the force is (a) F = yi. Find the maximum height attained and the range. *Find the equation for the trajectory of a projectile launched with velocity v at an angle α to the horizontal.) Show that to this order the range (on level ground) is x= 2uw 8γuw2 − .) For a projectile whose terminal speed if dropped from rest (see Chapter 2. and verify that it satisfies ∇ ∧ F = 0. 9. estimate the range for launch angles of 30◦ . A particle of mass m is attached to the end of a light string of length l. g cos β At what angle should the projectile be launched to achieve the maximum range? 8. What other angle of launch would give the same range? Find the time of flight in each of the two cases. Show that to the same order of accuracy the range is x ≈ (u/γ)(1 − e−1−γw/g ). Problem 13) would be 500 m s−1 . Write your answer in vector notation.1 s−1 . Evaluate the force corresponding to the potential energy function V (r) = cz/r3 . find the approximate equation for the trajectory of a projectile subject to small atmospheric drag to first order in γ. estimate the optimal angle and the range if the launch speed is 100 m s−1 .

and to find v in terms of the various parameters of the system. which is horizontal. A small block of mass m is placed on its upper face. A particle of mass m is attached to the end of a light spring of equilibrium length a. (Compare your results with those in Problem 12. 14. The particle is originally spinning round the hole with angular velocity ω. In the system of Problem 12. Use the energy conservation equation to find the angular velocity as a function of θ. Write down the equations of motion in polar co-ordinates.Energy and Angular Momentum 69 11. Show that there is a limiting tension F0 such that if F < F0 the motion is oscillatory. and the kinetic energy of the system. Initially the system is at rest and the particle is given an impulse that starts it moving at right angles to the spring with velocity v. Using conservation of momentum and the equation for the rate of change of kinetic energy. instead of a fixed tension applied to the string. and find the angle at which this occurs. Gravity is negligible. ¨ *A light rigid cylinder of radius 2a is able to rotate freely about its axis. Given that the maximum radial distance attained is 2a. . Find also the angular acceleration and the tension in the string. A particle of mass m is fixed to the cylinder at a distance a from the axis and is initially at rest at its lowest point. slowly pulled through it. whose other end is fixed. Write down the horizontal component of momentum. Estimate the value of F0 by numerical approximation. Find also the values of r when r = a and when r = 2a. which is also smooth and inclined at an angle α to the horizontal. 13. Find also the 2 tension in the string when its length is r. A light string is wound on the cylinder. but if F > F0 it continues to accelerate. in terms of the velocity v of the wedge and the velocity u of the small block relative to it. and a steady tension F applied to it. Find the angular velocity when the string length has been reduced to 1 l. and verify that the increase in kinetic energy is equal to the work done by the force pulling the string through the hole.) Show that there is a point at which the tension falls to zero. 12. What happens immediately beyond this point? A wedge-shaped block of mass M rests on a smooth horizontal table. The tension in the spring is k times its extension. Find the angular acceleration and angular velocity of the cylinder after it has turned through an angle θ. a weight of mass m/2 is hung on it. The system is released from rest. use the energy and angular momentum conservation laws to determine the velocity at that point. so that the spring is free to rotate in a horizontal plane.

Given that M = 1 kg and m = 250 g. To complete the integration. Show that the time taken is z1 0 1 + (dx/dz)2 2gz 2 1/2 dz. Problem . 15. and hence that for a minimum dx dz = c2 z . This problem was first posed by Johann Bernoulli on New Year’s Day 1697 as an open challenge. It is in fact an example of a cycloid.70 Classical Mechanics find the accelerations of the blocks. the locus of a point on the rim of a circle of radius 1/2c2 being rolled beneath the x-axis. *The position on the surface of a cone of semi-vertical angle α is specified by the distance r from the vertex and the azimuth angle ϕ about the axis. find the angle α that will maximize the acceleration of the wedge. Newton’s brilliant solution method initiated the calculus of variations. Find the shape of the curve that will minimize the time taken between two given points. Bernoulli had an equally brilliant idea. = dϕ2 dϕ dϕ dr dr The substitution u2 = v then reduces the equation to a linear form that may be solved by using an integrating factor (see Chapter 2. using an optical analogy with refraction of a light ray through a sequence of plates and Fermat’s principle of least time. Show that the shortest path (or geodesic) along the surface between two given points is specified by a function r(ϕ) obeying the equation r d2 r −2 dϕ2 dr dϕ 2 − r2 sin2 α = 0. 1 − c2 z where c is an integration constant. [Take the origin as the starting point and the z axis downwards. and writing dr du du d2 r du = =u .] 16. [The equation may be solved by the standard technique of introducing a new dependent variable u = dr/dϕ. *A particle starts from rest and slides down a smooth curve under gravity. where r0 and ϕ0 are constants. Show that the solution is r = r0 sec[(ϕ − ϕ0 ) sin α]. This famous curve is known as the brachistochrone. use the substitution z = c−2 sin2 θ.

Hence show that ∂er /∂θ = eθ and ∂eθ /∂θ = −er . q2 . *Find the corresponding formulae for ∂ei /∂qj for spherical polar coordinates. *By comparing the Euler–Lagrange equations with the corresponding components of the equation of motion m¨ = −∇V . write down (a) the kinetic energy T in terms of the generalized velocities qi . *Find the geodesics on a sphere of unit radius. η) in a plane are defined by ξ = r + x. will the particle. ∂qi Use this result to identify the components of the acceleration in cylindrical and spherical polars. By starting with r = rer and differentiating. Show that the kinetic energy of a particle of mass m is T = m (ξ + η) 8 ˙ ξ2 η2 ˙ + ξ η . (Here ei is a unit vector in the direction of increasing qi . to calculate ϕ = (1/u)dr. Hence find the equations of motion. (b) the generalized momentum ˙ pi and (c) the component ei · p of the momentum vector p in the qi direction. and look for the path ϕ = ϕ(θ). 19. . To perform the integration.] 18.. θ. Find the positions of equilibrium (a) if c > g. 20. [Hint : Use θ as independent variable. write the unit vectors er ˆ (= r) and eθ in terms of i and j. 22.e. one may use the substitution r = 1/x. Finally. For the case of plane polar co-ordinates r. determine whether the equilibrium is stable (i. Write down the equations of motion in polar co-ordinates for a particle of unit mass moving in a plane under a force with potential energy function V = −k ln r + cr + gr cos θ.Energy and Angular Momentum 71 13). Find x and y in terms of ξ and η. where k. and the element of length in the qi direction is hi dqi . q3 are orthogonal curvilinear co-ordinates. 23. tend to return repeatedly?).) 21. By considering the equations of motion near these points. and (b) if c < g. and hence verify the results obtained in Problem 21. c and g are positive constants. if given a small displacement. use the substitution x = cot θ. show that the r component of the acceleration vector in the qi direction is ¨ ei · r = d 1 mhi dt ∂T ∂ qi ˙ − ∂T . η = r − x.] 17. rederive the expressions for the components of the velocity and acceleration vectors. *Parabolic co-ordinates (ξ. If q1 .

2 Hence write down the equations of motion. y = c sinh λ sin θ. Show that the kinetic energy function may be written ˙ ˙ T = 1 mc2 (cosh2 λ − cos2 θ)(λ2 + θ2 ). To find the maxima and minima of an integral I. . *The motion of a particle in a plane may be described in terms of elliptic co-ordinates λ. *A curve of given total length is drawn in a plane between the points (±a. the shape in which a uniform heavy chain hangs between two fixed supports. subject to the condition that the total length is fixed. find the shape that will enclose the largest possible area between the curve and the x-axis. θ defined by x = c cosh λ cos θ. *The method of Lagrange multipliers (see Appendix A. 0). [The required shape is the one that minimizes the total potential energy. 0 ≤ θ ≤ 2π). Solve this equation by introducing the new variable u = y and solving for u(y). we have to find the stationary points of the integral I − λJ under variations of the function y(x) and of the parameter λ. Problem 11) can be extended to the calculus of variations. (λ ≥ 0. subject to the condition that another integral J = 0. Using the method of Problem 25.72 Classical Mechanics 24. where c is a positive constant. 25. Show that this leads to a variational problem with f (y.] 26. Apply this method to find the catenary. y ) = (y − λ) 1 + y 2 . and hence to the equation (y − λ)y = 1 + y 2 .

This oscillator is called isotropic because all directions (not only those along the axes!) are equivalent. with k constant.2. The corresponding equation of motion is m¨ + kr = 0.1) The equation of motion for each co-ordinate is thus identical with the equation (2. but with different constants in the three equations.1 The Isotropic Harmonic Oscillator We consider a particle moving under the action of a central restoring force proportional to its distance from the origin. y m¨ + kz = 0. 73 . F = −kr. r or. x m¨ + ky = 0. which obey the ‘inverse square law’.13) for the simple harmonic oscillator. We begin. by discussing a problem for which it is particularly easy to solve the equations of motion — the three-dimensional analogue of the harmonic oscillator discussed in §2. 4. Much of this chapter will therefore be devoted to this special case. however.Chapter 4 Central Conservative Forces The most important forces of this type are the gravitational and electrostatic forces. z (4. m¨ + kx = 0. The anisotropic oscillator (which we shall not discuss) is described by similar equations. in terms of components.

1) — or (3.19): x = cx cos ωt + dx sin ωt.9). the solution is r = c cos ωt + d sin ωt. but equivalent. where ω 2 = k/m. namely 1 V = 2 kr2 = 1 k(x2 + y 2 + z 2 ). (Other forms of the solution can be given. z = cz cos ωt + dz sin ωt. Using ˙ r = −ωc sin ωt + ωd cos ωt.20) or (2.4) which is obviously a constant. 2 (4. The potential energy function corresponding to the force (4. the motion is periodic.2) in a slightly different. From (4. we find 1 1 ˙ E = 2 mr 2 + 1 kr 2 = 1 k(c2 + d2 ) = 2 mv 2 + 1 kr2 . form. it is convenient to rewrite (4. To find the shape of the particle orbit. 0 0 2 2 2 (4. (4. If θ is any fixed angle.5) Thus. (4. (4.3) We can easily verify the conservation laws for angular momentum and energy.7) . In vector notation.2) Clearly.74 Classical Mechanics The general solution is again given by (2. we can write r = a cos(ωt − θ) + b sin(ωt − θ). so that the direction of J is fixed. the arbitrary constant vectors c and d can be fixed by the initial conditions.6) which is again a constant. with period τ = 2π/ω. evaluating the energy. we find explicitly ˙ J = mr ∧ r = mωc ∧ d = mr 0 ∧ v 0 .10) — is just (3. d = v 0 /ω.23). then c = r0. If at t = 0 the particle is at r 0 and moving with velocity v 0 .) As in the one-dimensional case. analogous to (2. y = cy cos ωt + dy sin ωt.2) it is clear that r always lies in the plane of c and d. (4.

It is x2 y2 + 2 = 1.7) then becomes x = a cos(ωt − θ). z = 0. (4. b = −c sin θ + d cos θ.9) This is the well-known equation of an ellipse with centre at the origin. and semi-axes a and b. or. Equation (4. We can now choose θ so that a and b are perpendicular. a = c cos θ + d sin θ. The equation of the orbit is obtained by eliminating the time from these equations. d = a sin θ + b cos θ.Central Conservative Forces 75 where c = a cos θ − b sin θ. (B. b O d a c α v0 Fig. and Fig.8) We are now free to choose our axes so that the x-axis is in the direction of a and the y-axis in the direction of b.1 . This requires 0 = a · b = −(c2 − d2 ) sin θ cos θ + c · d(cos2 θ − sin2 θ). c2 − d2 (4. (See Appendix B.1.2). y = b sin(ωt − θ).) The vectors c and d are what is known in geometry as a pair of conjugate semi-diameters of the ellipse. Eq. or tan 2θ = 2c · d . 4. a2 b z = 0. equivalently. 4.

conservative force. According to the discussion of §3. Equating the expressions for these quantities. from c and d) is to use the constancy of E and J. Hence eliminating b (or a) between these two equations.76 Classical Mechanics The simplest way to determine the magnitudes of the semi-axes a and b from the initial conditions (that is.) If α is the angle between c and d. and one for angular momentum ˙ mr ∧ r = J = constant.7. 4.4. ˙ mr2 θ = J. to the corresponding expressions in terms of a and b.11) A great deal of information about the motion can be obtained directly from these equations. one for energy.10) Conventionally.6) and (4. the second of these laws implies that the motion is confined to a plane. the second equation yields ab = cd sin α. (These equations may also be obtained directly from (4.8). so that the problem is effectively twodimensional.4). (4. There are two conservation laws. It corresponds. to a potential energy function V (r) depending only on the radial co-ordinate r. a is taken to be the larger root. we obtain for a2 (or b2 ) the quadratic equation a4 − (c2 + d2 )a2 + c2 d2 sin2 α = 0. θ in this plane. (4.2 The Conservation Laws We now consider the general case of a central. a ∧ b = c ∧ d. we obtain a2 + b2 = c2 + d2 . and called the semi-major axis. 1 ˙2 2 mr + V (r) = E = constant. we may write the two conservation laws in the form 1 ˙2 2 m(r ˙ + r2 θ2 ) + V (r) = E. (4. as we saw in §3. Introducing polar co-ordinates r. without actually having to solve them to find r and .

We note that θ may be eliminated to yield an equation involving only r and r: ˙ 1 ˙2 2 mr + J2 + V (r) = E. it has precisely the same form as the one-dimensional energy equation with an effective potential energy function U (r) = J2 + V (r). let us consider again the case of the isotropic harmonic oscillator. It has a minimum (corresponding . expressed in terms of the constant J ˙ rather than the variable θ. Since r 2 ˙ is positive.13) It is easy to understand the physical significance of the extra term J 2 /2mr2 in this ‘potential energy’ function. For a given value of J. This ˙ is precisely the ‘centrifugal force’ mr θ2 (the first term on the right hand side of the radial equation in (3.2.2 a r As an example. 2mr2 (4. U E b Fig.Central Conservative Forces 77 ˙ θ as functions of the time.1. 2mr2 (4. 4.14) The maximum and minimum radial distances are given by the values of r for which the equality holds. the motion is limited to the range of values of r for which U (r) = J2 + V (r) ≤ E. It corresponds to a ‘force’ J 2 /mr3 . We can use the radial energy equation just as we did in §2.12) We shall call this the radial energy equation. 2mr2 (4. for which V (r) = 1 kr2 . The corresponding effective potential 2 energy function U (r) is shown in Fig. 4.48)).

this is identical with the equation (4.15) by equating the attractive force kr to the centrifugal force in the circular orbit. It is interesting to note that we could also obtain (4. then the values of E and J are 2 2 1 E = 2 mv0 + 1 kr0 . the motion is confined to the region b ≤ r ≤ a between the two limiting values of r. 4.10) found previously. Thus the equation whose roots are a and b becomes (on multiplying by 2r2 /k) 2 r4 − r0 + m 2 2 m 2 2 2 v r + r0 v0 sin α = 0.14). the particle must move in a circle around the origin. and moving with velocity v0 in a direction making an angle α with the radius vector (as in Fig. 2 2mr r (4. For any larger value of E. 4. In this case. and r is fixed at the minimum position. in the first case. attractive. given by the solutions of the equality in (4. r must always be ˙ zero. The corresponding potential energy function is V (r) = k/r. The constant k may be either positive or negative. r2 where k is a constant. 2 J = mr0 v0 sin α.1).15) When the value of E is equal to the minimum value of U . 2mr2 r J2 k + .78 Classical Mechanics to a position of stable equilibrium in the one-dimensional case) at r= J2 mk 1/4 . J 2 /mr3 . the force is repulsive. The radial energy equation for this case is 1 ˙2 2 mr + J2 k + = E.3). k 0 k By (4.3 The Inverse Square Law We now consider a force F = k ˆ r. If the particle is initially at a distance r0 from the origin. (4. and in the second.16) It corresponds to the ‘effective potential energy’ function U (r) = .

Initially it is approaching the centre of force with velocity v (at a large distance) along a path which. (See Fig. Thus it has no minima. the particle must follow an orbit on which r decreases to r1 (at which point the velocity is purely transverse).) Since the particle starts from a great distance. the orbit is actually a hyperbola. 4. (4. (Note that we have chosen the arbitrary additive constant in V so that V (∞) = 0. there is a minimum value of r. and then increases again without limit. Example: Distance of closest approach A charged particle of charge q moves in the field of a fixed point charge q . as is physically obvious. with qq > 0. would pass the centre at a distance b. Then U (r) decreases monotonically from +∞ at r = 0 to 0 at r = ∞ (see Fig. 4. and circular U E r1 Fig. As is well known. if continued in a straight line.17) .4. r1 say.3 r motion is impossible. but no maximum value. This distance b is known as the impact parameter. and as we shall show in the next section. Let us consider an example. Find the distance of closest approach. If the radial velocity is initially inward.) Thus the total energy is simply 1 E = 2 mv 2 .3). which is the unique positive root of U (r) = E. and will appear frequently in our future work. For any positive value of E. its initial potential energy is negligible.Central Conservative Forces 79 Repulsive case We suppose first that k > 0. 4.

4π 0 mv 2 (4.20) Attractive case We now suppose that k < 0. (4.4 Moreover. 4. with the dimensions of length. into the radial energy equation. . and then setting r = 0.21) Then the effective potential energy function is U (r) = |k| l 1 − 2r2 r . the angular momentum is J = mvb. It will be useful to define a quantity l. This yields ˙ 2 r1 − 2ar1 − b2 = 0. m|k| (4. (4. and k = qq /4π 0 .80 Classical Mechanics m v r1 Θ b Fig. as in the gravitational case. r1 . by l= J2 .18) The distance of closest approach. since the component of r perpendicular to v is b. is obtained by substituting these values. where a= qq .19) The required solution is the positive root r1 = a + a2 + b 2 .

4. the orbit is in fact an ellipse. ml (4. 2l This is the minimum value of U . |k| < E < 0. As we shall see.5 Here.5. 4. We may distinguish four cases: |k| .22) This can also be found by equating the attractive force |k|/l 2 to the ‘centrifugal force’ mv 2 /l. with minimum value U (l) = −|k|/2l. Note the interesting result that for a circular orbit the potential energy is always twice as large in magnitude as the kinetic energy (see Problem 21). 2l This case is illustrated by the lower line (E) in Fig. different types of motion are possible according to the value of E. 2l whence v= |k| .5. and U (r) has a minimum at 2 r = l. Since the potential energy is V = −|k|/l. r must always be zero. and ˙ the particle must move in a circle of radius l. Evidently. U ( 1 l) = 0. Hence. The radial distance is limited between a minimum distance r1 and a maximum distance r2 . 4. U E′ r E |k| 2l r1′ l r1 2 l r2 Fig. we must have (a) E=− T = |k| . (b) − .Central Conservative Forces 81 It is plotted in Fig. It is easy to find the orbital velocity v from the kinetic energy T = E − V .

we compute the escape velocity from the Earth. Now. r1 = 2 l. with kinetic energy tending to zero at large distances.24) Thus E = 1 mv 2 − Rgm. 1 In this case. or equivalently that its velocity exceeds the escape velocity. but the maximum distance r2 is infinite. (4. Again. and how does this depend on the angle of launch? Suppose the projectile is launched with velocity v at an angle α to the vertical. there is a minimum distance. (d) E > 0. however. To express the energy in terms of more familiar quantities. R2 from which we obtain the useful result mg = GM = R2 g.82 Classical Mechanics (c) E = 0. As a simple example of the use of these equations. The orbit will be shown to be a parabola. (4. . the particle can escape to infinity with non-zero limiting velocity. ve = 2Rg. 4. J = mRv sin α. Thus the particle has just enough energy to escape to infinity. The projectile will escape to infinity provided 2 that E ≥ 0. Example: Escape velocity What is the minimum velocity with which a projectile launched from the surface of the Earth (taken to be a sphere of mass M and radius R) can escape. The orbit is in fact a hyperbola.23) R where G is Newton’s gravitational constant. This corresponds to the upper line (E ) in Fig. there is a minimum distance but no maximum distance. we note that the gravitational force on a particle at the Earth’s surface is 1 E = 2 mv 2 − GM m . The energy and angular momentum are GM m .5.

If the projectile is launched with a speed less than escape velocity.23) for E and J. it will reach a maximum height and then fall back.2 km s−1 .9 km s−1 . The circular orbit velocity. Example: Maximum height of projectile If the launch speed v is equal to the circular orbit speed vc in an orbit just above the Earth’s surface. This example illustrates the kind of problem which may readily be solved by using the radial energy equation. Using the values R = 6370 km. so that r2 = R(1 + cos α). and not in the polar angle θ or the time t. how high will the projectile reach for a given angle of launch α? The maximum distance r2 from the centre is the larger root of the equation U (r) = E. the orbit is nearly a circle of radius R.) The problem of finding this distance provides another useful example. Energy levels of the hydrogen atom This is not a problem that can be solved by the methods of classical mechanics alone. (2Rg − v 2 )r2 − 2R2 gr + R2 v 2 sin2 α = 0. (This is a generalization of the problem discussed in §3. by (4. it is less.Central Conservative Forces 83 Note that this condition is independent of the angle of launch α (so long as we neglect atmospheric drag). However.81 m s−2 . Thus the equation reduces to r2 − 2Rr + R2 sin2 α = 0.24). and in the limit of an almost horizontal launch. or. is vc = Rg = 7. the energy levels derived from quantum mechanics can . with the values (4. g = 9.22) and (4. For any other angle.2. the maximum distance is 2R. For a vertical launch. It is particularly useful when we are interested only in r. we find for the escape velocity from the Earth ve = 11.

or minus the charge on the electron. where e is the electric charge on the proton.29 × 10−11 m. Now 1 dr du =− 2 . In the case of circular orbits. the electron in an atom cannot occupy any orbit. historically. θ = −r2 θ dθ dθ m dθ . dθ r dθ whence r= ˙ dr ˙ ˙ du = − J du . me2 The corresponding energy levels are En = − e2 e2 1 =− 2 . but only a certain discrete set of orbits.11). to obtain an equation relating r and θ. an = 4π 0 J 2 = n 2 a1 .4 Orbits We now turn to the problem of determining the orbit of a particle moving under a central conservative force. (4. The simplest way of doing this is to work not with r itself. According to Bohr’s ‘old quantum theory’. The constant k in this case is k = −e2 /4π 0 . the quantization rule he imposed was that the angular momentum J be an integer multiple of (Planck’s constant divided by 2π).21). Indeed.84 Classical Mechanics also be obtained by imposing on the classical orbits an ad hoc ‘quantization rule’. This can be done by eliminating the time from the two conservation equations. as determined from the spectrum of hydrogen. but with the variable u = 1/r. by (4. 4. the radius of the first Bohr orbit (usually denoted by a0 ). me2 where a1 . and look for an equation determining u as a function of θ. is a1 = 4π 0 2 = 5. this is how they were first obtained. 8π 0 an n 8π 0 a1 These values agree well with the energies of atomic transitions. Thus for J = n the radius an of the orbit is.

where θ0 is an arbitrary constant of integration. it can have a solution only when the the right hand side is positive. multiplying (4. replacing u by 1/r and multiplying by r. |k| where the upper sign refers to the repulsive case.Central Conservative Forces 85 Thus substituting for r in the radial energy equation (4. We shall consider explicitly only the case of the inverse square law. to define the length parameter l= J2 m|k| (4. To solve this equation. Thus finally. |k| (4. we multiply both sides by l and add 1 to ‘complete the square’. defining a new dimensionless constant e. We now introduce the new variable z = lu ± 1. dθ dθ Then we may write the equation as dz dθ 2 + z2 = 2El + 1 = e2 . we obtain ˙ J2 2m du dθ 2 + J2 2 u + V = E. It will be useful.26) Then. for which V = ku. we obtain l du dθ 2 + lu2 ± 2u = 2E . so that du dz =l .25) in which of course V is to be regarded as a function of 1/u. if not analytically) to give the equation of the orbit.27) say.25) by 2/|k|. This equation can be integrated (numerically. 2m (4. in the . as in the preceding section. Note that since the left hand side is a sum of squares. in agreement with our earlier result that the minimum value of E is −|k|/2l. We shall treat both cases k > 0 and k < 0 together.12). by writing V = ±|k|u. The general solution of this equation is z = lu ± 1 = e cos(θ − θ0 ). we find that the orbit equation is. k < 0. and the lower to the attractive case. k > 0.

e must be greater than unity. In the repulsive case.86 Classical Mechanics repulsive case r[e cos(θ − θ0 ) − 1] = l. the orbit is then the circle r = l. r can become infinite when the square bracket vanishes. determines its scale. called the semi-latus rectum. it is better to use the orbit equation directly in polar form.28) These are the polar equations of conic sections. e = 0 when E has its minimum value. So long as e < 1. the constant l also has a simple geometrical meaning. The constant e. Thus the orbit is closed. (k < 0) (4. and there is a value of r for every θ. r = l when θ = θ0 ± 2 π. a2 b where a= l |k| = 1 − e2 2|E| and b2 = al = J2 2m|E| (4. In the attractive case. This is in agreement with our previous conclusion that the particle will escape to infinity if and only if its total energy is positive. since otherwise the square bracket in (4. E must be positive. and θ0 its orientation relative to the coordinate axes. Thus θ0 specifies the direction of the point of closest approach. Note that r takes its minimum value when θ = θ0 . Elliptic orbits (E < 0. It is the radial distance 1 at right angles to this direction. that is. by (4. however. or E ≥ 0.28) is always negative. In the attractive case. l. When e ≥ 1. determines the shape of the orbit.29) is always positive. −|k|/2l. or E < 0. It is. straightforward to rewrite it in the possibly more familiar Cartesian form (see Appendix B). the square bracket in (4. we obtain after some algebra (x + ae)2 y2 + 2 = 1. 0 ≤ e < 1) For most applications. If we choose the axes so that θ0 = 0. referred to a focus as origin (see Appendix B). the eccentricity. Therefore. and in the attractive case r[e cos(θ − θ0 ) + 1] = l.29) (k > 0) (4.27).30) .

while the semi-latus rectum l is fixed by the angular momentum J.30).26) and (4. 4.26) between angular momentum and rate of sweeping out area. 0). τ 2π and thus τ 2π 2 2 = m 2 a2 b 2 m2 a3 l . τ 2π 2 = a3 .6 determined by the value of the energy E.6) It is useful to note that the semi-major axis a is b a ae l Fig. |k| (4. = 2 J m|k|l = m 3 a . The time taken by the particle to traverse any part of its orbit may be found from the relation (3. and semi-axes a and b. GM (4. J dA = . . since the area of the ellipse is A = πab. In particular.22) that this gives the correct period for a circular orbit of radius a. (See Fig. and multiply by 2m/J.31) (It is easy to verify directly from (4. the orbital period is τ = 2mπab/J. 4.32) This yields Kepler’s third law of planetary motion: the square of the orbital period is proportional to the cube of the semi-major axis. dt 2m All we have to do is to evaluate the area swept out by the radius vector. Thus by (4.) For a planet or satellite orbiting a central body of mass M .Central Conservative Forces 87 This is the equation of an ellipse with centre at (−ae.

4.) One branch of the hyperbola (on the left in the figure) corresponds to the orbit in the attractive case and the other to the orbit in the repulsive case.0167. and l by l ae b Θ a Fig. 4. 4.6 that the areas swept out by the position vector of the Earth in the two halves are equal to half the area of the ellipse ± the area of a triangle with base 2b and height ae. Hyperbolic orbits (E > 0. 2mE (4. namely 1 πab ± aeb. 0) and semi-axes a and b. how much longer does it spend in one half than the other? The eccentricity of Earth’s orbit is e = 0. It is clear from Fig.88 Classical Mechanics Example: Time spent in the two halves of Earth’s orbit If the Earth’s orbit is divided in two by its minor axis. e > 1) For both the repulsive and attractive cases. Thus the times 2 taken are ( 1 ± e/π) years. (See Fig. As before.88 days. 2 a b where a= |k| l = e2 − 1 2E and b2 = al = J2 .7 . a is determined by the energy E. the Cartesian equation of the orbit is (x − ae)2 y2 − 2 = 1.33) This is the equation of a hyperbola with centre at (+ae.7. 2 or 3. The difference between the two is 2e/π years.

this gives 1 b2 = a2 (e2 − 1) = a2 [sec2 1 (π − Θ) − 1] = a2 cot2 2 Θ.17) and (4.34) This angle Θ is called the scattering angle. we have a = |k|/mv 2 .E . It follows that the comet’s velocity v when it crosses the Earth’s orbit is given by 2 1 2 mv = GMS m 2 = mvc. θ = ±[π − arccos(1/e)]. θ = ± arccos(1/e). 2 But also from (4. therefore. (4. Note that by (4. For later use.35) |k| 1 cot 2 Θ.18). aE using (4. From (4. Example: Orbit of a comet The minimum distance of a comet from the Sun is half the radius of the Earth’s orbit (assumed circular). Hence the energy is 2 E = 2mvc.E − 2GMS m = 0. and.33).Central Conservative Forces 89 the angular momentum J. it will be helpful to find the relation between the impact parameter b. in the attractive case. The directions in which r becomes infinite are. Thus we (4.34). using E = obtain b= 1 2 2 mv . In both cases. 2 Substituting in (4. the angle through which the particle is deflected from its original direction of motion is Θ = π − 2 arccos(1/e). Will the comet subsequently escape from the solar system? What kind of orbit does it follow? At perihelion. and the limiting velocity v at infinity. aE . the scattering angle Θ.33). Find its velocity when it crosses the Earth’s orbit. the semi-minor axis b is identical with the impact parameter introduced earlier.E . and its velocity at that point is twice the orbital velocity of the Earth. r = aE /2 and v = 2vc. we have e = sec 1 (π−Θ). mv 2 Let us complete this section by considering a rather special orbit.22). in the repulsive case. and the angle at which the orbits cross.

4. hard (that is. We suppose that it impinges on the target with velocity v and impact parameter b. Then. whence by (4. The angular momentum is J = maE vc. corresponding to a potential V (r) which is zero for r > R. Then the number of particles which strike the target in unit time is w = f σ.E . 4. namely σ = πR2 .36) Now let us consider one of these particles.8.5 Scattering Cross-sections One of the most important ways of obtaining information about the structure of small bodies (for example atomic nuclei) is to bombard them with particles and measure the number of particles scattered in various directions. the number of particles crossing unit area normal to the beam direction per unit time. We shall consider first a particularly simple case. Let the particle flux in the beam.26). as is clear from Fig. and that a uniform.E . (4. Its orbit is a parabola. The force on the particle is an impulsive central conservative force. parallel beam of particles impinges on it.90 Classical Mechanics √ whence v = 2vc. Thus the angle α at which the orbits cross is given by maE v cos α = J = maE vc. and rises very sharply in the neighbourhood of r = R. Since E = 0. we must know how to calculate the expected angular distribution when the forces are known. Let us take the . perfectly elastic) sphere of radius R. which yields α = 45◦ . The angular distribution of scattered particles will depend on the shape of the target and on the nature of the forces between the particles and the target. l = aE .E . that is. it will hit the target at an angle α to the normal given by b = R sin α. where σ is the cross-sectional area presented by the target. Thus the kinetic energy and angular momentum must be the same before and after the collision.37) (4. To be able to interpret the results of such an experiment. be f . We suppose that the target is a fixed. the comet has just enough energy to escape from the solar system.

4.Central Conservative Forces 91 α α Θ R b z Fig.8 positive z direction (θ = 0) to be the direction of motion of the incoming particles. (4.) Consider now a cross-section of the incoming beam. it follows that the particle will bounce off the sphere at an angle to the normal equal to the incident angle α. the particle must move in a plane ϕ = constant. from angular momentum conservation. where 1 db = − 2 R sin 1 θ dθ. 2 (Note that in our case db is actually negative. within angular ranges dθ. From energy conservation. Then. its velocity must be the same in magnitude before and after the collision. by the axial symmetry of the problem.39) . (4.38) We can now calculate the number of particles scattered in a direction specified by the polar angles θ. The particles we are interested in are those which cross a small element of area dσ = b |db| dϕ. ϕ. related to the impact parameter by 1 b = R cos 2 θ. Thus the particle is deflected through an angle θ = π − 2α. The particles scattered through angles between θ and θ + dθ are those that came in with impact parameters between b and b + db. dϕ. Then.

and therefore the rate at which they emerge in the given angular range. (4. 4. 4. we find dσ = 1 R2 sin θ dθ dϕ.40) The rate at which particles cross this area. and its distance L from the target (which we assume to be much greater     dϕ Fig.9 .) Inserting the values of b and db.9.41) In order to measure this rate. we may place a small detector at a large distance from the target in the specified direction. We therefore want to express our result in terms of the cross-sectional area dA of the detector.92 Classical Mechanics         L dθ dA                 L sin θ dϕ db dσ b dϕ b     Θ (See Fig. is dw = f dσ. 4 (4.

40) and (4.42). dΩ L2 (4. like angle. We may define dσ/dΩ to be the ratio of scattered particles per unit solid angle to the number of incoming particles per unit area.42) The solid angle is measured in steradians (sr).30)). so the total solid angle subtended by an entire sphere is dΩ = 1 L2 π 2π dA = 0 sin θ dθ 0 dϕ = 4π.43) is the analogue of the equation ds = L dθ for a circle of radius L. The important quantity is not the cross-sectional area dσ itself. it is measured in square metres per steradian (m2 sr−1 ). as in (4. (4. is dimensionless).Central Conservative Forces 93 than R). so that dA = L2 dΩ. Note that dσ/dΩ has the dimensions of area (solid angle. Eq. dσ = 1 R2 . (4. the differential cross-section is. Now from the discussion of §3. and therefore cannot say just which of the incoming particles are those that emerge in a particular direction.5 (see the paragraph preceding (3. 4 dΩ (4.43) (4. We define the solid angle subtended at the origin by the area dA to be dΩ = sin θ dθ dϕ.44) It is useful to note an alternative definition of the differential crosssection. In the particular case of scattering from a hard sphere. the rate dw at which particles enter the detector is dw = f dσ dA . Then the rate at which particles are detected is obtained by multiplying the differential cross-section by the flux of incoming particles. and by the solid angle subtended at the target by the detector. By (4.44).45) .41) and (4. It plays the same role for a sphere as does the angle in radians for a circle. by (4.43). which is called the differential cross-section. which is applicable even if we cannot follow the trajectory of each individual particle. Just as the total angle subtended by an entire circle is 2π. we see that the element of area on a sphere of radius L is dA = L dθ × L sin θ dϕ. but rather the ratio dσ/dΩ.

46). in this case. and whose crosssectional area is σ. we have Af (x) − Af (x + dx) = f (x)σnA dx = f (x) by (4. and consider a thin slice of wall of thickness dx and area A at the depth x (see Fig. The difference between the two must be the rate at which collisions occur within the slice. λ= 1 . independent of the direction in which it is placed. Then the particle will collide with any atoms whose centres lie within the cylinder. 4π. Equivalently. dx λ A dx. How far will they penetrate? We need to calculate the flux of particles that penetrate to a depth x without suffering a collision. impinging normally on a wall. with flux f .6 Mean Free Path The total cross-section σ is useful in discussing the attenuation of a beam of particles passing through matter. df (x) 1 = − f (x). The rate at which unscattered particles enter the slice is Af (x). and the rate at which they emerge on the other side is Af (x + dx). Let us consider first a particle moving through a material containing n atoms per unit volume. Equating the two quantities.46) Now consider a beam of particles. the number of such atoms in a length x of the cylinder is nσx.45) over all solid angles. Thus the mean distance travelled between collisions — the mean free path λ — is x/nσx. we have merely to multiply by the total solid angle.e.37) is correctly given by integrating (4. Let this flux be f (x). This is therefore the average number of collisions made by the particle when it travels a distance x.10). Thus the rate at which particles enter the detector is. or independent of the scattering angle. i. Thus the rate at which collisions occur in the slice is f (x)σnA dx.94 Classical Mechanics It has the special feature of being isotropic. λ . nσ (4. Now the total number of atoms in the slice is nAdx. and suppose that the total cross-section for scattering by a single atom is σ. Now. and the total cross-sectional area presented by all of them is σnA dx (assuming dx is small enough that none of them overlap). 4. We note that the total cross-section (4. in this case. Consider a cylinder whose axis is the line of motion of the particle. 4.

this shows that for a thin target the number of particles scattered will be just N times the number scattered by a single atom. like an atom. When the target is thin. the probability of multiple collisions. For a thick target. But f (0) = f . Instead. (4. in which a particle strikes several target atoms in succession.47) Thus the number of particles in the beam decreases by a factor of 1/e in one mean free path. If x is small compared to the mean free path. the rate at which collisions occur within the target will be Af (0) − Af (x) = A(1 − e−x/λ )f. it would be quite impractical to use a target consisting of only a single atom.Central Conservative Forces 95 f(x) A f x dx f(x + dx) Fig.10 This equation may be integrated to give f (x) = Ce−x/λ . when we wish to study the structure of a small object. we have to use a target containing a large number N of atoms. If the thickness of the target is x. the rate is approximately Axf /λ = Axnσf . it would be less. so finally f (x) = f e−x/λ . If we . will be small. 4. In this case. Very often. where C is an arbitrary constant. because the atoms would effectively screen each other. Since N = nAx. then we may retain only the linear term in the expansion of the exponential.

i. substituting in (4. dΩ L2 (4. . is large compared to the target size (so that the scattering angle does not depend appreciably on which of the atoms in the target is struck). performed in 1911. just N times the rate for a single target atom. If we use a detector whose distance from the target. 1 b = a cot 2 θ. then we can conclude that the angular distribution of scattered particles will also be the same as that from a single target atom. 2 sin2 1 θ 2 so that. Rutherford was able to show that the law of force between α-particle and nucleus is the inverse square law down to very small distances. Thus he concluded that the positive charge is concentrated in a very small nuclear volume rather than being spread out over the whole volume of the atom. Because these particles are much heavier than electrons.48) that is. a= qq . In a classic experiment. From observations of the angular distribution of the scattered α-particles. 4.96 Classical Mechanics assume that it is negligible. 4π 0 mv 2 (4. and can therefore be used to study the heavy atomic nucleus. they are deflected only very slightly by the electrons in the atom (see Chapter 7). we obtain dσ = 1 a2 cos 2 θ dθ dϕ 2 sin3 1 θ 2 .49) Thus db = − a dθ .7 Rutherford Scattering We discuss in this section a problem which was of crucial importance in obtaining an understanding of the structure of the atom.e.35). Let us now calculate the differential cross-section for the scattering of a particle of charge q and mass m by a fixed point charge q . L. This will be the case if all the dimensions of the target are small in comparison with λ.39). then the rate at which particles enter the detector will be dw = N f dσ dA . Rutherford bombarded atoms with α-particles (helium nuclei). The impact parameter b is related to the scattering angle θ by (4.

we must use high-velocity particles. corresponding to particles with small impact parameter b. We saw in §4. however small.50) is large for small values of the scattering angle.50).3 that the minimum distance of approach is given by (4. it would decrease as we go to even smaller distances.Central Conservative Forces 97 Dividing by the solid angle (4. For scattering of an α-particle on a nucleus of atomic number Z. Thus to investigate the structure of the atom at small distances. It also increases rapidly with increasing charge.42).50) This is the Rutherford scattering cross-section. If the positive nuclear charge were spread out over a large volume. We note that. A peculiar feature of the differential cross-section (4. in contrast to the differential cross-section for hard-sphere scattering. and examine largeangle scattering. we find for the differential cross-section a2 dσ = . Consequently. 0 (4. for which a is small. However far away from the nucleus a particle may be. 1 σ(θ > θ0 ) = πb2 = πa2 cot2 2 θ0 . Thus we expect the number of particles scattered to increase like Z 2 with increasing atomic number. Beyond that point. is indeed infinite. this cross-section is strongly dependent both on the velocity of the incoming particle and on the scattering angle.50) is that the corresponding total cross-section is infinite. but physically it is the large-angle scattering which is of most interest. Thus the total number of particles scattered through any angle. These are the particles which had impact parameters b less 1 than b0 = a cot 2 θ0 . The corresponding cross-section is. The cross-section (4. and is scattered through a non-zero (though small) angle. the fact that particles can be scattered through large angles is an indication that there are very strong forces acting at short distances. dΩ 4 sin4 1 θ 2 (4.) .20). We can easily calculate the number of particles scattered through any angle greater than some small lower limit θ0 . This is a consequence of the infinite range of the Coulomb force. the force would be inverse-square-law only down to the radius of the charge distribution. therefore. the particles that penetrate to within this distance would experience a weaker force than the inverse square law predicts. it still experiences some force. For.51) (This may also be verified by direct integration of (4. and would be scattered through smaller angles. qq = 2Ze2 (where −e is the electronic charge).

The values of E and J can be determined from the initial conditions. The semi-major axis of the Earth’s orbit. [Their mean rotation periods are 10 hours and 27 days.8 km s−1 . ˙ which results from eliminating θ between the conservation equations for energy and angular momentum. according as E < 0 or E > 0.50 × 10 8 km. When a beam of particles strikes a target. the orbit is an ellipse or a hyperbola.20 au. The orbits of synchronous communications satellites have been chosen so that viewed from the Earth they appear to be stationary. and this equation then tells us the radial velocity at any value of r. conservative force. respectively. Problems 1. The orbit of an asteroid extends from the Earth’s to Jupiter’s. The mass of Jupiter is 318 times that of the Earth. If we are concerned with finding the time taken to traverse part of the orbit. and the semi-latus rectum by J.) . (Treat the planetary orbits as circular and coplanar. For the inverse square law. The semi-major axis of Jupiter’s orbit is 5. just touching both. information about the radial motion may be obtained from the radial energy equation. The attenuation of the beam is related to the total cross-section σ. obtained by integrating dσ/dΩ over all solid angles. (Mean orbital speed of Earth = 29.8 Summary For a particle moving under any central. Find its orbital period. we can use the relation between the angular momentum and the rate of sweeping out area. 2. Find its orbital period in years.) 4. Find the radii of synchronous orbits about Jupiter and about the Sun. This may be calculated from a knowledge of the relation between the scattering angle and the impact parameter. we must find the equation of the orbit.98 Classical Mechanics 4. or astronomical unit (au) is 1. Find the radius of the orbits.] 3. When information about the angle θ is needed. the angular distribution of scattered particles may be found from the differential cross-section dσ/dΩ. and its mean (time-averaged) orbital speed. The semi-major axis is fixed by E.

7. Calculate the period of a satellite in an orbit just above the Earth’s atmosphere (whose thickness may be neglected).0123 ME and 0. A star of mass M and radius R is moving with velocity v through a cloud of particles of density ρ. Problem 11. Show that the comet discussed at the end of §4. find the angular frequency ω of small oscillations. It is then given a blow of impulse mv in a direction making an angle α with its original velocity. (To evaluate the area required. Find the maximum and minimum orbital speeds of the asteroid in Problem 4. Find the time it spends inside the Earth’s orbit. whose distance is 28 000 light years. See Appendix B. 11. 6. Find the orbital speed v. Write down the effective potential energy function U (r) for the system described in Chapter 3. Initially. Find in each case the gravitational acceleration at the surface. Explain your results physically for the two limiting cases α = 0 and α = π. Hence describe the disturbed orbit qualitatively. Find the orbital angular velocity ω in terms of the natural angular frequency ω0 of the oscillator when not rotating. 10.Central Conservative Forces 99 5. For Jupiter the corresponding figures are 318 ME and 11. 8. and the escape velocity. 9. If the motion is lightly disturbed. show that the mass of the star will increase at a rate 2GM R dM = πρv R2 + dt v2 .273 RE (E = Earth). it is moving in a circle of 2 radius a. Estimate the total mass of the Galaxy in solar masses. . write the equation of the orbit in Cartesian co-ordinates.4 crosses the Earth’s orbit at opposite ends of a diameter. A particle of mass m moves under the action of a harmonic oscillator force with potential energy 1 kr2 . Initially. The Moon’s mass and radius are 0. The Sun has an orbital speed of about 220 km s−1 around the centre of the Galaxy.0 RE. the particle is moving in a circular orbit of radius 2a. By considering the effective potential energy function U (r) near its minimum. If all the particles that collide with the star are trapped by it. Find also the periods for close orbits around the Moon and Jupiter. Use the conservation laws to determine the minimum and maximum distances from the origin during the subsequent motion.) 12. the particle will execute small oscillations about the circular orbit.

For Mars. *Find the polar equation of the orbit of an isotropic harmonic oscillator by solving the differential equation (4. using the effective potential energy function U . show that the difference in time spent in the two halves. as found in Problem 13.) Check also that the period is given correctly by τ = 2mA/J.100 Classical Mechanics Given that M = 1031 kg and R = 108 km. *If the Earth’s orbit is divided in two by the latus rectum. differ in this case? What shape is the orbit? 15. 13. is 2 e 1 − e2 + arcsin e . an obvious target in the short term. in years. There are of course other . Where in its orbit must Jupiter be at the time of launch.) 16. relative to the Earth? Where will the Earth be when it arrives? [This semi-elliptical trajectory is known as a Hohmann transfer and it is energy-efficient for interplanetary travel using high-thrust rockets in that a discrete boost is required at the beginning and at the end of the journey in order respectively to leave Earth and to arrive at the target planet. the time required is about 32 Earth months with about 15 months spent at Mars.4. (Hint : Use Cartesian co-ordinates to evaluate √ the required area. The identity π/2 − arcsin 1 − e2 = arcsin e may be useful. the orbit of the asteroid in Problem 4). A spacecraft is to travel from Earth to Jupiter along an elliptical orbit that just touches each of the planetary orbits (i. 4 and 5 to find the relative velocity of the spacecraft with respect to the Earth just after launching and that with respect to Jupiter when it nears that planet. (Hint : Change to the variable v = u2 . Discuss qualitatively the orbits of a particle under a repulsive force 1 with potential energy function V = 2 kr2 where k is negative.. 14. and verify that it is an ellipse with centre at the origin. neglecting in each case the gravitational attraction of the planet. How would the orbit equation. find how the effective crosssectional area compares with the geometric cross-section πR 2 for velocities of 1000 km s−1 . so that there is an inevitable minimum time that must be spent in the region of (here) Jupiter before this can be done.e. It is an interesting and important exercise to compare timings for round trips of planetary exploration using this form of transfer. 100 km s−1 and 10 km s−1 .25). Use the results of Problems 3. A similarly careful choice of timing for initiating a return to Earth is necessary. π and hence for small e about twice as large as the difference computed in the example in §4.

either in fuel or in time spent at the destination!] *Suppose that the asteroid of Problems 4 and 5 approaches the Earth with an impact parameter of 5RE . *Show that the position of a planet in its elliptical orbit can be expressed. using a frame with x-axis in the direction of perihelion (point of closest approach to the Sun). Use the parametrization of Problem 18 to calculate the time-averaged values of the kinetic and potential energies T and V over a complete period. ways of effecting transfer. 19. moving in the same plane and overtaking it. using hyperbolic functions. in terms of Jupiter radii? (MJ = 318ME.) What is its new velocity v relative to the Sun? Show that the semi2 2 major axis of its new orbit is aE vE /(2vE − v 2 ). but at rather greater cost. where RE = Earth’s radius. *Find a parametrization similar to that of Problem 18 for a hyperbolic orbit. in terms of an angular parameter ψ by x = a(cos ψ − e). On reaching the vicinity of Jupiter. the spacecraft in Problem 16 is swung around the planet by its gravitational attraction — a ‘slingshot’ manoeuvre. 22. in the frame of reference in which the Earth is at rest.) *If the manoeuvre in Problem 21 is in the orbital plane. and that the time from perihelion is given by t = (τ /2π)(ψ − e sin ψ) (Kepler’s equation).1. 18. V av = −2 T av . 20. (This is an improbably close encounter for a large asteroid.) Show that r = a(1 − e cos ψ). (Assume that the asteroid is small enough to have negligible effect on the Earth’s orbit. however the spectacular impact of comet Shoemaker–Levy 9 with Jupiter in July 1994 should prevent us from being too complacent about this threat!) Find the distance of closest approach and the angle through which the asteroid is scattered. where aE and vE are the Earth’s orbital radius and orbital velocity. y = b sin ψ. 21. Find the asteroid’s new orbital period.Central Conservative Forces 101 17. ψ is sometimes called the eccentric anomaly. (See Problem B.0RE. while the polar angle θ is the true anomaly. What is the magnitude and direction of the spacecraft’s velocity before scattering? What is its magnitude after scattering? If the scattering angle in this frame is 90 ◦ . Hence verify the virial theorem. Consider this encounter in the frame of reference in which Jupiter is at rest. so that the final velocity of the spacecraft relative to Jupiter is radially away from the Sun. what must be the impact parameter? What is the distance of closest approach to the planet. In the literature. what is its velocity in magnitude and direction relative to the Sun? Use the radial energy equation to determine the spacecraft’s . RJ = 11.

(The gravitational potential energy in the equatorial plane of the Earth has approximately this form. (Include the cases where one of these parameters vanishes. Assume that relative to Jupiter its velocity after scattering is directed normal to the orbital plane. Hence find the differential cross-section.) Find the equation of its orbit. Hence show that a .102 Classical Mechanics 23. 25. Show that for the attractive case (k < 0). (Hint : A sketch may help. *The potential energy of a particle of mass m is V (r) = k/r + c/3r 3 . (Note: 1 nautical mile = 1 minute of arc over the Earth’s surface. find the launch velocity and the angle at which the rocket should be launched. what will be its perihelion distance? An alternative to the manoeuvre described in Problem 22 is for the spacecraft to be scattered out of the orbital plane. we should choose α so that l = 2a − R. When it returns. where k < 0 and c is a small constant. farthest distance from the Sun (its aphelion distance) in astronomical units.) *A ballistic rocket (one that moves freely under gravity after its initial √ launch) is fired from the surface of the Earth with velocity v < Rg at an angle α to the vertical. (Ignore the Earth’s rotation.) Deduce that the maximum range is 2Rθ where sin θ = v 2 /(2Rg − v 2 ).) Show that the scattering angle for particles of mass m and initial velocity v scattered by a repulsive inverse-cube-law force is π − π/n (see Problem 25). and hence show that to maximize the range. Express the range 2Rθ (measured along the Earth’s surface) in terms of the parameters l and a. because of its flattened shape — see Chapter 6. the radial component of its velocity is zero. and the angular frequency ω of small radial oscillations about this circular orbit. show that the orbit equation is r cos n(θ − θ0 ) = b. b and θ0 are constants.) Discuss the possible types of orbit for a particle moving under a central inverse-cube-law force. described by the potential energy function V = k/2r2 . Find also its new orbital period. For the repulsive case (k > 0). Find the equation of the orbit for each possible type. This is therefore the perihelion point of the new orbit.) Find the angular velocity ω in a circular orbit of radius a. The farthest point from the original orbital plane will occur when it is at one end of the semi-minor axis of the orbit. 26. 27. where n. 24. the nature of the orbit depends on the signs of J 2 + mk and of E. Given that the maximum range is 3600 nautical miles. What is its velocity relative to the Sun? What will be its aphelion distance and orbital period? How far from the orbital plane will it reach? (Hint : Immediately after scattering.

31. A beam of particles strikes a wall containing 2 × 1029 atoms per m3 . τ ∝ a3/2 .26). Hence calculate the ˙ ¨ radial acceleration. for most planets in our Solar System these values are almost equal.Central Conservative Forces 103 28. implies that the force on a planet is proportional to its mass. where r is a ¯ ‘mean value’ of r. it is the mean over arc length — or the median — which is given by a! Of course. Find the thickness of wall that exactly half the particles will penetrate without scattering. A detector of cross-sectional area 400 mm2 is placed 0. Show that his first law — that the orbit is an ellipse with the Sun at a focus — implies the inverse square law.66 × 10−27 kg. find r and r in terms of r and θ. 1 u = 1.) *It was shown in §3.6 × 10−19 J) is scattered by an aluminium atom through an angle of 90◦ . 29. ¯ [This law was originally expressed by Kepler as τ ∝ r 3/2 .) Show that Kepler’s third law. the mean over angle θ is in fact b. What thickness would be needed to stop all but one particle in 106 ? An α-particle of energy 4 keV (1 eV = 1. (Hint : By differentiating the orbit equation l/r = 1 + e cos θ. Find the rate of detection of α-particles.6 m from the target in a direction at right angles to the beam direction. atomic number of Al = 13.] . Each atom behaves like a sphere of radius 3 × 10−15 m.6 × 10−19 C. Calculate the distance of closest approach to the nucleus. For an ellipse. (Atomic number of α-particle = 2. 30.) A beam of such particles with a flux of 3 × 108 m−2 s−1 strikes a target containing 50 mg of aluminium. and using (3. the 1 mean over time is actually a(1 + 2 e2 ). e = 1.4 that Kepler’s second law of planetary motion implies that the force is central. nearly circular orbit is approximately an ellipse whose axes precess at an angular velocity Ω ≈ (c/|k|a2 )ω. (Atomic mass of Al = 27 u.

104 Classical Mechanics .

Let n be a unit vector along the axis. we shall find the equations of motion with respect to such a frame. whose direction is defined by the right-hand rule: it is the direction in which a right-handthread screw would move when turned in the direction of the rotation.292 × 10−5 s−1 . 86164 (5.3). Clearly. 5. For example. and discuss some applications of them. which is less than that with respect to the Sun by one part in 365). we have always used inertial frames. Rate of Change of a Vector Let us consider a solid body which is rotating with constant angular velocity ω about a fixed axis. then the velocity of 105 . For example. towards the north pole. in which the laws of motion take on the simple form expressed in Newton’s laws. angular velocity. when discussing the motion of a particle near the Earth’s surface. however. is an axial vector (see §3. There are. In this chapter. and rotates with it. like angular momentum. a number of problems that can most easily be solved by using a non-inertial frame.1) If we take the origin to lie on the axis of rotation.1 Angular Velocity. it is often convenient to use a frame which is rigidly fixed to the Earth. Its magnitude is equal to 2π divided by the length of the sidereal day (the rotation period with respect to the fixed stars. Then we define the vector angular velocity ω to be a vector of magnitude ω in the direction of n: ω = ωn. ω is a vector pointing along the polar axis. for the Earth. that is ω= 2π −1 s = 7.Chapter 5 Rotating Frames Hitherto.

v is perpendicular to the plane containing ω and r. we note that the point moves with angular velocity ω around a circle of radius ρ = r sin θ (see Fig.1). da = ω ∧ a. If a is any vector fixed in the rotating body. 5. dt dk = ω ∧ k. Thus (5. Thus its speed is ω ρ v θ r Fig. (5.2) is correct both as regards magnitude and direction. dt dj = −ωi. dt (Compare Fig. dt dk = 0. then by the same argument. and it is easy to see from the figure that its sense is given correctly by the right-hand rule.1 v = ωρ = ωr sin θ = |ω ∧ r|. dt di = ω ∧ i.106 Classical Mechanics a point of the body at position r is given by the simple formula v = ω ∧ r. j. 5.2) To prove this. Moreover. for clearly. k are orthogonal unit vectors fixed in the body. It is not necessary that r should be the position vector of a point of the rotating body.4) For example. then . if ω is in the k direction. then (5. 5. the direction of v is that of ω ∧ r. dt di = ωj. dt (5.3) In particular.2. if i.) dj = ω ∧ j.

(Our discussion applies quite generally.Rotating Frames 107 k j i dj di Fig. An observer outside the Earth will always agree with one on the Earth about the latitude and longitude of a small body moving on the surface. so that a = ax i + ay j + az k. ˙ dt day = ay . but it may be helpful to think of a as the position vector of a particle with respect to the Earth. and in particular about the rates of change of the three components ax . and it will be convenient to ˙ suspend for the moment the convention whereby da/dt and a mean the same thing. Now. k by the components ax . although our two observers differ about the rate of change of a vector. and by a the rate of change as measured by an observer rotating with the solid body. ˙ ˙ ˙ (5.2 Now consider a vector a specified with respect to the rotating axes i. these are not the components of a with respect to his own set of axes. j. az . az . they will always agree about the rate of change of any scalar quantity. (Note that for the inertial observer. ˙ dt (5.6) .) Hence we can write dax = ax . We wish to find the relation between these two rates of change. We shall denote by da/dt the rate of change of a as measured ˙ by an inertial observer at rest relative to the origin.5) According to the observer on the rotating body. so that ˙ a = ax i + ay j + az k. ay . the rate of change of a is fully described by the rates of change of its three components. ay .) We must distinguish two kinds of ‘rates of change’. ˙ dt daz = az . though these are not the co-ordinates he would naturally use himself to describe its position. 5.

10) . so that da = dt dax day daz di dj dk i+ j+ k + ax + a y + az dt dt dt dt dt dt ˙ ˙ = (ax i + ay j + az k) + ω ∧ (ax i + ay j + az k). dv = ω ∧ v.8) Now let us suppose that the magnetic field is uniform (independent of position) and constant in time.9) has precisely the form of (5.3): da/dt = ω ∧ a. if we introduce a frame of reference rotating with ˙ angular velocity ω. 5. dt (5. dt (5.108 Classical Mechanics However.7) Applied to the position vector r. For. and perpendicular to it. then according to (5. The equation of motion is then m dv = qv ∧ B.9) (5. and because its application to other vectors is much less obvious. j.4).3).5) and (5.7). k are themselves changing with time according to (5. we obtain da ˙ = a + ω ∧ a. finally. a = 0. It is important to realize that one can reverse the argument that led up to it. m (5. dt where ω=− q B.2 Particle in a Uniform Magnetic Field A particle of charge q moving with velocity v in a magnetic field B(r) experiences a force proportional to its velocity. If a satisfies this equation. this result is almost obvious. so that a is fixed in the rotating frame. Then (5. the axes i. F = qv ∧ B. ˙ by (5. We shall frequently encounter in our later work equations similar to (5. then it must be a vector of constant length rotating with angular velocity ω about the direction of ω.4). for it states that the velocity with respect to the inertial observer is the sum of the ˙ velocity r with respect to the rotating frame and the velocity ω ∧ r of a particle at r rotating with the body. Thus. We have given a detailed proof because of the central importance of this result. to the inertial observer.

then v has B Fig. even at the highest energies. and a component in the xy-plane which rotates around a circle with angular velocity ω. the particle will continue to move with uniform velocity along a field line. This method can be used only so long as the speed remains small compared to the speed of light. an alternating voltage is applied between two D-shaped pole pieces enclosing two halves of the circles (see Fig. Quite similar methods can be used. 5. the angular frequency ωc is not precisely constant when the speed is large.Rotating Frames 109 Hence. and they experience an accelerating field each time they cross the gap. by the time the particles have made a half-revolution. 5. by the argument of the preceding section. for.3). In that case. Each semicircle is therefore slightly larger than the preceding one. if v is initially parallel to B. The other limiting case. however. m (5. In order to prevent the particles from escaping. The angular frequency of this alternating voltage is chosen to coincide with the cyclotron frequency ωc = qB .3 a constant z-component. the particle describes a circle of radius r= mv v = . the direction of the electric field has reversed. In particular.11) This effect is used in accelerating particles in the cyclotron.4).12) Thus. one obtains a beam of high-velocity particles at the outer edge of the cyclotron. Finally. If we take the direction of B to be the z-direction. is more interesting. but decreases with increasing speed. and the particles spiral outwards with increasing energy. according to relativity theory. the velocity vector v rotates about the direction of B with a constant angular velocity. . It follows that the path of the particle is a helix whose axis points along the field lines (see Fig. ω qB (5. a strong magnetic field is employed to constrain them to move in circles. in which v is perpendicular to B. To accelerate them. 5.

Find the solution for the case when the particle starts from rest at the origin. Show that if it is initially moving in the xy-plane. y ˙ m¨ = 0. r m¨ = qB y.110 Classical Mechanics E E ~ Fig. in terms of components. Example: Crossed electric and magnetic fields A particle of mass m and charge q moves in uniform perpendicular electric and magnetic fields. Problem 5). E = Ej and B = Bk. 5.4 If there are both electric and magnetic fields present. F = q(E + v ∧ B). z = z. y = y. We can eliminate ˙ the term in E by going over to a frame moving with relative velocity (E/B)i (see Chapter 1. An interesting case is that of crossed fields. z Clearly. . ˙ The equation of motion m¨ = qE+q r∧B is. x ˙ m¨ = qE − qB x. in which the co-ordinates are given by x = x − (E/B)t. and that it has a circular motion with a superimposed uniform drift velocity in a direction perpendicular to both E and B. this will be true always. it will continue to do so. a charged particle experiences the Lorentz force. if z = z = 0 initially.

assuming that ω is constant. Apparent Gravity We can use the formula (5. 5. substituting in (5. = dt2 dt But. the particle moves in a circle. from (5. y= E (1 − cos ωc t). Hence. the complete solution is x= E B t− sin ωc t ωc . we obtain d2 r ¨ ˙ = r + 2ω ∧ r + ω ∧ (ω ∧ r).15) (5.13). z So in the moving frame.7) twice to obtain the relation between the ¨ absolute acceleration d2 r/dt2 of a particle and its acceleration r relative to a rotating frame. and ˙ ω ∧ v = ω ∧ r + ω ∧ (ω ∧ r). In the original frame. y = y. z = z. as in the discussion above. The latter is directed inwards .14). so the ˙ radius of the circular motion is E/Bωc . x m¨ = −qB x . and the third term is the centripetal acceleration.14) The second term on the right is called the Coriolis acceleration. this means circular motion with a uniform velocity superimposed.3 Acceleration. If the particle starts from the origin. Bωc z = 0. we find ˙ ¨ ˙ v = r + ω ∧ r. dt2 (5. y ˙ m¨ = 0. we have d2 r dv ˙ = v + ω ∧ v.13) Applying the same formula to the rate of change of v. Thus the equations of motion become ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ m¨ = qB y .Rotating Frames 111 Then x = x−E/B. dt (5. The initial conditions yield x = −E/B. The velocity of the particle relative to an inertial frame is v= dr ˙ = r + ω ∧ r.

the equation of motion is m d2 r = mg + F .112 Classical Mechanics towards the axis of rotation.16)) ω ∧ (ω ∧ r) = (ω · r)ω − ω 2 r.17) In particular. (5. to the mass of the particle. (There are further corrections.15). (See Fig. and consider here the last term.) Let us consider a point in colatitude (π/2 − latitude) θ. and moving all the terms except the relative acceleration to the right side of the equation. For a particle moving under gravity. ∗ gv = g − ω 2 r sin2 θ. Thus the horizontal and vertical components of the effective gravitational acceleration g ∗ (using ‘vertical’ to mean towards the Earth’s centre) are ∗ gh = ω 2 r sin θ cos θ. what we actually measure is not g but g ∗ = g − ω ∧ (ω ∧ r). Then |ω ∧ (ω ∧ r)| = ω|ω ∧ r| = ω 2 r sin θ. 5. r (5. like gravity. dt2 where g is a vector of magnitude g pointing downward (towards the centre of the Earth). We shall postpone discussion of the effects of the third term — the Coriolis force — to the next section.) . in which this effect is greatly exaggerated. but is swung outwards through a small angle by the centrifugal force.5. When we make a laboratory measurement of the acceleration due to gravity. a plumb line does not point directly towards the centre of the Earth.15) is to a particle moving near the surface of the Earth. due to the nonspherical shape of the Earth. proportional. This force is a slowly varying function of position. which is the familiar centrifugal force. mechanical force F . we can write it as ˙ m¨ = mg + F − 2mω ∧ r − mω ∧ (ω ∧ r). which arise because of the non-inertial nature of the frame of reference. to be discussed later. The most important application of (5. and perpendicular to it.16) The last two terms are apparent (or fictitious) forces. as may be seen by writing it in the form (see (A. and under an additional. Using (5.

and g ∗ = g. 5. Thus the gravitational acceleration g. . We shall discuss this point in the next chapter. On the equator. the angle α between the apparent and true verticals is approximately α≈ ∗ ω2r gh sin θ cos θ. for the flattening of the Earth is a consequence of its rotation. We find ω 2 r = 34 mm s−2 . and is about 0◦ 6 . (5.1) for ω. and for r the mean radius of the Earth. but more nearly spheroidal in shape. even excluding the centrifugal term. we shall consider the problem of a liquid in a rotating vessel. there is no centrifugal force. As another example of the effect of the centrifugal force. At the pole. Thus we might expect the measured value of the acceleration due to gravity to be larger at the pole by 34 mm s−2 . is itself larger at the pole than on the equator. (5. The actual measured difference is somewhat larger than this. ∗ ∗ ∆g ∗ = gpole − gequator = 52 mm s−2 . 6371 km.5 The magnitude of the centrifugal force may be found by inserting the value (5.Rotating Frames 113 ω ω −ω∧(ω∧r) g α g* Fig. ≈ ∗ gv g The maximum value occurs at θ = 45◦ .19) This discrepancy arises from the fact that the Earth is not a perfect sphere.18) Since ω 2 r g. These two effects are not really independent. ∗ g = g − ω 2 r. flattened at the poles.

4 Coriolis Force ˙ The Coriolis force. its surface must be an equipotential surface. velocity-dependent force arising from the Earth’s rotation. To understand its physical origin. 5. Because a paraboloid is the ideal shape to focus light from directly above it. is an apparent. it may be helpful to consider a flat. This is the Coriolis force. Suppose that a particle moves across the disc under no forces. an observer on the disc will see the particle crossing successive radii. the mirror is made by spinning a thin film of liquid. gz − 1 ω 2 (x2 + y 2 ) = constant.6(a). 2 (5. Unless the surface is one on which potential energy is constant.20) Consider a particle on the surface of the liquid. but subject to the centrifugal force. so that in the rotating frame the liquid is at rest.6(b). 5. rotating disc. so that an inertial observer sees it moving diametrically across in a straight line. We may regard Fig. 2 This is a paraboloid of revolution about the z-axis. 5. and corresponds to a potential energy 1 Vcent = − 1 mω 2 ρ2 = − 2 mω 2 (x2 + y 2 ). he will ascribe this curvature to a force acting on the particle at right angles to its velocity. the particle will tend to move towards regions of lower potential energy. This is very much cheaper than grinding glass mirrors to a precise shape — though it has the disadvantage that the telescope can only look at objects near the zenith. 5. following a curved track as in Fig. Thus we see that the effect of the Coriolis force is to make a particle .) Then. because the disc is rotating. Now this force is conservative. (See Fig.114 Classical Mechanics Example: Surface of a rotating liquid Liquid in a vessel rotating with angular velocity ω is rotating with the same angular velocity. Hence if the liquid is in equilibrium under the gravitational and centrifugal forces. −2mω ∧ r. Find the equation for its surface. We use a frame rotating with the vessel. for example mercury.6 as representing the Earth viewed from the north pole. This effect is used in constructing some high-powered optical telescopes. If he is unaware that the disc is rotating.

let us take a small body falling freely under gravity towards the Earth’s surface. it is convenient to choose our axes so that i is east. in general. We shall suppose that the distance through which it moves is sufficiently small for both the gravitational and centrifugal forces to be effectively constant. The angular velocity vector then has the components ω = (0. Let us consider a particle moving near the surface of the Earth in colatitude θ. r (5.21) As an example. . How far from the point directly below its starting point does it land? To analyze this problem. and write this simply as g. Example: Freely falling body A body is dropped from rest at a height h above the ground. Then we may combine them in a constant effective gravitational acceleration g ∗ .) Here ‘up’ means opposite to g ∗ . ω sin θ. (See Fig. and the colatitude θ is the angle between that direction and the Earth’s axis. (It also has a vertical component. we examine some effects of the Coriolis force which are observable in the laboratory. First. ω cos θ). we shall drop the star. j is north. For convenience. and to the left in the southern.7.Rotating Frames 115 ω (a) Fig. however. 5. 5.6 (b) deviate to the right in the northern hemisphere.) It is responsible for some well-known meteorological phenomena. and k up. The equation of motion is then ˙ m¨ = mg + F − 2mω ∧ r. which we shall discuss below.

therefore. −x cos θ. y = 0. x sin θ). Thus the body will hit the ground. −gt). z z = h − 1 gt2 . this means that we may substitute for r the ˙ zeroth-order value r = (0. it has a component of velocity towards the east relative to the inertial . that is.21) then read m¨ = 2mωgt sin θ. (5. (5.22) We shall calculate the effect of the Coriolis force only to first order.22) contains ˙ an explicit factor of ω. Since the Coriolis force (5. we neglect terms of order ω 2 .116 Classical Mechanics ω j North θ k Fig. ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ Neglecting the Coriolis force. The equations of motion (5. x m¨ = 0.7 Hence the Coriolis force is ˙ −2mω ∧ r = 2mω(y cos θ − z sin θ. 1 x = 3 ωgt3 sin θ. 2 The solution with appropriate initial conditions is. the deviation is about 16 mm. y = 0. 0. It is instructive to consider how an inertial observer would describe this experiment. the motion is described by x = 0. 5. y m¨ = −mg. at a point east of that vertically below its point of release. if a particle is dropped from a height of 100 m in latitude 45◦ .23) For example. z = 0. at a distance x= ω 3 8h3 g 1/2 sin θ. 1 z = h − 2 gt2 . Since the particle is dropped from rest relative to the Earth.

Thus the equations of motion for ˙ the x and y co-ordinates are g ˙ x = − x + 2ω y cos θ.Rotating Frames 117 x x h (b) Fig. As it falls. Figs.8(b) show the experiment as it appears (but much exaggerated) to an observer on the Earth and to an inertial observer. so that z ≈ 0. (It must also be long.) The important components as 10 m s−1 .8(a) and 5. The vertical component of the Coriolis force is negligible. ¨ ˙ l (5. in vector notation. This is simply an ordinary pendulum free to swing in any direction.) Examples of the Foucault pendulum are to be found in many science museums. 5.24) . we have 2ω x = 1.25) g y = − y − 2ω x cos θ. so that it will go on swinging freely for several hours at least. g ¨ ˙ r = − r − 2ω cos θ k ∧ r. the velocity of the pendulum bob is almost horizontal. and carefully arranged to be perfectly symmetric. Foucault’s pendulum Another way of observing the effect of the Coriolis force is to use Foucault’s pendulum. l (5. 5. If the amplitude is small. the angular momentum about the Earth’s axis remains constant.8 h (a) observer. the pendulum equation is simply the equation of two-dimensional simple harmonic motion. and fairly heavy. and therefore its angular velocity increases. so that it gets ahead of the ground beneath it. respectively. For small amplitude. for it is merely a small correction to g.5 mm s−2 are the horizontal ones. despite the resistance of the air. so that its periods of oscillation in all directions are precisely equal. ¨ l or. (Even for a velocity x as large ˙ ˙ g. whose sign alternates on each half-period.

ω cos θ k. but this component leads only to a vertical Coriolis force. In effect. its oscillation plane must rotate around the vertical with angular velocity −ω. or. 2 2 The roots of this equation are p = −iΩ ± iω1 . . as in §2. Hence.24). Then it is clear from the equation of motion in a non-rotating frame that it must swing in a fixed direction in space. In particular. (5. find for p the equation 2 p2 + 2iΩp + ω0 = 0. so that the solution is z = ae−iΩt cos ω1 t. We now look for solutions of the form pt z = Ae and. we may regard the Earth’s surface in colatitude θ as rotating about the vertical with angular velocity ω cos θ (and also with angular velocity ω sin θ about a horizontal northsouth axis. x = a cos Ωt cos ω1 t. Thus. relative to the Earth. where ω1 = ω0 + Ω2 .25) is that in place of the angular velocity ω we have only its vertical component. so that.) We can verify this conclusion by obtaining an explicit solution of Eqs. ¨ ˙ 2 where Ω = ω cos θ and ω0 = g/l. Now. we get 2 z + 2iΩz + ω0 z = 0. 0) at t = 0. (5. we should expect that the oscillation plane of the pendulum rotates with angular velocity −Ω = −ω cos θ around the vertical. if the pendulum is released from rest at position (a. the general solution of the equation for z is z = Ae−i(Ω−ω1 )t + Be−i(Ω+ω1 )t .118 Classical Mechanics Let us first suppose that the pendulum is at the north pole (θ = 0). the only difference in Eq. while the Earth rotates beneath it. A neat way of doing this is to combine the two equations by introducing a complex variable z = x + iy (not of course to be confused with the vertical co-ordinate). in terms of x and y. adding i times ˙ ˙ ˙ the second equation to the first. we must choose A = B = a/2. Then y − ix = −iz. Hence. which does not appreciably affect the motion. y = −a sin Ωt cos ω1 t. at any other latitude.5.

The period of the pendulum will not be substantially affected. Thus an anticlockwise rotation is set up around the low-pressure zone. Further from the equator there are belts of high pressure. however. it does not flow directly north or south. and the Coriolis force (plus the centrifugal force of the rotation) acting outwards. The solution represents an oscillation with amplitude a in a plane rotating with angular velocity −Ω. this pattern does not extend to high latitudes. in these latitudes. the period is greater than this. on a yet larger scale. familiar to those who live in temperate latitudes. which. Thus the difference between the angular frequency ω1 in our solution and ω0 is not significant. For reasons that are too complex to discuss in detail here. It should be noted that in deriving (5. The heating of the Earth’s surface near the equator causes the air to rise.) More generally. At the pole. the wind velocity is not directly from regions of high to low pressure. The air around it will be pushed inwards by the force of the pressure gradient. and be replaced by cooler air flowing in from higher latitudes. As it starts to move. there is no effect of this kind on the equator. it is infinite. the pendulum bob oscillates between the extreme points ±a(cos Ωt. like the equatorial region itself. This configuration is a cyclone. the Coriolis force cause it to curve to the right. Cyclones and trade winds There are also some important large-scale effects of the Coriolis force. However. are characterized . In latitude 45◦ . the variation in the centrifugal force is of this order). for the trade winds. and the south-east trade winds in the southern. since Ω ω0 and ω0 ω1 . The same effect is responsible. The process will continue until an approximate equilibrium is established between the pressure force. sin Ωt). the plane of oscillation makes a complete revolution in just 24 hours. because of the Coriolis force. At any other latitude. and is in fact 2π/ω cos θ. but is made to deviate towards the west. it is about 34 hours. keeping the low pressure on the left in the northern hemisphere.Rotating Frames 119 So at time t. acting inwards. (As in the case of Foucault’s pendulum. while on the equator (where ω is purely horizontal).24) we neglected terms of order Ω2 (in particular. but more nearly along the isobars. or depression. Suppose that for some reason a region of low pressure develops in the northern hemisphere. Thus we have the north-east trade winds in the northern hemisphere.

In the original. we shall consider the effect of a magnetic field on a particle of charge q moving in an orbit around a fixed point charge −q . We obtain ¨ ˙ r + 2ω ∧ r + ω ∧ (ω ∧ r) = − q k ˆ ˙ r + (r + ω ∧ r) ∧ B. so we obtain ¨ r=− q k ˆ r+ mr2 2m 2 B ∧ (B ∧ r). however.15). = − 2r +q 2 dt r dt where k = qq /4π 0 . mr2 m ˙ Now.31) to express the right side in terms of the mean angular velocity ω0 of the particle in its orbit. . Let us rewrite this equation in terms of a rotating frame of reference. The last term on the left only cancels half the last term on the right. When this condition is satisfied. then the terms in r drop out. non-rotating frame. if we choose ω = −(q/2m)B. we obtain the approximate equation ¨ r=− k ˆ r. mr2 But this is just the usual equation of motion for a particle in an inversesquare-law field. mr3 4π 0 mr3 (5. Near the poles. Consequently. is m dr k d2 r ˆ ∧ B. The equation of motion. a bounded orbit in the rotating frame is an ellipse. We now assume that the magnetic field is sufficiently weak for the quadratic term in B to be negligible in comparison to the electrostatic force term. 5.5 Larmor Effect As a rather different example of the use of rotating frames. Beyond these.7) and (5. the direction of the pressure gradient is reversed. using (5.120 Classical Mechanics by light and variable winds. Thus around 40◦ to 50◦ N or S the prevailing wind direction is westerly rather than easterly. and the circumpolar winds blow from the east.8). The necessary condition for this is that ω2 = qB 2m 2 k qq 2 = ≈ ω0 . it is a slowly precessing ellipse. there is a further reversal. including the magnetic force (5.26) where we have used (4.

9. The difference arises from the factor of 2 in the Coriolis acceleration term of (5. 5.) When the weak magnetic field approximation is not applicable then the resulting motion can be very complex — see §14. 5. ωL = qB . 2m is called the Larmor frequency. the effect of a small force on a rotating system is often to make the axis of rotation precess — that is. it B Fig. the axes of the ellipse will precess only through a small angle on each revolution. and the angular velocity of precession.26). which is drawn for the special case in which the orbit lies in the plane normal to B. This effect is known as the Larmor effect. (See Fig. As we shall see later in a number of different examples. since the Bohr energy level corresponding to a given angular momentum is slightly shifted in the presence of a magnetic field. (The shift in spectral lines is known as the Zeeman effect.) Note that. . 5.9 will be inclined.4. and very important. phenomenon. and the plane of the orbit will precess about the direction of B. In general.Rotating Frames 121 precessing with angular velocity ω. in view of the restriction (5.15). This effect leads to observable changes in the spectra emitted by atoms in the presence of a magnetic field. revolve about some fixed direction. Note that it is just half the cyclotron frequency (5.12).6 Angular Momentum and the Larmor Effect The Larmor effect is a particular example of a more general.

then in terms of the axes a. dt (5.122 Classical Mechanics It will therefore be useful to consider here an alternative treatment of the problem which is of more general applicability. 5. Hence the energy is constant. (See Fig. the components of r. then to a first approximation the particle must move in an inverse-square-law orbit whose characteristics change slowly with time. (5.) It will be convenient to introduce three orthogonal unit vectors.16). v and B .28) If we specify the position of the particle in its orbit by the angle ψ between a and r. If the magnetic field is weak.10. a in the direction of k ∧ n and b = n ∧ a. n normal to the n α k b ψ a r v v∧B Fig. b. However the angular momentum J does change with time. it does no work. B = Bk. and that the particle is moving in a circular orbit of radius r in a plane inclined to the xy-plane at an angle α.10 plane of the orbit. Then the angular momentum is J = mr ∧ v = mrvn.27) using (A. let us suppose that the magnetic field is in the z-direction. Since the magnetic force is perpendicular to the velocity. and therefore so is the semimajor axis of the orbit. n. according to the equation dJ = r ∧ F = qr ∧ (v ∧ B) = q[(r · B)v − (r · v)B]. 5. To be specific.

v = (−v sin ψ. Since dJ /dt is perpendicular to J .3). r sin ψ. v cos ψ. (5. (5. and sin ψ cos ψ by 0. In fact. Thus we replace 1 sin2 ψ = 2 (1 − cos 2ψ) by 1 . 2m (5. but for small magnetic fields this will be negligible.Rotating Frames 123 are r = (r cos ψ. its magnitude remains unchanged. It follows that we can replace (5. From (5. (There is also a small contribution to v from the fact that the plane of the orbit is changing.28). B cos α).29) Since the magnetic field is weak.. B = (0. Thus (5.29) by its average value over a complete oscillation period. 0). the change in J in a single orbit will be small. while its direction precesses around the direction of B. over all values of ψ from 0 to 2π. dt 2m This is the equation of a vector J rotating with angular velocity ω=− qB .27) is qBr sin α sin ψ v = qBrv sin α(− sin2 ψ. Thus the oscillatory term in (5.31) .30) Thus the vector J will move in the direction of −a. 0).30) can be seen to be another example of an equation of the form (5.29) is unimportant: it leads only to a very small periodic oscillation in J. we have k ∧ J = mrvk ∧ n = mrv sin α a. in a circular orbit.30) may be written dJ qB =− k ∧ J. B sin α. (5. 0).e. Hence the right hand side of (5. i.) Now. r · v is always zero. sin ψ cos ψ. The important term is the one which leads to a secular variation of J (a steady change in one direction). This yields the equation 2 dJ = r∧F dt av 1 = − 2 qBrv sin α a.

but reaching just as far from the xy-plane. Comparison with a current loop It is instructive to contrast this behaviour of a charged particle with the superficially similar case of a current loop.) To understand why a particle moving in an orbit behaves so differently. so that its normal tends to become aligned with the direction of B. this agrees with our previous conclusion that the orbital plane precesses around the direction of the magnetic field. If one applies a small force downwards on the rim of a rapidly rotating wheel. These are the centrifugal force. say at the farthest point above the xy-plane. The equations of motion in such a frame contain additional terms representing apparent forces which arise because the frame is non-inertial. the effect would be simply to rotate it about this axis. The effect of such a blow is to give the particle a small component of velocity perpendicular to its original orbit. in place of a continuously acting force. rather than its position. We shall see in Chapter 9 that a rigid body displays a very similar type of behaviour. Thus the effect of a small blow is not seen in a shift of the orbit at the point of the blow. that is changed instantaneously. with a precessional angular velocity equal to the angular Larmor frequency. (This is the familiar fact that a current loop behaves like a magnetic dipole. a small impulsive blow delivered once every orbit.) 5. directed outwards from the axis of rotation. it is not that point that moves down.7 Summary In problems involving a rotating body — particularly the Earth — it is often convenient to use a rotating frame of reference. The effect of the force. but a point 90◦ later. but rather at a point 90◦ later. (This is easy to verify with a freely spinning bicycle wheel. Since the loop itself (that is. and the velocity-dependent . A circular current loop in the same position as the particle orbit would experience a similar force. would be quite different. The next orbit will be in a plane slightly tilted with respect to the original one. it may be helpful to consider. producing a moment about the −a-axis. The net effect is to make the orbit swing around the z-axis.124 Classical Mechanics Since the direction of J is that of the normal to the orbital plane. its mass) is not rotating. The essential point here is that it is the velocity of the particle. however.

rotating frames are also useful in many problems involving a magnetic field. and the masses 1.e. respectively.1 × 104 km and 7. 3.) . heading due east. show that the pressure gradient required to balance the horizontal component of the Coriolis force. Find the centrifugal acceleration at the equator of the planet Jupiter and of the Sun. Find the horizontal and vertical components of the Coriolis force acting on it. The water in a circular lake of radius 1 km in latitude 60◦ is at rest relative to the Earth. at a constant altitude above the surface) what is its velocity relative to the inertial frame (a) if it flies north.0 × 105 km. In each case. and (c) if it flies east? 5. The apparent weight of the aircraft in Problem 4 when on the ground at the equator is 100 t weight. express your answer also as a fraction of the surface gravity. (The rotation periods are 10 hours and 27 days.) 4. the radii 7. where ρ is the density of the air. find the height by which the centre is raised by the curvature of the Earth’s surface. Water in a rotating container of radius 50 mm is 30 mm lower in the centre than at the edge. −2mω ∧ r. Evaluate this gradient in mbar km−1 for a wind speed of 50 km h−1 in latitude 30◦ N. is dp/dx = 2ωρv cos θ. Because the magnetic force on a charged particle tends to produce rotation about the direction of the magnetic field. Find the velocity relative to an inertial frame (in which the centre of the Earth is at rest) of a point on the Earth’s equator. (Earth radius = 6400 km. Find the angular velocity of the container. For comparison. The wind speed in colatitude θ is v. (1 bar = 105 Pa. (b) if it flies west. An aircraft is flying above the equator at 1000 km h−1 . By considering the forces on a small volume of air.9 × 1027 kg and 2..0 × 1030 kg.) 2. A bird of mass 2 kg is flying at 10 m s−1 in latitude 60◦ N. Find the depth by which the centre is depressed relative to the shore by the centrifugal force. Assuming that it flies straight and level (i.3 kg m−3 .Rotating Frames 125 ˙ Coriolis force. and thus to maintain a constant wind direction. 7. density of air = 1. What is its apparent weight in each of the three cases (a)–(c)? 6. Problems 1.

parallel electric and magnetic fields. A beam of particles of charge q and velocity v is emitted from a point source. and solve it. Find his apparent weight in each case.. Given that the radius is 25 m. climbing at 1 m s−1 ? 10. but different speeds v.6 × 10−19 J. How does this locus depend on m and q? 12. What is the largest .01 T. 0. Calculate the focal distance for electrons of kinetic energy 500 eV in a magnetic field of 0.) 11. and the correct (smallest possible) choice for l. An aircraft is flying at 800 km h−1 in latitude 55◦ N. all such particles are focussed onto a line parallel to the z-axis. as in the example at the end of §5.. An orbiting space station may be made to rotate to provide an artificial gravity. but with a small angular dispersion. A screen is placed at x = a. The angular velocity of the electron in the lowest Bohr orbit of the hydrogen atom is approximately 4 × 1016 s−1 . 1 eV = 1.1 × 10−31 kg. A man whose normal weight is 75 kg weight runs around the station in one direction and then the other (i. Find the angle through which it must tilt its wings to compensate for the horizontal component of the Coriolis force. Show that if the path length l is correctly chosen.126 Classical Mechanics 8. find the rotation period required to produce an apparent gravity equal to 0.e. 0. 13. mass = 9. roughly parallel with a magnetic field B. on a circle on the inside of the cylindrical wall) at 5 m s−1 . 0). while particles with other speeds follow curved trajectories. given that the particle starts from the origin with velocity (v. is approximately a parabola.02 T. Show that if the ratio E/B is correctly chosen the particles are undeviated. (Charge on electron = −1. A beam of particles with velocity (v.e.) For electrons of velocity 108 m s−1 in a magnetic field of 0. *Write down the equation of motion for a charged particle in uniform. Show that the effect of the field is to focus the beam to a point at a distance z = 2πmv/|q|B from the source. but with a small angular dispersion. 0) enters a region containing crossed electric and magnetic fields. where a mv/qB. 9. Show that the locus of points of arrival of particles with given m and q. Suppose the particles have velocities equal to v in magnitude.7g. find the required electric field.6 × 10−19 C.2. both in the z-direction. (Thus a slit at that point can be used to select particles with a given speed. closer to the axis). What effects will he experience if he climbs a ladder to a higher level (i.

Find the equation of motion for a particle in a uniformly accelerated frame. in the sense of §5.8. 5. Evaluate the two roots if B = 105 T. this agrees with §5. y. Verify that for small values of B.Rotating Frames 127 magnetic field which may be regarded as small in this case. *The co-ordinates (x. with acceleration a. the gravitational field may be eliminated by a suitable choice of a. that in reality a would be changed by the field. By writing the equation of motion in a frame rotating with the electron. show that the angular velocity ω is given by one of the roots of the equation mω 2 − eBω − Ze2 /4π 0 a3 = 0.5? Determine the Larmor frequency in a field of 2 T. and subject to other forces. 16.) 15.) *Solve the problem of a particle falling from height h above the equator by using an inertial frame. (Note. 17. and verify that the answer agrees with that found using a rotating frame. Evaluate this distance if θ = 45◦ and y = 40 km. and aimed at a target whose distance is y (small compared to Earth’s radius R).5. *The orbit of an electron (charge −e) around a nucleus (charge Ze) is a circle of radius a in a plane perpendicular to a uniform magnetic field B.3 × 10−11 m. however. (Hint : Use equations (3. 14.48). Z = 1 and a = 5.) Find the equations of motion for a particle in a frame rotating with variable angular velocity ω. Recall Fig. *A projectile is launched due north from a point in colatitude θ at an angle π/4 to the horizontal. Discuss the physical origin of this force. but to the west both on the equator and near the south pole? (Neglect atmospheric resistance. z) of a particle with respect to a uniformly rotating frame may be related to those with respect to a fixed inertial . the projectile will miss its target by a distance 2y 3 g 1/2 x=ω (cos θ − 1 3 sin θ). 18. and show that there is another apparent ˙ force of the form −mω ∧ r. 19. Why is it that the deviation is to the east near the north pole. Show that for a particle moving in a uniform gravitational field. Show that if no allowance is made for the effects of the Coriolis force.

y. y. . by the transformation ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ∗⎤ x cos ωt sin ωt 0 x ⎣y ⎦ = ⎣− sin ωt cos ωt 0⎦ ⎣y ∗ ⎦ .15) between d2 r/dt2 and r .) Write down the inverse relation giving (x∗ . (Here. z z∗ 0 0 1 x = cos ωt · x∗ + sin ωt · y ∗ . [Hint : Note that r = (¨. z ∗ ).128 Classical Mechanics frame.16) is to use La1 grange’s equations. Another way of deriving the equation of motion (5. z). y ∗ . z ∗ ) in terms of (x. z ). we use matrix notation: this stands for three separate equations. Express the kinetic energy 2 m(dr/dt)2 in terms of (x. while d2 r/dt2 is the vector obtained by applying the above transformation to (¨∗ .16) for the case where the force is conservative. rederive the relation ¨ ¨ x ¨ ¨ (5. y ∗ . z ∗ ). z). etc. and show that Lagrange’s equations (3.44) reproduce (5.] x ¨ ¨ 20. By differentiating with respect to t. y ∗ . y . (x∗ .

6. we may define the gravitational potential Φ(r) to be the potential energy per unit mass V (r) = mΦ(r). then the potential energy is the sum V (r) = − Gmmj . In it we shall discuss not the problem of determining the motion of a particle under known forces. We shall not use rotating frames again until Chapter 9. so that Φ(r) = − Gmj . located at the points r j . |r − r j | j (The fact that the potential energies add follows from the additive property of forces. If we have several masses mj . but the problem of finding the forces from a knowledge of the positions of other bodies. We deal specifically with gravitational and electrostatic forces obeying the inverse square law.1) j 129 . which are determined by the positions of other masses and charges.2) (6.Chapter 6 Potential Theory This chapter is complementary to the preceding ones.) Since the mass m appears only as an overall factor.1 Gravitational and Electrostatic Potentials The gravitational potential energy of a particle of mass m moving in the field of a fixed mass m at r is −Gmm /|r − r |. |r − rj | (6. ˙ We return here to the convention whereby r = dr/dt.

The electrostatic case is very similar. and therefore positive. We define the electrostatic potential φ(r) to be the electrostatic potential energy per unit charge. r Since this acceleration is independent of the mass m. (6. the electrostatic potential φ may have either sign.2) and (6.3) are all that is needed to calculate the acceleration induced in a particle by a given distribution of masses. (6.3) Thus (6.130 Classical Mechanics Note that Φ is always negative. We prefer. This proportionality is the content of the equivalence principle. r where the electric field E(r) is defined by E(r) = −∇φ(r). (The corresponding ratio in the gravitational case is the ratio of gravitational to inertial mass. which is of course a constant. to retain the direct correspondence between potential and potential energy.) Unlike the gravitational potential. however. so that particles tend to move towards regions of lower potential.6) Note that the acceleration depends on the charge-to-mass ratio q/m. .4) qj .) The acceleration of a particle moving under gravitational forces is given by m¨ = −∇V (r) = −m∇Φ(r). set equal to unity in conventional units. V (r) = qφ(r).5) The acceleration of a charged particle is given by m¨ = qE. we may define the gravitational acceleration or gravitational field g(r) by g(r) = −∇Φ(r). because both positive and negative charges exist. 4π 0 |r − rj | (6. The potential due to charges qj at r j is then φ(r) = j (6. (The potential has sometimes been defined to be minus the potential energy per unit mass.

. we evaluate the terms up to order a2 .1 r φ(r) = q q − .7) We shall assume that a r. If θ is the angle between a and r. so that we may expand by the binomial theorem. r r r 2 (The general term in this series is of the form (al /rl+1 )Pl (cos θ). (See Fig. respectively. Here. q and −q. where Pl is a polynomial. 6. but neglect a3 . then |r − a|2 = r2 − 2ar cos θ + a2 . known as the Legendre polynomial of degree l.1. 6. 4π 0 |r − a| 4π 0 |r| (6.8) 1 a2 a 1 + 2 cos θ + 3 ( 3 cos2 θ − 2 ) + · · · .2 The Dipole and Quadrupole The electric dipole consists of two equal and opposite charges. Hence 1 1 = |r − a| r = = a2 a 1 − 2 cos θ + 2 r r −1/2 1 1 1− r 2 a2 a −2 cos θ + 2 r r + 3 8 a2 a −2 cos θ + 2 r r 2 − ··· (6.) The potential is r−a +q a θ −q Fig. Since we shall need the result later. placed close together. 6. say at a and at the origin.Potential Theory 131 We can now forget about the particle at r. and concentrate on the problem of calculating the potential from given information about the positions of the masses or charges.

) In vector notation. drawn in the direction of E. Eθ = − r ∂θ 4π 0 r3 1 ∂φ = 0. 4π 0 |r − a|3 4π 0 r3 −3/2 Now. we denote the potential and the azimuth angle by the distinct symbols φ and ϕ. we shall only need the terms up to l = 2. Eϕ = − r sin θ ∂ϕ Er = − (6. 6. has the spherical polar components (see (A.2. by putting two dipoles together to form a quadrupole. The corresponding electric field.132 Classical Mechanics however. we have 1 a·r 1 ≈ 3 1−2 2 |r − a|3 r r Hence. Keeping only the linear term in a and neglecting a2 .6).11) (To avoid any possible risk of confusion. neglecting terms of order a2 . with dipole moments d and −d. to this approximation φ(r) = 3(d · r)(a · r) − (d · a)r2 . d = qa. r3 r . |r − a| r r 2r5 (6. at a and at the origin. If we place oppositely oriented dipoles. Note that the two always intersect at right angles. 3 4π 0 r 4π 0 r2 (6.7). ∂r 4π 0 r3 d sin θ 1 ∂φ = . in which the solid lines are field lines. and the dashed lines are the equipotential surfaces.10) where d is the electric dipole moment.) This field is illustrated in Fig.9) We now return to (6. we can write it as φ(r) = d·r d cos θ = . 4π 0 r5 (6.50)) 2d cos θ ∂φ = .12) ≈ 1 a·r +3 5 . given by (6. then the potential is φ(r) = d·r d · (r − a) − .8) as 1 a · r 3(a · r)2 − a2 r2 1 = + 3 + + ··· . We can repeat the process of putting two charges (or monopoles) together to form a dipole. φ = constant. we may write (6.

so that d is parallel to a. 16π 0 r4 3Q Eθ = cos θ sin θ. 8π 0 r4 Eϕ = 0. Er = (6. (The factor of 4 is purely conventional.14) It is illustrated in Fig. 6.3. we may take this common direction to be the z-axis. and obtain Q (3 cos2 θ − 1). and serves to simplify some of the later formulae. 16π 0 r3 φ(r) = (6.13) where Q is the electric quadrupole moment. where the dipoles are placed end-on.) The corresponding electric field is 3Q (3 cos2 θ − 1).2 In the special case. . 6.Potential Theory 133 Fig. Q = 4da.

5) d3 r = dx dy dz = r 2 dr sin θ dθ dϕ . Note that θ ranges from 0 → π. In spherical polars.3 Spherical Charge Distributions When we have a continuous distribution of charge (or mass) we can replace the sum in (6. radius a and thickness da. Choosing the direction of r to be the z-axis. 4π 0 |r − r | (6. and ϕ from 0 → 2π. Let us first take a uniform thin spherical shell of charge density ρ. namely (see §3. and d3 r denotes the element of volume. we can write .3 6. 6.134 Classical Mechanics Fig.5) by an integral: φ(r) = ρ(r ) d3 r . We shall consider in this section spherically symmetric distributions of charge. the volume element is the product of the elements of length in the three co-ordinate directions. for which ρ is a function only of the radial co-ordinate r .15) where ρ(r ) is the charge density.

. we have to separate the contributions from the regions r < r and r > r. (6. 3 Inside the sphere. (A similar result holds in the gravitational case.15) as φ(r) = ρa2 da 4π 0 sin θ dθ dϕ . Outside the shell. and the electric field is E = r dq/4π 0 r2 . Inside. by summing over all the spherical shells. with constant charge density ρ inside it? For r > a the potential is clearly just φ(r) = q .Potential Theory 135 (6. and yields φ(r) = ρa2 da (r + a) − |r − a| . The θ integration can easily be performed by the substitution u = cos θ . (r2 − 2ar cos θ + a2 )1/2 The ϕ integration gives a factor of 2π. 4π 0 a r > a. ⎨ 4π 0 r φ(r) = ⎪ dq ⎩ . we obtain ⎧ dq ⎪ . It is clear that the electric field at a distance r from the centre is equal to that of a point charge located at the origin. 4π 0 r with q= 4 3 πa ρ.16) r < a. Example: Uniformly charged sphere What is the potential and electric field for a sphere of radius a. In terms of the total charge dq = 4πρa2 da of the spherical shell. and the electric field vanishes. and obtain r φ(r) = 0 ρr 2 a 0r dr + r ρr 0 dr . whose magnitude is the total charge enclosed within a sphere of radius r. It is now easy to find the potential of any spherically symmetric distribution.) A simple example is a uniformly charged sphere. the potential is the same as that of a charge dq concenˆ trated at the origin. the potential is a constant. 2 0 ar We now have to consider separately the cases r > a and r < a.

we find ⎧ q ⎪ ⎨ 4π r .18) r < a. We shall discuss the nature of this correction later. 4π 0 r2 ⎪ r qr . 6. it increases linearly from zero at the centre to the surface value q/4π 0 a2 . ⎩ˆ 4π 0 a3 q r > a. outside the sphere. (6. This potential is illustrated in Fig. 0 φ(r) = r2 3 ⎪ q ⎩ − 3 4π 0 2a 2a r > a. any spherically symmetric distribution of charge or mass may be replaced by a point charge or mass located at the centre. (6. This is the justification for treating the Sun. any deviation from spherical symmetry will lead to a modification in the inverse square law. 6. r < a. Of course. . for example. The corresponding electric field is φ q 4πε0 a a Fig. as a point mass in discussing the motion of the planets.4. .4 r E(r) = ⎧ ⎪r ⎨ˆ Thus. Inside.17) . the field obeys the inverse square law. So far as its effect on outside bodies is concerned.136 Classical Mechanics Performing the integrations.

25) . The next term in (6.4 Expansion of Potential at Large Distances It is only for simple cases that we can calculate the potential exactly.15). 4π 0 r3 (6. (6. if the total charge is non-zero. and we may use the series expansion (6.19) may be regarded as measuring deviations from spherical symmetry. 4π 0 r (6.20) qj or q= ρ(r ) d3 r . This is the potential we should get for an exactly spherically symmetric distribution.24) Thus.19) is φ1 (r) = d·r . r is much larger than rj or r .21) Thus at very great distances. defined by d= j qj rj or d= ρ(r )r d3 r . Thus the further terms in the series (6.5) or (6. only the total charge is important. we are often interested in the form of the potential at distances from the charge or mass distribution which are large compared to its dimensions. we can always make the dipole moment vanish by choosing the origin to lie at the centre of charge R= d qj rj = . In general. not the shape of the distribution.23) If we shift the origin through a distance R. The leading (‘monopole’) term is φ0 (r) = where q is the total charge q= j (6. In particular.19) q . (6. Then in (6.8) to obtain an expansion of the potential in powers of 1/r: φ(r) = φ0 (r) + φ1 (r) + φ2 (r) + · · · . the total charge is clearly unaffected.22) where d is the dipole moment. q qj (6.Potential Theory 137 6. but the dipole moment changes to d= j qj (r j − R) = d − qR. we must use approximation methods. (6.

though flattened at the poles.9) into (6. However. it reads x2 (2x 2 − y 2 − z 2 ) + y 2 (2y 2 − x 2 − z 2 ) + z 2 (2z 2 − x 2 − y 2 ) + 6xyx y + 6xzx z + 6yzy z . (6. if the total charge is zero. This case is of particular interest in connection with the gravitational potential of the Earth.15). z ) exactly cancel. we shall not consider the general case here (see Appendix A. the dipole moment gives us information about the position of the centre of charge. we examine the numerator of the integrand in (6. obtained by substituting the third term of (6. Hence we can replace 2x 2 − y 2 − z 2 in the integrand by 1 (x 2 + y 2 ) − z 2 without 2 affecting the value of the integral. we see that the three .and y-axes are in no way distinguished from one another. so we can always ensure that the gravitational ‘dipole moment’ is zero by choosing our origin at the centre of mass. z ) and (−x . Moreover. To do this. where ρ depends on r and θ (or ρ and z ) but not on ϕ .13) with a suitably defined quadrupole moment Q. but restrict the discussion to the special case of axial symmetry. Written out in terms of components.138 Classical Mechanics In this case. the total mass can never vanish. because of axial symmetry.27) Now.26) can be written in a form similar to (6. is φ2 (r) = ρ(r ) 3(r · r )2 − r2 r 8π 0 r5 2 d3 r . (6. Problem 17).12).19). The ‘quadrupole’ term in the potential (6. y . for example ρ(r )x z d3 r = 0. because the contributions from (x . y . We shall see that in the case of axial symmetry. axial symmetry also implies that ρ(r )x 2 d3 r = ρ(r )y 2 d3 r . However.26). then by (6.24) the dipole moment is independent of the choice of origin — the electric dipole and quadrupole discussed in the preceding section are examples of this. (6. When we do this.26) One can write this expression in a form similar to (6. since the x. which is to a good approximation axially symmetric. Note that in the gravitational case. any integral involving an odd power of x or y will vanish.

14) with this value of Q.26) all involve the same integral. and negative if it is oblate.30) . 0. The quantity Q defined by (6. 5 (6. Here the central particle contributes nothing to Q. The result is Q = 2 q(c2 − a2 ). Find the quadrupole moment. with the z-axis longer than the others).Potential Theory 139 remaining terms of (6. The value of Q may be regarded as a measure of the flattening of the distribution. Q = 0. and therefore omit the details here.28) explicitly. like the Earth. because the integrals over x 2 . a. Example: Linear quadrupole Two equal charges q are positioned at the points (0. y 2 and z 2 all yield the same value. namely Q= Thus (6.28) is the quadrupole moment of the distribution. c. 16π 0 r5 16π 0 r3 (6. Thus we see that a better approximation than treating a charge distribution as a single point charge is to treat it as a point charge plus an electric quadrupole of moment given by (6. with uniform charge density and semiaxes a. ±a). and the other two each give the same contribution. For a distribution with uniform positive charge density.29) ρ(r )(2z 2 − x 2 − y 2 ) d3 r . We shall have occasion to evaluate a very similar integral in connection with moments of inertia in Chapter 9. for a spheroid (ellipsoid of revolution).26) can be written φ2 (r) = Q 2z 2 − x2 − y 2 Q= (3 cos2 θ − 1). The potential and electric field at large distances are given by (6. In particular.12) of an axially symmetric quadrupole. Q is positive if the shape is prolate (egg-shaped. and a charge −2q at the origin.13) and (6.28) This is identical with the potential (6. For a spherically symmetric charge distribution. so Q = 2q(2a2 ) = 4qa2 . (6.28). and write down the potential and electric field at large distances. we can evaluate the integral in (6.


Classical Mechanics


The Shape of the Earth

The Earth is approximately an oblate spheroid whose equatorial radius a exceeds its polar radius c by about 21.4 km. Its oblateness is defined to be = 1 a−c ≈ . a 297 (6.31)

Its gravitational potential is therefore not precisely the inverse-square-law potential, −GM/r. The most important correction is the ‘quadrupole’ term, Φ2 (r) = − GQ (3 cos2 θ − 1). 4r3

Since the Earth is oblate, Q here is actually negative. If the density of the Earth were uniform, the quadrupole moment would be given simply by (6.30):
2 4 Q = − 5 M (a2 − c2 ) ≈ − 5 M a2 .

Here we have used c = a(1 − ), and dropped terms of order 2 . In fact, the density is considerably greater near the centre than at the surface, so that large values of r contribute proportionately less to the integral (6.28). Thus we must expect Q to be rather smaller in magnitude than this value (see Problem 15). It will be convenient to write Q = −2M a2J2 ,
2 where J2 is a dimensionless parameter, somewhat less than 5 , defining the magnitude of the quadrupole moment. (In general, Jl parametrizes the term in Φ proportional to Pl (cos θ) — see the note following Eq. (6.8).) Then the gravitational potential becomes

Φ(r) ≈ −

GM a2 J2 GM + (3 cos2 θ − 1). r 2r3


We shall see that both and J2 can be determined from measurements of the acceleration due to gravity and the use of an equilibrium principle. The flattening of the Earth is in fact a consequence of its rotation. Over long periods of time, the Earth is capable of plastic deformation, and behaves more nearly like a liquid than a solid — and of course the larger part of the surface is covered by a liquid. Although its crust does have some rigidity, it could not preserve its shape for long unless it were at

Potential Theory


least approximately in equilibrium under the combined gravitational and centrifugal forces. Now, as in the problem discussed at the end of §5.3, the surface of a liquid in equilibrium under conservative forces must be an equipotential surface, for otherwise there would be a tendency for the liquid to flow towards regions of lower potential. We can include the centrifugal force by adding to the potential a term
1 1 Φcent (r) = − 2 ω 2 (x2 + y 2 ) = − 2 ω 2 r2 sin2 θ.

The equipotential equation is then Φ(r) + Φcent (r) = constant, (6.33)

with Φ given by (6.32). Thus equating the values at the pole (θ = 0) and on the equator (θ = π/2), we obtain the equation − GM a2 J2 GM J2 GM GM + − − 1 ω 2 a2 . =− 2 c c3 a 2a

Since and J2 are both small quantities, we may neglect 2 and J2 . Thus, in the quadrupole term, we may ignore the difference between c and a. In the inverse-square-law term, we can write 1/c ≈ (1/a)(1 + ). Hence to first order we find − 3GM J2 GM 1 + = − 2 ω 2 a2 . a 2a

Writing g0 for the gravitational acceleration without the centrifugal term, g0 = GM/a2 , and multiplying by 2/ag0, we obtain ω2a = 2 − 3J2 . g0 (6.34)

If we made the approximation of treating the Earth as of uniform den2 sity, and therefore set J2 = 5 , then this equation would determine the oblateness in terms of the angular velocity. This yields ≈ 1/230, which is appreciably larger than the observed value. On the other hand, if we regard and J2 as independent, then we need another relation to fix them both. Such a relation can be found from the measured values of g. (See §5.3.) Now, the gravitational field g = −∇Φ


Classical Mechanics

corresponding to the potential (6.32) is gr = − GM 3GM a2 J2 + (3 cos2 θ − 1), r2 2r4 3GM a2 J2 gθ = cos θ sin θ. r4


Note that gθ is directed away from the poles, and towards the equator, as one might expect from thinking of it as due to the attraction of the equatorial bulge. The inward radial acceleration −gr is decreased at the poles, and increased at the equator, by the quadrupole term, so that the difference between the two values is not as large as the inverse square law would predict. At the poles, and on the equator, gθ = 0, and the magnitude of g is equal to −gr . Thus we find gpole = geq 3GM a2 J2 GM − ≈ g0 (1 + 2 − 3J2 ) c2 c4 GM 3GM J2 3 = 2 + ≈ g0 (1 + 2 J2 ), a 2a2

making the same approximations as before. Thus, for the difference, we find the expression gpole − geq 9 ∆g = = 2 − J2 . g0 g0 2 (6.36)

For the value including the centrifugal term, ∆g ∗ = ∆g + ω 2 a, we have to add (6.34) to (6.36). This yields 15 ∆g ∗ = 4 − J2 . g0 2 (6.37)

Using the known values quoted in (5.18) and (5.19), we may solve the simultaneous equations (6.34) and (6.37) for and J2 . This yields = 0.0034, J2 = 0.0011.

The value of is in good agreement with the the oblateness deduced from direct measurements of the polar and equatorial radii. As expected, the 2 value of J2 is somewhat less than 5 . The relation between the two is determined by the density distribution within the Earth. (See Problem 15.) One consequence of the fact that the Earth’s surface is approximately an equipotential surface should be noted. Because of the general property

Potential Theory


that the force field is always perpendicular to the equipotentials, it means that the effective g ∗ , which is the field derived from Φ + Φcent , is always perpendicular to the Earth’s surface. Thus, although a plumb line does not point towards the Earth’s centre, it is perpendicular to the surface at that point — apart, of course, from minor deviations caused by mountains and the like. (Compare Chapter 1, Problem 10.) Satellite orbits The ‘quadrupole’ term in the Earth’s gravitational field has two important effects on the orbit of a close artificial satellite. Indeed, observations of such orbits provide the most reliable means of measuring its magnitude (and those of the even smaller higher-order correction terms). They have revealed quite substantial deviations from spheroidal shape and from hydrostatic equilibrium: the Earth’s surface is only rather approximately an equipotential. The first effect of the quadrupole term, arising mainly from the deviation of the radial component of g from the inverse square law, is a precession of the major axis of the orbit within the orbital plane. (Compare Chapter 4, Problem 27.) The major axis precesses in the forward direction for orbits of small inclination to the equator, and in the retrograde direction for orbits with inclination greater than arcsin 4/5 = 63.4◦ . (The difference is a reflection of the differing sign of the quadrupole contribution to gr on the equator and near the poles.) The second effect occurs because the force is no longer precisely central, so that the angular momentum changes with time according to dJ = mr ∧ g. dt (6.38)

Thus, as in the case of the Larmor effect discussed in §5.6, the orbital plane precesses around the direction of the Earth’s axis. The rate of precession may be calculated by a method very similar to the one used there (see Problem 25). The precession is in fact greater for orbits of small inclination, and is zero for an orbit passing over the poles. For a close satellite with small inclination, it can be nearly 10◦ per day. It is always in a retrograde sense (opposite to the direction of revolution of the satellite in its orbit). Both effects are strongly dependent on the radius of the satellite orbit. In fact, the rate of precession decreases like r −7/2 . At the radius of the Moon’s orbit, the precessional angular velocity is only a few seconds of arc


Classical Mechanics

per year. (The Moon’s orbit does precess, at about 19◦ per year, but this is a consequence of the non-uniformity of the Sun’s gravitational field, not of the shape of the Earth. See Problem 26.)

Planetary precession It should be noted that a small oblateness of the Sun produces a slow precession of the Kepler orbits around it. The major part of the precession of planetary orbits is due to the gravitational action of the planets on each other, leading for example in the case of Mercury to a predicted precession of the axes of the ellipse of about 531 seconds of arc every century. These effects can be modelled quite well for each planet by smearing the mass of each of the other planets into an appropriate coplanar uniform circular ring. The modifications to the inverse square law potential depend, of course, on whether the planetary distance being considered is inside or outside the ring. For Mercury (alone) there is an observed residual precession of 43 per century, not explainable by the Newtonian theory. In fact, general relativity does explain this precession — indeed that it does so is one of the celebrated tests of the theory.


The Tides

Tidal forces arise because the gravitational attraction of the Moon, and to a lesser extent of the Sun, is not uniform over the surface of the Earth. The attraction is stronger than average on the side of the Earth facing the Moon, and weaker than average on the far side, so there is a tendency for the Earth to be elongated along the line of centres. Let a be the position of the Moon relative to the Earth’s centre, and consider a point r on the Earth. The potential at this point is (see Fig. 6.5) Gm , |r − a|

Φ(r) = −


where m is the mass of the Moon. Now, since r a, we may expand in powers of r/a. (This is the reverse of the situation encountered in §6.2, where r was much larger than a.) Taking the direction of the Moon to be

Potential Theory


h(θ) E r θ M


Fig. 6.5

the z-direction, and using (6.8), we obtain Φ(r) = −Gm r r2 1 + 2 cos θ + 3 ( 3 cos2 θ − 1 ) + · · · . 2 a a a 2

The first term is a constant and does not yield any force. The second may be written Φ1 (r) = − Gm z. a2

It yields a uniform gravitational acceleration Gm/a2 directed towards the Moon. This term therefore describes the major effect of the Moon’s gravitational force, which is to accelerate the Earth as a whole. It is irrelevant in discussing the phenomenon of the tides, since we are interested in motion relative to the centre of the Earth. In fact, we can eliminate it by going over to an accelerated frame, the frame in which the Earth’s centre of mass is at rest. (See Chapter 5, Problem 18.) The important term for our purposes is the quadratic term, which leads to a gravitational field Gmr (3 cos2 θ − 1), a3 3Gmr gθ = − 3 cos θ sin θ. a gr =


This field is directed outwards along the z-axis, towards and away from the Moon, and inwards in the xy-plane, as expected. It should be noted that the field described by (6.40) is much weaker even than the corrections to the Earth’s field discussed in the preceding section. (If it were not, it would show up in measurements of g.) It is easy to compute its magnitude. It is smaller than g0 = GM/r2 by the factor


Classical Mechanics

mr3 /M a3 . For the Moon, m/M = 1/81.3 and r/a = 1/60.3, so that this factor is mr3 = 5.60 × 10−8 . M a3 (6.41)

If we denote the mass of the Sun by m and its mean distance, the semimajor axis of the Earth’s orbit, by a , then the corresponding values for the Sun are m /M = 3.33 × 105 and r/a = 4.26 × 10−5 . Thus the factor in that case is m r3 = 2.57 × 10−8 . Ma 3 (6.42)

By a remarkable coincidence (unique in the solar system), these two fields are of roughly the same order of magnitude: the effect of the Sun is rather less than half that of the Moon. The only reason why these very small fields can lead to significant effects is that they change with time. As the Earth rotates, the value of θ at any point on its surface varies. Thus the field described by (6.40) oscillates periodically with time. Because of the symmetry of (6.40) in the central plane, the main term has an oscillation period of 12 hours in the case of the Sun, and slightly more for the Moon, because of its changing position. This explains the most noticeable feature of the tides — their twice-daily periodicity. Unless the Moon is directly over the equator, however, a point on the Earth that passes directly beneath it will not also pass directly opposite, so that the two daily tides may be of unequal height. In other words, there is an additional term in the field with a period of 24 rather than 12 hours. At new moon or full moon, the Sun and Moon are acting in the same direction, and the tides are unusually high; these are the spring tides. On the other hand, at the first and third quarters, when the Sun and Moon are at right angles to each other, their effects partially cancel, and we have the relatively low neap tides. (See Fig. 6.6.) Measurements of the relative heights of the tides at these times provided one of the earliest methods of estimating the mass of the Moon. (A more accurate method will be discussed in the next chapter.) To get some idea of the order of magnitude of the effects produced by the tidal field, (6.40), let us make the simplest possible assumptions. We consider a perfectly rigid solid Earth, completely covered by ocean, and suppose that the natural periods of oscillation are short compared to the rotation period. In that case, the rotation is slow enough for the water

Potential Theory



S (a) Spring tides

M (b) Neap tides
Fig. 6.6


to reach equilibrium under the combined forces of Earth and Moon. The problem is then one in hydrostatics rather than hydrodynamics. In equilibrium, the surface of the water must be an equipotential surface. We can thus calculate the height h(θ) through which it is raised, as a function of the angle θ to the Moon’s direction (see Fig. 6.5). Since h(θ) is certainly small, the change in the Earth’s gravitational potential is approximately g0 h(θ). This change must be balanced by the potential due to the Moon, so that g0 h(θ) = Gmr2 3 1 ( cos2 θ − 2 ). a3 2

Thus, using g0 = GM/r2 , we find h(θ) = h0 ( 3 cos2 θ − 1 ), 2 2 where h0 = mr4 . M a3 (6.43)

This h0 is just (6.41) times an extra factor of r. Thus, using r = 6370 km, we find, for the Moon, h0 = 0.36 m, and for the Sun, h0 = 0.16 m. These figures must not be taken as more than rough order-of-magnitude estimates of the height of the tides. Even on a completely ocean-covered Earth, there would be important modifying effects. First, we have neglected the gravitational attraction of the ocean itself. The tidal bulges exert an attraction that tends to increase h0 slightly, in fact by about 12 per cent (see Problem 19). More important, however, is the fact the Earth is not perfectly rigid, and is itself distorted by tidal forces. Because the observed tidal range refers not to absolute height but to the relative heights of sea surface and sea floor, this reduces the effective height by a substantial factor. Indeed, in the extreme case of a fluid Earth enclosed by a completely flexible crust, there would be essentially no observable tide at all.


Classical Mechanics

The values obtained from (6.43) may seem rather small, especially when further reduced by the effect just mentioned. However, it is important to remember that they refer to the unrealistic case of an Earth without continents. The observed tidal range in mid-ocean (which can be measured by ranging from satellites) is in fact quite small, normally less than a metre. Large tides are a feature of continental shelf areas, and are strongly dependent on the local topography. Note too that the Moon’s attraction at any point on the Earth’s surface is a periodic force, whose effect may be greatly enhanced by the phenomenon of resonance, discussed in §2.6. The natural periods of oscillation of a body of water depend on a variety of factors, including its size, shape and depth, and there are critical values for which one of the periods is close to 12 hours. Then, because the damping produced by tidal friction is normally quite small except in very shallow water, very large tides can be set up. Another effect of resonance is to delay the oscillations, so that they are not precisely in phase with the applied force. At resonance, the phase lag is a quarter period (about three hours in this case). Thus we should not normally expect the times of high tide to coincide with the times when the Moon is overhead, or directly opposite. In practice, the times are determined in a very complicated way by the actual shapes of the oceans.


The Field Equations

It is often convenient to obtain the electric or gravitational potential by solving a differential equation rather than performing an integration. Although we shall not in fact need to use this technique in this book, we include a short discussion of it because of its very important role in more advanced treatments of mechanics and electromagnetic theory. To find the relevant equations, we consider first a single charge q located at the origin. The electric field is then E= q ˆ r. 4π 0 r2

Now let us consider a closed surface S surrounding the charge, and evaluate the surface integral of the component of E normal to the surface, E · n dS = q 4π ˆ r·n dS, r2




and n is a unit vector normal to ˆ the surface.Potential Theory 149 where dS is the element of surface area. If α is the angle between r n ¡ ¡ ¡ α ¡ E dS ¡ ¡ q ˆ and n.44) . 6. Evidently. Thus all the terms but one will cancel. so that all contributions will cancel. (It is to ensure that the factor of 4π here cancels that Coulomb’s law in SI units is written with an explicit factor of 1/4π.7). a radial line must always cut it in an odd number of points. 6. half in each direction. For each radial line cuts S in an even number of points. Hence E · n dS = q 4π dΩ = 0 S since the total solid angle subtended by a closed surface around the origin is 4π. (See Fig. (6. Hence it follows from the definition of solid ˆ angle (see (4. if we consider a surface S which does not enclose the origin. and we obtain the same answer (6. we can easily remove this restriction. we can see that the surface integral will vanish. then r · n dS = dS cos α is the projection of the area dS on a plane normal to the radius vector r. the contributions to the surface integral from points where it goes into. Similarly. rather ˆ than out of. ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡ dΩ Fig.42)) that r · n dS/r2 is equal to the solid angle dΩ subtended at the origin by the element of area dS.8. directed outwards (see Fig.7 q 0 .) We have implicitly assumed that each radial line cuts the surface only once.) Moreover. the surface are all of opposite sign (because r · n = cos α is negative at these points) and of equal magnitude. 6. However.44).

(6. V This equation must be true for an arbitrary volume V . by the theorem of Gauss (see (A. S V Hence (6. and therefore the integrand itself must vanish: ∇·E = −1 0 ρ.46) . (6. with charge density ρ(r).36)). while charges outside contribute nothing. then E · n dS = 1 0 V ρ(r) d3 r. Now. Any charge q located anywhere within a closed surface S will contribute to the surface integral an amount q/ 0 . the value of the integral is 1/ 0 times the total charge enclosed within the surface.8 It is now clear how we may generalize this result to an arbitrary distribution of charges. the surface integral is equal to the volume integral of the divergence of E: E · n dS = ∇ · E d3 r. This is often called Gauss’s law. If we have a continuous distribution of charge.150 Classical Mechanics n n n q Fig. Therefore.45) may be written (∇ · E − −1 3 0 ρ) d r = 0. 6.45) S where V is the volume enclosed by the surface S.

49) The gravitational case is of course entirely similar.51) (6.48) The main importance of these equations lies in the fact that they provide local relations between the potential or field and the charge density. Then (6. The expression (6. The electric field is in fact completely determined (except for a possible additive uniform field extending over the whole of space) by this equation together with the condition that it be a conservative field. This type of problem may be solved by looking for solutions of (6.47) This latter equation guarantees the existence of the potential φ related to E by E = −∇φ.46) and (6. where we do know the value of ρ.15) for φ in terms of ρ is non-local.50).. To use this equation. (See §6.50) Note the explicit appearance of the factor of 4π on the right hand side of (6. Note also the differing signs in (6.5). where ρ is now the mass density. in the sense that it expresses the potential φ at one point as an integral involving the charge density at all points of space. A particularly important special case is that in which ρ vanishes inside the region of interest.48) with appropriate boundary conditions.e. we obtain Poisson’s equation for the potential. (6.50). . (6.) Substituting in (6. which arises because the gravitational force is conventionally expressed in terms of unrationalized units.Potential Theory 151 This is the differential form of Gauss’s law. ∇2 φ = 0. i. instead of having information about ρ outside this region.5) and (1. ∇2 φ = − −1 0 ρ. we must know ρ everywhere. which again reflect the difference between (1. while. and ∇ ∧ g = 0. Frequently. ∇ ∧ E = 0. The field equations are ∇ · g = −4πGρ. (6. however. there is no factor of 1/4π in (1. (6.48) becomes Laplace’s equation. we have some conditions on the fields at the boundary.46).6).6. we are interested in the field in some restricted region of space.

If the electric field is uniform. Calculate the quadrupole moment of the disc of Problem 1. Verify that on the axis it agrees with the exact value when r/a is sufficiently large. a direct integration of the forces produced by each element of the sphere is difficult to perform. they provide a method of solving most of the problems in which the object of immediate interest is (or may be taken to be) a single particle. moving under the action of conservative forces. and let a → ∞? 2. (Take d in the z-direction.152 Classical Mechanics Poisson’s equation for the gravitational potential is ∇2 Φ = 4πGρ. In fact. show that the potential energy of a dipole of moment d is V = −d · E. This chapter. and that in a non-uniform field there is also a net force. What happens to the field if we keep the charge per unit area σ = q/πa2 fixed. which allowed many previously intractable problems to be handled relatively simply. Write down the potential energy of a pair of charges.52) The great advantage of calculating the potential. in a field with potential φ(r). Even in simple cases. when is this potential energy a minimum? Show that the dipole experiences a net moment. or couple. is complementary to the previous chapters. the introduction of the potential was one of the major advances in mechanics. Together. where we discussed the motion of a particle under known forces.8 Summary (6. F = (d · ∇)E. in which we have discussed the method of determining the force on a particle from a knowledge of the positions of other masses or charges. Find the potential and electric field at points on the axis of symmetry of a uniformly charged flat circular disc of charge q and radius a. rather than the field itself directly. and deduce the form of the field at large distance in any direction. and show that F = d ∂E/∂z. By considering the limit a → 0. like that of the uniformly charged sphere. 3. is that it is much easier to add scalar quantities than vector ones. q at a and −q at the origin. G = d ∧ E. Problems 1.) . 6.

Find the corresponding total charge on the Earth. 10. find the potential energy of a dipole of moment d in the field of another dipole of moment d . and find the leading correction to the monopole term −6Gm/r. (Take d at the origin and d at position r.) Find the forces and couples acting between the dipoles if they are placed on the z-axis and (a) both are pointing in the zdirection. Find also the potential. (Note: This requires expansion of the potential up to terms of order a4 /r5 . Using the result of Problem 3. *Two equal charges q are located at the points (±a. at distances r a. 11. 0. but not in the corresponding expression 2 for the potential energy in an external potential φ(r)? Find the energy stored in a sphere of charge q and radius a with uniform charge density. 9. typically of order 100 V m−1 . (b) both are pointing in the x-direction. 7. there is normally a vertical electric field.Potential Theory 153 4. *Six equal point masses m are located at the points ±ai. and show that infinite energy is required to compress the sphere to a point. 8. initially far apart. ±a. Find the leading term in the potential at large distances. 0). 6. Near the Earth’s surface. (c) d is in the zdirection. and the leading term in the gravitational field near the origin. up to terms of order r −3 . to a separation r12 is q1 q2 /4π 0 r12 . where φj (r j ) is the potential at r j due to all the other charges. Why does a factor of 1 appear here. Show that the quadrupole term in the potential vanishes. and (d) d is in the x-direction and d in the y-direction. Find the gravitational potential at large distances of a thin circular loop of radius a and mass m. and the stored energy per unit surface area. and d in the x-direction. 0). *Write the electric field of a dipole in vector notation. 5. Find the quadrupole moment of a distribution of charge on the surface 3 1 of a sphere of radius a with surface charge density σ = σ0 ( 2 cos2 θ − 2 ). ±aj and ±ak. Find also the stored energy in the case where the charge is uniformly spread over the surface of the sphere.) . and two charges −q at (0. Show that the work done in bringing two charges q1 and q2 . Write down the corresponding expression for a system of many charges. Show that the energy stored in the charge distribution is V = 1 2 j qj φj (rj ). Find the total energy stored in this distribution. and the corresponding electric field.

*Assume that the Earth consists of a core of uniform density ρc .84 × 105 km for the Moon. and that its contraction is halted by the build-up of pressure when a star of radius 106 km has been formed.) Estimate the collapse time for the Earth and for the Sun. Given that the mass of the gas cloud of Problem 12 is 10 30 kg. A diffuse spherical cloud of gas of density ρ is initially at rest. show that every particle will reach the centre at the same instant. taking a suitable value of ρ in each case. assuming that the density of the star is still uniform. Calculate approximately its oblateness. Find the ratio between the heights of the tides raised on the Moon by the Earth and on the Earth by the Moon. surrounded by a mantle of uniform density ρm . Hence. and starts to collapse under its own gravitational attraction. (The Moon’s radius is RM = 0. The semi-major axis of its orbit is 4. as compared to 7.22 × 105 km.154 Classical Mechanics 12. . Evaluate this time in years if ρ = 10−19 kg m−3 . The rotation period of Jupiter is approximately 10 hours. (Hint : Assume that particles do not overtake those that start nearer the centre.0RE. (The observed value is about 1/15. Verify that your solution is consistent with this assumption. Its mass and radius are 318ME and 11.) Estimate how high the tides on the Moon would have been when the Earth–Moon distance was 10RE . neglecting other forces. Jupiter has a satellite Io only a little heavier than the Moon (mass 8. The distance between the Earth and the Moon is gradually increasing (because of tidal friction — see §8. Note that in reality neither core nor mantle is of uniform density. (Hint : Treat the Earth as a superposition of two ellipsoids of densities ρm and ρc − ρm . and that the time taken is 3π/32ρG. 18.4).) 16. and that the boundary between the two is of similar shape to the outer surface. 14.) 15.93 × 1022 kg. How far away will it be when the lunar and solar tides are equal in magnitude? 17. Estimate the height of the tides when the Moon was 10 Earth radii away. respectively (E = Earth). use the result of Problem 6 to find the total energy released. 13.35 × 1022 kg). but with a radius only three-fifths as large.27RE . The substitution r = a sin2 θ may be used to perform the integration. Find what ratio of densities ρc /ρm is required to explain the observed quadrupole moment. Suppose that at some time the Moon had been ocean-covered and rotating relative to the Earth. neglecting the variation in density. compared with 3. Find the radial velocity of a particle which starts at a distance a from the centre when it reaches the distance r.

Note that the pressure at the surface is essentially zero. where ρE is the mean density of the Earth and RE its radius. where ρ is the density and p the pressure (the equation of hydrostatic equilibrium). show that in a fluid in equilibrium under pressure and gravitational forces. (See Problem 14 for Jovian data.) *The tidal bulge in the ocean may be regarded as adding a surface mass distribution of the same form as the surface charge distribution of Problem 8. ρ = 3.Potential Theory 155 19. however. because the spheres themselves would be distorted by the tidal force. both inside and outside the sphere. show that they will be pulled apart by the Earth’s tidal force if a is less than ac = 2(ρE /ρ)1/3 RE .) *Two small identical uniform spheres of density ρ and radius r are orbiting the Earth in a circular orbit of radius a. Given that the spheres are just touching. For the mean density of the Moon.) Verify that the potential of a uniformly charged sphere satisfies Poisson’s equation. within which small planetoids would be torn apart by tidal forces. (Mean density of Earth = 5. with their centres in line with the Earth’s centre. Deduce that. By considering the equilibrium of a small volume element. thus enhancing the effect.45(ρE/ρ)1/3 RE . 23. excluding the origin. Find the quadrupole moment of this distribution.5 × 103 kg m−3 . (Note.59) for this and subsequent problems.) The potential φ(r) = (q/4π 0 r)e−µr may be regarded as representing the effect of screening of a charge q at the origin by mobile charges in a plasma.34 × 103 kg m−3 . (This is an illustration of the existence of the Roche limit.89RE . The actual limit is larger than the one found here.43) the effective height of the tides is increased by a factor (1 − 3ρo /5ρE )−1 . 20. Calculate the charge density ρ (at points where r = 0) and find the total charge throughout space. positive near θ = 0 and π and negative near θ = π/2. given that ρE = 5. that the effective height is decreased by a larger factor due to the nonrigidity of the Earth. ∇p = ρg. Estimate the height of the tides raised on Jupiter by Io. (You will need (A. 22. where ρo is the mean density of the oceans and ρE that of the Earth as a whole. this gives ac = 2.03 × 103 kg m−3 . for example. 21. Evaluate this factor. It is ac = 2. The actual pressure at the centre is more than this estimate — . p + ρΦ is a constant. and show that when it is included in (6.52 × 103 kg m−3 and ρo = 1. for an incompressible fluid of uniform density ρ. and that the only force between them is gravitational. Use this result to obtain a rough estimate of the pressure at the centre of the Earth.

Hence show that the radius a of the star is determined solely by k and is independent of its mass M .) 24. =− dr2 k Solve this equation with the boundary conditions that ρ is finite at r = 0 and vanishes at the surface of the star.156 Classical Mechanics in fact about 3. Evaluate this rate for an orbit 400 km above the Earth’s surface. By introducing a pair of axes in the plane of the orbit.6 (see Fig. *Show that the moment of the solar tidal force mg S on an Earth satellite is mr ∧ g S = 3GMS m (r · aS )(r ∧ aS ). Show also that M = (4/π)a3 ρ(0). 5. show that the average value of this moment is mr ∧ g av =− 3GM ma2 J2 cos α (k ∧ n). 25.6 × 1011 Pa — because of the non-uniformity of ρ. where ω is the orbital angular velocity. where k is a constant. 2r3 where n is the normal to the orbital plane. Hence show that Poisson’s equation yields 4πG d2 [rρ(r)] rρ(r).10). Use the fluid equilibrium equation obtained in Problem 23 to find a relation between ρ and Φ. It should be noted that — as indicated in Problem 12 — even very small departures from hydrostatic equilibrium would result in collapse on a short time scale. a5 S . Hence show that the orbit precesses around the direction k of the Earth’s axis at a rate Ω = −(3J2 a2 /2r2 )ω cos α. Find also the precessional period. r5 Consider a satellite in a circular orbit of radius r in a plane inclined to the equator at an angle α. *Assume that the pressure p in a star with spherical symmetry is related to the density ρ by the (distinctly unrealistic) equation of state 1 p = 2 kρ2 . with an inclination of 30◦ . 26. as in §5. *Show that the moment of the Earth’s gravitational force may be written in the form mr ∧ g = 3GM ma2 J2 (k · r)(k ∧ r). only checked by an increase in internal pressure via other processes.

) Ω=− . Consider the effect on the Moon.Potential Theory 157 where aS is the position vector of the Sun relative to the Earth.. Compute the precessional period. By averaging both over a month and over a year (i. relative to Earth. with i in the direction where the Moon’s orbit crosses it.e. 4ω where is the Earth’s orbital angular velocity. Introduce axes i and j in the plane of the ecliptic. show that the moment leads to a precession of the Moon’s orbital plane. as functions of time. over the positions in their orbits of both bodies). Write down the positions of the Sun and Moon. at a precessional angular velocity 3 2 cos α k. (Note that this calculation is only approximately correct. whose orbit is inclined at α = 5◦ to the ecliptic (the Earth’s orbital plane).

158 Classical Mechanics .

(7. where 159 M = m 1 + m2 . the equations of motion are ¨ m1 r 1 = m 1 g + F . (7. that on the second due to the first is −F . and considerably extends the range of applicability of the results. However.) The centre of mass is often denoted by r. m2 . typographically inconvenient when dots are used to denote time derivatives. r = r1 − r2 .3) m1 r 1 + m 2 r 2 . r2 and m1 . If the force on the first particle due to the second is F . subject only to the force between the two.1) It is convenient to introduce new variables in place of r 1 and r2 .1 Centre-of-mass and Relative Co-ordinates We denote the positions and masses of the two particles by r 1 .4) . From (7.1).Chapter 7 The Two-Body Problem We shall be mainly concerned in this chapter with an isolated system of two particles. however. 7. as it is no harder to solve. ¨ m2 r 2 = m 2 g − F . by Newton’s third law. m1 + m 2 (7.1. Thus. we shall also allow the presence of a uniform gravitational field.2) ¯ (See Fig. (7. We define the position of the centre of mass. 7. then. R= and the relative position. in a uniform gravitational field g. we get the equation of motion for R by adding: ¨ M R = M g. This symbol is.

then we can also solve the two-particle problem.5) µ¨ = F . = m1 R + M M M M . because it is always less than either m1 or m2 .7) The separation between centre-of-mass and relative motion extends to the expressions for the total angular momentum and kinetic energy. These two equations are now completely separate.5) for the relative position is identical with that for a single particle of mass µ moving under the force F .160 Classical Mechanics m1 r1 r R r2 Fig.2) and (7. 7. We have ˙ ˙ J = m1 r 1 ∧ r 1 + m2 r 2 ∧ r 2 m2 m1 m2 m1 ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ r ∧ R+ r + m2 R − r ∧ R− r . If we can solve this one-particle problem. r where µ= m1 + m 2 The mass µ is called the reduced mass. M r2 = R − m1 r. Equation (7. we can obtain the positions of the particles by solving the simultaneous equation (7. When we have found R and r as functions of time. (7. In the case g = 0 it is equivalent to the law of conservation of momentum.4) shows that the centre of mass moves with uniform acceleration g. M (7. ˙ ˙ ˙ M R = m1 r1 + m2 r2 = P = constant. The equation for r is obtained by dividing by the masses and then subtracting: m1 m2 . (7.6) The equation of motion (7.1 m2 One virtue of the notation R for the centre of mass is that it serves to emphasize the fact that R is associated with the total mass.3): r1 = R + m2 r. M .

Let us suppose that the internal. it is clear that the crucial point is the separation of the potential energy.10). Now. It then corresponds to a potential energy function Vint (r). from (7. ˙2 ˙ T = 1 M R + 1 µr 2 .7. z1 .7).1). It is easy to see that the cross terms between R and r cancel. 2 ˙ 2 (7.) Thus the Lagrangian function is L=T −V 1 ˙1 2 ˙2 = 2 m1 r 2 + 1 m2 r2 + m1 g · r 1 + m2 g · r2 − Vint (r 1 − r2 ). y1 .9) and (7.5). Now the potential energy of a particle of mass m in a uniform gravitational field g is −mg · r.7. this is the familiar expression mgz.8) we find. (7. and we are left with ˙ ˙ J = M R ∧ R + µr ∧ r.11) The complete separation of the terms involving R from those involving r is now obvious.9). after a little algebra. but only for a uniform gravitational field does the potential energy separate in a similar way. In this form. x2 . and depends only on the relative co-ordinate r. we may express L in terms of any six independent co-ordinates in place of x1 . 2 2 (7. z2 . we find 1 ˙ L = 2 M R + M g · R + 1 µr 2 − Vint (r). The kinetic energy may always be separated according to (7.44) yield the correct equations of motion (7. (7. The total potential energy V includes not only Vint but also the potential energy of the external gravitational forces. substituting (7. (If g is in the −z-direction.7) into 1 ˙1 2 ˙2 T = 2 m1 r 2 + 1 m2 r 2 . two-body force is conservative. .4) and (7. we may choose the coordinates of R and r. In particular. Then.The Two-Body Problem 161 by (7. Similarly. y2 .10) It is easy to verify that Lagrange’s equations (3. just as in §3. It is easy to check that Lagrange’s equations for these co-ordinates are just (7.9) It is instructive to examine this problem also from the Lagrangian point of view introduced in §3.

14) ˙ ˙ ˙2 r2 = R + r∗ . it is often convenient to solve a problem first in the CM frame.15) p . (7. ˙ ˙ p2 = m 2 r 2 = m 2 R − p ∗ . To find the solution in some other frame. (In a gravitational field. M (7. Then the velocities of the two particles are ˙ ˙1 ˙ r1 = R + r ∗ . so.12) In this frame. We shall denote quantities referred to it by an asterisk. ˙ T = 1 M R + T ∗. (7.162 Classical Mechanics 7.) This is the centre-of-mass (CM ) frame. the momenta of the two particles are equal and opposite: ˙1 ˙2 ˙ m1 r ∗ = −m2 r ∗ = µr = p∗ . As we shall see explicitly later.13) say.9). we then need the relations between the momenta in the two frames. this is an accelerated.2 The Centre-of-mass Frame It is often convenient to describe the motion of the system in terms of a frame of reference in which the centre of mass is at rest at the origin. ˙ J ∗ = µr ∧ r = r ∧ p∗ . angular momentum and kinetic energy in the CM frame are P ∗ = 0. 2µ ∗2 (7.8) and (7. non-inertial frame. From (7. The relative position r is of course independent of the choice of origin. their momenta are ˙ ˙ p1 = m 1 r 1 = m 1 R + p ∗ . Let us consider ˙ a frame in which the centre of mass is moving with velocity R. 2 2 (7.16) . we find r∗ = 1 m2 r. but it is still useful. setting R∗ = 0 in (7. Hence by (7. M r∗ = − 2 m1 r.13). ˙ J = M R ∧ R + J ∗.7). it follows that the total momentum. T ∗ = 1 µr 2 = 2 ˙ Thus in any other frame we can write ˙ P = M R.

the period is given by (4. not restricted to two-particle systems. we have only to add the contribution of a particle of mass M located at the centre of mass R. Problem 31. rather than the mass of the heavier body. for an elliptic orbit. we see from (7. and the Pluto–Charon system. but also on the mass.The Two-Body Problem 163 To obtain the values in any frame from those in the CM frame. (See also Chapter 4. r r2 r This is identical with the equation for a particle moving around a fixed point mass M . Thus Kepler’s third law is only approximately correct: the orbital period depends not only on the semi-major axis.5) becomes Gm1 m2 GM µ = −ˆ 2 . We shall see in the next chapter that this is a general conclusion. for which m1 /m2 = 1/81. let us consider two bodies moving under their mutual gravitational attraction.31).5. This would yield a period about 4 hours too long. GM Note that a here is the semi-major axis of the relative orbit (the median distance between the bodies).3.) The only cases in the solar system for which the lighter mass is an appreciable fraction of the total are those of the Earth–Moon system. Example: Motion of a satellite How does the period of the Moon’s orbit relate to the Earth– Moon distance? How far does the apparent position of the Sun oscillate because of the influence of the Moon on the Earth’s position? Equation (7. for instance the Moon and the Earth. we should obtain the value given above but with m2 in place of M . µ¨ = −ˆ r r τ 2π 2 = a3 . for which m1 /m2 = 1/8. In particular. As an example.12) that both bodies move in ellipses around the centre of mass. with semi-major . and that M is the sum of the masses. In the CM frame of the Earth–Moon system. If we were to compute the period of the Moon’s orbit from Kepler’s third law by comparing it with the period of a small Earth satellite.

α = 6. M For the Earth–Moon system.84 × 105 km. the two types of motion are completely separate.2 A larger effect can be obtained by looking at the direction of some object closer to us than the Sun. the centre of mass of the Earth–Moon system moves in an ellipse around the Sun. . The Earth therefore moves around the centre of mass in a small ellipse with semi-major axis a2 = a/82. since A = 1. there are small effects due to the non-uniformity of the Sun’s field. This effect provides a method of determining the lunar mass. However. such as an asteroid.) This leads to a small oscillation in the direction of the Sun (see Fig. as we shall see later. where A is the distance to the Sun.164 Classical Mechanics axes a1 = m2 a. a = 3. and no transfer of energy or angular momentum from one to the other can occur. of angular amplitude α ≈ a2 /A.4 seconds of arc. 7.5 × 108 km. and the motion of the two bodies around the centre of mass is superimposed on this larger orbital motion. Moon a1 A α a 2 Sun Earth Fig.3 = 4670 km. (Note that the centre of mass is inside the Earth. 7. In the frame in which the Sun is at rest.2 — which is not drawn to scale). M a2 = m1 a. In the approximation in which the Sun’s gravitational field is uniform over the dimension of the Earth–Moon system.

The Two-Body Problem 165 7. we therefore need to use the laboratory (Lab) frame. 7. if the total kinetic energy after the collision is the same as that before it. like billiard balls. and the momenta after the collision by q 1 and q 2 . 7. Such collisions are typical of very hard bodies.18) In practice. most experiments are performed with one particle initially at rest (or nearly so) in the laboratory. Since the collision is elastic. so that p2 = 0.3 Elastic Collisions A collision between two particles is called elastic if there is no loss of kinetic energy in the collision — that is. and the angles of scattering and recoil by θ and α (see Fig. p∗ = q ∗ . (They are also important in atomic and nuclear collision problems. 2µ 2µ (7.3 T∗ = q ∗2 p∗2 = . and recede after the collision again with equal and opposite momenta. 7. from (7. (7.15). the target. p∗ and −p∗ . q ∗ and −q ∗ .17) Thus the magnitudes of the momenta before and after the collision are the same. To interpret such an experiment. we have. in which the momentum of particle 2.3). We shall denote the Lab momentum of the incoming particle by p1 . Thus each particle is scattered through the same angle θ ∗ (see Fig. The particles must approach each other with equal and opposite momenta.4).) It is easy to describe such a collision in the CM frame. We could work out the relations . q∗ 1 p∗ −q ∗ θ∗ −p ∗ 2 Fig. before the collision is zero.

m1 ∗ p + q∗.5 q2 θ p∗ α . Since p2 = 0. 7.166 Classical Mechanics between these quantities by using the conservation laws of energy and mo- q1 p1 1 2 θ α q2 Fig.14). using the formulae obtained in §7.20) (7. 7.5. 7. They are then. we have from (7.19).14).2. which also incorporates the momentum conservation q1 m1 p ∗ m2 q∗ θ∗ p1 Fig.4 mentum directly in the Lab frame.19) The momenta after the collision are again given by (7. R= m2 and also p1 = m1 ∗ M ∗ p + p∗ = p . 1 ∗ ˙ p . q 2 = p∗ − q ∗ . drawn in Fig. m2 m2 (7. q1 = m2 All these relations may be conveniently summarized in a vector diagram. but it is actually simpler to relate them to the CM quantities. using also (7. but with q ∗ in place of p∗ .

18). 2 T M2 (7. the vectors p∗ . (m1 /m2 ) + cos θ∗ (7. it bounces off the target with little loss of energy. the maximum fractional energy transfer is 64 4 per cent.21) The Lab kinetic energy transferred to the target particle is therefore T2 = 2 q2 2p∗2 = sin2 1 θ∗ . If the incoming particle is very light. the total kinetic energy in the Lab is just the kinetic energy of the incoming particle. and again loses little of its energy.2 per cent. For example. The interesting quantity is the fraction of the total kinetic energy which is transferred. if it is very heavy. Any desired relation between momenta. This is T2 4m1 m2 = sin2 1 θ∗ .22) The maximum possible kinetic energy transfer occurs for a head-on collision (θ∗ = π). in a proton–α-particle collision (m1 /m2 = 4 or 1 ). 7. 2 2m2 m2 On the other hand. p1 = q 1 + q2 . 2 (7. it is hardly deflected at all from its original trajectory. We consider explicitly only a few important relations. q2 = 2p∗ sin 1 θ∗ . q ∗ .) Another important relation is that between the Lab and CM scattering angles. and is T2 /T = 4m1 m2 /(m1 + m2 )2 .20). 2m1 2m1 m2 2 by (7. It is easy to prove by elementary trigonometry (most simply by dropping a perpendicular from the upper vertex in Fig. (These conclusions are changed by relativistic effects for speeds approaching that of light.The Two-Body Problem 167 equation in the Lab. By (7. Thus the recoil angle and the magnitude of the recoil momentum q2 are given in terms of CM quantities by 1 α = 2 (π − θ∗ ). In an electron–proton collision (m1 /m2 = 1/1836) it is about 0. T = M 2 p∗2 p2 1 = . energies or angles may be extracted from this diagram without difficulty. q 2 form an isosceles triangle.5) that tan θ = sin θ∗ .23) . Clearly this can be close to unity only if m1 and m2 are comparable in magnitude.

The maximum scattering angle occurs when q 1 is tangent to the circle (see Fig.6 sin θmax = m2 /m1 .24) For instance. the vector q ∗ sweeps out a semicircle of radius ∗ p . (7. and depends only on their mass ratio. as in §4. the left-hand vertex of Fig.5 lies inside this semicircle. if the target is the lighter particle (m1 /m2 > 1). As θ∗ varies from 0 to π. so that we obtain the simple relation 2 θ = 1 θ∗ . and so that the geometry of the scattering event is not . and a proton can only be scattered by an electron through an angle less than 0.6). In the special case of equal-mass particles. is still small enough so that the particles do not screen each other. and θ also varies from 0 to π.4 CM and Lab Cross-sections Let us now consider the scattering of a beam of particles by a target.5◦ . the right side of (7. However.031◦. 7. the semicircle excludes this vertex. an α-particle can only be scattered by a proton through an angle of almost 14. In that case.23) simplifies to tan 1 θ∗ . If the target is the heavier particle (m1 /m2 < 1). 7. It is given by q1 θmax q* m1 * p m2 Fig. and there is an intermediate value of θ ∗ for which θ is a maximum. 7.168 Classical Mechanics Note that this relation is independent of the momenta of the two particles.25) In this case. θ = 0 both when θ ∗ = 0 and when θ∗ = π. We shall suppose that the target contains a large number N of identical target particles. (7.5. but. 7. 2 (m1 = m2 ). the maximum scattering angle is π/2.

We can now introduce the concept of differential cross-section.44). f . To be specific. the scattering angle θ will be determined in some way (depending on the shape of the particles) by the impact parameter b.27) exactly as in (4. Let us imagine two beams of particles approaching from opposite directions — a ‘colliding-beam’ experiment. but for the moment we shall assume that they can be distinguished.The Two-Body Problem 169 seriously affected by which target particle is struck.5. with a particle flux of f particles crossing unit area per unit time. we have to calculate the corresponding cross-sectional area of the incident beam. Indeed the fact that the particles that are struck recoil out of the target makes no essential difference. we wish to discuss a slightly different type of experiment. (7.26) (compare (4. The ratio dσ/dΩ is the Lab differential cross-section. In any one collision. and by the flux. just as we did for the case of a fixed target in §4. If we set up a detector of cross-sectional area dA at a large distance L from the target. First. To find the number emerging within a solid angle in some specified direction. 4. In particular. dΩ L2 (7. The incident particles may or may not be the same as those in the target. We also suppose that the beam is a parallel beam of particles. a particular pair of particles will collide if the distance b between . N .9). so that we are directly concerned with the CM frame. and multiply by the number of target particles. however.39) and Fig. each with the same mass and velocity. let us suppose that the particles in one beam are hard spheres of radius a1 and those in the other beam are hard spheres of radius a2 . we shall be interested in the case where the momenta of the particles in the two beams are equal and opposite. Thus the particles scattered through angles between θ and θ + dθ will be those of the incident particles which strike any one of the target particles with impact parameters between the corresponding values b and b + db. We shall return to the question of calculating the Lab differential crosssection later. dσ = b |db| dϕ. without including also the recoiling target particles. the rate of detection will be dw = N f dσ dA . Evidently. so that it is possible to set up a detector to count the number of scattered particles emerging in some direction.

7 Let us select one of the particles in the second beam. To compute the number of collisions occurring in a short time interval dt. In our case. and is the same whether the target is at rest or moving towards the beam. (7. we have to find the relation between b and the CM scattering angle θ∗ .7). and v is the relative velocity (= v1 + v2 ). we may imagine the cross-sectional area σ to be attached to our selected particle and moving with it. α α a1 θ∗ b a2 θ∗ Fig. It will collide with any particles in the first beam whose centres cross an area σ = πa2 .170 Classical Mechanics the lines of motion of their centres is less than a = a1 + a2 (see Fig. if we are interested in the number of particles emerging in a given solid angle.7 that 1 b = a sin α = a cos 2 θ∗ . it is clear from Fig.26). not of either particle individually. Then the probability that the centre of one of the particles in the first beam crosses this area in the time dt will be n1 vσ dt. If the number of particles in the second beam per unit volume is n2 . This serves to emphasize the fact that the cross-section is a property of the pair of particles involved in the collision. Note that it is the sum of the radii which enters here.28) . 7. where n1 is the number of particles per unit volume in the beam. Now. This is the total cross-section for the collision. 7. then the total number of collisions occurring in volume V is n1 n2 vσV dt. 7. and evaluate the corresponding cross-sectional area (7.

and then use the relation sin θ∗ dθ∗ dz ∗ dΩ∗ = = .31) The value of dz ∗ /dz may be found from (7. Nor is it true in the Lab frame. but the resulting expression for the general case is not particularly illuminating. to solve for z ∗ and differentiate. then the detection rate of particles will be w = n1 n2 vV dσ dA .The Two-Body Problem 171 Hence. In our particular case. so that the cross-section takes a simpler form in the CM frame than in the Lab frame. This is a very special property of hard spheres. Let us assume (for a reason to be given later) that m1 < m2 . introducing the solid angle dΩ∗ = sin θ∗ dθ∗ dϕ. z ∗ = cos θ∗ . dΩ dΩ∗ dz [(m1 /m2 ) + z ∗ ]2 . the differential crosssection (7. 4 dΩ∗ (7. The easiest way to find the Lab differential cross-section is often to compute the CM differential cross-section first. the number of particles detected is independent of the direction in which we place the detector (so long as it is outside the unscattered beam). of hard-sphere scattering. we find that the CM differential cross-section is dσ = 1 a2 .30) Note that N and f in (7. and we shall omit it. Then it follows that dσ dz ∗ dσ = . which may be written z2 = It is straightforward.29) If we set up a detector arranged to record particles scattered in a particular direction from a small volume V . dΩ sin θ dθ dz with z = cos θ. as in (4. the reason for calculating the CM differential cross-section first is that the relation between b and θ ∗ is much simpler than that between b and θ. Indeed. . if tedious.42). 1 + 2(m1 /m2 )z ∗ + (m1 /m2 )2 (7. dΩ∗ L2 (7.29) is independent of θ ∗ . and is not true in general.27) correspond to n2 V and n1 v in this formula. In other words. and the scattering is therefore isotropic in the CM frame.23).


Classical Mechanics

If m1 > m2 , there is a complication which arises from the fact that for each value of θ less than the maximum scattering angle θmax there are two possible values for θ ∗ , as is clear from Fig. 7.6. If we measure only the direction of the scattered particles, we cannot distinguish these two, and must add the contributions to dσ/dΩ from dσ/dΩ∗ at these two separate values of θ∗ . (Moreover, for one of these two, dz ∗ /dz is negative, and must be replaced by its absolute value.) The two values of θ ∗ can be distinguished if we can measure also the energy or momentum of the scattered particles. We shall consider explicitly only the case of equal mass particles, m1 = m2 . Example: Scattering of equal hard spheres Find the Lab-frame differential cross-section for the scattering of equal-mass hard spheres. Here the relation between the scattering angles, (7.23), simplifies to θ∗ = 2θ, or z ∗ = 2z 2 − 1. Consequently, dz ∗ /dz = 4z, and the Lab differential cross-section corresponding to (7.29) is dσ = a2 cos θ, dΩ (θ < 1 π). 2 (7.32)

Of course, no particles are scattered through angles greater than π/2, so dσ = 0, (θ > 1 π). (7.33) 2 dΩ In this case, the cross-section is peaked towards the forward direction, and more particles will enter a detector placed at a small angle to the beam direction than one placed nearly at right angles. As a check of this result, we may evaluate the total cross-section σ, 1 which must agree with the value σ = 4π × 4 a2 = πa2 obtained in the CM frame. We find σ= dσ dΩ = dΩ
2π π/2

0 0

a2 cos θ sin θ dθ = πa2 ,

as expected. (Note the upper limit of π/2 on the θ integration, which arises because of (7.33).)

The Two-Body Problem


We assumed at the beginning of this section that the target particles and beam particles were distinguishable, and that the aim of the experiment was to count scattered beam particles only. However, it is easy to relax this condition. We shall now calculate the rate at which recoiling target particles enter the detector. In a collision in which the incoming particle has impact parameter b, and is moving in a plane specified by the angle ϕ, the target particle will emerge in a direction specified by the polar angles α, ψ, where α is related to θ ∗ or b by (7.21) and ψ = π + ϕ. The number of target particles emerging within the angular range dα, dψ is therefore equal to the number of incident particles in the corresponding range db, dϕ. To determine the number of recoiling particles entering the detector, we have to relate dσ to the solid angle dΩ2 = sin α dα dψ. By (7.21), we have cos θ ∗ = 1 − 2 cos2 α, whence dσ dσ = 4 cos α dΩ2 dΩ∗ (α < 1 π). 2 (7.34)

In the particular case of equal-mass hard spheres, this differential crosssection has exactly the same form as (7.32). This shows that in the scattering of identical hard spheres the numbers of scattered particles and recoiling target particles entering the detector are precisely equal, and the total detection rate is obtained by doubling that found earlier.



For our later work, the most important result of this chapter is that the total momentum, angular momentum and kinetic energy in an arbitrary frame differ from those in the CM frame by an amount equal to the contribution of a particle of mass M moving with the centre of mass. We have seen that for a two-particle system the use of the CM frame is often a considerable simplification, and this is true also for more complicated systems. When we need results in some other frame, it is often best to solve the problem first in the CM frame, and then transform to the required frame. This is true for example in the calculation of scattering cross-sections in two-particle collisions.


Classical Mechanics

Problems 1. A double star is formed of two components, each with mass equal to that of the Sun. The distance between them is 1 AU (see Chapter 4, Problem 2). What is the orbital period? 2. Where is the centre of mass of the Sun–Jupiter system? (The mass ratio is MS /MJ = 1047. See Chapter 4, Problems 2 and 3.) Through what angle does the Sun’s position as seen from the Earth oscillate because of the gravitational attraction of Jupiter? 3. The parallax of a star (the angle subtended at the star by the radius of the Earth’s orbit) is . The star’s position is observed to oscillate with angular amplitude α and period τ . If the oscillation is interpreted as being due to the existence of a planet moving in a circular orbit around the star, show that its mass m1 is given by α m1 = MS M τE MS τ


where M is the total mass of star plus planet, MS is the Sun’s mass, and τE = 1 year. Evaluate the mass m1 if M = 0.25MS, τ = 16 years, = 0.5 and α = 0.01 . What conclusion can be drawn without making the assumption that the orbit is circular? 4. Two particles of masses m1 and m2 are attached to the ends of a light spring. The natural length of the spring is l, and its tension is k times its extension. Initially, the particles are at rest, with m1 at a height l above m2 . At t = 0, m1 is projected vertically upward with velocity v. Find the positions of the particles at any subsequent time (assuming that v is not so large that the spring is expanded or compressed beyond its elastic limit). 5. *Prove that in an elastic scattering process the angle θ + α between the emerging particles is related to the recoil angle α by m1 + m 2 tan(θ + α) = . tan α m1 − m 2
1 (Hint : Express both tangents in terms of tan 2 θ∗ .) What is the mass ratio if the particles emerge at right angles to each other? 6. A proton is elastically scattered through an angle of 56◦ by a nucleus, which recoils at an angle α = 60◦ . Find the atomic mass of the nucleus, and the fraction of the kinetic energy transferred to it.

The Two-Body Problem


7. An experiment is to be designed to measure the differential cross-section for elastic pion–proton scattering at a CM scattering angle of 70◦ and a pion CM kinetic energy of 490 keV. (The electron-volt (eV) is the atomic unit of energy.) Find the angles in the Lab at which the scattered pions, and the recoiling protons, should be detected, and the required Lab kinetic energy of the pion beam. (The ratio of pion to proton mass is 1/7.) 8. *An unstable particle of mass M = m1 + m2 decays into two particles of masses m1 and m2 , releasing an amount of energy Q. Determine the kinetic energies of the two particles in the CM frame. Given that m1 /m2 = 4, Q = 1 MeV, and that the unstable particle is moving in the Lab with kinetic energy 2.25 MeV, find the maximum and minimum Lab kinetic energies of the particle of mass m1 . 9. The molecules in a gas may be treated as identical hard spheres. Find the average loss of kinetic energy of a molecule with kinetic energy T in a collision with a stationary molecule. (Hint : Use the fact that the collisions are isotropic in the CM frame, so that all values of cos θ ∗ between ±1 are equally probable.) How many collisions are required, on average, to reduce the velocity of an exceptionally fast molecule by a factor of 1000? 10. Two identical charged particles, each of mass m and charge e, are initially far apart. One of the particles is at rest at the origin, and the other is approaching it with velocity v along the line x = b, y = 0, where b = e2 /2π 0 mv 2 . Find the scattering angle in the CM frame, and the directions in which the two particles emerge in the Lab. (See §4.7.) 11. *Find the distance of closest approach for the particles in Problem 10, and the velocity of each at the moment of closest approach. 12. Obtain the relation between the total kinetic energy in the CM and Lab frames. Discuss the limiting cases of very large and very small mass for the target. 13. *Suppose that the asteroid of Chapter 4, Problem 17, has a mass of 6 × 1020 kg. Find the proportional change in the kinetic energy of the Earth in this encounter. What is the resulting change in the semi-major axis of the Earth’s orbit? By how much is its orbital period lengthened? (Note that the postulated event is exceedingly improbable.) 14. Calculate the differential cross-section for the scattering of identical hard spheres directly in the Lab frame.


Classical Mechanics

15. Find the Lab differential cross-section for the scattering of identical particles of charge e and mass m, if the incident velocity is v. (See (4.50).) 16. At low energies, protons and neutrons behave roughly like hard spheres of equal mass and radius about 1.3 × 10−14 m. A parallel beam of neutrons, with a flux of 3 × 1010 neutrons m−2 s−1 , strikes a target containing 4 × 1022 protons. A circular detector of radius 20 mm is placed 0.7 m from the target, in a direction making an angle of 30◦ to the beam direction. Calculate the rate of detection of neutrons, and of protons. 17. *Write down the equations of motion for a pair of charged particles of equal masses m, and of charges q and −q, in a uniform electric field E. Show that the field does not affect the motion of the centre of mass. Suppose that the particles are moving in circular orbits with angular velocity ω in planes parallel to the xy-plane, with E in the z-direction. Write the equations in a frame rotating with angular velocity ω, and hence find the separation of the planes.

Chapter 8

Many-Body Systems

Any material object may be regarded as composed of a large number of small particles, small enough to be treated as essentially point-like, but still large enough to obey the laws of classical rather than quantum mechanics. These particles interact in complicated ways with each other and with the environment. However, as we shall see, if we are interested only in the motion of the object as a whole, many of these details are irrelevant. We shall consider in this chapter a general system of N particles labelled by an index i = 1, 2, . . . , N , interacting through two-body forces, and also subjected to external forces due to bodies outside the system. We denote the force on the ith particle due to the jth particle by F ij , and the external force on the ith particle by F i . Then the equations of motion are ¨ mi ri = F i1 + F i2 + · · · + F iN + F i ≡ F ij + F i .


Here, and throughout this chapter, the sum is over all particles of the system, j = 1, 2, . . . , N . Of course, there is no force on the ith particle due to itself, and so F ii = 0. The sum in this case is really over the other N − 1 particles.


Momentum; Centre-of-mass Motion

The position R of the centre of mass is defined, as in (7.2), by R= 1 M mi r i ,



mi .




Classical Mechanics

The total momentum is P =

˙ ˙ mi r i = M R.


It is equal to the momentum of a particle of mass M located at the centre of mass. The rate of change of momentum, by (8.1), is ˙ P =
i j

F ij +

F i.


Now the two-body forces must satisfy Newton’s third law F ji = −F ij . (8.5)

Thus, for every term F ij in the double sum in (8.4), there is an equal and opposite term F ji . The terms therefore cancel in pairs and the double sum is zero. (Compare the discussion at the end of §1.3 for the three-particle case.) Hence we obtain the important result that the rate of change of momentum is equal to the sum of the external forces alone: ˙ ¨ P = MR =

F i.


In the special case of an isolated system of particles, acted on by no external forces, this yields the law of conservation of momentum, ˙ P = M R = constant. (8.7)

Let us now regard our system of particles as forming a composite body. If the body is isolated, then according to Newton’s first law it moves with uniform velocity. Thus we see that to maintain this law for composite bodies, we should define the position of such a body to mean the position of its centre of mass. Moreover, with this definition, Newton’s second law is just (8.6), provided that we interpret the force on the body in the obvious way to mean the sum of the external forces on all of its constituent particles, and the mass as the sum of their masses. It is also clear that if Newton’s third law applies to each pair of particles from two composite bodies, then it will apply to the bodies as a whole. Thus, with a suitable (and very natural) interpretation of the concepts involved, Newton’s three basic laws may be applied to composite bodies as well as to point particles. (Though we have phrased the discussion in terms

Many-Body Systems


of collections of particles, we could also include the case of a continuous distribution of matter, by dividing it up into infinitesimal particles.) It follows that, so long as we are interested only in the motion of a body as a whole, we may replace it by a particle of mass M located at the centre of mass. This is a result of the greatest importance, for it allows us to apply our earlier discussion of particle motion to real physical bodies. We have of course implicitly assumed it in many of our applications; for example, we treated the planets as point particles in discussing their orbital motion. There is one point about which one must be careful. We may still need some information about the actual shape of the body to calculate the total force acting on it. This force is not necessarily equal to that on a particle of mass M at the centre of mass. In the gravitational case, it happens to be so if the body is spherical, or if the gravitational field is uniform, but not in general otherwise. As an example of the use of the momentum conservation equation for an isolated system, we consider the motion of a rocket. Example: Rockets A rocket, initially at rest, emits matter with a constant velocity u relative to the rocket (though not necessarily at a uniform rate). Gravity is negligible. If the initial total mass of the rocket is M0 , find its velocity v when the mass has fallen to M . Consider the emission of a small mass dm. After the emission, the mass of the rocket will be reduced by this amount, dM = −dm, (8.8)

and its velocity will be increased to some value v + dv. (See Fig. 8.1.) This velocity can be found from the momentum conservation equation (M − dm)(v + dv) + dm(v − u) = M v.

M before




M−dm after


Fig. 8.1


Classical Mechanics

Neglecting second-order infinitesimals, we find M dv = u dm. By (8.8), we can write this in the form dv dM =− , u M whence, integrating, and using the initial condition M = M0 when v = 0, we have v M = − ln . u M0 This relation may be solved to give the mass as a function of the velocity attained: M = M0 e−v/u . (8.10) (8.9)

This shows that to accelerate a rocket to a velocity equal to its ejection velocity u, we must eject all but a fraction 1/e of its original mass. Note that the velocity of the rocket depends only on the ejection velocity and the fraction of the initial mass which has been ejected, and not on the rate of ejection. It makes no difference whether the acceleration is brief and intense, or prolonged and gentle. (This assumes of course that the rocket is not subjected to other forces, such as gravity, during its acceleration. It would clearly be useless to try to escape from the Earth with a rocket providing a long, slow acceleration, because it would be constantly retarded by gravity.) For interplanetary flights, rockets are normally used only for brief spells, between which the spacecraft moves in a free orbit — as, for example, in Chapter 4, Problem 16, where these brief spells are at or near planetary departures and arrivals. If the duration of the rocket bursts is sufficiently short for the change in position of the rocket during each burst to be negligible, then it is a good approximation to assume that on each occasion the velocity is changed instantaneously, by an amount known as the velocity impulse. The relevant quantity for determining the mass of the rocket required to deliver a given payload, using a given ejection velocity, via a given orbital manoeuvre, is then the sum of the velocity impulses (in the ordinary, not the vector, sense). For example, the minimum velocity impulse needed to escape from the Earth is 11 km s−1 . For the return trip,

(8. 8. if the deceleration on re-entry into the atmosphere is to be produced by the rockets rather than atmospheric friction.2 The contribution consists of two terms.) For simplicity. Central Internal Forces The total angular momentum of our system of particles is J= i ˙ mi r i ∧ r i . let us write r = r 1 − r2 . (See Fig. (We shall discuss the possible justification for this assumption shortly. 8. and F = F 12 . just as they did in the evaluation of the rate of change of total linear momentum. r 1 ∧ F 12 + r2 ∧ F 21 = r 1 ∧ F − r 2 ∧ F = r ∧ F .12) Now let us examine the contribution to (8. Let us for the moment simply assume that all the internal forces are central.) Then all the terms in the double sum in (8. parallel to r. say 1 and 2.Many-Body Systems 181 it is 22 km s−1 . so that also F 21 = −F .12) will cancel in pairs.2 Angular Momentum.12) from the internal force between a particular pair of particles. (8. 8.13) This contribution will be zero if F is a central internal force. F r1 1 r r2 2 −F Fig. (8.11) The rate of change of J is ˙ J= i ¨ mi r i ∧ r i = i j r i ∧ F ij + i ri ∧ F i .2. The total moment of all the internal forces will be .

for an isolated system. they are actually of much more general validity. Thus we can write ˙ J = M R ∧ R + J ∗. this is true if all the external forces are directed towards. with all F i = 0.16) into (8. It is often convenient. so that M R∗ = i mi r∗ = 0. i (8. We define the positions r ∗ of the particles relative to the centre of mass by i ri = R + r∗ .14) and (8. (8. Although we have only shown that (8. we obtain J= i mi + i ˙ R∧R+ mi r ∗ i i ˙ ∧R+R∧ ˙i mi r ∗ i ˙i mi r ∗ ∧ r ∗ . notably the electromagnetic force between moving charges. (8. J = constant. the position of the centre of mass relative to itself is zero.17) Now.14) as a basic postulate of the dynamics of composite bodies. Many are.16) Clearly. when the internal forces are central. It is certainly not true that all the internal forces in real solids. i (8. justified by the fact that the predictions derived from it agree with observations.18) . for reasons that should become clearer in Chapter 12.17). or away from. we have the law of conservation of angular momentum. to separate the contributions to J from the centre-of-mass motion and the relative motion. substituting (8. It is better to regard (8.11). So.15) hold in the special case of central internal forces. the origin (which may be true for example if they are due to the gravitational attraction of a spherical body). liquids or gases are central. as we did in Chapter 7.14) In particular.15) More generally. (8.182 Classical Mechanics zero. the rate of change of angular momentum is equal to the sum of the moments of the external forces only: ˙ J= i ri ∧ F i . i The second and third terms vanish by virtue of (8. but there are obvious exceptions.

In general. we obtain ˙∗ J = i r∗ ∧ F i . namely J∗ = i ˙i mi r ∗ ∧ r ∗ .20) Hence. Only in very special cases.14). For.) The angular momentum of this system is ˙ J = M R ∧ R + J ∗.21) Thus the rate of change of the angular momentum J ∗ about the centre of mass is equal to the sum of the moments of the external forces about the centre of mass. It is particularly important in the case of rigid bodies. d ˙ ¨ (M R ∧ R) = M R ∧ R = R ∧ dt F i. we consider the system comprising the Earth and the Moon. and treat the Sun as fixed. i (8. This is a remarkable result. the resultant force acts at the centre of mass.6). subtracting from (8.Many-Body Systems 183 where J ∗ is the angular momentum about the centre of mass. it must be remembered that the centre of mass is not in general moving uniformly. by (8. (8.16). i (8. i (8.22) . For an isolated system. and treat it as though it were fixed. For example. we may take moments about the origin of any inertial frame. This result means that in discussing the rotational motion of a body we can ignore the motion of the centre of mass. are we allowed to do this. For. and using (8. but it would be quite wrong to take moments about an accelerated point. which we discuss in Chapter 9.19) It is easy to find the rate of change of J ∗ . such as where the point is the centre of mass. More generally.21) that J ∗ as well as J is a constant. and J ∗ is therefore a constant.3 The Earth–Moon System As an interesting example of the use of the angular momentum conservation law. for a system of particles in a uniform gravitational field. 8. (We ignore the other planets. it follows from (8. J ∗ is a constant if the external forces have zero total moment about the centre of mass.

1. This angular momentum J ∗ can again be separated into an orbital term. according to (7. E M (8. and two rotational terms.) Thus there is a couple acting to slow the Earth’s ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ Moon Fig. Then J ∗ as well as J will be constant. to a good approximation. and a corresponding equal and opposite couple tending to increase the orbital angular momentum.15). One is the non-spherical shape of the Earth. we shall make the simplest possible approximations. However. We neglect the rotational angular momentum J ∗ of the Moon M .184 Classical Mechanics where M = m + m is the total mass of Earth plus Moon. and J ∗ is the angular momentum about the centre of mass. We shall E discuss this effect further in §10. To investigate this effect. is µr ∧ r. 8.23) are separately constant. The dissipation of energy by the tides has the effect of gradually slowing the Earth’s rotation. it tries to carry with it the tidal ‘bulges’. due to the motion of the Earth and Moon around their common centre of mass. E M ˙ The orbital angular momentum. over long periods of time they do change.5. Indeed. We can picture this effect as follows: as the Earth rotates. but because of angular momentum conservation there is a corresponding precession of the Earth’s angular momentum J ∗ which is important.3 rotation.3. Thus ˙ J ∗ = µr ∧ r + J ∗ + J ∗ . the individual terms of (8. 8. as we saw in §6.23) Let us first neglect the non-uniformity of the Sun’s gravitational field over the dimensions of the Earth–Moon system. The second reason is the effect of tidal friction. due to the rotation of each body about its own centre. where µ = mm /M . which. while the Moon’s attraction is pulling them back into line. for at least two reasons. (See Fig. J ∗ and J ∗ . This is too small to be of much importance in the present context (the non-uniformity of the Sun’s field produces a much bigger effect). leads to a precession of the Moon’s orbital plane.

Indeed this effect can now be measured: the Moon is currently receding from the Earth at about 3. Note that at present the first term of (8.23) have the same direction.24) (dividing by µr2 ω0 ) as a r 2 Ω ω + 27.e.0365. Thus the total angular momentum about the centre of mass is J ∗ = µa2 Ω + 0.26) Inserting this into (8.2 = 160. ω0 ω0 (8. the Moon moves further away from the Earth. mass m and radius 2 r. (8. we may write the conservation law (8.3. 8. Ω2 a3 = GM. a must increase. If we use (8. Hence Ω decreases too. Now the orbital angular velocity Ω is related to a by (4. and ω the rotational angular velocity..23)).1). (8. equivalently Ω r = 17. or. i.1 ω0 a 3/2 .33mr2 ω. .27) to plot Ω and ω as functions of a we obtain curves like those of Fig. The Earth’s rotational angular momentum.32).629 ω0 r 1/2 . It is convenient to express the angular velocities in terms of the present value ω0 of ω.26) and (8. the Earth’s density increases towards its centre. given by (5. and I is therefore somewhat less than this.33mr2 .8 cm yr −1 . and assume that the Earth’s axis is perpendicular to the Moon’s orbital plane. i.25) yields for the Earth’s rotational angular velocity ω a = 5. so that the remaining terms of (8.e. approximately I = 0.3 and Ω/ω0 = 0.27) As ω decreases due to tidal friction.. I has the value I = 5 mr2 . where I is the so-called moment of inertia.4 (which are not drawn to scale).24) where Ω is the Moon’s orbital angular velocity. has the ∗ form JE = Iω. In fact. as we shall see in the next chapter. (8. Using m/µ = 82.25) is almost five times as large as the second.Many-Body Systems 185 (which is in fact very small compared to the other terms in (8. For a sphere of uniform density.25) where the value of the constant on the right is obtained by using the present values a/r = 60.88 − 0.

and the common rotation period (the ‘day’ or the ‘month’) would be nearly 48 days.4 It is important to note that if at any time Ω were actually larger than ω. and that Mercury always presents the same face to the Sun.186 Classical Mechanics ω. and tidal forces would play no further role. On this simple picture. then the tidal forces would act to increase the angular velocities and decrease the separation.9 Earth radii) where the tidal forces become so strong that they would break up the Moon (see Chapter 6. Problem 20). the Earth would always present the same face to the Moon. and then gradually condensed into the present Moon in an orbit with a radius of a few Earth radii.Ω ω ω0 Ω0 Ω a Fig. There are. Then ω and Ω would again be equal. as the Moon already does to the Earth (except for a small wobble). The distance between Earth and Moon would then be about half as large again as it now is. it is in fact impossible that the Moon should ever have been so close.3 Earth radii. In this final state. because it would then have been inside the Roche limit (about 2. However. The final state of the system in the very distant future would correspond to the second point where the curves cross. However. however. with a common rotation period of under 5 hours). it is now known that the ratio of the orbital . 8. It was at one time believed that Mercury and the Sun had reached the final state described above. so that the Moon revolved around the Earth in less than a day. It is now generally believed that the material that later formed the Moon was ejected from a proto-Earth in a violent collision with another planet early in its history. the smallest distance there can have been between the bodies corresponds to the first point where the curves cross (about 2. several factors which might modify this picture.

not after. but also to make it more eccentric and less inclined. This may be an example of the phenomenon of resonance (see §2. and are very different in character from the ocean tides. (So does the Moon of course. In the distant past. In the very remote future. As on the oceans. The effect of tidal dissipation is not only to make the Moon’s orbit expand. day. and would therefore gradually pull the Moon back towards the Earth. The solar ocean tides are indeed small compared to the lunar ones. It is a little surprising that the dominant period is 12 hours. They would tend to slow the Earth’s rotation even more. 12 noon and 12 midnight. and engulfed the whole system. However. for the energy (kinetic plus potential) is actually increasing. although it is probable that the Sun will have reached the end of its life. A significant over-simplification in our argument is the assumption that the Moon’s orbit is a circle in a plane normal to the Earth’s axis. rather than 24. due to heating during the hours of daylight. This energy comes from solar heating. The Sun has another effect which has been omitted from our discussion. but its effect averages out to zero over a lunar month. noticeable as fluctuations in the barometric pressure at sea level. This process has the effect of transferring angular momentum from the Earth’s orbital motion to its rotation. and of course the Earth’s axis also precesses is a complicated way. Thus the couple acts to speed the Earth’s rotation rather than to slow it. The stability of this configuration depends on the unusually large eccentricity of Mercury’s orbit.6): the amplitude of the 12-hour oscillation may be enhanced by being closer to a natural oscillation period of the atmosphere than is 24 hours. with the Earth acting as a kind of giant heat engine . both its eccentricity and its inclination can change with time. long before that happens. pulling it (immeasurably slowly) closer to the Sun.) It happens that the maxima in this case occur before. The most important component has a period of half a solar. origin. rather than gravitational. There are several other cases in the solar system of such rational ratios. it may have been considerably more steeply inclined than it now is. the Sun exerts a gravitational couple on the resulting bulges in the atmosphere. The ‘final’ state would in any case not be the end of the evolution of the system. A purely gravitational process could not have this effect. because the solar tides would still be active.Many-Body Systems 187 and rotation periods is not unity but 3/2. It therefore tends to decrease the Earth’s orbital radius. the two bodies would collide. rather than lunar. It is unlikely that such a state could be reached by the Earth–Moon system. In reality. there are quite substantial semi-diurnal tides in the Earth’s atmosphere. They are predominantly of thermal.

T can be separated into centre-ofmass and relative terms. in contrast to the previous situation.188 Classical Mechanics converting heat to mechanical work. the kinetic energy relative to the centre of mass. Thus we obtain ˙ T = 1 M R + T ∗. the momentum.17). As in (8. there is in general no reason for this to ˙ vanish.29) (8. This will . Substituting (8. However.18) and (8.2). The rate of change of kinetic energy is ˙ T = i ˙ ¨ mi r i · r i = i j ˙ r i · F ij + i ˙ ri · F i .3). Conservative Forces The kinetic energy of our system of particles is T = i 1 ˙2 2 mi r i .13). we again find that the cross terms drop out because of (8.16) into (8. because in general we must expect there to be some change in the internal potential energy of the system. the net effect of the atmospheric tides in speeding the Earth’s rotation is not nearly large enough to counterbalance that of the ocean tides in slowing it. exactly as in the twoparticle case (see (7.29) show that. (8. This is of course the rate at which the force F does work. 8. (8.12). Let us again examine the contribution from the internal force F 12 = −F 21 = F between particles 1 and 2 (see Fig. angular momentum and kinetic energy in any frame are obtained from those in the CM frame by adding the contribution of a particle of mass M located at the centre of mass R.28) As in the case of angular momentum.31) This equation may be compared with (8. and T cannot therefore be written in terms of the external forces alone.30) The relations (8. and may be omitted from the energy change equation. We may note that there are certain special cases in which a force does no work.28).4 Energy. (8.16)). 2 where T ∗ . 2 (8. is T∗ = i 1 ˙ ∗2 2 mi r i . However. This is not at all surprising. it is ˙ ˙ ˙ r1 · F − r 2 · F = r · F . 8.

and is therefore unaffected by the choice of reference frame. If the force is central. if r = 0 (e. subtracting from (8. Now. or ˙ if F is always perpendicular to r (e. let us make the less restrictive assumption that all the internal forces are conservative.32) i The rate of change of the kinetic plus internal potential energy is equal to the rate at which the external forces do work. and ˙ is always perpendicular to r. From (8. Now let us suppose that the external forces are also conservative. in which the distances between all the particles are fixed.g.Many-Body Systems 189 ˙ be the case. where V = Vext + Vint . the magnetic force on a charged particle). Then there must exist a corresponding external potential energy function Vext .34) . i Hence. for example.g. and the rate of working r · F will be equal to minus the rate of change of this potential energy..21).32) and using (8. From (8. then it has the same direction as r. An important special case is that of a rigid body. Thus T ∗ + Vint is the total energy in the CM frame.. (8. we find d ∗ (T + Vint ) = dt ˙i r∗ · F i . whose rate of change is minus the rate of working of the external forces. (8. so that ˙ r · r = 0. Let us denote the internal potential energy — the sum of the potential energies for all the 1 N (N − 1) pairs of particles — by Vint .16). we have d 1 ˙2 ˙ ¨ ˙ (2MR ) = MR · R = R · dt F i. Then clearly the rate of 2 working of all the internal forces will be minus the rate of change of Vint . however. Note that Vint is a function only of the differences r i − r j . the reaction at a fixed pivot). Then the force F must correspond to a ˙ potential energy function of particles 1 and 2. Thus a central force between particles whose distance apart is fixed does no work. We can also find the rate of change of energy relative to the centre of mass. Then r is constant.29) and (8. (8.6).32) we then find the law of conservation of energy T + V = E = constant.33) i This equation is the analogue of (8. Thus we obtain d (T + Vint ) = dt ˙ ri · F i .

We saw in §7. zi ) which vanish at the limits of integration. We consider only the case where all the forces are conservative. . The equations of motion may thus be written mi xi = − ¨ ∂V . however. 8. it follows that the action integral. is stationary under arbitrary small variations of the 3N co-ordinates r i = (xi . (8.7 to a many-particle system. . ∂xi (i = 1. ∂xi (i = 1. Exactly as in §3. . again as in §3. we may re-express L in terms of any other set of 3N co-ordinates. 2.36) with L = T − V .35) together with similar equations for the y and z components. .190 Classical Mechanics It is important to notice. Thus the components of the total force on the ith particle will be minus the derivatives of V with respect to the components of r i . (8.35) are identical with ˙ Lagrange’s equations d dt ∂L ∂ xi ˙ = ∂L . . and is therefore dependent on the choice of frame. that Vext depends on the co-ordinates themselves. Thus in general it is not possible to write down a similar equation in which only the kinetic energy T ∗ relative to the centre of mass appears. yi . N ). not merely the co-ordinate differences. clearly. N ). so that there exists a total potential energy function V .1 (see the discussion following (7. Then. Now. . .5 Lagrange’s Equations We close this chapter with a brief discussion of the extension of the Lagrangian method of §3. unlike Vint . ∂T = mi xi . ˙ ∂ xi ˙ while ∂T /∂xi and ∂V /∂ xi both vanish. . t1 I= t0 L dt.7. Thus (8.7. . 2.9)) that the derivatives of the potential energy function Vint (r 1 − r2 ) corresponding to a two-body force with respect to the components of r 1 or r 2 give correctly minus the forces on the corresponding particles.

. the motion of the centre of mass and the relative motion are uncoupled.29).38) Since Vint is a function only of the co-ordinate differences r i − rj = r ∗ − r∗ .2. . let us suppose that external forces are provided by a uniform gravitational field g. As we saw in §8. ∂qα (α = 1.Many-Body Systems 191 q1 . we find ˙ L = 1MR + Mg · R + 2 2 i ˙i mi r∗2 − Vint . 1 ˙2 2MR − M g · R = constant. just as in the twoi particle case of §7. Then. 2. Now. there is also in this case a separate conservation law for angular momentum relative to the centre of mass. 3N ).17)). and T ∗ + Vint = constant. . because i of (8. The corresponding equations of motion will be Lagrange’s equations d dt ∂L ∂ qα ˙ = ∂L . For the case of a uniform gravitational field.1. using (8.37) As an example. (8. q2 . . this Lagrangian function exhibits a complete separation between i j the terms involving R and those involving the r ∗ . . (8. there are two separate conservation laws for energy. let us write the Lagrangian in terms of the three co-ordinates R and the co-ordinates r ∗ (of which only 3N − 3 are independent. . The potential energy function for the uniform field is Vext = − i mi g · ri = −M g · R. . In particular. q3N . Example: Uniform gravitational field Show that the centre-of-mass and internal motions can be completely separated in the case of a uniform gravitational field. There is an important physical consequence of this separation: no observation of the internal motion of a system can ever reveal the presence of . . with two separate energy conservation laws.

respectively. there would be no observable difference inside the laboratory. the rate of change of the kinetic energy plus the internal potential energy is equal to the rate of working of the external forces. 8. or conservative. but the supporting forces somehow retained. the only contribution to P comes from the centre-of-mass motion. the rate of change of angular momentum is equal to the sum of the moments of the external forces. since such a field in no way affects the equations of motion for the relative co-ordinates r ∗ .6 Summary The centre of mass of any system moves like a particle of mass M acted on by a force equal to the total force on the system. Indeed if the Earth were removed. If the external forces are also central. P . which would of course be accelerated upwards with acceleration g! This was an important consideration in the argument which led to Einstein’s general theory of relativity. the same thing is true for the motion relative to the centre of mass. find the required initial mass. then the total angular momentum.) When the internal forces are central. neglecting the variation of g with height (and the Earth’s rotation). Note that a laboratory is i subjected to other external forces besides the Earth’s gravitational field. since it is supported by the ground. are conserved. to reach a height of 50 km. When they are conservative.192 Classical Mechanics a uniform gravitational field. and the ejection velocity is 2 km s−1 . (Of course. A rocket is launched from the surface of the Earth. Problems 1. 2. for an isolated system. In both cases. Calculate the total velocity impulse needed to place it in a . J and T + Vint are all constants. and J or T may be written as a sum of two corresponding terms. Find the required velocity impulse. The contribution of this motion to the angular momentum or kinetic energy may be completely separated from the contributions of the relative motion. Given that the mass of the payload and rocket without fuel is 100 kg. In particular. or total energy (including external potential energy). A satellite is orbiting the Earth in a circular orbit 230 km above the equator.

Show that the total take-off mass required to accelerate a payload m to velocity v is M0 = m 1−λ . If λ = 0. described in Chapter 4. Consider the effect of a finite burn-up time. 7. using an intermediate semi-elliptical transfer orbit which just touches both circles. find l. if the payload mass is 100 kg? Find the velocity impulse needed to launch the spacecraft on its trip to Jupiter.15. . Hence calculate the total energy which must be supplied from chemical or other sources to accelerate the rocket to a given velocity. Problem 1). 6. Problem 16. (Hint : Use energy conservation to find the velocity at the surface of the Earth needed to give the appropriate relative velocity for the spacecraft once it has escaped. in which each stage produces the same velocity impulse.) Given that the final mass to be placed in orbit is 30 kg.) With the figures of Problem 3.Many-Body Systems 193 synchronous orbit (see Chapter 4.5 km s−1 . e−v/u − λ 4. without payload or fuel. (Hint : From the orbit parameters a and ae. Assume that the residual mass of a rocket. Find the gain in kinetic energy when a rocket emits a small amount of matter. as in Problem 1.5 km s−1 ? Find a formula analogous to that of Problem 3 for a two-stage rocket. and hence the velocities. then its height at time t is z = ut − M0 uM ln − 1 gt2 . (The firststage rocket is discarded when its fuel is burnt out. Show that. and the ejection velocity of the rocket is 2. what is the minimum number of stages required to reach escape velocity (11. what is the minimum required ejection velocity? Given that u = 2. find the total take-off mass.) If a three-stage rocket is used. and that the mass of the payload is 500 kg.2 km s−1 )? With that number. 2 a M with M = M0 − at. 5. is a given fraction λ of the initial mass including fuel (but still without payload). what take-off mass is required. if the rocket ejects matter at a constant rate a. Show that this is equal to the energy required if an equal amount of matter is ejected while the rocket is held fixed on a test-bed. what is the upper limit to the velocity attainable with an ejection velocity of 2. and the parameter λ of Problem 3 is 0. 3. *A rocket with take-off mass M0 is launched vertically upward.1. find the necessary initial mass.5 km s−1 .

11. Find the required launch speed to achieve the desired apogee. Find the retarding force on the satellite if each particle which strikes it (a) adheres to the surface. A spherical satellite of radius r is moving with velocity v through a uniform tenuous atmosphere of density ρ. 12. and hence that the effect is to decrease the period and apogee distance. 10. in terms of the scattering cross-section of a hard sphere? *If the orbit of the satellite of Problem 10 is highly elliptical. find the required take-off mass. By considering changes in energy and angular momentum.) Show that the velocity at apogee increases. and hence show that the rates of change of a and l are equal. find the maximum height reached if the burn-up time is (a) 10 s. (The orbit therefore becomes more and more circular with time. so that the orbit remains approximately circular. at perigee. Replace it by an impulsive force of impulse I delivered once every orbit. A third identical ball moving along the table with velocity v perpendicular to their line of centres strikes both balls simultaneously. and . using a rocket launched vertically from a point on the equator. the retarding force is concentrated almost entirely in the lowest part of the orbit. while leaving the perigee distance unaffected. M0 − M1 M1 8. 9. With the same figures as in Problem 2. leaving a final mass M1 . *A satellite is to be launched into a synchronous orbit directly from the surface of the Earth. and (b) bounces off it elastically. Two billiard balls are resting on a smooth table. Show that δl = δa(1 − e)2 . and just touching. Using the same values of u. Find the velocities of the three balls immediately after impact. M0 and M1 as in Problem 1. If the satellite orbit of Problem 12 is 500 km above the Earth’s surface. 13. Can you explain why the two answers are equal. the maximum height reached is z= u2 2g ln M0 M1 2 − ut1 M0 M0 ln −1 . Find the rates of change of energy and angular momentum. *Suppose that the satellite of Problems 10 and 11 has achieved a circular orbit of radius a. find the changes in the parameters a and l. assuming that the collision is elastic.194 Classical Mechanics Hence. then [provided that t1 < (u/g) ln(M0 /M1 )]. and (b) 30 s. show that if it burns out after a time t1 . while that at perigee decreases. Show also that the velocity of the satellite must increase. and the required velocity increment.7 m. the mass and radius of the satellite are 30 kg and 0.

] What happens to the energy lost? Why does the argument not necessarily apply to a cloud of particles around a hot star? *An N -body system is interacting only through the gravitational forces between the bodies. In this case. ωy . [As in Problem 15. Problem 16.) Show that in a conservative N -body system. ρ = 10−13 kg m−3 . 16. ωz .) . but the angular momentum will remain fixed. the energy will gradually decrease from its initial value. Their mutual gravitational attraction is negligible. Show that the particles will tend to form a ring around the planet. The system will thus evolve towards a state of minimum energy. and by minimizing with respect to r i that all particles occupy the same orbit. Problem ˙ 11). Find the lengths of the ‘day’ and the ‘month’ (a) when the Moon was 10 Earth radii away.Many-Body Systems 195 14. ∂/∂zi ). Show that the potential energy function V satisfies the equation ri · ∇i V = −V. Show by minimizing with respect ˙ to r i that once equilibrium has been reached the cloud rotates as a rigid body. (Hint : Show that each two-body term Vij satisfies this equation. (See Chapter 6. [Use the method of Lagrange multipliers (see Appendix A. This condition expresses the fact that V is a homogeneous function of the co-ordinates of degree −1. find the changes in orbital period and height in a year.] *A planet of mass M is surrounded by a cloud of small particles in orbits around it. Due to collisions between the particles. 17. and treat the components of the positions r i and velocities ri as independent variables. If the height is 200 km and ρ = 10−10 kg m−3 . say ωx . i where ∇i = (∂/∂xi . the constraint may be imposed by the method of Lagrange multipliers. J = J 0 . and (b) when the solar and lunar tides become equal in magnitude. find the changes in a single orbit. subject to this constraint. and with respect to ω. because there are three components of the constraint equation. ∂/∂yi . 15. we need three Lagrange multipliers. a state of minimal total energy for a given total z-component of angular momentum is necessarily one in which the system is rotating as a rigid body about the z-axis. We have to minimize the function E − ω · (J − J 0 ) with respect to variations of the positions r i and ˙ velocities ri . say.

(Compare Chapter 4. i (Note that K relates to the overall scale of the system. neither growing nor shrinking. Problem 19. dt2 where K= 1 2 i mi r 2 . show that the total kinetic and potential energies T and V satisfy the virial equation.196 Classical Mechanics 18. on average.) .) Deduce that. 2T + V = d2 K . We may define a root-mean-square radius r by K = 1 M r2 . then the time-averaged value of the total energy is equal to minus the time-averaged value of the kinetic energy — the virial theorem. *Under the conditions of Problem 17. if the scale 2 of the system as measured by K is.

let us assume. we shall be concerned with the mechanics of rigid bodies. and the like. whose size and shape are permanently fixed.3) and (8.11). according to (8. 9. changes in temperature. The motion of the centre of mass of the body is completely specified by (8. Then. Under normal circumstances. (9. Thus. Thus it is natural to consider the idealization of a perfectly rigid body. in place of (8.6): ˙ ¨ P = MR = F. its size and shape vary only slightly under stress. For the moment. as we originally did in §8. and J= ˙ mr ∧ r.1 Basic Principles It will be convenient to simplify the notation of the previous chapter by omitting the particle label i from sums over all particles in the rigid body.3. 197 (9. ˙ J= r ∧ F. that the internal forces are central.Chapter 9 Rigid Bodies The principal characteristic of a solid body is its rigidity.2) . Such a body may be characterized by the requirement that the distance between any two points of the body remains fixed. we shall write P = ˙ mr.14).1) Our main interest in this chapter will be centred on the rotational motion of the rigid body. In this chapter. for example.

so that ˙ T = ˙ r · F. the success of these postulates. as we discussed in §8. particularly (9. It is of course particularly useful in the case when the external forces are conservative.2).3) This might at first sight appear to be a third independent equation. Under the same assumption of central internal forces. Clearly. the body can remain at rest only if the right hand sides of both (9. (9. and in any case cannot be adequately described by classical mechanics. and thus both P and J vanish. previously denoted by Vext .1) and (9. it could not be justified from our knowledge of the internal forces in real solids. condition for equilibrium. as we shall see. we saw in §8. and it is better to regard these as basic assumptions of rigid body dynamics. Indeed.5 that the internal forces do no work. However. since it then leads to the conservation law T + V = E = constant. 9. i. In fact. which for simplicity we take to be the z-axis. may seem rather fortuitous.1) and (9. we shall see later that it is actually a consequence of the other two..4) where V is the external potential energy. which are certainly not exclusively central.2). whose justification lies in the fact that their consequences agree with observation.198 Classical Mechanics We shall see later that these two equations are sufficient to determine the motion completely. However. but also a sufficient.3. r = 0 for every particle.2) should be noted.2 Rotation about an Axis Let us now apply these basic equations to a rigid body which is free to rotate only about a fixed axis. One very important application of (9. To some extent. this is not only a necessary.2) vanish.) The assumption that the internal forces are central is much stronger than it need be. if the sum of the forces and the sum of their moments are both zero. in a rigid body. this does not change. we shall see in Chapter 12 that it is closely related to the relativity principle discussed in Chapter 1. (9. All we actually require is the validity of the basic equations (9.e. .1) and (9. (Note that there is no mention here of internal potential energy. For ˙ a rigid body at rest.

two-dimensional object) of size a × b and negligible mass. as shown in Fig.5) is the moment of inertia about the axis.1.Rigid Bodies 199 We also choose the origin on this axis.2) yields ˙ ˙ Jz = I ω = ρFϕ . F b Q a Mg Fig.8) . 9.e. the z and ρ co-ordinates of every point are fixed. the z component of (9. (9.7) vanishes. By (3. For T = 1 ˙ 2 2 m(ρϕ) 1 = 2 Iω 2 .29). carrying a weight M g and supported by a horizontal force F . Since I is obviously constant..e.6) mρvϕ = mρ2 ω = Iω. it is Jz = where I= mρ2 (9. In cylindrical polars. i. positioned so that the z co-ordinate of the centre of mass is zero. (9. The condition for equilibrium here is simply that the right hand side of (9. that the forces have no net moment about the z-axis.7) This equation determines the rate of change of angular velocity. while the ϕ co-ordinate varies according to ϕ = ω. so for equilibrium we require F = (a/b)M g. The total moment here is bF −aM g. the angular velocity of ˙ the body (not necessarily constant). 9.1 The kinetic energy may also be expressed in terms of I. We examine first the component of angular momentum about the axis of rotation. pivoted at one corner. a plane. consider a rectangular lamina (i. For example.. and may be called the equation of motion of the rotating body. (9.

M g. by (5. 9. −ω 2 R in the ρ direction.) Together. in the case illustrated in Fig. 0.3) is. Differentiating again to find the acceleration of the centre of mass. 0).1) ˙ ¨ P = MR = Q + F. and has the components F = (M g.9) and (9.2. equations (9. and choose the x-axis vertically downward.) Then the force (the weight) acts at the centre of mass. we obtain ¨ ˙ ˙ ˙ R = ω ∧ R + ω ∧ R = ω ∧ R + ω ∧ (ω ∧ R).11) .7).10) The first term is the tangential acceleration. 0).1) serves to determine the reaction at the axis. The momentum equation (9.7) is I ϕ = −M gR sin ϕ. Then from (9. we shall still take the z-axis to be the axis of rotation. and gives us no additional information. the equilibrium condition ˙ P = 0 immediately yields Q = (F. which has of course no moment about the axis.10) serve to determine Q. and moving under gravity. ¨ (9. (See Fig. This is clearly a consequence of (9. (Note that the z-axis here is horizontal.200 Classical Mechanics The equation (9. ˙ T = Iω ω = ˙ (ρϕ)Fϕ = ω ˙ ρFϕ . therefore.2). Let us denote the force on the body at the axis by Q. Thus the equation of motion (9. so that. ˙ R = ω ∧ R. (9.) The centre of mass is of course fixed in the body. To be consistent. and the reaction at the pivot as a function of angle. and so does not appear in (9. Example: Compound pendulum Find the period of small oscillations of a compound pendulum. let us consider a compound pendulum — a rigid body pivoted about a horizontal axis. and separate this from all the other forces on the body.1. (Compare (3.9) For example. and the ˙ second the radial acceleration. Rω in the ϕ direction. (9. 9.47). As a simple example.7).

˙ The components of the reaction Q. E is determined by the initial conditions.9). As ˙ usual. The energy conservation equation is T + V = 1 I ϕ2 − M gR cos ϕ = E = constant. we find Qz = 0 Qϕ = M g(1 − R/l) sin ϕ.11) by multiplying by ϕ and integrating. substituting for ϕ in terms of ϕ using (9. 9.Rigid Bodies 201 y ϕ R F x Fig. l is always larger than the distance R from the pivot to the centre of mass. As we shall see. (This is the length of the equivalent simple pendulum) Thus the period of small oscillations is 2π l/g = 2π I/M gR. ˙ Qρ = −M g cos ϕ − M Rϕ2 . and (9. .12).12) It may be obtained from (9. are Qz = 0 ¨ Qϕ = M g sin ϕ + M Rϕ. and for ϕ in terms ¨ ˙ of ϕ by (9. Thus.11). obtained from (9. Qρ = −M g(1 + 2R/l) cos ϕ − 2E/l. 2 ˙ (9.2 This is identical with the equation of motion of a simple pendulum of length l = I/M R.12) then serves to fix the angular velocity ϕ for any given inclination ϕ.

Example: Effect of sudden blow Suppose that the pendulum is initially in equilibrium and is given a sharp horizontal blow of impulse K at a distance d below the axis (see Fig.9) serves to fix the reaction at the axis.). in this case the impulsive reaction.9) is M ωR = −S + K. . etc. (9. tennis. As a rather different illustration of the use of these equations. S say. For what value of d does the impulsive reaction at the pivot vanish? S d K Fig. 9.11) integrated over a short time interval.3 From (9. let us consider the effect of a sudden blow. 9. however. baseball. whence S= 1− M dR I K. we learn that the angular velocity ω just after the blow is given by Iω = dK.3). As before. d = I/M R = l. Since the velocity of the centre of mass immediately after the blow is ωR. This is the ideal point at which to hit a ball with a bat (sometimes called the ‘sweet spot’ in sporting applications — cricket. the integrated form of (9. that this result is not the same as the reaction at the pivot of a simple pendulum of length l. The interesting thing about this result is that it is possible to make S vanish by choosing d equal to the length of the equivalent simple pendulum.202 Classical Mechanics Note.

˙ Thus we find Jx = Jy = m(−z y) = − ˙ m(z x) = − ˙ mxzω. previously denoted by I. rigidly fixed at an angle θ to an axis through its mid-point. however. J is perpendicular to r.4. Clearly. We shall see that they give us further information about the reaction on the axis.15) Jy = Iyz ω.) If the positions of the masses are r and −r. (See Fig. myzω. (9. Consider a light rigid rod with equal masses m at its two ends. 9. When the rod is in the xz-plane. ˙ (9. Thus if no external force is applied. Jz = Izz ω.3 Perpendicular Components of Angular Momentum We now consider the remaining components of the angular momentum vector. (9. In this example.13) We can write all three components of J in the form Jx = Ixz ω. Iyz = − myz. a resultant couple on the axis (here represented by the forces F ). The quantities Ixz and Iyz are called products of inertia. ˙ z = 0. There is.14) Here Izz is the moment of inertia about the z-axis. In Cartesian co-ordinates. Izz = m(x2 + y 2 ).Rigid Bodies 203 9. At first sight it may seem surprising that J has components in directions perpendicular to ω. the total reaction on the axis is zero. the total angular momentum is ˙ ˙ J = mr ∧ r + m(−r) ∧ (−r) = 2mr ∧ (ω ∧ r). which is required to balance the couple produced by the centrifugal forces. and there is a component of angular momentum about the x-axis as well as one about the z-axis. the centre of mass lies on the axis. the masses are moving in the ±y directions. where Ixz = − mxz. The magnitude of this couple may be determined from the remaining pair of the . y = ωx. as shown in the figure. A simple example may help to clarify the reason for this. the velocity of a point r of the body is given by x = −ωy.

From (9.2). 9.13). we see that. the only non-vanishing component of G is the moment about the y-axis. in general. I˙zz = 0. This determines F . then ω is a constant. unlike Izz the products of inertia are not constants.2) ˙ Jx = Ixz ω − Iyz ω 2 = Gx + ˙ ˙ Jy = Iyz ω + Ixz ω 2 = Gy + ˙ (yFz − zFy ). we have from (9. (zFx − xFz ). ˙ Iyz = ωIxz . When the rod is in the xz-plane.15).204 Classical Mechanics ω F′ d/2 J θ r −r d/2 −F ′ Fig. we find I˙xz = −ωIyz . Gy = dFx = Ixz ω 2 = −2mr2 ω 2 sin θ cos θ. Thus if G is the couple on the axis. and G precisely balances the centrifugal couple. If there are no other external forces. .4 equations (9. Using (9.

Rigid Bodies 205 9. if the xy-plane is a plane of reflection symmetry. for then the contribution from (x. z). y. z) is exactly cancelled by that from (x.17) Jz Izx Izy Izz ωz . .16).4 Principal Axes of Inertia We have seen that. −z). ωy . but take it to have an arbitrary inclination.16) that is. So we shall no longer assume that the axis of rotation is the z-axis. (9. However. the angular momentum vector J is in a different direction from the angular velocity vector ω. in the form J= mr ∧ (ω ∧ r) = m[r2 ω − (r · ω)r]. it is a principal axis if it is an axis of rotational symmetry. in which the products of inertia Ixz and Iyz vanish. The nine elements Ixx . A tensor I with this property is called symmetric. . Jy . For bodies with three symmetry axes — such as a rectangular parallelepiped or an ellipsoid — there are obviously three perpendicular principal axes. Similarly. Jz are regarded as the components of the vector J. The angular momentum J may be written. The z-axis is a principal axis. In this case. −y. in particular. . Its components are therefore linear functions of the components of ω. in much the same way as the three quantities Jx . there is no resultant force or couple on the axis. y.15) that the products of inertia satisfy symmetry relations like Ixy = Iyx . Jx = Ixx ωx + Ixy ωy + Ixz ωz . and we shall see later that this is true more generally. z) is cancelled by that from (−x. in this case the inertia tensor. we shall need to use only one result from this general theory. the z-axis is called a principal axis of inertia. y. for then the contributions to the products of inertia Ixz and Iyz from any point (x. (9. Then ω has three components (ωx . When a body is rotating freely about a principal axis through its centre of mass. It is obvious from the definition (9. The entity I is called a tensor. using (A. however. and two similar equations. . which we may write in matrix notation as ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤⎡ ⎤ Ixx Ixy Ixz Jx ωx ⎣Jy ⎦ = ⎣Iyx Iyy Iyz ⎦ ⎣ωy ⎦ . Then J is also in the z direction. ωz ). in general. In that case. it is clearly an advantage to choose these as our co-ordinate axes.17) is therefore unchanged by reflection in the leading diagonal. The elementary properties of tensors are described in §A.9. Izz of the 3 × 3 matrix may be regarded as the components of a single entity I. There are special cases. Ixy . The 3 × 3 matrix in (9.

as in (9. Then.18) Thus J is parallel to ω if ω is along any one of the three symmetry axes. The kinetic energy may also be expressed in terms of the angular velocity and the inertia tensor. not in space. if we write ω = ω 1 e1 + ω 2 e2 + ω 3 e3 . Thus we obtain J = I1 ω1 e1 + I2 ω2 e2 + I3 ω3 e3 . Jz = Izz ωz . particularly since the principal moments I1 . (9.20) The three diagonal elements of the inertia tensor. (9.17) simplify to Jx = Ixx ωx . the relations (9. and I has the diagonal form ⎤ ⎡ Ixx 0 0 ⎣ 0 Iyy 0 ⎦ . I2 . not an inertial one. We have T = 1 ˙2 2 mr = 1 2 m(ω ∧ r)2 = 2 2 1 2 m[ω r − (ω · r)2 ].10 that for any given symmetric tensor one can always find a set of axes with respect to which it is diagonal. e3 along these axes.18). We shall always use a single subscript for the principal moments. This is. we can find three perpendicular axes through any given point which are principal axes of inertia. a rotating frame. It is shown in §A. It is often convenient to use these axes to define our frame of reference. Thus for any rigid body. I2 . however.206 Classical Mechanics If the three co-ordinate axes are all axes of symmetry. 0 0 Izz In this case. then all the products of inertia vanish. It is important to realize that the principal axes are fixed in the body.19) the components of J in these three directions will be obtained by multiplying the components of ω by the appropriate moments of inertia. I3 are constants. e2 . to distinguish them from moments of inertia about arbitrary axes. Jy = Iyy ωy . It will be convenient to introduce three unit vectors e1 . I1 . (9. and therefore rotate with it. . I3 are called principal moments of inertia. but not in general otherwise.

Indeed. In other words.) Thus from (9. or a square pyramid.19) and (9. It follows from the fact that one cannot find a pair of perpendicular axes e1 and e2 which are in any way distinguished from other possible pairs. namely T = 1 1 2 2 M v = 2 v ·P .8) provide a special case of this general result. this is not entirely obvious. Problem 7). 2 2 (9. (In the case of the prism. Symmetric bodies The term symmetric applied to a rigid body has a special. We may choose them to be any pair of orthogonal axes in the plane normal to e3 . but the axes e1 and e2 are not.16). I1 = I2 if e3 is an axis of more than two-fold rotational symmetry — for example the axis of an equilateral triangular prism.Rigid Bodies 207 by a standard formula of vector algebra (see Appendix A. (9. they need not even be fixed in the body. More generally. the symmetry axis e3 is of course uniquely determined. so that the coefficients of vx . It may be an axis of cylindrical symmetry — for example. we see that 1 T = 2ω · J. vy and 2 vz are all equal. unlike the inertia 2 2 tensor. say I1 = I2 . a cube. The principal difference is that the mass. This is the case for a sphere (with origin at the centre). It means that two of the principal moments of inertia coincide.20) becomes J = I1 (ω1 e1 + ω2 e2 ) + I3 ω3 e3 . the axis of a spheroid or a circular cylinder or cone. It can happen that all three principal moments of inertia are equal. so long as they always remain perpendicular to e3 and to each other. This is true in particular if the third axis e3 is a symmetry axis of appropriate type. any axis in the plane of e1 and e2 is a principal axis. Comparing with (9. (9. so J is parallel to ω.20).22) These equations for rotational motion may be compared with the corresponding ones for translational motion with velocity v.) For a symmetric body.23) Note that if ω3 = 0. (9. I1 = I2 = I3 .23) will still hold so long as this condition is satisfied. .21) (Equations (9. technical significance. Assuming that I3 = I1 . we find 2 2 2 1 T = 2 I1 ω1 + 1 I2 ω2 + 1 I3 ω3 . has no directional properties. Equation (9.5) and (9. then J = I1 ω. This freedom of choice will prove to be very useful later.

where ρ(r) is the density. They have the property that J = I1 ω whatever direction ω may take. e2 .. Thus we obtain relations of the form ∗ Ixx = M (Y 2 + Z 2 ) + Ixx . the cross terms between R and r ∗ drop out. We may call such bodies totally symmetric. we generally choose the origin to be the centre of mass. exactly as they did in (8. Shift of origin When the rigid body is pivoted so that one point is fixed. we must replace sums by integrals: Ixx = ρ(r)(y 2 + z 2 ) d3 r. r = R + r ∗ .17). the components of the inertia tensor with respect to an arbitrary origin are obtained from those with respect to .5 Calculation of Moments of Inertia The moments and products of inertia of any body with respect to a given origin may be calculated from the definitions (9. so that every axis is a principal axis. and use the conditions (8.24) etc.208 Classical Mechanics or a regular tetrahedron (or. Ixy = − m(X + x∗ )(Y + y ∗ ) = −M XY − mx∗ y ∗ .18) or (8.29). Ixy = ρ(r)(−xy) d3 r.15). any of the five regular solids). we substitute in (9. as in previous cases. namely mx∗ = my ∗ = mz ∗ = 0. (9.15) the relation (8. (9. and the choice of the orthonormal triad e1 . ∗ The last term here is just the product of inertia Ixy referred to the centre of mass as origin. As usual. 9. If there is no fixed point. it is convenient to choose that point to be the origin. To find the desired relations. e3 is completely arbitrary. Note that. It may of course also happen by accidental coincidence of the three values. For continuous distributions of matter. Thus it is useful to be able to relate the moments and products of inertia about an arbitrary point to those about the centre of mass. Because of these relations.16). ∗ Ixy = −M XY + Ixy . For example. indeed. we shall distinguish quantities referred to the centre of mass as origin by an asterisk.25) etc.

respectively. Routh’s rule There is a simple and convenient formula that allows us to write down at once the moments of inertia of a large class of bodies. Iyz will all be zero. integrated over the volume V of the body. or rectangular parallelepipeds) but with different values of a.25). In fact. and consider together all bodies of the same type (e. this will be true if. c. then the products of inertia ∗ ∗ ∗ Ixy . ∗ I2 = Kx + Kz . to compute the moments and products of inertia with respect to the centre of mass. Ixz . Ixz . The principal axes are then obvious. Y. this is known as the parallel axes theorem. Z are zero. Iyz are zero. y = bη. ∗ I3 = Kx + Ky . ellipsoids. It is important to realize that the principal axes at a given origin are not necessarily parallel to those at the centre of mass. we see that M = ρabc V0 dξ dη dζ. for any given body. for example. 2c.25) that this does not necessarily imply that Ixy . 2b. where. b. the chosen origin lies on one of the principal axes through the centre of mass. Now let us denote the lengths of the three co-ordinate axes by 2a.. (For the moments of inertia. and we shall take them to be the co-ordinate axes. It is then easy to find how M and Kz depend on these three lengths. those with respect to any other origin are then given by (9. and only if. . Kz = V ρz 2 dx dy dz. it is only necessary. but it is clear from (9. we see that the principal moments of inertia may be written in the form ∗ I1 = Ky + Kz . From (9.Rigid Bodies 209 the centre of mass by adding the contribution of a particle of mass M at R. Making the substitution x = aξ.) Because of this result. If we choose the axes at the centre of mass to be principal axes.g. so that two of the three co-ordinates X. z = cζ. The mass of the body is of course M= V ρ dx dy dz.24). We consider bodies with uniform density ρ and three perpendicular symmetry planes.

∗ I2 = M (λx a2 + λz c2 ). For ellipsoids. Hence we obtain Routh’s rule. we may quote the elliptic cylinder of length 2c.210 Classical Mechanics where V0 is a standard body of this type with ρ = 1 and a = b = c = 1. which asserts that ∗ I1 = M (λy b2 + λz c2 ). 1/4 for ‘elliptic’ ones. where λz is a dimensionless number. 3 . 3 ∗ I3 = 1 M (a2 + b2 ). and 1/5 for ‘ellipsoidal’ ones. and each of its principal moments is 2 M a2 . A parallelepiped 3 with c = 0 is a flat rectangular plate. ∗ I3 (9.26) = M (λx a + λy b ). 15 1 Since also M0 = 4π/3. Its principal moments are ∗ I1 = 1 M b2 . Kz ∝ ρabc3 . V0 is a sphere of unit radius. for which λx = λy = 1 4 λz = 1 . we have λz = Kz0 /M0 = 5 . 3 (parallelepiped) As an example of a body for which the three constants are not all equal. Hence M ∝ ρabc. and each of its three principal moments of inertia is 2 M a2 . 5 (ellipsoid) A similar calculation shows that for a rectangular parallelepiped λx = λy = λz = 1 . It follows that Kz = λz M c2 . λz may be found by examining the standard volume V0 . This formula covers several special cases of particular interest. for example. A sphere is of course an ellipsoid with a = b = c. Thus for an ellipsoid λx = λy = λz = 1 . Similarly a cube is a parallelepiped with 5 a = b = c. for which Kz0 = V0 ζ 2 dξ dη dζ = 1 −1 ζ 2 π(1 − ζ 2 ) dζ = 4π . 3 (cylinder) All three examples may be summarized by saying that λ is 1/3 for ‘rectangular’ axes. the same for all bodies of this type. In a similar way. 2 2 The values of the constants λx . λy . 3 ∗ I2 = 1 M a2 .

So long as no external force acts on the body the angular momentum equation (9.6 Effect of a Small Force on the Axis So far we have assumed that the axis about which the rigid body is rotating is fixed. so the axis will remain fixed in space and the angular velocity will be constant.Rigid Bodies 211 Similarly.2) tells us that ˙ ˙ J = I3 ω = 0. However. the angular velocity with which the axis moves will be small in comparison to the angular velocity of rotation about the axis. which forms the basis. We shall see what happens in that case later. and that initially it is rotating freely about a principal axis. say e3 . ∗ ∗ I1 = I2 = 1 M a2 . 9. if the angular velocity is ω = ωe3 . In that case. We now go on to consider how it moves if only one point on the axis is fixed.) Now suppose that a small force F is applied to the axis at a point r (see Fig. In that case. rapidly rotating bodies have great stability. Then the equation of motion becomes ˙ J = r ∧F. Its principal moments are ∗ ∗ I1 = I2 = 1 M c2 . 3 ∗ I3 = 0.27) This force will cause the axis to change direction. As we shall see.5). of the gyroscope. We suppose that the rigid body is free to rotate about a fixed smooth pivot. for example. the angular momentum will be J = I3 ωe3 . 9. (9. we may neglect the angular . 4 ∗ I3 = 1 M a2 . 2 Finally. and the body will therefore acquire a small component of angular velocity perpendicular to its axis e3 . provided the force is small enough. a flat circular plate is a cylinder with a = b and c = 0. (This would not be true if the axis of rotation were not a principal axis. Then. a thin rod is a limiting case of either a parallelepiped or a cylinder with a = b = 0.


Classical Mechanics

F r∧F

ω r

Fig. 9.5

momentum components normal to the axis, and again write ˙ ˙ J = I3 ω = r ∧ F . (9.28)

Since the moment r∧F is perpendicular to ω, the magnitude of the angular ˙ velocity does not change. (Recall that d(ω 2 )/dt = 2ω · ω.) However, its direction does change, and the axis will move in the direction of r ∧ F , that is perpendicular to the applied force. The effect may be rather surprising at first sight. However, it is easy to see it in action in, for example, a freely rolling bicycle wheel (see Fig. 9.6). If the wheel leans to the right, it will not necessarily fall over, as it would if it were not rotating, but will turn to the right. The force F in this case is the force of gravity, which produces a moment about a horizontal axis, as shown in Fig. 9.6. Thus, in a small time interval dt, the angular velocity ω of a wheel acquires a small additional horizontal component, dω. This shows that the axis of the wheel must change direction. When turning a corner on a bicycle, this effect plays a role, but there are other more important effects, related to the way the handlebars and front fork are pivoted. (See Jones, Physics Today, 23, 34–40, 1970 and Fajans, American Journal of Physics, 68, 654–659, 2000.) Another familiar example is the spinning top, or toy gyroscope (which we shall discuss in more detail in Chapters 10 and 12). The force in this case is again the force of gravity, F = −M gk, acting at the centre of mass position, R = Re3 (see Fig. 9.7). Thus (9.28) yields

Rigid Bodies


ω ω r ∧ Mg Mg r

Fig. 9.6


Ω k R Mg

Fig. 9.7

˙ I3 ω e3 = −M gRe3 ∧ k. This equation is of a form we have encountered several times already. It may be written ˙ e3 = Ω ∧ e 3 ,


Classical Mechanics

where Ω= M gR k. I3 ω (9.29)

Thus (see §5.1) it describes a vector e3 rotating with constant angular velocity Ω about the vertical. The effect is similar to the Larmor precession (see §5.6) or the precession of a satellite orbit (see §6.5). Note that the angular velocity Ω is independent of the inclination of the axis. Our treatment here is valid only if Ω ω, or, equivalently, if M gR I3 ω 2 . In other words, we require the rotational kinetic energy (T = 1 I3 ω 2 ) 2 to be much greater than the possible change in gravitational potential energy (of order M gR). We shall discuss what happens when this condition is not satisfied later (see §10.3 and §12.4). Note that the precessional angular velocity (9.29) is inversely proportional both to the moment of inertia and the rotational angular velocity ω. Thus, to minimize the effect of a given force, we should use a fat, rapidly spinning body. The great stability of rapidly rotating bodies is the basis of the gyroscope. Essentially, this consists of a spinning body suspended in such a way that its axis is free to rotate relative to its support. The bearings are made as nearly frictionless as possible, to minimize the torques on the gyroscope. Then, no matter how we turn the support, the axis of the gyroscope will remain pointing very closely to the same direction in space. The gyroscope is particularly useful for navigational instruments in aircraft. It may be employed, for example, to provide an ‘artificial horizon’ which allows the pilot to fly a level course even in cloud (where our normal sense of balance is notoriously unreliable). A similar instrument, designed to show the orientation in a horizontal plane, serves as a direction indicator.

Precession of the equinoxes The non-spherical shape of the Earth leads to another example of the phenomenon of precession. The effect is closely related to the precession of a satellite orbit discussed in §6.5. Since the Earth exerts a moment on the satellite, the satellite exerts an equal and opposite moment on the Earth. For a small satellite, this is of course quite negligible, but a similar moment is exerted by both the Sun and the Moon, and, although the effect is still quite small, it leads to observable changes over long periods of time.

Rigid Bodies


Let us consider for example the effect of the Sun. Because it attracts the nearer equatorial bulge more strongly that the farther one, it exerts a couple on the Earth’s axis, in a direction which would tend (if the Earth were not rotating) to align it with the normal to the plane of the Earth’s orbit (called the ecliptic plane, because it is the plane in which eclipses can occur.) (See Fig. 9.8.) However, because of the Earth’s rotation, the


n α Sun

Fig. 9.8

actual effect is to make the axis precess around the normal to the ecliptic plane. Since the equator is inclined to the ecliptic at about 23.45◦, the axis therefore describes a cone in space with semi-vertical angle 23.45 ◦. It turns out that this effect depends on the same parameter, (6.41) or (6.42), that appeared in the discussion of the tides. Thus, as in that case, the effect of the Moon is rather more than twice as large as that of the Sun (though somewhat complicated by the fact that the Moon’s orbital plane is not fixed in space). The two bodies together lead to a precessional angular velocity of about 50 per year, which corresponds to a precessional period of 26 000 years. The effect means that the pole of the Earth’s axis moves relative to the fixed stars, so that 13 000 years ago our present pole star was some 47◦ away from the pole. (The irregularity of the Moon’s motion, which is due to the moment exerted by the Sun on the Earth–Moon system, leads to a superimposed wobble of the axis with an amplitude of 9 and a period of 18.6 years.) The equinoxes occur when the apparent direction of the Sun crosses the equator. The points on the ecliptic where this happens also precess with the 26 000-year period, which is why this phenomenon is known as ‘precession of the equinoxes’.


Classical Mechanics


Instantaneous Angular Velocity

We shall now turn to the problem of the general motion of a rigid body, without assuming that it is spinning about a principal axis, or that the forces acting are small. In this section, we shall discuss the concept of angular velocity, and show that, no matter how the body is moving, it is always possible to define an instantaneous angular velocity vector ω (which in general is constant in neither direction nor magnitude). We consider first a rigid body free to rotate about a fixed pivot. Then the position of every point of the body is fixed if we specify the directions of the three principal axes e1 , e2 , e3 . (This would be true for any three axes fixed in the body, but it will be convenient later if we choose them to be principal axes.) Since the position of any point of the body is fixed relative to these ˙ ˙ ˙ axes, its velocity is determined by the three velocities e1 , e2 , e3 . In fact, if the point in question is r = r1 e1 + r2 e2 + r3 e3 , then r1 , r2 , r3 are constants, and ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ r = r1 e1 + r2 e2 + r3 e3 . (9.31) (9.30)

We now wish to show that, no matter how the body is moving, we can always define an instantaneous angular velocity ω. Let us define the nine quantities ˙ aij = ei · ej . Now, since e1 is a unit vector, e2 = 1. Hence, differentiating, we obtain 1 0= d 2 ˙ (e ) = 2e1 · e1 = 2a11 . dt 1

˙ It follows that e1 has the form ˙ e1 = a21 e2 + a31 e3 . Moreover, since e1 and e2 are always perpendicular, we have 0= d ˙ ˙ (e1 · e2 ) = e1 · e2 + e1 · e2 = a21 + a12 . dt (9.32)

Rigid Bodies


Thus we can define a vector ω by setting ω1 = −a23 = a32 ,

ω3 = −a12 = a21 . With this definition, (9.32) becomes simply ˙ e1 = ω 3 e 2 − ω 2 e 3 = ω ∧ e 1 , where of course ω = ω 1 e1 + ω 2 e2 + ω 3 e3 is the instantaneous angular velocity. Substituting this, and two similar equations, into (9.31), we find that the velocity of any point in the body is given by ˙ r = ω ∧ r. (9.35) (9.34)

ω2 = −a31 = a13 ,


Thus we have shown that an instantaneous angular velocity vector ω always exists. We note that the direction of ω is the instantaneous axis of rotation: ˙ for points r lying on this axis, the instantaneous velocity r is zero. Now let us consider the general case, in which no point of the body is permanently fixed. Then we may specify the position of the body by the position R of its centre of mass (or of any other designated point), and by the orientations of the principal axes at that point. We can now define, as ˙ before, an angular velocity vector ω relative to the centre of mass. If R is the velocity of the centre of mass, then the instantaneous velocity of a point whose position relative to the centre of mass is r ∗ is ˙ ˙ ˙ r = R + r∗ . But, since r ∗ is fixed in the body, we can apply the same argument as above to define an instantaneous angular velocity vector ω and write ˙ ˙ r = R + ω ∧ r∗. (9.36)

We have not attached an asterisk to ω, because the angular velocity is in fact independent of the choice of origin. For example, if the body is rotating with angular velocity ω about a fixed pivot, then ˙ r = ω ∧ r = ω ∧ R + ω ∧ r∗ .


Classical Mechanics

˙ But the instantaneous velocity of the centre of mass is of course R = ω ∧R, whence subtracting from (9.36), we find ˙ r∗ = ω ∧ r ∗ , which shows that ω is also the angular velocity relative to the centre of mass. The equation of motion of a rigid body rotating about a fixed pivot is the angular momentum equation (9.2), ˙ J= where J is related to ω by (9.20): J = I1 ω1 e1 + I2 ω2 e2 + I3 ω3 e3 . As in §9.2, the momentum equation (9.1) serves to determine the reaction at the pivot. In the general case, we have to determine both the velocity of the centre of mass and the angular velocity. The motion of the centre of mass is described by the momentum equation (9.1): ˙ ¨ P = MR = and the rotational motion by J˙∗ = r∗ ∧ F . (9.39) F, (9.38) r ∧ F, (9.37)

The angular momentum J ∗ about the centre of mass is of course related to the angular velocity by
∗ ∗ ∗ J ∗ = I1 ω1 e∗ + I2 ω2 e∗ + I3 ω3 e∗ , 1 2 3 ∗ ∗ ∗ where e∗ , e∗ , e∗ are the principal axes at the centre of mass, and I1 , I2 , I3 1 2 3 are the corresponding principal moments.


Rotation about a Principal Axis

The principal axes e1 , e2 , e3 rotate with the body. Thus if we wish to use directly the expression for J in terms of its components with respect to these axes, we have to remember that they constitute a rotating frame. In this section, we shall return to the notation of Chapter 5, and distinguish ˙ the absolute rate of change dJ /dt from the relative rate of change J . The

Rigid Bodies


equation of motion (9.37) refers of course to the absolute rate of change, so we must write it as dJ = dt r ∧ F = G, (9.40)

say. (The argument here may be applied equally to a rigid body rotating about a fixed pivot, or to the rotation about the centre of mass.) The relative rate of change is ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ J = I1 ω1 e1 + I2 ω2 e2 + I3 ω3 e3 , since the principal moments of inertia are constants. The two rates of change are related by dJ ˙ = J + ω ∧ J. dt Substituting in (9.40), we obtain ˙ J + ω ∧ J = G, or, in terms of components, ˙ I1 ω1 + (I3 − I2 )ω2 ω3 = G1 , ˙ I3 ω3 + (I2 − I1 )ω1 ω2 = G3 .

˙ I2 ω2 + (I1 − I3 )ω3 ω1 = G2 ,


These equations may be solved, in principle, to give the angular velocity components as functions of time. However, when there are external forces, they are not often particularly useful, because these forces are usually specified in terms of their components with respect to a given fixed set of axes. Even if the external force F is a constant, its components F1 , F2 , F3 are variable, and depend on the unknown orientation of the body. For this kind of problem, an alternative method of solution, using Lagrange’s equations (to be described in the next chapter), is usually preferable. We shall confine our discussion here to the case where there are no external forces, so that the right hand sides of (9.41) vanish. If the body is initially rotating about the principal axis e3 , so that ω1 = ω2 = 0, then we see from (9.41) that they remain zero, and ω3 is a constant. Thus we have verified our earlier assertion that a body rotating freely about a principal axis will continue to rotate with constant angular velocity. Now, however, we wish to investigate the stability of this motion.


Classical Mechanics

Example: Stability of free rotation about a principal axis A rigid body is rotating freely about a principal axis, say e3 , and is given a small displacement. Will its rotation axis remain close to e3 ? If the displacement is small enough, we may treat ω1 and ω2 (at least initially) as small, and neglect the product ω1 ω2 . Thus the third equation, with G3 = 0, tells us that ω3 remains almost constant. We can solve the remaining two equations (with G1 = G2 = 0) by looking for solutions of the form ω1 = a1 ept , ω2 = a2 ept ,

where a1 , a2 and p are constants. (This is essentially the method we used to treat the the problem of stability of equilibrium in one dimension in §§2.2, 2.3. We shall discuss the general problem of stability by a similar method in the next chapter.) Substituting, and dividing by ept , we obtain I1 pa1 + (I3 − I2 )ω3 a2 = 0,

I2 pa2 + (I1 − I3 )ω3 a1 = 0. Eliminating the ratio a1 /a2 , we find p2 = (I3 − I2 )(I1 − I3 ) 2 ω3 . I1 I2

2 The denominator is obviously positive, as is ω3 . Thus if I3 > I1 and I3 > I2 , or if I3 < I1 and I3 < I2 , the two roots for p are pure imaginary, and we have an oscillatory solution. On the other hand, if I1 > I3 > I2 or I1 < I3 < I2 , then the roots are real, and the values of ω1 and ω2 will in general increase exponentially with time, until the approximation of treating them as small is no longer valid. Therefore, we may conclude that the rotation about the axis e3 is stable if I3 is either the largest or the smallest of the three principal moments, but not if it is the middle one.

This interesting result is easy to verify. For example, if one throws a matchbox in the air, it is not hard to get it to spin about its longest or its shortest axis, but it will not spin stably about the other one. The result applies to any rigid body. It is often called the tennis racquet theorem, and we will examine this problem from a different perspective in §13.6.

e3 of the body coincide with the fixed axes i. bringing the axes to the positions e1 . and making three successive rotations. e2 . First. 9.) The first two rotations are designed to bring the e3 ψ k ϕ θ e2 i e 1′′ e1′ ϕ θ ψ ϕ ψ j θ e 2′ e1 Fig. we make a rotation through an angle θ about the axis e2 . ϕ — and the third specifies the angle through which the body has been rotated from a standard position about this axis. Let us suppose that initially the axes e1 . e2 . These may be chosen in various ways. e3 . specified by the polar angles θ.9 Euler’s Angles The orientation of a rigid body about a fixed point — or about its centre of mass — must be specified by three angles. ϕ. (See Fig. We can reach an arbitrary orientation by starting with the body in a standard position. k. This brings the three axes into the positions e1 . j. k. . but one convenient choice is the set of angles known as Euler’s angles. say e3 — they are just the polar angles θ.9 axis e3 to its required position. e2 . Two of these are required to fix the direction of one of the axes. Next.9. 9. we make a rotation through an angle ϕ about the axis k.Rigid Bodies 221 9.

e2 . ˙ ˙ (9. the angular velocity is the sum of these three contributions. Hence if ϕ is changing at a rate ϕ. The components of k in the directions of e1 . We obtain ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ J = −I1 ϕ sin θ e1 + I1 θe2 + I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)e3 .22).42). Similarly. j. In particular. the angular ˙ velocity is ϕk. e3 . we may use the axes e1 . e3 . A small change in ϕ corresponds to a rotation about k. together with e3 . we could either re-express J in terms of the fixed axes i. 0. so long as they are always principal axes. Then. e2 . we limit the discussion to the case of a symmetric body. When all three angles are changing. e2 . θ. we should have to find the components of ω in the directions of the three principal axes. All we have to do is to multiply the three components of ω by the principal moments I1 . e2 . we make a rotation through an angle ψ about e3 . e1 . cos θ). or write down equations directly in the rotating frame .45) To find the equations of motion.44) (9. Instead. ˙ ˙ ω = ϕk + θe2 + ψe3 . if only θ or ψ is changing.20).44) are already expressed in terms of these axes e1 . the angular velocity is ˙ ˙ ˙ θe2 or ψe3 . and I1 = I2 . e3 are clearly (− sin θ. fix the orientations of the three axes. (9. I3 . e2 . they specify completely the orientation of the rigid body. This choice has the advantage that two of the three terms in (9. e3 . ϕ. It is not necessary that the axes we choose be fixed in the body.20) or (9. This is not difficult. we find ˙ ˙ ω = −ϕ sin θ e1 + θe2 + (ψ + ϕ cos θ)e3 . I1 .4. Since the three Euler angles. ψ.222 Classical Mechanics Finally. according to the discussion of §9. Thus from (9. and the other angles are constant. any orthogonal pair of axes in the plane of e1 and e2 will serve as principal axes. ˙ (9. so that k = − sin θ e1 + cos θ e3 . using (9. The angular velocity of the body is clearly determined by the rates of change of these three angles. This brings all three axes to their required positions e1 .43) We can now find the angular momentum from (9.42) In order to find the angular momentum or kinetic energy. k. with symmetry axis e3 . but we shall not go through the derivation in the general case.

however. Since there are no external forces. the angular velocity vector ω thus describes a cone around the direction of J . The same formalism applies to a body rotating freely about a fixed pivot. It is ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ T = 1 I1 ϕ2 sin2 θ + 1 I1 θ2 + 1 I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)2 . we obtain I1 ϕ sin θ = J sin θ. and also with J . by (9. The angular momentum vector therefore points in a fixed direction in space. The angular velocity vector ˙ ˙ ω = −ϕ sin θ e1 + (ψ + ϕ cos θ)e3 ˙ (9. e3 . Though we could solve the problem in terms of arbitrary axes.Rigid Bodies 223 defined by e1 . Hence. and in addition the body spins about its axis with ˙ constant angular velocity ψ (see Fig 9. we learn that θ is a constant. In space. ˙ I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ) = J cos θ. The kinetic energy is obtained similarly from (9.45). ˙ From the second equation. ˙ ˙ I1 θ = 0. find a simpler method in the next chapter.10). Hence the axis of the ˙ ˙ body.46) Free motion of a symmetric rigid body As an example of the use of the Euler angles. e2 . 2 2 2 (9. equating the three components.47) has fixed components with respect to e1 . Then. this must be identically equal to the expression (9. It too therefore maintains a constant angle with e3 . For consistency. J = Jk = −J sin θ e1 + J cos θ e3 . maintaining a constant angle θ to it. The interesting part of the motion is the rotation about the centre of mass. it will be convenient to choose the axis k to be in the direction of the constant vector J . and from the other ˙ two that (provided θ = 0 or π) ϕ and ψ are constants.43). e3 rotates around the direction of J at a constant rate ϕ. We shall. e3 . precessing at the . Its centre of mass moves of course with uniform velocity. let us consider a symmetric body moving under no forces. e2 . the angular momentum equation is simply dJ /dt = 0.22).48) (9.

it is easy to see that ˙ ψ ϕ. and the space cone is much narrower than the body cone.47).1 (a circle of about 3 m radius at the pole) in a period which . it must describe a cone around this axis — the body ˙ cone.224 Classical Mechanics J ϕ e3 ψ −e 1′ ω β θ Fig. called the Chandler wobble. (For. since ω maintains a ˙ constant angle to e3 . then the angles β and θ are nearly equal.48) we see that the semi-vertical angle β of the body cone is given by tan β = − ϕ sin θ ˙ I3 ω1 = tan θ. 9. so that |I1 − I3 | I3 . which is where it touches the space cone.) Thus the motion may be described by saying that the body cone rolls round the fixed space cone. In the body.) Since the direction of ω is the instantaneous axis of rotation. = ˙ + ϕ cos θ ω3 I1 ψ ˙ (9. It precesses around a fixed direction in space roughly once every day. the body cone is instantaneously at rest along the line in the direction of ω. In particular. The Earth’s axis has a very small oscillation of this kind. and the body rotates relative to them ˙ with angular velocity ψ. (See Fig. From (9.10. e2 . so that the period taken to describe the body cone is much greater ˙ than that for the space cone. if the body is nearly totally symmetric. ω is fixed with respect to the axes e1 .10 rate ϕ. 9. This is known as the space cone. e3 .49) by (9. The rate at which it describes this body cone is ψ. In this case. and moves round a cone in the Earth with semi-vertical angle of order 0.

˙ and ψ < 0 (see Fig.10 Summary Determining the motion of a rigid body under known forces can be divided into two quite separate problems. Similarly the kinetic energy T is the sum of the three terms corresponding to rotation about each of the three principal axes. The rotational motion about the centre of mass is determined. (Note that this precession is quite independent J e3 −ψ ω β θ −e 1′ ϕ Fig. if one point is fixed.6).1). but is actually around 14 months. discussed at the end of §9. The motion of the centre of mass is determined. 9. so the body cone actually rolls around with the space cone inside it. by the total force acting on the body — or. via the angular momentum equation (9. the precession of the equinoxes.11).2). It is always possible to find a set of principal axes (fixed in the body) for which all the products of inertia vanish. The relation between angular momentum and angular velocity is described by the inertia tensor. 9. with considerable variation.Rigid Bodies 225 should be about 300 days for a perfectly rigid Earth. In this case I3 > I1 . .11 of the much larger effect. via the momentum equation (9. the force is determined by the motion of the centre of mass. Then J is obtained from ω simply by multiplying each component by the appropriate principal moment of inertia. by the total moment of the forces acting. 9. and therefore β > θ.

if the rod is struck elsewhere. (b) during impact. We shall see in the following chapter that the Lagrangian method is very useful for obtaining equations of motion in terms of Euler’s angles. A uniform solid cube of edge length 2a is suspended from a horizontal axis along one edge. Find also the initial momentum. Determine the minimum value of v for which the cube topples over rather than falling back.226 Classical Mechanics In general. and (c) after impact? Find the angular velocity immediately after impact. An insect of mass 100 mg is resting on the edge of a flat uniform disc of mass 3 g and radius 50 mm. which is rotating at 60 r. it is convenient to describe the rotational motion in terms of a set of principal axes. with two identical uniform solid spheres of radius 50 mm attached one on either side of its lower end. at a point a distance b below the hinge. A pendulum consists of a light rigid rod of length 250 mm. It is struck sharply. The insect crawls in towards the centre of the disc. Find the length of the equivalent simple pendulum. find its angular velocity when it reaches the lowest point. the . Show that. Which dynamical variables are conserved (a) before impact. Where does this kinetic energy come from. A uniform solid cube of edge 2a is sliding with velocity v on a smooth horizontal table when its leading edge is suddenly brought to rest by a small ridge on the table. Find the length of the equivalent simple pendulum. Use the angular momentum equation to find the initial value of the angular velocity. Normally these rotate with the body.p. the orientation of the body is conveniently described by Euler’s angles. Find the angular velocity when it reaches it. though in the special case of a symmetric rigid body (with I1 = I2 ) they may be chosen as in §9. 4. and what happens to it when the insect crawls back out to the edge? 3. Given that the cube is released from rest with its centre of mass level with the axis. Find the period of small oscillations (a) perpendicular to the line of centres. In that case.9. 2. Determine the point at which the rod may be struck without producing any impulsive reaction at the hinge. A uniform rod of mass M and length 2a hangs from a smooth hinge at one end. Problems 1. about a smooth pivot. with impulse X. and the gain in kinetic energy.m. 5. and the fractional loss of kinetic energy. and (b) along it.

*(a) A simple pendulum supported by a light rigid rod of length l is released from rest with the rod horizontal.1 m. find the horizontal and vertical components of the reaction on the axis as a function of its angular position. solid cone of vertical height h. Find the reaction at the pivot as a function of the angle of inclination.) A spaceship of mass 3 t has the form of a hollow sphere. with its axis parallel to it. Find the principal moments of inertia of a uniform solid cube of mass m and edge length 2a (a) with respect to the mid-point of an edge. Its orientation in space is controlled by a uniform circular flywheel of mass 10 kg and radius 0. Compare your answer with the corresponding expressions for the equivalent simple pendulum. Given that the flywheel is set spinning at 2000 r.. 12.) *Calculate the principal moments of inertia of a uniform. A long.p. 9. with inner radius 2. Calculate the angular displacement at the moment when the cylinder ceases to touch the knife edge. (Hint : This is the moment when the radial component of the reaction falls to zero. 11. For what value of the ratio h/a is every axis through the vertex a principal axis? For this case. It is given a small displacement. 7. find how long it takes the spaceship to rotate through 1◦ . Given that the axis is of total length 120 mm. thin hollow cylinder of radius a is balanced on a horizontal knife edge. find the horizontal component of the force on each bearing. (b) For the cube of Problem 1. find the components of the angular momentum parallel to the edges. . Find the moment of inertia about an axis through its centre of a uniform hollow sphere of mass M and outer and inner radii a and b. and is held vertical by bearings at its ends. with a sphere of density ρ and radius b removed. 8. and base radius a about its vertex.m. Given that the plate is rotating about a diagonal with angular velocity 15 rad s−1 . direction of the impulsive reaction depends on whether the point of impact is above or below this point.Rigid Bodies 227 6. 10. find the position of the centre of mass and the principal moments of inertia about it. (Hint : Think of it as a sphere of density ρ and radius a. Find also the energy dissipated in this manoeuvre. *Find the principal moments of inertia of a flat rectangular plate of mass 30 g and dimensions 80 mm×60 mm. and (b) with respect to a vertex.5 m and outer radius 3 m.

spinning rapidly about its axis of symmetry. Due to faulty construction. the fixed point is not precisely at the centre. Show that v = aω = RΩ. Hence show that the axis will precess around the direction of the magnetic field with precessional angular velocity equal to the Larmor frequency of §5. about a horizontal axis.m. *A wheel of radius a. Use the momentum equation to find the horizontal and vertical components of the force at the point of contact. Determine the frequency of small oscillations of the axis. but non-uniform? 17.p. Taking the z axis in the direction of ω. 16. A gyroscope consisting of a uniform circular disc of mass 100 g and radius 40 mm is pivoted so that its centre of mass is fixed.1 m is spinning at 3000 r.m.m. 18. A solid rectangular box. A top consists of a uniform. and B in the xz-plane. and Ω ( ω) is the precessional angular velocity of the axis. is placed on a smooth flat table. Evaluate the total moment of the magnetic force on the sphere. is rolling with velocity v round a circle of radius R ( a). 15.p. Then show from the angular momentum equation about the centre of mass that R = 2v 2 /g tan α. What difference would it make if the charge distribution were spherically symmetric. write down the moment about the centre of the magnetic force on a particle at r. A gyroscope consisting of a uniform solid sphere of radius 0. axis. Find the time taken for the axis to move through 1◦ . respectively. *A uniformly charged sphere is spinning freely with angular velocity ω in a uniform magnetic field B.228 Classical Mechanics 13. and show that it is equal to (q/2M )J ∧B. solid cone of height 50 mm and base radius 20 mm. where ω is the angular velocity of the wheel about its axis. *A rigid body of spheroidal shape. but 20 µm away from it along the axis.5. 14.m. maintaining a constant inclination α to the vertical. Find the precessional period of the axis about the vertical.p. with its mass concentrated on the rim. where q and M are the total charge and mass. Evaluate R for v = 5 m s−1 and α = 30◦ . It is spinning with its vertex fixed at 7200 r. of dimensions 100 mm×60 mm×20 mm. e. and (b) the shortest. Find the angular velocity of precession of the axis.p. if the axis of rotation is (a) the longest. 19. and is spinning about its axis at 2400 r. is spinning freely with angular velocity 240 r.g. a discus) and in the . Show by considering the moment of the force at the point of contact that its axis will precess in one direction if it is oblate (c < a = b. A 5 g mass is attached to the axis at a distance of 100 mm from the centre.

. where G is the couple restraining the axis from leaving the horizontal plane. and hence evaluate Ω.Rigid Bodies 229 opposite direction if it is prolate (c > a = b. but if it is prolate it will rise. Show that Q = −2(I3 − I1 ) and hence that the precessional angular velocity produced by this moment is Ω=− 3 I3 − I1 2 cos α n. Show also that (I3 − I1 )/I3 ≈ . a rugby ball). 2 I3 ω where is the Earth’s orbital angular velocity. and Ω is the Earth’s angular velocity. Why is this effect less sensitive to the distribution of density within the Earth than the complementary one discussed in §6. Show also that if there is a small frictional force.. that of Fig. *The average moment exerted by the Sun on the Earth is. show that the angular velocity ω about the axis is constant. from the vertical component show that the angle ϕ between the axis and east obeys the equation ¨ I1 ϕ − I3 ωΩ sin λ cos ϕ = 0. *The axis of a gyroscope is free to rotate within a smooth horizontal circle in colatitude λ. so that if the body is oblate its centre of mass will fall. Problem 26. 20. and α = 23.5? 21. the axis will become more nearly vertical. identical with the expression found in Chapter 6. in particular the contribution of Ω to J . in latitude 30◦ N. To find the effect of this couple.p. (Neglect terms of order Ω2 . except for sign. Determine the period of small oscillations about this direction if the gyroscope is a flat circular disc spinning at 6000 r. 5. use the equation for the rate of change of angular momentum in a frame rotating with the Earth ˙ (e. the oblateness of the Earth. e. and r as the distance to the Sun. Show that the stable position is with the axis pointing north. J +Ω∧J = G.45◦ is the tilt between the Earth’s axis and the normal to the orbital plane (the ecliptic).7).m. and describe the effect qualitatively from the point of view of an inertial observer. there is a couple on the gyroscope.) From the component along the axis. Explain why this system is sensitive to the horizontal component of Ω.g.g. Due to the Coriolis force. provided we interpret m as the mass of the Sun.

230 Classical Mechanics .

θ. we might constrain the centre of mass to move with uniform velocity. Such constraints are represented by algebraic conditions on the co-ordinates (e. Then. In this particular case. we might for example fix the position of one point of the body.) In this chapter. which may be of two kinds. these 3N co-ordinates cannot all vary independently.g. in place of algebraic equations. The positions of all the particles may be specified by 3N co-ordinates. Holonomic Systems Let us consider a rigid body. say the centre of mass.. but are subject to constraints — the rigidity conditions. or to move round a circle with uniform angular velocity. 10. In particular problems. X = Y = Z = 0). we shall give a more systematic account of the Lagrangian method. ψ which determine the orientation. and apply it in particular to the case of rigid bodies. In fact. which may be used to eliminate some of the co-ordinates. First. composed of a large number N of particles.5.Chapter 10 Lagrangian Mechanics We have already seen that the equations of motion for a system of N particles moving under conservative forces may be obtained from the Lagrangian function in terms of any set of 3N independent co-ordinates.1 Generalized Co-ordinates. (See §8. the position of every particle may be fixed by specifying the values of just six quantities — for instance. Y. Z of the centre of mass and the three Euler angles ϕ. For example. The second type of constraint is represented by conditions on the velocities rather than the co-ordinates. the three Euler angles alone suffice to fix the position of every particle. the three co-ordinates X. These six constitute a set of generalized co-ordinates for the rigid body. we 231 . these co-ordinates may be subject to further constraints. However.

. The constraint equations — the rolling conditions — serve to determine the angular velocity in terms of the velocity of the centre of mass. we say that q1 . the system is natural. t). Then the position of every particle will be determined by the values of the remaining generalized co-ordinates and the time t. In simple cases. θ. . we find ˙ that the velocity of the ith particle is a linear function of q1 . There do exist non-holonomic systems.1). The distinction between a natural and a forced system can be expressed in another way. ϕ.) However. leaving a set equal in number to the number of degrees of freedom. For the present. qn .1) The number of co-ordinates which can vary independently is called the number of degrees of freedom of the system. . and the number of degrees of freedom is two (three if we allow it also to spin about the vertical). it is not hard to show that ˙ ω = k ∧ R/a. and the number of generalized coordinates taken equal to the number of degrees of freedom.232 Classical Mechanics ˙ have differential equations (e. which will be useful later. we could roll the sphere round a circle so that it returns to its starting point but with a different orientation. q2 . X = u).) However. (10. Differentiating (10. so that t does not appear explicitly in (10. these equations cannot be integrated to find the orientation in terms of the position of the centre of mass. q2 . these equations can be solved to find some of the co-ordinates as explicit functions of time (e. (Z is a constant and may be omitted. In general. for example. . the system is said to be forced . Its position may be specified by five generalized co-ordinates — X. for which the constraint equations cannot be solved to eliminate some of the co-ordinates. If it is possible to solve the constraint equations. ψ. . together with k · ω = 0. X = X0 + ut). Using the fact that the instantaneous axis of rotation must be a horizontal axis through the point of contact. on the other hand. where a is the radius of the sphere. If this elimination introduces explicit functions of time. and perhaps also explicitly of time: r i = r i (q1 . . if all the constraints are purely algebraic.g. the system is called holonomic. . . qn is a set of generalized co-ordinates for a given system if the position of every particle in the system is a function of these variables. a sphere rolling on a rough plane.. and eliminate some of the co-ordinates. though ˙ . . Consider. .g. for. Y. qn . we shall assume that the constraint equations can be solved. . (This follows from the ˙ fact that R = ω ∧ ak. . . the sphere can roll in only two directions.1).

2 Lagrange’s Equations To obtain a more general form of Lagrange’s equations than the one found in §3. where ˙ T = 1 mr 2 . such as X = 0. Then clearly δT = mx δ x.2) Now let us make a small variation δx(t) in the x co-ordinate. For example.29) and (9.2). we ˙ obtain a quadratic function of the time derivatives q1 . . we obtain a function with ˙ constant or linear terms. if we impose a ˙ differential constraint. the integrand is −Fx δx = −δW . qn . ˙ ˙ Substituting in (10. subject to the boundary conditions δx(t0 ) = δx(t1 ) = 0. 2 2 2 If we impose further algebraic constraints. where δW is the work done by the force F in the displacement δx. the kinetic energy of a symmetric rigid body is ∗ ∗ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ T = 1 M (X 2 + Y 2 + Z 2 ) + 1 I1 (ϕ2 sin2 θ + θ2 ) + 1 I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)2 . if we make variations of all three . such as X = u or ϕ = ω. We consider variations of the integral t1 I= t0 T dt. and performing an integration by parts.Lagrangian Mechanics 233 in general it depends in a more complicated way on the co-ordinates themselves: ˙ ri = ∂ri ∂r i . qα + ˙ ∂qα ∂t α=1 n The last term arises from the explicit dependence on t in (10. it is a homogeneous quadratic function. the corresponding terms drop out. 2 (10. we find t1 δI = − m¨ δx dt. . . and we are still left with a homogeneous quadratic function of the remaining time derivatives. Similarly. in which the integrated term vanishes by virtue of the boundary conditions. and is 1 ˙2 absent for a natural system.7 — in particular. On the other hand. x t0 Now. 10.1).46). but for a forced system there are also linear terms and terms independent of the velocities. When we substitute in T = 2 mr . . moving under an arbitrary force F . For a natural ˙ system. one that is not restricted to conservative forces — let us return for the moment to the case of a single particle. according to (8.

or δW = Fr δr + Fθ δθ. (Compare the discussion following (3.4) Then we may equate δI as given by (10.7). F2 .47). t0 These two expressions must be equal for arbitrary variations subject only to the boundary conditions that δq1 (t0 ) = δq1 (t1 ) = 0. for example.234 Classical Mechanics coordinates.4). it makes no explicit reference to any particular set of co-ordinates. ∂qα (10. Consider. t1 δI = − F1 δq1 (t) dt.37). t0 (10. Hence we can use it to find equations of motion in terms of an arbitrary set of co-ordinates q1 .3) is that. dt (10. (10. t1 δI = t0 ∂T d − ∂q1 dt ∂T ∂ q1 ˙ δq1 (t) dt. q2 .3) and (10. we find t1 δI = − δW dt. Hence the integrands must be equal.6) It is important to remember that Fθ here does not mean the component of the vector F in the direction of increasing θ. T = 2 m(r2 + r2 θ2 ).4). Let us define the generalized forces F1 . according to (3. The advantage of (10.5) For example.3) to the general expression (3. Hence Lagrange’s equations are ˙ d ˙ (mr) = mrθ2 + Fr .37). q3 . .3) where δW = F · δr is the work done by the force in the displacement δr.) It is defined by (10. On the other hand. F3 corresponding to F by δW = F1 δq1 + F2 δq2 + F3 δq3 . like Hamilton’s principle (see §3. ˙ dt d ˙ (mr2 θ) = Fθ . and described by polar 1 ˙ co-ordinates. and we obtain Lagrange’s equations in the form d dt ∂T ∂ qα ˙ = ∂T + Fα . by (10. Then. a variation δq1 of q1 . for a particle moving in a plane.

Lagrangian Mechanics 235 The work done in producing a small angular displacement δθ is equal to δθ multiplied by the moment of the force F about the origin. The most important example of a force of this type in the electromagnetic force on a charged particle. defining the Lagrangian function L = T − V . The general principle embodied in (10. .9) In this case too.5) or (10. and such that Fα = − ∂V d + ∂qα dt ∂V ∂ qα ˙ .5) in the form (3. and write Lagrange’s equations in the form (10. Thus Fθ here is in fact the moment of F about the origin.6)). (10.44) obtained earlier. then δW = −δV . . (Recall that the generalized ˙ momentum pθ = mr2 θ is the angular momentum. and obtain Lagrange’s equations . with n degrees of freedom. we can write (10.8). qn .3) applies to any system whatsoever.4) that Fα = − ∂V . .8) but also to the ‘generalized momentum’ on the left. It then follows from (10.) If the force is conservative. ∂qα (10. If the system is holonomic. More generally. There is nothing in the discussion leading to Lagrange’s equations (10. even if F is non-conservative. which we shall discuss in §10. containing any number of particles. then we can make independent arbitrary variations of the generalized co-ordinates q1 . where V is the potential energy. ∂qα (10. it may be possible to find an effective ‘potential energy’ function V depending on the velocities as well as the co-ordinates.7) Thus. Note that in this case the ‘potential energy’ V contributes not only to the ‘generalized force’ on the right side of (10. .8) Note that the ‘generalized force’ ∂L/∂qα on the right hand side of this equation includes not only the force Fα determined by F but also the ‘apparent’ force ∂T /∂qα arising from the curvilinear nature of the co-ordinates ˙ (for example.8) that restricts their applicability to the case of a single particle. (10. d dt ∂L ∂ qα ˙ = ∂L .5. we can define L = T − V .6) expresses the fact that the rate of change of angular momentum is equal to the moment of the force. the centrifugal term mr θ2 in (10. q2 . Thus the second of Eqs.

there is a minimum value of the rotational angular velocity about the axis for which this is possible. Show that for any θ < π/2. by n δW = F1 δq1 + F2 δq2 + · · · + Fn δqn = Fα δqα . or more generally if they can be written in the form (10. (Compare Fig. This is a symmetric rigid body.5). discussed in the previous chapter. 10. Thus the Lagrangian function is 1 ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ L = 2 I1 ϕ2 sin2 θ + 1 I1 θ2 + 1 I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)2 − M gR cos θ. ˙ dt (10. then Lagrange’s equations may be expressed in the form (10. as in (10.8). This system has three degrees of freedom.13) . and moving under gravity.3 Precession of a Symmetric Top As a first example of the use of Lagrange’s equations.8) for θ is therefore d ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ (I1 θ) = I1 ϕ2 sin θ cos θ − I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)ϕ sin θ + M gR sin θ. (10.236 Classical Mechanics (10. and the potential energy is V = M gR cos θ. and we use the three Euler angles as generalized co-ordinates. ˙ ˙ dt d ˙ [I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)] = 0.9). we consider in more detail the problem of the symmetric top. 2 2 (10.4). 9. so the corresponding equations express the constancy of the generalized momenta pϕ and pψ : d ˙ [I1 ϕ sin2 θ + I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ) cos θ] = 0. but only their time derivatives.11) Lagrange’s equation (10.10) Finally. pivoted at a point on its axis of symmetry. θ.46). if the forces are conservative.12) dt The Lagrangian function does not involve the other two Euler angles.) Example: Steady precession of a top Find the conditions under which steady precession at a given constant angle of inclination of the axis. in which the generalized forces are defined. can occur. The kinetic energy is given by (9. α=1 (10.7.

In particular. it will start to wobble. Since the left side must vanish. and another which is comparable in magnitude to ω3 . if we consider a top suspended below its point of support — then steady precession is possible for any value of ω3 . Note that if we allow θ to be greater than π/2 — that is. Ω ≈ I3 ω3 /I1 cos θ. we find the possible angular velocities of a compound pendulum swinging in a circle. given by Ω ≈ M gR/I3 ω3 . For any larger value of ω3 there are two possible values of Ω. the roots of (10. discussed in §9.13). we obtain (for sin θ = 0. say. Then there is one root for Ω which is much less than ω3 . we examine the θ equation. It corresponds precisely to the free precessional motion of a rigid body.15). (10. given that θ remains constant.15) The minimum value of ω3 for which real roots for Ω exist is given by If the top is spinning more slowly than this.6 on the assumption that Ω was much smaller than ω3 (see (9. It is interesting to examine the special case where ω3 is large.Lagrangian Mechanics 237 Note that this last equation tells us that the component of angular velocity ω3 about the axis of symmetry is constant ˙ ˙ ω3 = ψ + ϕ cos θ = constant.9. To find ˙ the relation between the angular velocities Ω and ω3 . (10.29)). (10. for ω3 = 0. I1 | cos θ| We shall discuss the more general motion of this system in Chapter 12. Thus the axis of the top precesses ˙ around the vertical with constant angular velocity ϕ = Ω. The first of these is just the approximate result we obtained in §9. we learn ˙ that both ϕ and ψ must be constant. . The second represents a rapid precessional motion in which the gravitational force is negligible. I1 Ω2 cos θ − I3 ω3 Ω + M gR = 0. using the Hamiltonian methods developed there. that is unless the axis is vertical). 2 2 I3 ω3 = 4I1 M gR cos θ. Ω=± M gR .12).14) From the equations (10.

explicitly. 10.1 the other to a vertical axis. a known torque G(t) is applied to rotate it about the axis. ˙ (10. let us consider the system illustrated in Fig.17) (10. and hinged at ω θ l m Fig.4 Pendulum Constrained to Rotate about an Axis Next. ∂ϕ d ˙ (ml2 ϕ sin2 θ) = G. so that θ = 0 is the equilibrium position. Lagrange’s equations are d dt or. dt Now let us suppose that the torque G is adjusted to constrain the system to rotate with constant angular velocity ω about the vertical. ϕ. (For convenience. in addition to gravity. We suppose initially that. ∂θ d dt ∂L ∂ϕ ˙ = ∂L + G.) The Lagrangian function is 1 ˙ ˙ L = 2 ml2 (θ2 + ϕ2 sin2 θ) − mgl(1 − cos θ). 10. This imposes .238 Classical Mechanics 10.1. so that it can swing freely in a vertical plane. This system has two degrees of freedom. carrying a mass m at one end. ¨ ml2 θ = ml2 ϕ2 sin θ cos θ − mgl sin θ. of length l.16) Since the work done by the torque G is δW = G δϕ.18) ∂L ˙ ∂θ = ∂L . Its position may be described by the two polar angles θ. we take the z-axis vertically downward. (10. It consists of a light rigid rod.

In this case. For a forced system.18). The rate at which the torque does work is Gω. (10. . quadratic in the time derivatives. so the total energy T + V is not in general a constant. and the system may be regarded as a system with ˙ one degree of freedom. V = mgl(1 − cos θ) − 1 ml2 ω 2 sin2 θ. dt dt Since T + V = T + V − ml 2 ω 2 sin2 θ. we find T + V = E = constant. which is characteristic of a forced system. this corresponds to using a rotating frame. where 1 ˙ T = 2 ml2 θ2 . Example: Types of motion of the constrained pendulum Describe the possible types of motion of the constrained pendulum for a given value of ω. Thus. just as we did in §2. ˙ there is still a conservation law. 2 Physically.19) Note the appearance in the kinetic energy part of L of a term indepen˙ dent of θ. independent of them. we find 1 ˙ L = 2 ml2 (θ2 + ω 2 sin2 θ) − mgl(1 − cos θ).17) by θ and integrating. to find the qualitative features of the motion. However. It is often useful in problems of this kind to separate the Lagrangian function into a ‘kinetic’ term T . Multiplying (10. It is easy to verify the consistency of this by calculating the work done on the system. Substituting this constraint into the Lagrangian function (10. described by the co-ordinate θ. the constraining forces can do work on the system. We can use this conservation law.20) This is not the total energy T + V . and the extra term in V is the potential energy corresponding to the centrifugal force.Lagrangian Mechanics 239 the constraint ϕ = ω. d d (T + V ) = Gω = (ml2 ω 2 sin2 θ). rotating with angular velocity ω.16). (10. we write L = T − V . from (10. Here T is the kinetic energy of the motion relative to this frame. in our case. this is equivalent to (10. and a ‘potential’ term −V . because the centrifugal term appears with the opposite sign.20).1.

passing through both the upward and downward verticals. There is a more general way of handling constraints (holonomic or not). V′ 2mgl 0 θ0 Fig. The equilibrium position at θ = 0 is then unstable.2. though θ = 0 is no longer the position of maximum velocity.21) . The motion is qualitatively just like that of the ordinary pendulum. depending on the value of ω. then V has maxima at both 0 and π.240 Classical Mechanics To do this. using the method of Lagrange multipliers (see Appendix A. There are two distinct cases. we obtain in this way ˙ ˙ ˙ L = 1 ml2 (θ2 + ϕ2 sin2 θ) − mgl(1 − cos θ) − λ(ϕ − ω). we have a continuous circular motion. From (10.2. and an intermediate minimum at θ = θ0 = arccos(g/lω 2 ). If E < 0. as shown in the upper curve in Fig. To impose the constraint ϕ = ω on our system. For 0 < E < 2mgl. it swings from one side to the other as before. The stable equilibrium position at θ0 is the one where the transverse components of the gravitational and centrifugal forces are in equilibrium. 2 (10. without ever reaching the vertical. and subtract λ times the constraint from the Lagrangian function. and a maximum at θ = π. Problem 10). Finally. the pendulum oscillates around this stable position. if E > 2mgl. then V has a minimum at θ = 0. If ω 2 < g/l (that is. For this case. three types of motion are possible. we draw the ‘effective potential energy’ diagram for the function V . 10. if the rotation period is longer than the free oscillation period of the pendulum). as shown in the lower curve in Fig. we introduce a new variable ˙ λ.2 π θ If ω 2 > g/l. 10. though the period is longer. 10. the Lagrange multiplier.16).

we see that λ is physically the torque G required to impose the constraint.9) with a suitably chosen function V . which simply reproduces the constraint. (10. we could have integrated the constraint. Now.25) For time-independent fields. In general.17) is unchanged. To do this. ˙ ˙ Fx = qEx + q(yBz − zBy ). (10. or. according to which it is always possible to find a scalar potential φ and a vector potential A. we have the Euler–Lagrange equation for λ. we have to make use of a standard result of electromagnetic theory (see §A. 10. λ itself would be the torque. functions of r and t. Equivalently. ∂t B = ∇ ∧ A. such that E = −∇φ − ∂A . (10. This method is particularly useful when we want to find the constraining forces or torques.22) In addition. The force on the particle is then F = q(E + v ∧ B). the physical significance of λ may be found by considering a small virtual change in the constraint equation.23) together with two similar equations obtained by cyclic permutation of x. y. in terms of components. z.24) (10.7). and subtracted λ(ϕ − ωt) from L.22) with (10. ˙ dt (10. ˙ ˙ Comparing (10.Lagrangian Mechanics 241 The Euler–Lagrange equation for θ. 0 = ϕ − ω.18).5 Charged Particle in an Electromagnetic Field We now wish to consider one of the most important examples of a nonconservative force. That for ϕ becomes d (ml2 ϕ sin2 θ − λ) = 0. We consider a particle of charge q moving in an electric field E and a magnetic field B. φ is simply the electrostatic potential of Chapter 6. we wish to show that this force may be written in the form (10. In that case. .

t) − qφ(r.26) ˙ ˙ = qφ − q(xAx + yAy + zAz ). whence ˙ − ∂V d + ∂x dt ∂V ∂x ˙ =q − ∂φ ∂Ax − + ∂x ∂t ∂Ay ∂Ax − q y ˙ ∂x ∂y +z ˙ ∂Ax ∂Az − ∂x ∂z ˙ ˙ = qEx + q(yBz − zBy ). − Also. dt ∂V ∂φ ∂Ax ∂Ay ∂Az = −q +q x ˙ +y ˙ +z ˙ ∂x ∂x ∂x ∂x ∂x . d dt ∂V ∂x ˙ = −q dAx . by (10. t) − q r · A(r. t) Clearly.26). bearing in mind that Ax varies with time both because of its explicit time dependence. ˙ px = ∂L = mx + qAx . ˙ ∂t ∂x ∂y ∂z Adding.27) Note the appearance in L of terms linear in the time derivatives. Hence we have verified that F is given by (10.242 Classical Mechanics Now. let us consider the function ˙ V = qφ(r. we find that the terms in x cancel.25). Another consequence of the appearance of these terms is that the generalized momentum px is no longer equal to the familiar mechanical momentum. It follows that the equations of motion for a particle in an electromagnetic field may be obtained from the Lagrangian function ˙ ˙ L = 1 mr2 + q r · A(r. But this is just the expression for Fx given by (10. we find d dt ∂V ∂x ˙ = −q ∂Ax ∂Ax ∂Ax ∂Ax + x+ ˙ y+ ˙ z . 2 (10. and because of its dependence on the particle position r(t). one quadratic in ˙ r and one independent of it. Instead. This function cannot be separated into two parts.24). T − V . mx.9) with V equal to (10. t). ˙ so. (10. ˙ ∂x ˙ .

2.28) We can now obtain the equations of motion in terms of arbitrary coordinates from the Lagrangian function (10. For a uniform magnetic field. ρ ˙ d (mρ2 ϕ + 1 qBρ2 ) = 0. 2 Example: Uniform magnetic field A charged particle moves in a uniform static magnetic field B. Aρ = 0. Find the solutions of the equations of motion in which ρ is constant. ˙ p = mr + qA. ϕ=− ˙ .30) In particular. For example. 2 2 Lagrange’s equations are therefore ˙ m¨ = mρϕ2 + qBρϕ.) Thus the Lagrangian function is ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ L = 1 m(ρ2 + ρ2 ϕ2 + z 2 ) + 1 qBρ2 ϕ. more generally. we may take φ=0 and A = 1 B ∧ r.55).27).Lagrangian Mechanics 243 or. if we choose the z-axis in the direction of B. φ = 0. z (10. 2 Az = 0. and from the first ˙ ˙ equation that either ϕ = 0 (particle moving parallel to the z-axis). ˙ 2 dt m¨ = 0. (It is easy to verify the relation B = ∇ ∧ A using (A. it reads ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ L = 1 m(ρ2 + ρ2 ϕ2 + z 2 ) + q(ρAρ + ρϕAϕ + zAz ) − qφ. (10.29) or. m This is of course precisely the solution we obtained in §5. in the case where ρ is a constant.31) (10. or ˙ qB . 2 Aϕ = 1 Bρ. we learn from the last two equations that ϕ and z are also constants. in terms of cylindrical polars. (10.

244 Classical Mechanics The second of the three equations (10. It shows that. (10. However.6 The Stretched String As a final example of the use of the Lagrangian method. ∂t y = ∂y . say to l + ∆l. and stretched to a tension F . The reason for the existence of such a conservation law will be discussed in Chapter 12. This is an example of a system with an infinite number of degrees of freedom — a string of length l.32) . When the string is in equilibrium. its length is increased.34). For the partial derivatives of y we use the notations y= ˙ ∂y . In place of a finite set of generalized co-ordinates. there is still a corresponding conservation law for the quantity ˙ 1 pϕ = mρ2 ϕ + 2 qBρ2 .31) is particularly interesting. The kinetic energy of a small element of string of length dx is Thus the total kinetic energy is l T = 0 1 ˙2 2 µy dx. the displacement y(x. we can 1 replace 1 + y 2 by 1 + 2 y 2 . We shall consider small transverse oscillations of the string. with fixed ends. and mass µ per unit length. namely l l + ∆l = 0 1 + y 2 dx. The work done against the tension in increasing the length by ∆l is F ∆l. This is the potential energy of the string. we consider a rather different kind of problem. although in general the z component of the particle angular momentum is not a constant. its length is l. t) of the string from its equilibrium position. we now have a continuous function. For small displacements. when it is displaced. and is given by (3. ∂x 1 ˙2 2 (µ dx)y . 10. Thus we may take l V = 0 2 1 2Fy dx.

y ) dx dt. is actually independent of y. (In our particular case.6. L. y. with respect to t in the second term. in which the Lagrangian function has the form l L= 0 L(y.34) where L may be called the Lagrangian density. given by the integrand of (10. This is possible only if the integrand vanishes identically.) The action integral is t1 l 0 I= t0 L(y. t) vanishing at the limits. The variation of the action integral is t1 l 0 δI = t0 ∂L ∂L ∂(δy) ∂L ∂(δy) δy + + dx dt. ∂y ∂L = µy. ˙ (10.33). y ) dx. ˙ ∂y ˙ ∂L = −F y . the integrated terms vanish because δy is zero at the limits of integration. and with respect to x in the third. and also (because the ends of the string are fixed) at x = 0 and x = l. 2 ˙ 2 (10. ˙ Let us consider a small variation of the displacement δy(x. To do this. we can use Hamilton’s principle to derive the equation of motion. t) which vanishes at t0 and t1 . Hence we obtain Lagrange’s equation ∂ ∂L − ∂y ∂t ∂L ∂y ˙ − ∂ ∂x ∂L ∂y = 0.35) In the particular case of the stretched string. we integrate by parts. In both cases. y. ∂y . and a function only of its derivatives. Hamilton’s principle requires that this expression should be zero for arbitrary variations δy(x. it will be useful to consider a more general problem. Thus we obtain t1 l 0 δI = t0 ∂L ∂ − ∂y ∂t ∂L ∂y ˙ − ∂ ∂x ∂L ∂y δy(x. therefore. l L= 0 ( 1 µy 2 − 1 F y 2 ) dx. (10.33) As before.Lagrangian Mechanics 245 Our Lagrangian function is. as in §3. t) dx dt. ∂y ∂ y ∂t ˙ ∂y ∂x Now. the derivatives of the Lagrangian density are ∂L = 0.

as we show below.3). The general solution is y = f (x + ct) + g(x − ct). for.246 Classical Mechanics Thus Lagrange’s equation becomes y = c2 y . For a string of finite length. 0) of the ˙ string find its displacement at a later time t. but shifted to the right by a distance ct (see Fig. 0) and velocity y(x. Similarly. t) of two independent variables. When it gets to the end of the string it must be reflected back. t) = f (x − ct) is a solution. representing a wave travelling to the left along the string.36) involves two arbitrary functions.36) is the one-dimensional wave equation. we now have a partial differential equation for the function y(x. Ignoring for the moment the boundary conditions at x = 0 and x = l. the shape of the displacement y is the same at time t as at time 0. (10. y(x. which may be determined by the initial values of y and y. Example: Solution of the stretched-string equation Given the initial displacement y(x. It represents a wave travelling along the string with velocity c to the right. t) = f (x + ct) is a solution.36) In place of a discrete set of ordinary differential equations for the generalized co-ordinates qα (t). ¨ where c2 = F/µ. Note that c2 has the dimensions of (velocity)2 . the general solution of the wave equation (10. for any function f . It ˙ is easy to verify by direct substitution that. In fact. 10. c is the velocity of propagation of waves along the string. a wave cannot travel indefinitely in one direction. Similar equations turn up in many branches of physics. . Equation (10. whenever wave phenomena are encountered. y(x. where f and g are arbitrary functions. To satisfy the boundary conditions at x = 0 and x = l both terms in the solution must be present.

(10. The condition y = 0 at x = l requires that f (ct + l) − f (ct − l) = 0 for all t. let us write f as the sum of an even function and an odd function: f (x) = 1 [h(x) + k(x)].Lagrangian Mechanics 247 y time 0 time t ct Fig. In other words. and in the sign of the argument. 0) = f (x) − f (−x) = k(x).37).37) To establish the connection between the periodic function f and the initial conditions. f must be a periodic function. the initial value of y is y(x.39) . k(x) = f (x) − f (−x).40) (10.38) (10. 2 where h(x) = f (x) + f (−x). 10. equivalently. (10.3 x The condition y = 0 at x = 0 requires that f (ct) + g(−ct) = 0 for all t. we have to specify its values in the interval from −l to l. Thus the functions f and g differ only in sign. Now from (10. and we can write the solution as y = f (x + ct) − f (ct − x). satisfying f (x + 2l) = f (x). or. to specify both functions h and k in the interval from 0 to l. To fix f . of period 2l.

7 Summary The position of every part of a system may be fixed by specifying the values of a set of generalized co-ordinates. Problems 1.) Thus the initial value of y deter˙ mines the even part of f (up to an irrelevant additive constant. This is the case in all the examples we have considered. A uniform cylindrical drum of mass M and radius a is free to rotate about its axis. In general. Find the acceleration of the masses. The system is natural if the functions specifying the positions of particles in terms of the generalized co-ordinates do not involve the time explicitly. Moreover. For a forced system. and Lagrange’s equation. Write down the Lagrangian function in terms of an appropriate generalized co-ordinate.37)).248 Classical Mechanics This therefore determines the odd part of f . the equations of motion are given by Lagrange’s equations. In either case. all we need is the Lagrangian function L = T − V . and carries on its free end a mass m.41) (Remember that [f (−x)] = −f (−x). If the cable . 2. on the other hand. the generalized forces Fα corresponding to the generalized co-ordinates qα must be found by evaluating the work done in a small displacement. In that case. assuming no slipping or stretching of the cable. 0) = cf (x) − cf (−x) = ch (x). 10. Using the angular position of the pulley as generalized co-ordinate. A cable of negligible mass and length l is wound on the drum. which is horizontal. If these co-ordinates can all vary independently. the kinetic energy is a homogeneous quadratic function of the qα . the system is holonomic. T may contain ˙ linear and constant terms. which cancels in (10. for dissipative forces. ˙ (10. write down the Lagrangian function. Masses m and 2m are joined by a light inextensible string which runs without slipping over a uniform circular pulley of mass 2m and radius a. the initial value of y is ˙ y(x. If the forces are conservative (and sometimes in other cases too).

Obtain an equation of motion for θ alone. is initially fully wound up. and l = 2 m. 4. and carries a mass 4m on one end. Find the tensions in the strings in Problem 6.) *Find the Lagrangian function for the system of Problem 2 if the cable 1 is elastic. 7. Write down the kinetic energy of a particle in cylindrical polar coordinates in a frame rotating with angular velocity ω about the z-axis. A simple pendulum of mass m and length l hangs from a trolley of mass M running on smooth horizontal rails. 6. and the system is released from rest. Problem 13. although the total mass on each side is the same. Using the position x of the trolley and the angle of inclination θ of the pendulum as generalized co-ordinates. Explain why the first pulley turns. the angular position of the drum and the free length of cable. write down the Lagrangian function for the system. Hence find the tension in the cable. use energy conservation to find its angular velocity when it reaches the vertical. . Using a suitable pair of generalized co-ordinates. Treat the system of Problem 2 as one with two generalized co-ordinates. where x is the extension of the cable. The other end supports a second pulley with a string over it carrying masses 3m and m on the two ends. with a superimposed oscillation of angular frequency given by ω 2 = k(M + 2m)/M m. Show that the terms proportional to ω and ω 2 reproduce the Coriolis force and centrifugal force respectively. and Lagrange’s equations. Find also the minimum angular velocity ω3 for which steady precession at this angle is possible. Find the downward accelerations of the three masses. 9. Find the amplitude of this oscillation if the system is released from rest with the cable unextended. A light inextensible string passes over a light smooth pulley. if the axis makes an angle of 30◦ with the vertical. find the angular velocity of the drum when it is fully unwound. m = 1 kg. with an appropriate constraint. given that M = 2 kg. 8. 5. and Lagrange’s equations. Evaluate accurately the two possible precessional angular velocities of the top described in Chapter 9. Show that the motion of the mass m is a uniform acceleration at the same rate as before. The pendulum swings in a plane parallel to the rails. (Show that it is equal to the Lagrange multiplier. If the system is released from rest with the pendulum inclined at 30◦ to the vertical. with elastic potential energy 2 kx2 . write down the Lagrangian function.Lagrangian Mechanics 249 3. Compare the slower value with the approximate result found earlier.

14. and obtain the equation for ϕ without neglecting Ω2 . using two generalized co-ordinates. . 13. Given that the plank is initially at rest at an inclination of 60◦ . (Note that Z is related to θ.) The stretched string of §10. with a suitable constraint between the two. find the angle at which it loses contact with the wall. 12. What difference is there in the equation (10. Y. Describe the shape of the string after (a) a short time. (Hint : Take F = −qΛ. ϕ. I1 . Write down the Lagrangian function. From Lagrange’s equations. *A uniform plank of length 2a is placed with one end on a smooth horizontal floor and the other against a smooth vertical wall. and find the smallest value for which it is stable.) Use Hamilton’s principle to show that if F is any function of the generalized co-ordinates. (b) a time l/2c.6 is released from rest with its mid-point displaced a distance a. Show that motion with the axis pointing north becomes unstable for very small values of ω3 . then the Lagrangian functions L and L + dF/dt must yield the same equations of motion. the distance x of the foot of the plank from the wall. (Hint : First write the co-ordinates of the centre of mass in terms of x and θ. *Show that the kinetic energy of the gyroscope described in Chapter 9. and each half of the string straight. Note that the reaction at the wall is related to the Lagrange multiplier. ψ. show that the angular velocity ω3 about the axis is constant. and its angle θ of inclination to the horizontal.) Show that the horizontal motion of the centre of mass may be completely separated from the rotational motion.250 Classical Mechanics 10. Problem 21. in terms of the generalized co∗ ∗ ∗ ordinates X. Hence show that the equations of motion of a charged particle in an electromagnetic field are unaffected by the ‘gauge transformation’ (A. *Find the Lagrangian function for a symmetric top whose pivot is free to slide on a smooth horizontal table. I3 about the centre of mass. Find the function f (x). is 1 ˙ ˙ T = 2 I1 (Ω sin λ cos ϕ)2 + 1 I1 (ϕ + Ω cos λ)2 + 1 I3 (ψ + Ω sin λ sin ϕ)2 . What are the stable positions when ω3 = 0? Interpret this result in terms of a non-rotating frame. θ.42).15) for steady precession? Are the precessional angular velocities greater or less than in the case of a fixed pivot? Show that steady precession at a given value of θ can occur for a smaller value of ω3 than in the case of a fixed pivot. and the principal moments I1 . and (c) a time l/c. 2 2 11.

The restricted three-body problem concerns the motion of a third small body of mass m ( M1 or M2 ) in their gravitational field (e. in each of which the three bodies form an equilateral triangle. a spacecraft in the vicinity of the Earth–Moon system).e. circular motion with the same angular velocity as M1 and M2 ). using a rotating frame in which M1 and M2 are fixed. (Hint : The identities GM1 = ω 2 a2 a2 and GM2 = ω 2 a2 a1 may be useful. Consider ‘equilibrium’ positions on the line of centres of M1 and M2 . (Note: The positions are actually the solutions of a quintic equation..Lagrangian Mechanics 251 15. write down the Lagrangian function of the system. Chapter 12. *Two bodies of masses M1 and M2 are moving in circular orbits of radii a1 and a2 about their centre of mass..) Show also that there are two ‘equilibrium’ positions off the line of centres. show that there are three such positions. but that all three are unstable. *For the system of Problem 15. There is further consideration of this important problem in §14.g.) . Assuming that the third body is moving in the plane of the first two. Find the equations of motion.) 16.4. (The stability of these so-called Lagrangian points is the subject of Problem 12. with a = a1 + a2 and ω 2 = GM/a3 . By roughly sketching the effective potential energy curve. find the equations that must be satisfied for ‘equilibrium’ in the rotating frame (i.

252 Classical Mechanics .

2 — the oscillations of a system of several degrees of freedom near a position of equilibrium. the kinetic energy contains terms in q1 . By an extension of this terminology. q2 . . qn . the coefficients a11 . . We shall begin by investigating the form of the kinetic and potential energy functions near this point. q3 . for which the kinetic ˙ energy is a homogeneous quadratic function of q1 . the ˙ ˙ 253 . a12 . q2 .5). Without loss of generality. we may choose the position of equilibrium to be q1 = q2 = · · · = qn = 0. . The only essential restriction is that there should be no linear terms. holonomic systems. However.4 — for which L can be written as a sum of a quadratic term T and a term −V independent of the time derivatives. 11.1) In general. we shall discuss a generalization of the harmonic oscillator problem treated in §2. the co-ordinates are called orthogonal if the co-ordinate curves always intersect at right angles (see §3.) For example. . (More gener˙ ˙ ally. ˙ 2 ˙2 ˙2 but no cross products like q1 q2 . . for n = 2. and treat them as constants (equal to their values at q1 = q2 = 0). 2 2 (11. q2 . we have ˙2 ˙ ˙ ˙2 T = 1 a11 q1 + a12 q1 q2 + 1 a22 q2 . We consider only conservative. . .Chapter 11 Small Oscillations and Normal Modes In this chapter. In that case. if we are interested only in small values of q1 and q2 . we may neglect this dependence. described by n generalized co-ordinates q1 . a22 will be functions of q1 and q2 .1 Orthogonal Co-ordinates We shall restrict our attention to natural systems. qn . For a particle described by curvilinear co-ordinates. . we could include also those forced systems — like that of §10.

. It is a considerable simplification to choose the co-ordinates to be orthogonal. 11. For instance. ˙ 2 ˙ (11.2) must be positive numbers. a11 (11. a11 so that. q2 . and so on. ˙ q2 .2) We can even go further.254 Classical Mechanics generalized co-ordinates q1 . . (11. we may set q1 = q1 + a12 q2 . qn are called orthogonal if T is a sum of squares. . if a12 above is zero. (11. with no cross products — for example. let us consider the double pendulum illustrated in Fig. Thus we can always reduce T to the ˙ standard form n T = α=1 1 2 ˙ 2 qα . and this can always be done. so that T is reduced to a simple sum of squares: 1 T = 2 q1 2 + 1 q2 2 . (It is called the Gram–Schmidt orthogonalization procedure. As an illustration of these ideas. q2 = a22 q2 . the coefficients in (11. in terms of q1 and q2 .1) becomes 1 ˙ ˙2 T = 2 a11 q1 2 + 1 a22 q2 . 2 with a22 = a22 − a2 12 .) We may first eliminate the cross products involving q1 by means of the transformation to ˙ q1 = q1 + a12 a1n q2 + · · · + qn .4) where we now drop any primes. .1. Since T is necessarily positive for all possible q1 . a11 a11 then those involving q2 . . Hence we can define ˙ new co-ordinates q1 = √ a11 q1 .3) A similar procedure can be used in the general case.

4). and the velocity lϕ relative to that point. The velocity of the upper pendulum ˙ ˙ bob is Lθ. of θ to ϕ. Hence the kinetic energy is ˙˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ T = 1 M L2 θ2 + 1 m[L2 θ2 + l2 ϕ2 + 2Llθϕ cos(ϕ − θ)]. As generalized co-ordinates. we may initially choose the inclinations θ and ϕ to the downward vertical.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 255 Example: Kinetic energy of the double pendulum θ L Lθ M ϕ l m Fig. but we can make them so by adding an appropriate multiple of ϕ to θ. Since ˙˙ there is a term in θϕ. with a second simple pendulum of mass m and length l suspended from it. which for small angles are x = Lθ. so that the system has two degrees of freedom. these co-ordinates are not orthogonal. y = Lθ + lϕ. we may approximate cos(ϕ − θ) by 1. (11. Consider only motion in a vertical plane. 2 2 For small values of θ and ϕ. equally well. it is easy to see physically that a pair of orthogonal co-ordinates is provided by the displacements of the two bobs.1 lϕ Lθ A double pendulum consists of a simple pendulum of mass M and length L. Find a standard set of co-ordinates in terms of which the kinetic energy takes the form (11. 11.5) . The ˙ angle between these is ϕ − θ. That of the lower bob has two components — the velocity Lθ of its point of support. or. In fact.

Thus the leading terms are the quadratic ones. just as we did for a single co-ordinate in §2.7) q1 = M x.4). . this is not always essential. we may approximate V by 2 2 1 V = 2 k11 q1 + k12 q1 q2 + 1 k22 q2 .2. we may define the new co-ordinates √ √ q2 = my. (11. 11.6) To complete the reduction to the standard form (11.10) where for the sake of symmetry we have written k21 = k12 in the second equation. the equations of motion are simply qα = − ¨ ∂V . For small values of the co-ordinates. (11. 2 2 V = V0 + (b1 q1 + b2 q2 ) + ( 1 k11 q1 + k12 q1 q2 + 1 k22 q2 ) + · · · . .4). the constant term V0 is arbitrary. 2 (11. though it makes the discussion of the general case much easier. 2. b1 = b2 = 0. 2 2 The equilibrium conditions require that the linear terms should be zero.9) Then the equations of motion (11. Moreover.256 Classical Mechanics In terms of these. For example. ∂qα for α = 1. just as in §2. for n = 2. .2. 2 (11. T becomes 1 ˙ ˙ T = 2 M x2 + 1 my 2 .8) Thus the condition for equilibrium is that all n partial derivatives of V should vanish at the equilibrium position. With T given by (11.2 Equations of Motion for Small Oscillations Now let us consider the potential energy function V .8) become q1 = −k11 q1 − k12 q2 . and for small values of q1 and q2 . ¨ q2 = −k21 q1 − k22 q2 . In practice. n. . we can expand V as a series. and may be set equal to zero without changing the equations of motion. . ¨ (11.

For small angles. n.13) Example: Equations of motion of the double pendulum Find the equations of motion of the double pendulum. ⎥ = −⎢ . kn1 kn2 . . .) Then the 2 2 equations of motion are n qα = − ¨ kαβ qβ . Hence in terms 2 of x and y.⎦ . (11. we may approximate (1 − cos θ) by 1 θ2 . in terms of the orthogonal co-ordinates x and y. .12) or. which are of course equal. knn ⎤⎡ ⎤ k1n q1 k2n ⎥ ⎢ q2 ⎥ ⎥⎢ ⎥ . we have V = 1 (M + m)gLθ2 + 1 mglϕ2 = 2 2 (M + m)g 2 mg x + (y − x)2 . k22 . . V may be taken to be a homogeneous quadratic function of the co-ordinates. . ⎦ qn (11. . ⎡ ⎡ ⎤ k11 q1 ¨ ⎢ k21 ⎢ q2 ⎥ ¨⎥ ⎢ ⎢ ⎢ . 2L 2l Thus the equations of motion are ⎤ ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ (M + m)g mg mg ⎡ ⎤ − − Mx ¨ x L l l ⎥⎣ ⎦. The potential energy of the double pendulum is easily seen to be V = (M + m)gL(1 − cos θ) + mgl(1 − cos ϕ). . for example 1 k12 q1 q2 and 1 k21 q2 q1 . ⎥⎢ . ⎥. . ⎣ . . (Notice that each term with α = β appears twice.7). . ⎣. . in matrix notation. α=1 β=1 V = (11. ⎣ ⎦=⎢ (11. 2. . .14) ⎣ ⎦ mg mg m¨ y y − l l Note the appearance of the masses on the left hand side. . . because we have not gone over to the normalized variables of (11. . which can be written n n 1 2 kαβ qα qβ .Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 257 In the general case. ⎦⎣ . .11) with kβα = kαβ . . qn ¨ k12 . β=1 for α = 1.

The equations (11.3 and §2. A2 A2 (11. β=1 (11.3 Normal Modes The general solution of a pair of second-order differential equations like (11.16) Let us consider first the case n = 2. n −ω 2 Aα = − kαβ Aβ . k21 k22 − ω 2 (11. Then these equations are k11 k12 k21 k22 A1 A = ω2 1 .. (11. Similarly. which may be fixed by the ˙ ˙ initial values of q1 . q1 . To find the general solution.15) where the Aα are complex constants. of the form qα = Aα eiωt . = 0 A2 These equations have a non-zero solution if and only if the determinant of the coefficient matrix vanishes. The values of ω 2 for which non-zero solutions exist are called the eigenvalues of the 2 × 2 matrix with elements kαβ . Substituting (11.5: we look first for solutions in which all the co-ordinates are oscillating with the same frequency ω.17) can alternatively be written as k12 k11 − ω 2 k21 k22 − ω 2 A1 0 . the general solution of (11.5. q2 . (As in §2.14) must involve four arbitrary constants.e.18) .15).258 Classical Mechanics 11. if and only if k12 k11 − ω 2 2 = (k11 − ω 2 )(k22 − ω 2 ) − k12 = 0.13) must involve 2n arbitrary constants. i.) Such solutions are called normal modes of the system. we adopt a generalization of the method used for the damped harmonic oscillator in §2. the physical solution may be taken to be the real part of (11. The column vector formed by the Aα is an eigenvector of the matrix. q2 .17) This is what is known as an eigenvalue equation.13).15) into (11. we obtain a set of n simultaneous equations for the n amplitudes An .

then either of the two equations in (11. The ratio of q1 to q2 remains fixed throughout the motion. the ratio is obviously real. There remains in A1 and A2 a common arbitrary complex factor.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 259 This is called the characteristic equation for the system. corresponding to the eigenvalue −γ 2 . this means that the Aα and Bα coefficients must be proportional.18) is a quadratic equation for ω 2 . any superposition of solutions is again a solution. say −γ 2 . In general. which serves to fix the overall amplitude and phase of the normal mode solution.2). If ω 2 is chosen equal to one of the two roots of (11. which are the square roots of the eigenvalues ω 2 . that the second derivative of the potential energy function be positive (see §2. See §A. which is clearly positive. q2 = A2 eiωt + A2 eiω t . Its discriminant may 2 be written (k11 − k22 )2 + 4k12 . Thus each normal mode solution contains two arbitrary real constants.19) .18). Since the equations of motion (11.17) fixes the ratio A1 /A2 . The condition for stability is that both roots should be positive. (11. but actually in (or directly out of) phase. Since the coefficients are real numbers. If ω 2 and ω 2 are the roots of (11. would yield a solution of the form qα = Aα eγt + Bα e−γt . Hence it always has two real roots. is a natural generalization of the requirement. in which the ratios A1 /A2 and A1 /A2 are fixed by (11. the solution yields an exponential increase in the displacements with time. Except in the degenerate case of two equal eigenvalues. A negative root. that all the eigenvalues be positive.10. It determines the frequencies ω of the normal modes. This stability condition. since the eigenvector is unique up to an overall factor. so that q1 and q2 not only oscillate with the same frequency.) This means that A1 and A2 have the same phase (or phases differing by π). in the one-dimensional case. (This is a special case of a general theorem about symmetric matrices — those satisfying kβα = kαβ . where both the Aα and the Bα coefficients constitute eigenvectors of the 2×2 matrix.10) are linear. Hence the general solution is simply a superposition of the two normal mode solutions.17). therefore. it may be written as the real part of q1 = A1 eiωt + A1 eiω t .18). Equation (11.

provided that l is not too close to L. whose frequency is that of the upper pendulum. Ay L+l In the first mode. L+l L Ax ≈ . First. ≈ Ay L g . L Ax L−l . the two normal modes are ω2 ≈ and ω2 ≈ m M g g + . It is interesting to examine special limiting cases. In the second. the amplitudes are comparable. (11. . are. ≈− Ay M L g . the two roots. the upper pendulum is practically stationary. ⎣ g g Ay Ay − l l ω4 − (11. if M m. ≈ Ay M l−L In the first mode. L l Ax m L+l . the pendulums swing almost like a single rigid pendulum of length L + l. while the lower is swinging with its natural frequency. let us suppose that the upper pendulum is very heavy (M m).20). l Ax m L .17) may be written ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤ mg mg ⎡ ⎤ (M + m)g + − Ax ⎢ ML ⎥ ⎣Ax ⎦ Ml Ml⎦ = ω2 ⎣ ⎦ . In the second mode. At the other extreme.20) The characteristic equation (11.21) M L l M Ll The roots of this equation determine the frequencies of the two normal modes.260 Classical Mechanics Example: Normal modes of the double pendulum Find the normal mode frequencies of the double pendulum. while the upper one executes a very rapid oscillation. Then.18) simplifies to g M +m g M + m g2 + ω2 + = 0. the lower bob remains almost stationary. Here the equations (11. approximately ω2 ≈ and ω2 ≈ g . with the corresponding ratios determined by (11.

22) This is a cubic equation for ω 2 . the condition for stability is that all three roots should be positive. Thus.10) are 2 k11 = ω1 . Thus from (11. 2 k22 = ω2 . then V = 1 ω 2 q 2 .10). As before.18) it is clear that the characteristic frequencies of the system are given by ω 2 ≈ k11 and ω 2 ≈ k22 .16) is again that the determinant of the coefficients should vanish. As in the case n = 2. for n = 3. It can be proved that its three roots are all real (see §A. we require k12 k13 k11 − ω 2 2 = 0. When the oscillators are weakly coupled. Then from (11. as one might expect.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 261 The normal modes of a system with n degrees of freedom may be found by a very similar method.2. Each normal mode solution involves just two arbitrary real constants.) If the co-ordinate q of a harmonic oscillator is normalized so that T = 1 2 q . the ratio A2 /A1 is approximately k12 /(k11 − k22 ). we shall consider below the system shown in Fig. (As a specific example. they are close to the frequencies of the uncoupled oscillators. the coefficients in (11. For example. so that in a normal mode all the co-ordinates oscillate in phase (or 180 ◦ out of phase).16). 11. these ratios are all real. k21 k22 − ω k23 k31 k32 k33 − ω 2 (11. which consists of a pair of identical pendulums coupled by a spring. but with some kind of relatively weak coupling between the two. the normal modes differ very little from those of . The condition for consistency of the simultaneous equations (11. unless the frequencies of the two normal modes are nearly equal. Hence for a pair ˙ 2 2 of uncoupled oscillators.4 Coupled Oscillators One often encounters examples of physical systems that may be described as two (or more) harmonic oscillators. For each normal mode. the ratios of the amplitudes are fixed by the equations (11. The roots then determine the frequencies of the three normal modes. which are approximately independent. where ω is the angular frequency. k12 = 0.17) we see that. in the first normal mode. 11. these equalities will still be approximately true. so that in particular k12 is small in comparison to k11 and k22 . and the general solution is a superposition of all the normal modes.

the potential energy of the spring has the form 1 k(x − y)2 . each of mass m and length l. the potential energy is approximately 1 mω0 (x2 + y 2 ). We shall l l m x Fig. ˙ ˙ 2 2 2 V = 1 m(ω0 + ωs )(x2 + y 2 ) − mωs xy. As a specific example of this case. The interesting case. 11. we consider a pair of pendulums. or nearly so.23) The normal mode equations now read 2 2 2 −ωs ω0 + ωs 2 2 2 −ωs ω0 + ωs Ax A = ω2 x . 2 2 where ω0 = g/l gives the free oscillation frequency. ωs defined by ωs = k/m.24) The two solutions of the characteristic equation are easily seen to be 2 ω 2 = ω0 with + 2 2ωs Ax /Ay = 1. coupled by a weak spring (see Fig. in the 2 absence of coupling. ω = 2 2 ω0 with .262 Classical Mechanics the uncoupled system. and the coupling is not of great importance. For small values of x and y.2 m y use the displacements x and y as generalized co-ordinates. is that in which the two frequencies are equal. It will 2 2 be convenient to introduce another frequency. ωs is the angular frequency of the spring if one end is held fixed and the other attached to a mass m. in which even a weak coupling can be important. Ax /Ay = −1. Then. Thus we take 1 T = 2 m(x2 + y 2 ). In fact. 11. 2 (11.2). Ay Ay (11.

Example: Motion of coupled pendulums Find the solution for the positions of the bobs if the system is released from rest with one bob displaced a distance a from its equilibrium position.3(a)). it is not surprising that the frequency is just that of the uncoupled pendulums. which has a somewhat higher frequency.3 The general solution is a superposition of these two normal modes. 11.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 263 In the first normal mode. alternately expanding and compressing the spring (see Fig. . and may be written as the real part of x = Aeiω0 t + A eiω t . (a) (b) Fig. In the second normal mode. Since the spring is neither expanded nor compressed in this motion. y = Aeiω0 t − A eiω t . Describe the motion. 11. the pendulums swing in opposite directions. 11.25) 2 2 where ω 2 = ω0 + 2ωs . with equal amplitude (see Fig. The constants A and A may be determined by the initial conditions. the two pendulums oscillate together in phase. (11.3(b)).

x = 0. 2 q2 = m (x − y). the solution (11. 2 (11. the new co-ordinates q1 = m (x + y). and the second is oscillating with amplitude a. √ A2 = 2mA . We can make this fact explicit by introducing new ‘normal’ co-ordinates. We have beats between two nearly equal frequencies. Thus we may describe the motion as follows. Normal co-ordinates The two normal modes of this system (or the n normal modes in the general case) are completely independent. The whole process is then repeated indefinitely (though in practice there will of course be some damping). Meanwhile. Thus only a very small oscillation will be set up in the second oscillator. 2 2 where ω± = 1 (ω ± ω0 ). we have x = a. but 90◦ out of phase. q2 = A2 eiω t . so the solution is 1 x = 2 a cos ω0 t + 1 a cos ω t = a cos ω− t cos ω+ t. the first pendulum has come momentarily to rest. the second pendulum starts to swing with the same angular frequency. and therefore ω− ω+ . 2 y = 1 a cos ω0 t − 1 a cos ω t = a sin ω− t sin ω+ t. if one is started oscillating. at t = 0. and the amplitude of the first will be practically constant. and with gradually increasing amplitude a sin ω− t. the first spring swings with angular frequency ω+ and gradually decreasing amplitude. in place of x and y. y = 0. This behaviour should be contrasted with that of a pair of coupled oscillators of very different frequencies. Since the spring is weak. Then its amplitude starts to decrease. y = 0.26) In terms of these co-ordinates. a cos ω− t. Initially.264 Classical Mechanics Here.25) is q1 = A1 eiω0 t . and we have used standard trigonometric iden2 tities. while the first increases again. A1 = √ 2mA. one of the two normal modes will have a much larger amplitude than the other. ω is only slightly greater than ω0 .27) . we introduce. In the case of the coupled pendulums. whence we find ˙ ˙ A = A = a/2. After a time π/2ω− . (11. In such a case.

2 ˙ 2 ˙ 2 2 2 2 2 V = 1 ω0 (q1 + q2 ) + ωs q2 . we have reduced the Lagrangian to that for a pair of uncoupled oscillators. We write the force as the real part of F1 eiω1 t .28) In effect. From (11. In particular. in each normal mode. with angular frequencies ω0 and ω . ω0 − ω1 ω − ω1 . one co-ordinate only is oscillating. Example: Forced oscillation of coupled pendulums Find the amplitudes of forced oscillations of the coupled pendulums if one of them is subjected to a periodic force F (t) = F1 cos ω1 t.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 265 Thus. This is F (t) (δq1 + δq2 ). 2 ˙ 2 ˙ (11. we must evaluate the work done in a small displacement (see §10. Coordinates with this property are called normal co-ordinates.23) and (11.26). The normal co-ordinates are very useful in studying the effect on the system of a prescribed external force.6. q1 = −ω0 q1 + √ ¨ 2m iω1 t F1 e q2 = −ω 2 q2 + √ ¨ .2). F (t)δx = √ 2m Hence the equations of motion are F1 eiω1 t 2 . we find 2 2 T = 1 q1 + 1 q2 . To find the equations of motion in the presence of this force. 2 whence the Lagrangian function is 2 2 2 2 2 L = 1 (q1 − ω0 q1 ) + 1 (q2 − ω 2 q2 ). 2m (11.29) These independent oscillator equations may be solved exactly as in §2. A2 = 2 2 2. the amplitudes of the forced oscillations are given by √ √ F1 / 2m F1 / 2m A1 = 2 . The independence of the two normal co-ordinates may also be seen by examining the Lagrangian function.

its length is l.26). and the pendulums will swing in the same direction. Next. .30) these co-ordinates are orthogonal. 11.) 11. 11. with n equal masses m placed along it at regular intervals l. but when the particles are displaced it is l + δl = l2 + (yj+1 − yj )2 ≈ l 1 + (yj+1 − yj )2 . We shall consider transverse oscillations of the particles. 2m Note that if the forcing frequency is very close to ω0 . so that the amplitudes do not become infinite at resonance. and are Ax = A1 + A2 √ . and so that transient effects disappear in time. . The work done against the tension in increasing the length of the string to this extent . ˙2 ˙2 ˙2 2 (11. This calculation also applies to the segments of string at each end. while if it is close to ω the second will be more important. yn . we should really include the effects of damping. 2l2 assuming the displacements are small. (Of course.) Since the kinetic energy is y1 l l y2 l Fig. drawn for the case n = 3. In equilibrium.4 y3 l T = 1 m(y1 + y2 + · · · + yn ).4. stretched to a tension F . 2m Ay = A1 − A2 √ . and use as our generalized co-ordinates the displacements y1 . provided we set y0 = yn+1 = 0. y2 . Let us consider the length of string between the jth and (j + 1)th particles. .266 Classical Mechanics The corresponding forced oscillation amplitudes for x and y are found by solving (11.5 Oscillations of Particles on a String Consider a light string of length (n + 1)l. . we must calculate the potential energy. (See Fig. the first normal mode will predominate.

0 A1 A1 2 2 2 ⎢−ω0 2ω0 −ω0 . . For small l. we find that Lagrange’s equations are y1 = ¨ F (−2y1 + y2 ). ml F (y1 − 2y2 + y3 ). 0 ⎥ ⎢ A3 ⎥ ⎢ ⎥ 0 0 ⎢ ⎥ ⎢ ⎥ = ω 2 ⎢ A3 ⎥ . .32) yn = ¨ 2 It will be convenient to write ω0 = F/ml. ⎢ . .32). .31). . . . ⎤⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤ 2 2 2ω0 −ω0 0 . ml (11. A1 /A2 = −1.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 267 is F δl. −ω0 −ω0 2ω0 − ω 2 2 0 −ω0 2ω0 − ω 2 (11. the characteristic equation is 2 4 (2ω0 − ω 2 )2 − ω0 = 0. ω = 2 2 3ω0 . y2 = ¨ ml . . ⎣ . . . there is of course just 2 one normal mode. The characteristic equation here is 2 2 2ω0 − ω 2 −ω0 0 2 2 2 2 = 0. For n = 1. ⎦ . ⎥ .33) and we obtain two normal modes: 2 ω 2 = ω0 . ⎣ . (yj+1 −yj )2 /l2 is approximately y 2 . . For n = 2. 0 ⎥ ⎢ A2 ⎥ ⎢ A2 ⎥ ⎢ ⎥⎢ ⎥ ⎢ ⎥ ⎢ 0 −ω 2 2ω 2 . . From (11. adding the contributions from each segment of string. Then. with ω 2 = 2ω0 . Now consider n = 3. as n → ∞ and l → 0.31) It is worth noting that the potential energy of a continuous string may be obtained as a limiting case. A1 /A2 = 1. ⎥ ⎢ . ⎦ . F (yn−1 − 2yn ). . . 2ω0 ⎡ (11. ⎦⎣ . 2l 1 (11. . . 2 An An 0 0 0 .34) . so we recover the expression (10. . . we find that the potential energy is V = F 2 2 y + (y2 − y1 )2 + · · · + (yn − yn−1 )2 + yn .30) and (11. . substituting the normal iωt mode solution yj = Aj e . ⎥⎢ . Hence. we obtain the equations Let us look at the first few values of n.

5. 2 The roots of this equation are 2ω0 and (2 ± three normal modes √ 2 2)ω0 . ω 2 = (2 − √ 2 2)ω0 .5 Higher values of n may be treated similarly. Hence we obtain the √ 2 : 1. A1 : A2 : A3 = 1 : A1 : A2 : A3 = 1 : 0 : −1. The roots of this equation are given by 2 (2ω0 − ω 2 )2 = √ 3± 5 4 ω0 = 2 √ 5±1 2 ω0 2 2 . These normal modes are illustrated in Fig. √ 2 ω = (2 + 2)ω0 . 2 2 ω 2 = 2ω0 . Fig.268 Classical Mechanics Expanding this determinant by the usual rules. the characteristic equation requires the vanishing of a 4 × 4 determinant. which may be expanded by similar rules to yield 2 4 2 8 (2ω0 − ω 2 )4 − 3ω0 (2ω0 − ω 2 )2 + ω0 = 0. √ A1 : A2 : A3 = 1 : − 2 : 1. For n = 4. 11. we obtain a cubic equation for ω 2 : 2 4 2 (2ω0 − ω 2 )3 − 2ω0 (2ω0 − ω 2 ) = 0. . 11.

2 3.62 : 1. ω = ω = ω = 2 2 2 2 1. A1 : A2 : A3 : A4 = 1 : 1.62 ω0 . A1 : A2 : A3 : A4 = 1 : −1. We start from the equations of motion.38 ω0 . (10.62 : −1 : −1 : 1. 2 2. 11.6 Normal Modes of a Stretched String We now wish to discuss the problem treated in §10.62 : 1 : −1 : −1.62. 11. (See Fig.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 269 Thus we obtain the four normal modes: 2 ω 2 = 0.6 from the point of view of normal modes. while the fastest is one in which alternate masses oscillate in opposite directions.6.62 : −1. the slowest mode is the one in which all the masses are oscillating in the same direction.62. 11.) Fig.35) . (11. A1 : A2 : A3 : A4 = 1. A1 : A2 : A3 : A4 = 1.62 : 1.62 : 1. ¨ c2 = F/µ. the normal modes approach those of a continuous stretched string. y = c2 y .62 ω0 . For large values of n.38 ω0 .6 For every value of n.36). which we discuss in the following section.

2. or points where y = 0. (11.37) Each of these values corresponds to a normal mode of the string. t) = A(x)eiωt .39). denoted by (n + 1)l in the preceding section. The general solution for the stretched string is a superposition of all the normal modes (11.270 Classical Mechanics and look for normal mode solutions of the form y(x. we obtain A (x) + k 2 A(x) = 0. The solution for the nth normal mode can be written as y(x. we must impose the boundary conditions A(0) = A(l) = 0. t) = Re An einπct/l sin nπx . we obtain a differential equation for the amplitude function A(x).37) obtained in the previous chapter. The first few normal modes are illustrated in Fig. . because the ends of the string are fixed.35).) Thus a = 0 and moreover sin kl = 0. It is easy to establish the connection with the general solution (10. Ml where M is the total mass of the string. . 3. The general solution of this equation is A(x) = a cos kx + b sin kx. The possible values of k are k= nπ .38) Note that they are all multiples of the fundamental frequency ω1 = πc =π l F . with n − 1 nodes. Substituting in (11. .39) where An is an arbitrary complex constant.7. . (Note that l here is the full length of the string. 2. k = ω/c. . l n = 1. 11. (11. l (11. According to . . It represents a ‘standing wave’ of wavelength 2l/n.36) Thus. l n = 1. (11. However. . in place of a set of simultaneous equations for the amplitudes Aj . . The corresponding angular frequencies are ω= nπc . 3.

l = n=−∞ Now recall that fn and f−n must be complex conjugates (so that the two terms add to give a real contribution to y).45)). f (x) is a periodic function of x. we can write the solution as +∞ y(x. Thus the solution (10. t) = 2Re n=1 An einπct/l sin nπx . Hence it may be expanded in a Fourier series (see Eq.) If we define An = 2ifn . (2. with period 2l. 11.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 271 n=1 n=2 n=3 n=4 Fig. +∞ f (x) = n=−∞ fn einπx/l . l . (Note that there is no contribution from n = 0 because the sine function then vanishes.7 (10.38). Thus we may restrict the sum to positive values of n. t) = n=−∞ +∞ fn einπ(ct+x)/l − einπ(ct−x)/l 2ifn einπct/l sin nπx .37) is +∞ y(x.

To find the normal modes of oscillation. 2. the kinetic energy may be taken to be a homogeneous quadratic function of the qα .7 Summary Near a position of equilibrium of any natural. Such systems may then be analyzed as a combination of ‘nonlinear’ normal modes. 11.2) if the two are of different masses M and m. The problem of finding the normal modes is equivalent to that of finding normal co-ordinates. The linearized analysis of small amplitude oscillations near to a position of stable equilibrium in the form of normal modes is a technique which is applicable generally. each normal co-ordinate is oscillating at its own frequency. We can always find a set of orthogonal co-ordinates. each of mass m and length l. In terms of normal co-ordinates. but still the same length l. In it. and the potential energy to be a homoge˙ neous quadratic function of the qα . find the maximum amplitude of the other pendulum in . and obtain a set of simultaneous linear equations for the coefficients. The condition for consistency of these equations is the characteristic equation.1. For some systems. we substitute solutions of the form qα = Aα eiωt . in terms of which T is reduced to a sum of squares. A double pendulum. Given that the pendulum of mass M is started oscillating with amplitude a.272 Classical Mechanics 11. the idea of a normal mode may be generalized. is released from rest with the pendulums displaced but in a straight line. Lagrange’s equations then take on a simple form. which reduce not only T but also V to a sum of squares. whose frequencies are the characteristic frequencies of the system. Find the normal modes of a pair of coupled pendulums (like those of Fig. and with amplitude and phase determined by the initial conditions. conservative system. The stability condition is that all the roots of this equation for ω 2 should be positive. consisting of a pair. where no small amplitude approximation needs to be made — see §14. which are special but important. with constant coefficients. the system is reduced to a set of uncoupled harmonic oscillators. Find the displacements of the pendulums as functions of time. Problems 1. The general solution to the equations of motion is a superposition of all the normal modes. which determines the frequencies of the normal modes.

11. are fixed to the points where they meet. of negligible mass. whose period when suspended from a rigid support is 1 s. The first of the three pendulums of Problem 4 is initially displaced a distance a. each of mass m. as in Fig. and is restricted by a harmonic-oscillator restoring force. and a pair of particles. Write down the Lagrangian in terms of the angle of inclination θ of the diameter through the pivot and the angular position ϕ of the bead relative to a fixed point on the hoop. Determine the maximum value of θ in the subsequent motion. and beneath it a second. 4. and (b) transverse oscillations. while the other two are vertical.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 273 3. and the ratios of the amplitudes. the subsequent motion. Using the vertical displacements x and y of the masses from their positions with the springs unextended as generalized co-ordinates. Find the maximum amplitudes of the second and third pendulums in the subsequent motion. and the time at which it first occurs. *A bead of mass m slides on a smooth circular hoop of mass M and radius a. Find the position of equilibrium. Three identical pendulums are coupled. write down the Lagrangian function. The period of the . with springs between the first and second and between the second and third. hangs from a supporting block of mass 2m which can move along a horizontal line (in the plane of the pendulum). 6. 9. Find the frequencies of normal modes of (a) longitudinal. and natural length a are attached end-to-end. 7. The system is released from rest.2. identical spring. and the normal modes and frequencies of vertical oscillations. find the angular displacement θ of the hoop as a function of time. 8. A simple pendulum of mass m. identical mass. and spring constant (force/extension) k. Three identical springs. The system is stretched between fixed points a distance 3l apart (l > a). Find the frequencies of the normal modes. 5. supports a mass m. which is pivoted at a point on its rim so that it can swing freely in its plane. *The system of Problem 7 is released from rest with the centre of the hoop vertically below the pivot and the bead displaced by a small angle ϕ0 . spring constant k. carrying a second. Given that M = 8m and that 2a is the length of a simple pendulum of period 1 s. Find the frequencies of the normal modes. and sketch the configuration of hoop and bead at the extreme point of each. Does the amplitude of the first pendulum ever fall to zero? A spring of negligible mass.

and two fixed charges 12q at ±2ai. Using the longitudinal displacement x of the centre of the rod. the co-ordinates of the centre of mass and the angle through which the rod is turned.1 s. . and the pendulum bob is given an impulsive blow which starts it moving with velocity 0. Given that the forcing frequency is that of the uncoupled pendulums. 13. Find the amplitudes of the forced oscillations obtained by applying a periodic force to one pendulum. as generalized co-ordinates. find the Lagrangian function (for small x. *A particle of charge q and mass m is free to slide on a smooth horizontal table. Two fixed charges q are placed at ±aj. described by the co-ordinates qn (t) = 2 l l y(x.2 is subjected to a damping force. oscillator (with the pendulum removed) is 0. t) sin 0 nπx dx. 12.274 Classical Mechanics 10.5 m s −1 . 11. 14. Find the electrostatic potential near the origin (see §6. physically. . Show that the equations for the normal co-ordinates q1 ˙ and q2 are still uncoupled. Find the position of the support as a function of time in the subsequent motion. inextensible strings of length l joining its ends to supports also a distance 2a apart and level with each other. y2 of its ends. 2. . Show that a typical equation of the set (11. Determine the normal modes and frequencies. of magnitude αx and αy respectively. (Hint : First find the height by which each end is raised. l Determine the amplitudes of the various normal modes in the motion described in Chapter 10. Why. .33) may be satisfied by 1 setting Aα = sin αk (α = 1. *A rigid rod of length 2a is suspended by two light. provided that ω = 2ω0 sin 2 k. and the transverse displacements y1 . and that β is negligible. Show that this is a position of stable equilibrium. are the modes for even values of n not excited? 15. . y2 ). Find the periods of the two normal modes. what is the amplitude of the motion of the supporting block? *The system of Problem 9 is initially at rest.) *Each of the pendulums in Fig 11. y1 . When the pendulum bob is swinging in the slower mode with amplitude 100 mm. find the range of values of α for which the amplitude of the second pendulum is less than half that of the first. while there is a damping force β(x− ˙ ˙ ˙ y) in the spring.2). and find the frequencies of the normal modes of oscillation near it. n). *Show that a stretched string is equivalent mathematically to an infinite number of uncoupled oscillators. Problem 14.

and the axes are so chosen that x. . dynamic equilibrium — stable periodic motion — can occur. and hence that stable equilibrium under purely gravitational and electrostatic forces is impossible. then the equilibrium is necessarily unstable. (Of course.Small Oscillations and Normal Modes 275 Hence show by considering the required condition when α = n + 1 that the frequencies of the normal modes are ωr = 2ω0 sin[rπ/2(n + 1)]. in the limit of large n. . Show that. n. . Why may we ignore values of r greater than n + 1? Show that. . The point r = 0 is a position of equilibrium. with r = 1. the frequency of the rth normal mode tends to the corresponding frequency of the continuous string with the same total length and mass.) . 2.7). Note also that the two-dimensional stable equilibrium of Problem 11 does not contradict this result because there is another force imposed. A particle moves under a conservative force with potential energy V (r). ∇2 V = 0 (see §6. 16. z are normal co-ordinates. confining the charge to the horizontal plane. if V satisfies Laplace’s equation. y.

276 Classical Mechanics .

. some of the generalized momenta are constants of the motion. . 2. More generally.1 Hamilton’s Equations The Lagrangian function L for a natural system is a function of q1 . the value of the Lagrangian method. . q2 . p2 . . we ˙ 277 . .2) Here and in the following equations. However. qn and q1 . . It is particularly valuable when. . in several examples. which allows us to find equations of motion for any system in terms of an arbitrary set of generalized co-ordinates.Chapter 12 Hamiltonian Mechanics We have already seen. pn in place of ˙ the generalized velocities q1 . . due to Hamilton. where q stands for all the generalized coordinates. For brevity. α runs over 1. qn . we shall discuss an extension of the method. . . Its principal feature is the use of the generalized momenta p1 . we shall indicate this dependence by writing ˙ ˙ ˙ L(q. it is well suited to finding conserved quantities.1) where the generalized momenta are defined by pα = ∂L . q2 . In this chapter. . n. . 12. . ∂ qα ˙ (12. . q2 . . ˙ ˙ as often happens. q). and making use of them. . . and q for all their ˙ ˙ time derivatives. The instantaneous position and velocity of every part of our system may be specified by the values of the 2n variables q and q. qn . . ∂qα (12. . . Lagrange’s equations may be written in the form pα = ˙ ∂L .

2). p) = β=1 pβ qβ (q. p) − L(q. ˙ on pα . the term coming from the explicit dependence of L on qα . p)). p). q(q.278 Classical Mechanics can alternatively solve the equations (12. Other terms arise ˙ ˙ tive is the coefficient of pα in the sum from the dependence of each qβ . ˙ (12. For example. (12. We differentiate first with respect to pα .3) so the 2n variables q and p also serve equally well to specify the instantaneous position and velocity of every particle. ˙ ∂pα (12. we compute the derivatives of H with respect to its 2n independent variables. We find ˙ ∂H ∂L =− + ∂qα ∂qα n pβ β=1 ∂ qβ ˙ − ∂qα n β=1 ∂L ∂ qβ ˙ . namely qα . m pθ ˙ θ= . Altogether.2) for the q in terms of q and p. the second and third terms cancel. pr and pθ .4) The instantaneous position and velocity of the particle may be fixed by the values of r. Eqs. there are two kinds of terms. Hence we are left with ∂H = qα . mr2 (12. and described by polar co˙ ˙ ordinates. Again.5) Next. ∂ qβ ∂qα ˙ . by (12. ˙ ˙ (12. We now define a function of q and p. and those from the dependence of each qβ on qα . One term in this derivapq. ∂ qβ ∂pα ˙ Now. In this case. ˙ qα = qα (q. we obtain ∂H = qα + ˙ ∂pα n pβ β=1 ∂ qβ ˙ − ∂pα n β=1 ∂L ∂ qβ ˙ . the generalized momenta are given by pr = mr and pθ = mr2 θ. either in the sum or as an argument of L. θ. the Hamiltonian function.3) read r= ˙ pr . by n H(q. say. ˙ obtaining. for a particle moving in a plane.6) We now examine the derivative with respect to qα .

a particle moving in a plane under a central. (12.6).1). The second pair. are H= r= ˙ ∂H pr = . conservative force. but a general property of natural systems. we obtain ∂H = −pα .4) between velocities and momenta. 2 Thus the Hamiltonian function is ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ H = (pr r + pθ θ) − [ 1 mr2 + 1 mr2 θ2 − V (r)].10) .7). This is no accident. T + V . Hamilton’s constitute a set of 2n first-order equations.8) 2m 2mr2 Note that this is the expression for the total energy. Thus. the second and third terms cancel. are −pr = ˙ p2 ∂H dV = − θ3 + . Let us consider. θ= ∂pθ mr2 (12. 2 2 or. for example. as we shall see below.9) They simply reproduce the relations (12. p2 p2 r θ + + V (r). Example: Central conservative force Obtain Hamilton’s equations for a particle moving in a plane with potential energy function V (r).4) to eliminate the velocities.6) and (12. The first pair of Hamilton’s equation. ∂θ (12.7) together constitute Hamilton’s equations. Here the Lagrangian is 1 ˙ ˙ L = 2 mr2 + 1 mr2 θ2 − V (r). using Lagrange’s equations (12.7) The equations (12. using (12. ˙ ∂qα (12.Hamiltonian Mechanics 279 As before. ∂pr m pθ ∂H ˙ = . Note that whereas Lagrange’s equations are a set of n second-order differential equations. ∂r mr dr −pθ = ˙ ∂H = 0. (12. (12.

the Lagrangian can sometimes be written.12) in Chapter 4. for a natural system. Now let us examine the time derivative of H. − mr3 dr It may be integrated to give what we termed the ‘radial energy equation’ (4.2 Conservation of Energy (12. we therefore have ˙ n n n H= β=1 pβ qβ − L = ˙ β=1 ∂T qβ − (T − V ) ˙ ∂ qβ ˙ = 2T − (T − V ) = T + V. We shall now allow for the possibility that H may contain an explicit time dependence (as it does for . and V is independent of them.4. In such a case. Thus ∂T ∂T q1 + ˙ q2 = (a11 q1 + a12 q2 )q1 + (a21 q1 + a22 q2 )q2 = 2T. Thus. ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ∂ q1 ˙ ∂ q2 ˙ Since pα = ∂T /∂ qα . pθ = J = constant. The first gives the radial equation of motion. ˙ ∂ qα ˙ α=1 For example. T has the form (11.280 Classical Mechanics The second of these two equations yields the law of conservation of angular momentum. This latter ˙ condition may be expressed algebraically by the equation ∂T qα = 2T. where T is a homogeneous quadratic in the variables q.1 that a natural system is characterized by the fact that the kinetic energy contains no explicit dependence on the time. and is a homogeneous quadratic function of the time derivatives q. the ˙ Hamiltonian function is equal to T + V . which is in general not the total energy.11) We saw in §10. for n = 2.1). r pr = m¨ = ˙ 12. as we saw in §10. the value of the Hamiltonian function is equal to the total energy of the system. For a forced system. J2 dV . in the form L = T − V .

˙ dt ∂t ∂qα ∂pα α=1 α=1 Now. The prime example of this is that of a charged particle moving in static electric and magnetic fields E and B. Then the value of H varies with time for two reasons: firstly. secondly. neither T nor V contains any explicit dependence on the time.Hamiltonian Mechanics 281 some forced systems). the terms in parentheses cancel. because of its explicit time dependence. we again have a conservation law — like (10. H = T + V = E = constant. because the variables q and p are themselves functions of time. if H = T + V . dt Thus there is a law of conservation of energy. It is interesting to see how this emerges from the Hamiltonian formalism.6) and (12. The net change induced by the fact that q and p vary with time is zero. p. using Hamilton’s ˙ ˙ equations (12. whence dH ∂H = . .14) (12. for a natural. it does no work. and.7). (12. Obviously. if we express q and p in terms of derivatives of H. Thus ∂H/∂t = 0. and it follows that dH = 0. an energy conservation law may exist. t). Since the magnetic force ˙ is perpendicular to r. Thus the total time derivative is ∂H ∂H ∂H dH = + qα + ˙ pα . conservative system. In particular. we obtain dH ∂H = + dt ∂t α=1 n n n ∂H ∂H ∂H ∂H − ∂qα ∂pα ∂pα ∂qα .12) This equation asserts that the value of H changes in time only because of its explicit time dependence. and write H = H(q. and the sum of the kinetic and electrostatic potential energies is a constant. Even when H is not of the form T + V . dt ∂t (12.13) In a forced system.20) — though not for T + V . and is time-independent.

∂qα (12. pα . For an ignorable co-ordinate. does). Thus we find (p − qA)2 + qφ. In that case. t) − qφ(r. it follows that the generalized momentum is ˙ p = mr + qA. The ‘magnetic’ term L1 apparently does ˙ not appear. The conservation law for energy is the first of a large class of conservation laws which we shall discuss in the following sections.16) .3 Ignorable Co-ordinates It sometimes happens that one of the generalized co-ordinates. and therefore is conserved: H = E = constant. We begin with the Lagrangian (10. where Lk is of degree k in r. 12. 2 from which.15) 2m Now.7). it is possible to choose the scalar and vector potentials φ and A also to be so (see §A. B appears in H only via the relation between r and p. it turns out that H = L2 − L0 . as in (10. or constants of the motion. if E and B are time-independent. Show that. t). ˙ Note that in this case. does not appear in the Hamiltonian function (though the corresponding momentum. the co-ordinate qα is said to be ignorable — for a reason we shall explain in a moment. if the fields are time-independent. there is an energy conservation law. Hamilton’s equation (12. ˙ H =p·r−L= The Hamiltonian formalism is particularly well suited to finding conservation laws. (12. L does have a term linear in r: it has the ˙ form L = L2 + L1 + L0 .282 Classical Mechanics Example: Particle in electric and magnetic fields Find the Hamiltonian for a charged particle in electric and magnetic fields. In fact. Thus H has no explicit time-dependence.27): ˙ ˙ L = 1 mr2 + q r · A(r. In such a case. say qα .7) yields −pα = ˙ ∂H = 0.28).

11). Let us re-examine this problem from the Hamiltonian point of view. we solve first this one-dimensional problem (for example. Any required information about the angular part of the motion can then be found from the remaining pair of Hamilton’s equations. in effect. Since the Hamiltonian (12.8) is independent of θ. and therefore r as a function of t. in which a constant pθ appears.Hamiltonian Mechanics 283 It leads immediately to a conservation law for the corresponding generalized momentum. we were able to deal with an effectively one-dimensional problem involving only the radial co-ordinate r.17) For example. Our solution gives us complete information about the radial motion — it gives r as a function of r. for a particle moving in a plane under a central. so θ is ignorable. the ‘radial energy equation’). described by the co-ordinate r and its corresponding momentum pr . Because of the conservation law for angular momentum. Clearly. in the form θ = pθ /mr2 . though we did not then . conservative force. 2mr2 (12.13). (12. while the other gives ˙ ˙ ˙ θ in terms of pθ . and treat the corresponding pα simply as a constant appearing in the Hamiltonian function. The term ‘ignorable co-ordinate’ means just what it says: that for many purposes we can ignore the co-ordinate qα . H is independent of the angular co-ordinate θ and we therefore have the law of conservation of angular momentum. It is identical with the Hamiltonian for a particle moving in one dimension under a conservative force with potential energy function U (r) = p2 θ + V (r). pθ = 0. Hamilton’s equations for r and pr are r= ˙ pr ∂H = . (12. The generalized momentum pθ = J was simply a constant appearing in the equation of motion or the energy conservation equation. This is. one of which is the angular momentum conservation equation. using its energy conservation equation.8) as the Hamiltonian for a system with one degree of freedom. ∂pr m −pr = ˙ dU ∂H = . ∂r dr To solve the central force problem. Thus.18) This is precisely the ‘effective potential energy function’ of (4. ˙ by integrating. we may regard (12. what we did for the central force problem in Chapter 4. pα = constant.

We shall use the same method in the following section to discuss the general motion of a symmetric top. ˙ Solving these equations for ϕ.19) The simplest way to construct the Hamiltonian function is to use the fact that H = T + V . The Hamiltonian . I1 sin2 θ ˙ pθ θ= . we find H= p2 (pϕ − pψ cos θ)2 p2 ψ + M gR cos θ.6).20) It is easy to verify that the first set of Hamilton’s equations. and find the ‘effective potential energy function’ for the remaining co-ordinate. and express T in terms of the generalized momenta using (12.11): ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ L = 1 I1 ϕ2 sin2 θ + 1 I1 θ2 + 1 I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ)2 − M gR cos θ.19). (12. θ.19). ˙ pψ = I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ). I1 pψ pϕ − pψ cos θ ˙ ψ= cos θ. 2 2 2 The corresponding generalized momenta are ˙ ˙ ˙ pϕ = I1 ϕ sin2 θ + I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ) cos θ. pϕ = constant and pψ = constant. + θ + 2I1 2I3 2I1 sin2 θ (12. ψ. − I3 I1 sin2 θ ϕ= ˙ (12. Thus the problem can be reduced to that of a system with one degree of freedom only. In this way. and there are two corresponding conservation laws. we obtain ˙ ˙ ˙ pϕ − pψ cos θ . correctly reproduce (12. It is clear that the two co-ordinates ϕ and ψ here are ignorable. this is essentially just the method we used in Chapter 4.284 Classical Mechanics introduce the Hamiltonian. Example: The symmetric top Show that for the symmetric top two of the three Euler angles are ignorable co-ordinates. ˙ pθ = I1 θ. described by the co-ordinate θ. We start from the Lagrangian function (10.

If this angle lies outside the range between θ1 and θ2 (or ˙ if |pϕ /pψ | > 1). ∂θ dθ (12. the angle θ oscillates between a minimum θ1 and a maximum θ2 . between 0 and π. 12. We note that. we have an ‘equilibrium’ situation. 2I1 (12.20) may be written H= p2 θ + U (θ). is zero when ˙ cos θ = pϕ /pψ . . and wobbles up and down between θ1 and θ2 . the qualitative features of the motion can be found from the energy conservation equation.19). When E is equal to this minimum value. according to (12.21) 12. ϕ. and the motion is confined to the region where U (θ) ≤ E.4 General Motion of the Symmetric Top Hamilton’s equations for θ and pθ give ¨ ˙ −I1 θ = −pθ = dU ∂H = . Now let us examine the function U (θ). U (θ) → +∞. + 2I3 2I1 sin2 θ (12. This corresponds to steady precession. the angular velocity of the axis about the vertical.23) ˙ In particular.Hamiltonian Mechanics 285 function (12. However. p2 θ + U (θ) = E = constant.22) This is obviously a rather complicated equation to solve. with a minimum at some value of θ. the angles θ at which θ = 0 are given by the equation U (θ) = E. We exclude for the moment the special case where pϕ = ±pψ . and θ remains fixed at θ0 .1. For any larger value of E.21) that as θ approaches either 0 or π. say θ0 . It is not hard to describe the motion of the top. then ϕ never vanishes and the axis precesses round the vertical in a fixed direction.) Then it is clear from (12. 2I1 where the effective potential energy function U (θ) is U (θ) = p2 (pϕ − pψ cos θ)2 ψ + M gR cos θ. It can be shown that there is only one minimum (see Problem 7). (We return to this important special case in the next section. Hence it has roughly the form shown in Fig.

12. The limiting case between the two kinds of motion occurs when arccos(pϕ /pψ ) = θ1 . the axis moves in loops. 12. The angular velocity has one sign near the top of the loop.2 On the other hand. and the opposite near the bottom.3. 12.2. 12.4. The axis of the top comes instantaneously to rest at the top of each loop. Then the loops shrink to cusps. which shows the track of the end of the axis on a sphere. as shown in Fig.1 θ2 π θ This motion is illustrated in Fig. as shown in Fig. θ1 θ2 Fig. if θ1 < arccos(pϕ /pψ ) < θ2 . . 12.286 Classical Mechanics U E 0 θ1 θ0 Fig.

3 θ1 θ2 Fig. (It is impossible to have cusped motion with the cusps at the bottom.) . for they correspond to points of minimum kinetic energy. and the motion must always be below such points.4 This kind of motion will occur if the top is set spinning with its axis initially at rest.Hamiltonian Mechanics 287 θ1 θ2 Fig. A top set spinning with its axis stationary cannot rise without increasing its energy. 12. 12.

In practice. The treatment is entirely similar — but less interesting because a downward-pointing top is always stable. How will it move? If the axis of the top passes through the vertical. θ = 0. 2 2 2I1 (12. In that case. because of friction). 2 I3 say. θ = π.) If we set pϕ = pψ = I3 ω3 . the top will begin to wobble.24) where we have used the identity (1 − cos θ)/ sin θ = tan 1 θ. This is possible only if pϕ = pψ . that is. Example: Stability of a vertical top A top is set spinning with angular velocity ω3 with its axis vertical. 2 For small values of θ. then it is clear that U (0) must be finite. the effective potential energy function (12. it will remain vertical. if the coefficient of θ 2 is positive. 4I1 (12.288 Classical Mechanics It is easy to observe these kinds of motion using a small gyroscope. .26) If the top is set spinning with angular velocity greater than this critical value. we require pϕ = −pψ = −I3 ω3 . given by 2 ω3 = 4I1 M gR 2 = ω0 .25) Since there is no linear term. and retain only the terms up to order θ2 .21) becomes U (θ) = 2 2 I3 ω3 2 tan2 1 θ + 1 I3 ω3 + M gR cos θ. because of frictional effects. It is a position of stable equilibrium if U (θ) has a minimum at θ = 0. The energy of the vertical top is 2 1 E = 2 I3 ω3 + M gR. we may expand U (θ). (12. Thus there is a minimum value of ω3 for which the vertical top is stable. When the angular velocity falls below the critical value (as it eventually will. the type of motion will change slowly with time. obtaining 2 U (θ) ≈ ( 1 I3 ω3 + M gR) + 2 1 2 2 2 I3 ω3 − M gR θ2 . θ = 0 is always a position of equilibrium. (We could also consider types of motion for which the axis passes through the downward vertical. and both generalized momenta must be equal to I3 ω3 .

. 12. . the top behaves like a compound pendulum. called the phase space of the system. 2 2 2I1 U E 0 Fig. p1 . from (12. but it is interesting to consider it here because it is a very direct consequence of Hamilton’s equations.5 θ2 π θ They are easily seen to be θ1 = 0 and θ2 = 2 arccos(ω3 /ω0 ). . . pn ). . we may write r = (q1 . Symbolically.5 Liouville’s Theorem This theorem really belongs to statistical mechanics. or. with angular velocity less than the critical value ω0 . .5). . . . . . pn ). qn . 12. it will oscillate in the subsequent motion between the vertical and the angle θ2 . Note that θ2 increases as ω3 is decreased. . and tends to π as ω3 approaches zero. . . qn . 12. .Hamiltonian Mechanics 289 ˙ Thus the angles at which θ = 0 are given by U (θ) = E (see Fig. When ω3 = 0. and swings in a circle through both the upward and downward verticals. by 2 2 I3 ω3 tan2 1 θ = M gR(1 − cos θ) = 2M gR sin2 1 θ. . p1 . .24). It is convenient to think of these as co-ordinates in a 2n-dimensional space. The instantaneous position and velocity of every particle in our system is specified by the 2n variables (q1 . Thus if the top is set spinning with its axis vertical and almost stationary.

. qn .290 Classical Mechanics As time progresses. . . the motion in phase space is complicated. but becomes extremely distorted. The condition that the phase-space volume does not change with time in the flow described by the velocity field v is simply that the 2n-dimensional divergence of v is zero. ˙ ˙ ˙ prescribe the rates of change (q1 .6) and (12. which is indeed zero. Each copy of the system is represented by a point in the phase space.6) and (12. . though of course its shape may. . ∇·v = ∂ qn ˙ ∂ p1 ˙ ∂ pn ˙ ∂ q1 ˙ + ···+ + ···+ = 0.27) But. but very remarkable. . result. . Thus the theorem is proved.24)) that the fluid velocity in an incompressible fluid satisfies the condition ∇ · v = 0. p1 . by (12. For example. namely that the representative points in phase space move as though they formed an incompressible fluid.. We thus have a swarm of points. What it says is a very simple. p1 .27) cancel in pairs. In three dimensions. moving according to Hamilton’s equations. i. . Similarly. The phase-space volume containing the swarm of representative points maintains its volume. . the changing state of the system can be described by a curve r(t) in the phase space. . . ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ Now suppose that we have a large number of copies of our system. . The 2n-dimensional volume occupied by the swarm does not change with time.7). rather like the particles in a fluid. In general. qn . (12.e. ˙ v = r = (q1 . it is shown in Appendix A (see (A. These may be regarded ˙ as the components of a 2n-dimensional velocity vector. all the other terms in (12. except for special cases. change in very complicated ways. and usually does. . Liouville’s theorem concerns how this swarm moves. pn ). Hamilton’s equations. but with small random variations in the initial conditions. . the 1st and (n+1)st terms are ∂ q1 ˙ ∂ p1 ˙ ∂ + = ∂q1 ∂p1 ∂q1 ∂H ∂p1 + ∂ ∂p1 − ∂H ∂q1 . .7). we may repeat many times an experiment on the same system. To prove this. ∂q1 ∂qn ∂p1 ∂pn (12. . It is easy to see that the argument generalizes to any number of dimensions. occupying some volume in phase space. we need to apply a generalization of the divergence operation. rather like a drop of immiscible coloured liquid in a glass of water which is then stirred. starting out with slightly different initial values of the co-ordinates and momenta. pn ). .

The . is conserved. and of course there might be other conservation laws that also restrict the accessible region of phase space.11). It has revealed an astonishing range of possibilities. to be discussed in Chapter 14.6 Symmetries and Conservation Laws In §§12. is now one of the most active fields of mathematical physics. without changing r. we found some examples of conserved quantities. Of course. the equation ∂H/∂θ = 0 means that the energy of the system is unchanged if we rotate it to a new position.Hamiltonian Mechanics 291 The points cannot just go anywhere in phase space. The study of which systems do and do not behave ergodically. every component of the angular momentum J is conserved if the force is purely central. but show surprising almost-periodic behaviour. many quite complicated systems do not behave in this way. For example. If the force is noncentral. namely pϕ . Remarkably. for the symmetric top. but still possesses axial symmetry — so that H depends on θ but not on ϕ — then only the component of J along the axis of symmetry. Such behaviour is called ergodic. and angular momentum is not conserved. pr or pθ . In fact. and particularly the transition between one type and another as the parameters of the system are varied. (12. They must remain on the same constant-energy surface. p) = E. however. H(q. but so far we have not discussed the physical reasons for their existence. of the fact that there is no preferred orientation in the plane.2 and 12. Explicitly. 12. Similarly. Averaged properties of the system over a long time can then be estimated by averaging over the accessible phase space. it does determine a preferred orientation is space. the conservation law of angular momentum for the central force problem. This is an expression of the rotational symmetry of the system — in other words.3. and is commonly assumed in statistical mechanics. the equation ∂H/∂ϕ = 0 is an expression of the rotational symmetry of the system about the vertical. if the force is non-central. because of the energy conservation equation. But one might expect that in time the phase-space volume would become thinly distributed throughout almost all the accessible parts of phase space. replacing θ by θ + δθ. In a three-dimensional problem. they are expressions of symmetry properties possessed by the system. Thus angular momentum is conserved (pθ = constant) for systems possessing this rotational symmetry. arises from the fact that the Hamiltonian is independent of θ.

In this case. Using Hamilton’s equations (12.6) . A. however. (12. while all the remaining coordinates and momenta are unchanged. ∂qα (12. The problem is to understand the relationship between the transformation (12. the function G = p1 generates the transformation in which δq1 = δλ. we might consider the central force problem in terms of the Cartesian co-ordinates x and y. we see from (9. For example. If we make a small rotation through an angle δθ. Now of course not all symmetries are expressible simply by saying that H is independent of some particular co-ordinate. so clearly x y δH = 0. for. δy = x δθ. neither co-ordinate is ignorable. Now we know from our earlier discussion in terms of polar co-ordinates that this symmetry is related to the conservation of angular momentum. Since it depends on both x and y. t). Let us consider a general function of the co-ordinates. and time. the changes in the co-ordinates and momenta are (see Fig.4) δx = −y δθ. ∂pα δpα = − ∂G δλ.45). momenta.45) that the conserved quantity pψ is the component of J along the axis of the top. ˙ Jz = k · J = I1 ϕ sin2 θ + I3 (ψ + ϕ cos θ) cos θ = pϕ .292 Classical Mechanics corresponding conserved quantity pϕ is the vertical component of J .29) where δλ is an infinitesimal parameter.28) and the conserved quantity J. We define the transformation generated by G to be δqα = ∂G δλ. possess a symmetry under rotations. δ(x2 + y 2 ) = 0 and δ(p2 + p2 ) = 0. The energy is clearly unchanged by rotating the top about its axis. by (9. For example. δpy = px δθ. pψ = J3 = e3 · J.43) and (9. J = xpy − ypx = constant. Then the Hamiltonian is H= p2 + p 2 x y +V 2m x2 + y 2 . δpx = −py δθ.28) Under this transformation. G(q. ˙ ˙ The equation ∂H/∂ψ = 0 expresses the rotational symmetry of the top itself about its own axis. It does. p.

(12.7). ∂x δy = ∂J δλ = x δλ.28). ∂t (12. ∂py ∂J δλ = px δλ.32) A particular example is provided by the transformation (12. The change in F is n δF = α=1 ∂F ∂F δqα + δpα ∂qα ∂pα n = α=1 ∂F ∂G ∂F ∂G − ∂qα ∂pα ∂pα ∂qα δλ.30) If δλ is interpreted as a small time interval. We can now return to the function J. t). G] = α=1 ∂F ∂G ∂F ∂G − ∂qα ∂pα ∂pα ∂qα . We define the Poisson bracket of F and G to be n [F.30) generated by H. ∂px ∂J δλ = −py δλ. δpα = pα δλ. The next problem is to understand why the fact that this transformation represents a symmetry property of the system should lead to a conservation law. appears quite frequently.28).31) Then we can write the change in F under the transformation generated by G in the form δF = [F. involving the derivatives of two functions.29) on some other function F (q. G] δλ. and consider the effect of the transformation (12. This kind of sum. H]. To this end. (12. we see that the transformation generated by the Hamiltonian is ˙ δqα = qα δλ. Thus we have established a connection between J and this transformation (12. ˙ (12. and it is convenient to introduce an abbreviated notation. this represents the time development of the system. The transformation it generates is given by δx = ∂J δλ = −y δλ. The rate of change of F is ∂F dF = + dt ∂t α=1 n ∂F ∂F qα + ˙ pα ˙ ∂qα ∂pα = ∂F + [F. we return to a general function G. ∂y δpx = − δpy = − This is clearly identical to the infinitesimal rotation (12.Hamiltonian Mechanics 293 and (12.33) . p.

F ] = −[F. The condition that H should be unchanged is δH = [H. The number of independent symmetries possessed by a system. and which is generated by a function G. From (12. In particular. If we interchange F and G. constants or integrals of the motion.. If the number of independent conserved quantities for a system. dt (12. if the transformation does not involve the time explicitly.34) This has the important consequence that. The motion is then ordered and ‘regular’. G] δλ = 0. we merely change the sign: [G. . then reciprocally G is unchanged by the transformation generated by F . apart from an arbitrary additive function of t. in addition to the dependence via q and p. By exploiting the conservation laws.36) Thus we have shown that if H is unaltered by a t-independent transformation of this type.33) that dG = [G. and hence the number of conserved quantities. then G may be chosen to contain no explicit t dependence. and the system is termed integrable (in the sense of Liouville — see §14. G]. has a profound effect on the way that the system may behave. the complexity of problems may be reduced progressively. if F is unchanged by the transformation generated by G.e. Hence if ∂G/∂t = 0.29) we see that the generator G is unique.1). H] = 0. is at least equal to the number of degrees of freedom (the number of independent co-ordinates). then the motion may exhibit disorder or ‘chaos’.34) that [G. If there are insufficient conserved quantities to bring this about. Let us suppose that there exists a transformation of the co-ordinates and momenta which leaves the Hamiltonian unaffected. (12. We are now finally in a position to apply this discussion to the case of a symmetry property of the system. then the corresponding generator is conserved. H] = 0 also. we find from (12. i.294 Classical Mechanics The extra term here arises from the fact that we have now allowed F to have an explicit dependence on the parameter t. Now an obvious property of the Poisson bracket is its antisymmetry. independent of q and p. (12. then the reduction may be complete.35) It then follows from the reciprocity relation (12.

2. . H] = 0. A combination of these four types of transformation is the most general transformation which takes one inertial frame into another. dt (12. conservative force problems considered in Chapter 4. and transformations between frames moving with uniform relative velocity (sometimes called boosts). orientation of axes.7 Galilean Transformations To illustrate the ideas of the preceding section. origin in space.37) . and in Problems 12 and 13 at the end of this chapter. and the symmetric top considered in §10. then it is in fact conserved. The formal description of the connection between symmetry properties and invariance is contained in a famous theorem due to Emmy Noether (1918). and investigate the symmetry properties implied by the relativity principle of §1.1. The corresponding symmetry transformations are translations in time. Time translations The changes in r and p in an infinitesimal time δt are generated by the Hamiltonian function H. isolated system of N particles. considered in Problems 15 and 16 of Chapter 10. are examples of integrable systems. equal in each case to the number of degrees of freedom. or standard of rest.34). The restricted three-body problem. 2.3 and §§12. 12. The system has 3N degrees of freedom. dH = 0. We shall consider four distinct symmetry properties. which is certainly true because of (12. N ). 12.3. we shall consider a general. Thus. They are known collectively as Galilean transformations. does not possess such a complete set of conserved quantities. if H contains no explicit time dependence. and may be described by the particle positions r i and momenta pi (i = 1. since they possess respectively two and three conserved quantities. associated with the requirements that there should be no preferred zero of the time scale. . as we showed in §12. We consider them in turn. . spatial translations. The condition for invariance of H under this transformation is [H. and so is not integrable.Hamiltonian Mechanics 295 The central. .4. rotations.

38) The corresponding generator is easily seen to be the total x-component of momentum. δzi = 0. for then. then all components of P are conserved: dP = 0. but not for a system subjected to external forces which determine a preferred origin (for example. When this condition holds. δpyi = 0. Px ] δx = i=1 ∂H δx. a translation in the direction of the unit vector n is generated by the component of the total momentum P in this direction. The condition for H to be invariant under this transformation is N 0 = [H. When the system possesses translational invariance in all directions. δpxi = 0. (12. δzi = 0. a centre of force). δyi = xi δϕ. δpzi = 0. (12. we obtain a conservation law for the x-component of momentum. dPx /dt = 0. n · P .296 Classical Mechanics Spatial translations An infinitesimal translation of the system through a distance δx in the x direction is represented by the transformation δxi = δx. .39) This is physically very reasonable.40) δpxi = −pyi δϕ. More generally. δpyi = pxi δϕ. Rotations An infinitesimal rotation through an angle δϕ about the z-axis yields δxi = −yi δϕ. δpzi = 0. ∂xi It is satisfied if H depends only on the co-ordinate differences xi − xj . N Px = i=1 pxi . We know from our earlier work that momentum is conserved for an isolated system. dt (12. changing each xi by the same amount cannot affect H. δyi = 0.

we have shown that the conservations laws of energy. a much more general validity than the specific assumptions used in their original derivation. momentum. [H. For example. There remains one type of Galilean transformation. . All we have assumed is the existence of the Hamiltonian function. δpi = n ∧ pi δϕ. It is easy to verify that scalar quantities are indeed unchanged by (12. therefore. For example. involving only the squares and scalar products of vectors.Hamiltonian Mechanics 297 The corresponding generator is the z-component of the total angular momentum. or that they are central or conservative. (12. The condition for H to be rotationally symmetric. is satisfied provided that H involves the x and y co-ordinates and momenta only through invariant combinations like xi xj + yi yj . and so dJ = 0. When the Hamiltonian possesses complete rotational symmetry. Jz ] = 0. we have not assumed that the forces in our system are all two-body forces. and the relativity principle. then every component of J is conserved. a rotation through an angle δϕ about an axis in the direction of the unit vector n may be written in the form δr i = n ∧ r i δϕ. and angular momentum are expressions of symmetry properties required by the relativity principle. In general. by the symmetry of the scalar triple product (see (A. which is in some ways rather different from the others. N Jz = i=1 (xi pyi − yi pxi ). dt (12. They have.13)).42) So far. n · J. The Hamiltonian function is invariant under this transformation provided that it is a scalar function of r i and pi .41) It is generated by the appropriate component of the angular momentum.41). δ(r i · r j ) = (δr i ) · rj + ri · (δr j ) = [(n ∧ r i ) · rj + ri · (n ∧ rj )]δϕ = 0.

(12. The fourth of the basic conservation laws. δpxi = mi δv. because of the explicit time-dependence. δyi = 0.33) and (12.298 Classical Mechanics Transformations to moving frames Let us consider the effect of giving our system a small overall velocity δv in the x direction — a small ‘boost’. dt (12. ∂t (12. In fact.34). (12.44) Transformations to frames moving in other directions are generated by appropriate components of this vector.43) This transformation differs from the others we have considered in that t appears explicitly in (12. For. δpyi = 0. H] δλ = ∂G δλ.44). we find δH = [H.45) However. using (12. though not on the choice of origin or axes. The corresponding transformations are δxi = t δv. where M is the total mass.46) Thus the change in H is related to the explicit time-dependence of G. It is clearly the x component of the vector G = P t − M R. G] δλ = −[G. What the relativity principle actually requires is that the equations of motion should be unchanged by the transformation. is dG d = (P t − M R) = 0. for the quantity (12. We must now be careful. this no longer implies the invariance of H. Indeed. and X is the x co-ordinate of the centre of mass. it is no longer true that H must be invariant under (12. δpzi = 0.43). we know that the energy of a system does depend on the choice of reference frame. δzi = 0.47) . dt dt (12. The generator of this transformation is N Gx = i=1 (pxi t − mi xi ) = Px t − M X. It can be shown (see Problem 17) that the condition for this is still dG = 0.43). This generator is also explicitly time-dependent.

We have already seen that V must be a scalar function. is δH = Now. To satisfy (12.43) that N δT = i=1 pxi δv = Px δv. if we write N ∂Gx δv = Px δv. 2mi then we find directly from (12. ∂t (12.49) imposes no further restrictions on the r dependence. and this relation reduces to δV = 0. mi mj . it may be written P −M dR = 0. Thus the change in kinetic energy is exactly what is demanded by (12. it must contain them only through the combinations v ij = pj pi − . the equation is actually quite familiar. (12. the requirement (12. Let us now turn to the question of what this symmetry implies for the form of the Hamiltonian function. since dP /dt = 0. V must contain no explicit dependence on time.48). This relation too is therefore a consequence of the relativity principle. and must involve the particle positions only through the differences r ij = r i − r j . For.49) It is interesting to examine the conditions imposed on V by this requirement. Since these are unaffected by (12. For a transformation in the x direction. the change in H. none of the conditions imposed so far requires it to be independent of the momenta.48) H = T + V.46).49). where T = i=1 p2 i . given by (12. Moreover. dt which is simply the relation (8.43).7) between the total momentum and the centre-of-mass velocity.Hamiltonian Mechanics 299 Though this is an unfamiliar form. However.

it yields a conservation law for a quantity known as the parity. when the Hamiltonian function is independent . They differ from the proper transformations. it does not lead to a conservation law at all.8 Summary The Hamiltonian method is an extremely powerful tool in dealing with complex problems. the equations of motion will have the same form in right-handed and left-handed frames of reference. rather than a pseudoscalar. which has only two possible values ±1. y → y. The laws describing such processes do not have the same form in right-handed and left-handed frames of reference. it was believed that all physical laws were unchanged by reflections. such as rotations. Reflections. Thus the most general form of interaction in an N particle system which is invariant under all Galilean transformations is one described by a ‘potential energy function’ which is an arbitrary scalar function of the relative position vectors and the relative velocity vectors. in quantum mechanics. then the transformation takes us to another right-handed set. like (r i ∧ rj ) · r k . but this is the only new requirement. The condition for the Hamiltonian to be unchanged also under improper co-ordinate transformations is that it should be a true scalar function. In fact. in being discrete rather than continuous — no continuous change can ever take a right-handed set of axes into a left-handed set. but it was then discovered by Wu et al. If this condition is fulfilled. this symmetry does not lead to a conservation law for some continuous variable. we could also consider transformations like reflections (say x → −x. following a theoretical prediction by Lee and Yang. parity There is one other type of co-ordinate transformation which might be mentioned. However. Until 1957. Because of the discontinuous nature of these transformations. in classical mechanics. These are called improper co-ordinate transformations.300 Classical Mechanics which are easily seen to be invariant under (12. In particular. However.43). All those we have considered so far have the property that if we start with a right-handed set of axes. that parity is in fact not conserved in the process of radioactive decay of atomic nuclei. z → z) or inversions (r → −r) which lead from a right-handed set of axes to a left-handed set. which changes sign under inversion. like r i · rj . 12.

In such a case. we have seen that any symmetry property of the system leads to a corresponding conservation law. In relativity. then the corresponding generalized momentum pα is conserved. then the system is ‘integrable’ (in the sense of Liouville) and the conservation laws may then be exploited to produce (in principle) the complete solution to the problem. We have seen that the variables appear in pairs. since the amount of labour involved in solving a complicated problem can be greatly reduced by making full use of all the available symmetries. More generally. Such pairs are called canonically conjugate. The relationship between symmetries and conservation laws also applies to quantum mechanics. but the same principles apply. the number of degrees of freedom is effectively reduced by one. . Find the angle α if the frequency of small oscillations about this circular motion is also ω. and many of the features of our discussion carry over to that case. Show that stable circular motion is possible for any value of r. ω. A particle of mass m slides on the inside of a smooth cone of semivertical angle α. and lead to very similar conservation laws. The relationship between the relativity principle and the familiar con˙ servation laws (including the ‘conservation law’ P = M R) is of the greatest importance for the whole of physics. To each co-ordinate qα there corresponds a momentum pα . If there is a sufficient number of symmetries. but can now be seen as having a far more fundamental role. This can be of great importance in practice. The Hamiltonian function is also of great importance in quantum mechanics. using the distance r from the vertex. This relationship between pairs of variables is of central importance in quantum mechanics. which were originally derived as rather special consequences of Newton’s laws.Hamiltonian Mechanics 301 of some particular co-ordinate qα . and determine the corresponding angular velocity. Problems 1. where there is an ‘uncertainty principle’ according to which it is impossible to measure both members of such a pair simultaneously with arbitrary accuracy. the transformations we consider are slightly different (Lorentz transformations rather than Galilean). It is the basic reason for the universal character of these laws. and the azimuth angle ϕ as generalized co-ordinates. Obtain the Hamiltonian function. whose axis points vertically upwards.

Find the Hamiltonian function for the forced pendulum considered in §10. 3.29). is ignorable. described by the single component Aϕ (ρ. Problem 11. and hence that there are either two roots or none between these points: for every E there are at most two values of θ for which U (θ) = E. and show that it is a second constant of the motion. and verify that it is equal to T + V . Show. z) of the vector . as generalized coordinates. and show that ϕ. To what symmetry does this correspond? 6. On the other end is a mass m. A particle of mass m moves in three dimensions under the action of a central. Determine the frequency of small oscillations about the stable ‘equilibrium’ position when ω 2 > g/l. using the distance x of the first mass beneath the pulley. what operation can be performed on the system without changing its energy?) If the system is released from rest with the spring unextended. *Obtain the Hamiltonian function for the top with freely sliding pivot described in Chapter 10. with three roots in general. A light. Find the Hamiltonian function in terms of spherical polar co-ordinates. show that the equation U (θ) = E can be written as a cubic equation in the variable z = cos θ. and the extension y in the spring. conservative force with potential energy V (r). supported by a spring with spring constant k. but not θ. Show that x is ignorable. To what symmetry property does this correspond? (In other words. 5.4. however. Can you explain this result physically? 7. *Find the Hamiltonian for the pendulum hanging from a trolley described in Chapter 10. that f (z) has the same sign at both z = ±1. a second mass m.302 Classical Mechanics 2. 4. Find the Hamiltonian function.4) has only a single minimum. Express the quantity J 2 = ˙ ˙ m2 r4 (θ2 + sin2 θ ϕ2 ) in terms of the generalized momenta. and beneath it. Show that x is ignorable. starting from the Lagrangian function (10. Find whether the minimum angular velocity required for stable vertical rotation is greater or less than in the case of a fixed pivot. Problem 9. Find the Hamiltonian for a charged particle in electric and magnetic fields in cylindrical polars. find the positions of the particles at any later time. static magnetic field. inextensible string passes over a small pulley and carries a mass 2m on one end. *To prove that the effective potential energy function U (θ) of the symmetric top (see §12. Show that in the case of an axially symmetric. 8.

it is approaching from a great distance with velocity v and impact parameter b. Investigate the stability of one of the Lagrangian ‘equilibrium’ positions off the line of centres by assuming a solution where x − x0 . and that the distance of closest √ 1 approach to the dipole is 2 ( b2 ∓ a2 ± b).) *Find the Hamiltonian for the restricted three-body problem described in Chapter 10. Write down the Lagrangian function in polar co-ordinates rotating with the Larmor angular velocity ωL = −qB/2m (see §5. The motion is confined to the plane perpendicular to B. Problem 12) by a vector potential with the single non-zero component Aϕ = µ0 µ sin θ/4πr2 . y − y0 .) Find also the range of values of b for which the velocity can become purely radial. described (see Appendix A. according as b > a or b < a. px + mωy0 and py − mωx0 are all small quantities proportional to ept . Hence find the Hamiltonian function. (Hint : It may be useful to sketch the effective radial potential energy function. and interpret the conservation law. 10. 9. Show that ϕ is ignorable. 12. (Here qµ is assumed positive. it takes the form H= 1 2m p2 + p2 + ρ z (pϕ − qρAϕ )2 ρ2 . and in a uniform magnetic field B. but with a charge +q at the origin. Describe qualitatively the appearance of the orbits for different values of b.) A particle of mass m and charge q is moving around a fixed point charge −q (qq > 0). Initially. and the distances at which it does so.) Consider a system like that of Problem 9. (Note: Remember that the subscripts ϕ on the generalized momentum pϕ and on the component Aϕ mean different things. Show that v and pϕ are constants of the motion.5). By examining the effective radial potential energy function. Show that the possible values for p are given by p4 + ω 2 p2 + 27M1 M2 ω 4 = 0. whose sign is defined to be that of pϕ .Hamiltonian Mechanics 303 potential. Show that it will continue to move in this plane. find the radius of a stable circular orbit with angular velocity ωL . Problems 15 and 16. where a2 = µ0 qµ/πmv. (Note that Jz is not a constant of the motion. *A particle of mass m and charge q is moving in the equatorial plane z = 0 of a magnetic dipole of moment µ. 11. 4(M1 + M2 )2 . and determine the angular frequency of small oscillations about it. with p constant.

Specifically. The stability condition of Problem 12 is well satisfied for the case of the Sun and Jupiter. ∂ρ ∂z . compute its derivatives. Jy ] = Jz (together with two other relations obtained by cyclic permutation of x. z = 0. *The magnetic field in a particle accelerator is axially symmetric (as in Problem 8). ∂Bρ /∂ρ = 0 also. Indeed.55). for which M1 /M2 = 1047. *To investigate the stability of the motion described in the preceding question. ρ=a. Find for this case the periods of small oscillations about the ‘equilibrium’ points (in the plane of the orbit). z). since Bρ = 0 for all ρ. ˙ and ∂J/∂z = qρBρ . and the fact that. Hence show that a particle of mass m and charge q can move in a circle of any given radius a in the plane z = 0 with angular velocity equal to the cyclotron frequency for the field at that radius (see §5.304 Classical Mechanics and hence that the points are stable provided that the masses M1 and M2 are sufficiently different.40) and (A. What is the relation between ϕ and J? Treat the third term of the Hamiltonian in Problem 8 as an effective potential energy function U (ρ. and write down the ‘equilibrium’ conditions ∂U/∂ρ = ∂U/∂z = 0. given that M1 > M2 show that the minimum possible ratio for stability is slightly less than 25. 13. Defining J = pϕ − qρAϕ . and show that they may be written ∂Bz ∂ 2 U q2 = Bz Bz + ρ ∂ρ2 m ∂ρ ∂2U = 0.z=0 ∂2U q2 ∂Bz =− Bz ρ ∂z 2 m ∂ρ . . 15.86 years. Interpret this result in terms of the transformation of one component generated by another. ρ=a. y.z=0 (Hint : You will need to use the ϕ component of the equation ∇∧B = 0. z) = J 2 /2mρ2 . show that the orbit is stable if 0 < n < 1. show. evaluate the second derivatives of U at ρ = a. using (A. in that case these positions are occupied by the so-called Trojan asteroids. Show that the Poisson brackets of the components of angular momentum are [Jx . 14. 16.2). that ∂J/∂ρ = −qρBz . whose orbital periods are the same as Jupiter’s.) Given that the dependence of Bz on ρ near the equilibrium orbit is described by Bz ∝ (a/ρ)n . 11. and in the plane z = 0 has only a z component.

But since we can always add to G any function of t alone without affecting the transformation it generates.7). Write both sides of this equation in terms of G and use (12. (12. The first set of Hamilton’s equations.Hamiltonian Mechanics 305 17.33) applied both to ∂G/∂pα and to G itself to show that it is equivalent to the condition ∂ ∂pα dG dt = 0. *Show that the condition that Hamilton’s equations remain unchanged under the transformation generated by G is dG/dt = 0 even in the case when G has an explicit time-dependence. this means we can choose it so that dG/dt = 0. Proceed as follows. Thus dG/dt must be a function of t alone. Thus dG/dt is independent of each pα . will be unchanged provided that d (δqα ) = δ dt ∂H ∂pα . Similarly. (12. .6). show that it is independent of each qα . in addition to its dependence via q(t) and p(t). by using the other set of Hamilton’s equations.

306 Classical Mechanics .

if at all. Not only does this new perspective bring out important features of systems which are already familiar. e This approach enables us to move on from the solution of the differential equations for a system having one set of parameters and initial conditions to the consideration of the geometry of all the possible solutions. chemistry and economics. . not only in mechanics. for example. which had its origins in the work of Poincar´. n. for example. 307 . positions and velocities or momenta (as in §12. The ideas are of very wide applicability in many fields. powerful and largely geometrical way. . engineering and applied mathematics. other branches of physics. It should be noted that n is not necessarily the same as the number of degrees of freedom if. [For some systems it is appropriate and useful to observe at discrete time intervals (not necessarily equal). which may be highly nonlinear and accessible by other methods only with difficulty. Differential equations are then replaced by maps — see §14. 2. biology.Chapter 13 Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry In this chapter we will begin to look at continuous dynamical problems in a new. for example. but it also enables us to gain qualitative (and some quantitative) information about systems in which there is complex interaction. the system is mechanical. . which may be represented by functions xi (t) of time t where i = 1. but also in.1 Phase Space and Phase Portraits Many systems have a finite number n of distinct dynamic elements. .1). Here we are dealing with the number of elements which describe the dynamic state and these might therefore include.2 and appendix D.] 13.

spring constants and so on. The idea is that we fix c and consider the solutions of (13. it is useful to do so. constitutes the phase portrait of the system. like masses.1) describing the evolution of the dynamic elements with ‘velocity’ F . The phase space is usually taken to be Euclidean in its geometry.1). It is extremely useful to view (13.1) is then called the phase velocity. by analogy with fluid motion (see Fig. Fig. t).1 . although there are obvious difficulties in graphical representation when n > 3.1) for various different prescribed values of the xi at a particular initial time. dt (13. In practice F usually contains a set c of control parameters which are characteristic of the physical problem. together with the velocity directions upon them. so determining the evolution of these different initial states. While this is not absolutely necessary.308 Classical Mechanics We may denote the state of the system by the vector x(t) and the n equations of motion can be written in vector form ˙ x≡ dx = F (x. The evolutions of a continuous dynamical system pictured in this manner are often described as a flow.1) as the prescription for the way in which the point x evolves with time along trajectories (or orbits) in an n-dimensional space — the phase space of the system. 13. The set of all trajectories in this space for various initial prescribed values of x. 13. The function F in (13.

n−1 = G t. Naturally the interest for this biological application is in x0 ≥ 0. n. Evidently the phase portrait for a particular dynamical system may look very different for different values of the control parameters c in (13. If we have dn−1 x dx dn x . .1) and.1) is not as special as it appears. (13.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 309 It is important to note that the first-order system (13. The equation.2 First-order Systems — the Phase Line (n = 1) Let us consider the logistic differential equation for the dynamic state variable x(t): x≡ ˙ dx = kx − σx2 . . but at the expense of raising by one the dimension of the phase space.3) Here k. . . 13. abrupt changes at particular c are bifurcations or catastrophes. and the system is then said to be autonomous. The importance of this lies in what is called the structural stability of systems. which is due to Verhulst. Simple examples of this technique (for n = 2) will be given below. is a model of population growth (among many other applications) and the general motivation is that the growth rate x/x decreases as the population x(t) increases on account of ˙ overcrowding or lack of resources.1).1]. dt with x(0) = x0 . since any system having higher-order derivatives can be put into this standard form by a suitable change of variables. σ are positive control parameters. . dtn dt dt . it is immediately apparent that any non-autonomous system may be made autonomous through the substitution xn+1 = t. Of course. 2.1) the functions Fi contained within the phase velocity F may not depend explicitly on time. In (13. there is considerable interest in the dynamical transitions which occur in their behaviour at particular parameter values. and recover the form (13. (13. but will concentrate almost exclusively on autonomous systems [cf. . x. also ‘natural systems’ of §10.2) then we may write xi = di−1 x/dti−1 for i = 1. . . for many such systems. We will not be concerned further with this matter here. .

So x(t) ≡ 0 is a repeller . (13.310 Classical Mechanics Now this equation (13.4) and from Fig.4) This solution may be plotted as a function of t as in Fig. The comments detailed above result from interpretation of (13.4).3) in the form (13. Now here we have been fortunate to be able to arrive at the complete solution of (13. results in explosive growth until the overcrowding takes effect and x is attracted towards k/σ.3) by considering the phase space and the phase portrait. 13.2 derived from it. For 0 < x0 < k/σ the ‘sigmoid’ curves obtained represent the way in which the exponential growth (which would be present if σ = 0) is inhibited by overcrowding. then the equilibrium population x(t) ≡ k/σ is said to be asymptotically stable and it is an attractor . however small. 13. the important qualitative behaviour of the solutions is obtainable more directly from (13. However. for x0 > 0.3) is first-order separable and it may be solved explicitly to give x(t) = kx0 .2. [σx0 + (k − σx0 ) exp(−kt)] x(t) ≡ 0. for all x0 > 0. Fig. It is evident from (13. as above. 13. the evolution of x with t is such that x → k/σ.2 .4) and of Fig. in that it is only realizable if x0 = 0. The equilibrium population x(t) ≡ 0 is unstable. Since x → k/σ as t → ∞ in each case. 13. for x0 = 0.2 that. For x0 > k/σ there is steady decay of the population towards the value k/σ. Any positive change in x0 .

13. the complete portrait can be found by testing just a single x value away from the equilibria. Note that this solution of (13.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 311 Example: Phase portrait of the logistic system Find the qualitative features of the logistic system by considering the phase portrait. The phase space is here one-dimensional (a phase line). for example. x = k/σ are found by putting x ≡ 0 in (13. or critical points. very similar to the analysis carried out in. It is important to note ˙ that these equilibria. ˙ (13.3 The above is sufficient argument. From this we see immediately that x = k/σ is an attractor and x = 0 is a repeller. are the only values of x at which x can change sign. since k is positive. by the local behaviour on the phase line near to them and through the strong geometrical requirement that x ˙ cannot change sign at any other value of x. An important point to note here is that for this system and for other such first-order systems the qualitative behaviour is completely determined by the position of the critical points.5) is consistent with our assumption that quadratic terms in ξ could be neglected.2. The other critical point x = 0 may be treated similarly and confirmed as a repeller. If we write x(t) = k/σ + ξ(t). §2. then we find that ˙ ξ = −kξ (13. (See Fig.6) .) In constructing the phase portrait for this example the equilibria x = 0. 13. confirming of course that x = k/σ is an attractor. Fig.3).3. The arrow directions are those of the phase velocity ˙ and.5) to first order in ξ and ξ(t) → 0 exponentially as t → ∞. but with an eye to developments for higher-order systems we can consider a small-amplitude approximation near to each critical point. where ξ(t) is small enough for quadratic terms involving it to be neglected. here. We might consider the equation x = kx − σx2 − f.

3 Second-order Systems — the Phase Plane (n = 2) Again let us proceed by considering a particular and familiar example. x(t) could be the population of fish in a lake and f the rate of fishing this population. 13. the extra control parameter f which has been introduced can be varied and predictions made about the evolution of x from resulting changes in the phase portrait.8) The trajectories of this autonomous system in the (x. In particular. 13. along each trajectory the energy E of the oscillator is . (13. ¨ ω= k/m.312 Classical Mechanics where f represents a positive constant extraction rate. (See Problem 1. Naturally for many biological systems a discrete. (13.10) (13.) The analysis given above will be generalized in following sections to deal with higher-order systems.7) which is in the form (13. Example: Simple harmonic oscillator Determine the phase-space trajectories of the simple harmonic oscillator. ˙ (13. The exact solution is now rather more awkward to obtain and the use of the one-dimensional phase space provides clear advantage. ˙ y = −ω 2 x.4. rather than continuous.) Here.13) may be written x = −ω 2 x. dx x ˙ y which may be solved easily to give ω 2 x2 + y 2 = A2 . For example. with A2 constant.9) The phase portrait is a family of ellipses centred at the origin.2) and which may be converted to the form (13. model is more appropriate [see Appendix D].1) as x = y. (See Fig. The oscillator equation (2. y) phase plane are evidently given by the solutions of dy y ˙ ω2x ≡ =− .

0) is a critical 2 point of the system (13. for which F (x0 . In the case of a general system this may well not be easy. Evidently (x.11) certainly determines the slope of the unique trajectory in the phase plane at each point except at the critical points (x0 . G are suitable functions. y) = (0. or possible. y). y0 ) is an equilibrium solution of the system and trajectories can only intersect at such points and nowhere else. concerns the fate of the system when it is displaced slightly from such a critical point. Each such (x0 . for general small displacements: .9). ˙ where F. The interesting question to ask. Each trajectory is closed and is therefore a periodic orbit. In this case. 13.4 constant and given by E = 1 mA2 . except by numerical computation.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 313 Fig.8) and any small perturbation leads to the system traversing an elliptical trajectory around this equilibrium point. y0 ). ˙ y = G(x. y0 ) = 0 = G(x0 . from the physical point of view. y0 ).12) (13. we were able to find the trajectories by direct integration of (13. It is apparent that the equation G dy = dx F (13. The system could. The general second-order autonomous system with which we are presented is x = F (x. y).

in which case we say it is stable.2 using x = x0 + ξ.314 Classical Mechanics 1. in which ξ. In nearly all cases the correct behaviour of the almost linear system near ξ = 0 = η is given by the behaviour of the linear system which is obtained by neglecting the higher-order terms F1 . Move so as to tend towards (x0 . η η ˙ dt η (13. G1 in the above. but we are dealing with matrices M which are not necessarily symmetric. η=ξ ˙ +η 0 0 Here the partial derivatives are evaluated at the critical point (x0 . y ≡ x = 0 — ˙ hardly a surprising conclusion! The behaviour of the trajectories near to each critical point (x0 . in which case we say the system is asymptotically stable. y0 ) of the linear system may be classified using the eigenvalues λ of M .3. . y) locally. y0 ) in the phase plane can be found by an analysis similar to that introduced in §13. The behaviour near (x0 . η). in each of which ξ. 3. We obtain ˙ ξ=ξ ∂F ∂x ∂G ∂x +η 0 ∂F ∂y ∂G ∂y + F1 (ξ. y0 ) as t → ∞. y). y = y0 + η. Evidently. The simple harmonic oscillator is therefore stable at x = 0. The analysis appears similar to that involved in the calculation of the frequencies of the normal modes in §11. 0 (13. η are constant multiples of eλt . We seek a solution of the linear system which is a linear combination of ‘modes’. y0 ) without necessarily tending towards (x0 . Move increasingly away from (x0 . in which case we say it is unstable. y0 ) and F1 . so that the roots of the quadratic characteristic equation for λ need not be real. 2. In matrix notation. y0 ) as t → ∞.13) + G1 (ξ. η). y0 ) go inwards towards this critical point or go outwards from it. the signs of the real parts of these roots are crucial in determining whether trajectories near to (x0 . these equations are ˙ d ξ ξ ξ ≡ =M + higher-order terms. η are small and we expand functions F (x. G1 are generally quadratic in ξ. Move in an arbitrarily small neighbourhood of (x0 . G(x. η. y0 ).14) and the 2 × 2 Jacobian matrix M has constant entries which are special to each critical point.

Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 315 Details of the classification of critical points in the various cases are given in Appendix C.15) and we find the trajectories are given by 2 1 2 my + V (x) = E. be obtained from exact computational plots. local maxima of V (x) lead to saddles in the phase When the potential V (x) is known the phase portrait may be sketched immediately.5. y=± 2 [E − V (x)]. 13.6.e. since V (x0 ) is positive.12) may be integrated in straightforward fashion to give the curve family f (x. Apart from systems for which (13. m (13. the eigenvalues of M when V (x) is a local minimum are pure imaginary.11) is that we can usually obtain a qualitative picture of the full phase portrait of the system by this means.) Since ⎡ ⎤ 0 1 M = ⎣ V (x0 ) ⎦ − 0 m . 0). We note that the critical point (x0 . m with F =− dV (x) . Similarly. y axes respectively when crossing the curves G(x. The trajectories are constrained in that they cannot intersect elsewhere and they are locally parallel to the x. y) = 0. (See Fig. and (x0 . in the linear and almost linear systems. nearby trajectories form closed curves around it. The fate of particular initial states becomes apparent from the phase portrait. y) = 0. C.16) at equilibria (x0 . if required. y) = constant.) The importance of the local behaviours near critical points of system (13. 0) for the simple harmonic oscillator is a centre. The curves which go directly in and directly out of a critical point are called the stable and unstable manifolds respectively and. they correspond directly and are tangent to one another. 0) is a centre. which is stable. Conservative systems with one degree of freedom For the systems considered in §2. y0 ) = (0. dx (13. (See Appendix C. Detailed quantitative information can. ˙ y= ˙ F .1 we have x = y. there are some special cases of particular interest in mechanics. Fig. F (x. i.

e.2. most trajectories approach the critical point. Fig. but then turn away.5 portrait and these are unstable. 0) are called librations and.1 we can sketch the phase portrait.316 Classical Mechanics Fig. since V (θ) = mgl(1 − cos θ). it is necessary that E < 2mgl for these .1. 13. From the 2π-periodic potential function V (θ) sketched in Fig.) An important physical example is provided by the simple pendulum of §2. C. Example: Simple pendulum Determine the possible types of motion of a simple pendulum by considering the phase portrait. (See Fig. The simple oscillatory motions corresponding to closed orbits around (0. 2.6. 13.) The phase portrait is also 2π-periodic. i. (See Appendix C.

Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 317 Fig. 2. i. Here . either in the positive or negative sense.1) the pendulum makes complete revolutions or rotations. ∂x y=− ˙ ∂U (x. The period of libration motion of the pendulum increases with increasing amplitude and becomes infinite as the phase-plane trajectory corresponds more and more closely to the separatrices from the inside. 0). It should be noted that (13. The trajectories in the phase plane are everywhere perpendicular to the curves U (x.15) in general.6 to occur (E(1) in Fig. they are orthogonal trajectories of the level curves (contours) of U . are Hamiltonian systems with one degree of freedom. ∂y (13. and hence the simple harmonic oscillator and simple pendulum in particular. 13. 2. y) .1) F takes the form −∇U .1). y) = constant.17) so that in (13. If E > 2mgl (E(2) in Fig. y) . For such systems the critical points in the phase plane are either centres or saddles — spirals and nodes do not occur! Gradient systems These systems have equations of the form x=− ˙ ∂U (x.e. (π. 0). In the special case E = 2mgl the trajectory is a separatrix connecting the saddles (−π. and corresponds to motions of the pendulum in which it is vertically above the point of support at t → ±∞.

d are positive constants. For these systems the critical points in the phase plane are nodes and saddles — spirals and centres do not occur.7 and Problem 5. which is deceptively simple. . ˙ (13.4 Prey–Predator.7 13. A physical example of a gradient system is the ‘runoff’ problem of water flowing downhill through surface soil. These equations have been used by Volterra (1926) to model biological populations and by Lotka (1920) to model chemical reactions. They are usually known as the Lotka–Volterra system. An interesting example. 13. ˙ y = −cy + dxy.18) where a. 13. leads to the equations x = ax − bxy. y) and away from local maxima. c. Competing-species Systems and War The general method of analysis in the phase plane introduced in §13.3 finds very wide application.318 Classical Mechanics almost all trajectories tend towards local minima of the function U (x.) Fig. (See Fig. b.

y).Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 319 The biological application is to a simple ecological model of population dynamics.g. with M = ⎣ ad d ⎦.8. rabbits. d are therefore rates of growth. of course. dx x(a − by) which is separable. even of such isolated sets of species. while the predators would die out. disadvantageous to the prey. so that the eigenvalues are imaginary: • d b 0 b √ λ1. 13. That it is such is demonstrated by the realization that (13. The parameters a.20) (13. is.) Naturally. 0 −c We have a saddle with eigenvectors parallel to the x. not this simple. λ2 = −c. (See Fig. decay and competitive efficiency. (13. Example: Lotka–Volterra system Find the critical points and their nature for the Lotka–Volterra system. so that it may be integrated to give f (x. y) ≡ −c ln |x| + dx − a ln |y| + by = constant. Without the interactions the prey would proliferate exponentially in time. • (0. c.19) The phase portrait may be sketched as the set of contours of f (x. the biological interest is confined to the first . y co-ordinate axes.2 = ±i ac. ⎡ ⎤ bc 0 − ⎥ c a ⎢ . foxes) and the terms proportional to xy model the effect of interaction between these species through encounters — advantageous to the predators. y are prey.18) leads to dy y(−c + dx) = . b. predators respectively (e. We have a centre. but the consequences of idealized models prove useful as a basis for more extensive investigations.18): a 0 . The ecology. In the local linear analysis there are two critical points for the system (13. so that the eigenvalues are λ1 = a. 0) with M = The question arises as to whether the centre is a true centre for the full system in this case (see Appendix C and Problem 6). where x.

Similarly x = c/d. However. Small oscillations around the point of stable equilibrium have frequency √ √ ac and period T = 2π/ ac. 13. although an explicit analytic demonstration of this is not easy and will not be given here. a/b).8 quadrant (x ≥ 0. b so that the mean value of y around any periodic orbit is given by the equilibrium value a/b.320 Classical Mechanics Fig. since T 0 x ˙ x T dt = 0 (a − by) dt = ln x(t) T 0 = 0. y ≥ 0) and the trajectories are closed curves around the critical point at (c/d. which increases with the size of the orbit.21) we find that y= ¯ 1 T T y dt = 0 a . (13. ¯ . so confirming the local linear analysis that this is indeed a centre.

20) and it is an ‘energy’.) Here there are two asymptotically stable nodes at (1. in effect. α1 . y) in (13. k2 . but not mechanical energy. This system is certainly not usually Hamiltonian. which are not in phase.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 321 There are ecological consequences of this model in that there are cyclic variations in x.) In the original variables x. y with similarly destructive interactions. ˙ (13. so that the mean populations of prey/predators respectively increase/decrease — the paradoxical advantage to the prey of this extraction is due to the removal of some natural predators. y. for which the parameters have been 1 chosen to be k1 = σ1 = α1 = 1. Nearly all initial 2 conditions lead to extinction for one or other species and this is an example of the ‘Principle of Competitive Exclusion’ [Charles Darwin. of which there may be four. 2). an un1 stable node at (0. and is known as Volterra’s principle. p) = −cp + d ep − aq + b eq . 13. (0. The Origin of Species (1859)]. ˙ y = k2 y − σ2 y 2 − α2 xy. σ1 . ∂p ∂H . and changes in parameter values can be investigated. σ2 . y = eq in order to obtain the Hamilton canonical form q = −c + d ep = ˙ q ∂H . The model has one further interest for us in that it is. (See §12. . α2 are positive control parameters.3)) for each of x. For the first quadrant we may substitute x = ep . H is a conserved quantity. p = a−be = − ˙ ∂q (13. as detailed in Chapter 12. For this autonomous system.23) where k1 . models logistic behaviour (see (13. σ2 = 1 . p) becomes equivalent to f (x. An example of such a portrait is given in Fig.22) where H(q. The effect here of a proportional extraction rate is to reduce a and increase c. For example x = k1 x − σ1 x2 − α1 xy. α2 = 3 . More complicated systems involving interactions are very common and the outcomes are even less intuitively transparent. 0) and a saddle (unstable) at ( 2 .9. but the phase portrait is accessible by the local linear analysis near the critical points. The influence of the parameters is crucial. a Hamiltonian system.2. 0). k2 = 2 . y the function H(q. (See Problem 7 for 4 4 the details. 1 ).

y(t) which are effectively isolated apart from the confrontation between them. . b are positive constants. an extinction is inevitable when k1 σ2 < k2 α1 . On the other hand. ˙ y = −bx. models the attrition rates of each force on the other. k2 σ1 < k1 α2 (so that σ1 σ2 < α1 α2 ). see Problem 7). ˙ (13. peaceful coexistence via an asymptotically stable node in the first quadrant is guaranteed when these inequalities are all reversed (again.322 Classical Mechanics Fig.9 In the general case (13. Determine how the final outcome of a conflict depends on the initial conditions in this model. Example: Combat model The simple system x = −ay.23) and where there is a critical point in the first quadrant. In human conflict there are mathematical theories of war. The simplest such model involves forces x(t). 13.24) where a.

25) where x0 .Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 323 Evidently (0.10 x Of course x ‘wins’ if K < 0 and y ‘wins’ if K > 0.e. 13. i. the general success of the empirical rule ‘Divide and conquer!’ is confirmation of the effect of this simple qualitative law.10). force y as ay0 at t = 0. so the likely outcome becomes clearer and the weaker party may be induced to surrender. 13. These are hyperbolic arcs in general (see Fig. The most damaging conflicts are those that start near the line K = 0 which leads to a ‘draw’ in which both sides are completely annihilated. 2 The measure of fighting effectiveness of e. Through the ages. . y0 are the initial strengths at t = 0. Indeed the trajectories are given by 2 ay 2 − bx2 = ay0 − bx2 ≡ K. 0 (13.g. is Lanchester’s Law of Conventional Combat (1916). since in this case the forces were initially perfectly balanced. quadratic in numerical strength. y K>0 K<0 K = 0 O Fig. One interesting feature is that the trajectories diverge — the discrepancy between the two sides becomes more marked as time progresses. 0) is the only critical point and it is a saddle.

˙ y = −x + y(1 − y 2 ). By reference to the damped oscillator of §2. (c1 .27) in the form x = y. Rayleigh’s equation (1883) x − x(1 − x2 ) + x = 0. y(t) are war potentials/armaments of two nations/coalitions. The sort ˙ ˙ of physical system modelled by this equation is illustrated schematically in Fig. 13. for example the bowing of a violin string. For some systems there are other possibilities.26) y = a 1 x − c2 y + g 2 . ˙ (13. g2 basic grievances. where a block is acted upon by a spring and by a dry frictional force at contact with a belt. has been used to model various selfexcited oscillations. a2 ) are response parameters to the armament of the opponent (note that in contrast to the example above. c2 ) are cost deterrents and g1 . (a1 . We may write Fig.) 13. ˙ Here x(t). ¨ ˙ ˙ (13. these coefficients enter with positive sign).27) has positive or negative damping respectively according as |x| > 1 or |x| < 1.28) .5 it is evident that (13.11.5 Limit Cycles So far we have looked at phase portraits in which the attractors and repellers have been equilibria which are isolated critical points. Richardson (1939) introduced such a model in the form x = a2 y − c1 x + g 1 .27) where is a positive control parameter. 13. ˙ (13. (See Problem 8.324 Classical Mechanics One may also model not the conflict itself but the arms race leading up to it. which is itself moving uniformly.11 (13.

13(a)). 13. . Here liquid is added at a constant rate to the reservoir on the right-hand side and periodically tips the balance.12(a) to a markedly non-symmetrical oscillation in Fig. 13.12. which is an asymptotically stable limit cycle. Other trajectories tend towards this cycle as t → ∞ and the form of the cycle depends crucially on the parameter . Fig. 13. For this type of oscillation. The phase portraits for progressive values are sketched in Fig. However trajectories come inwards from large values of x and y. which is called a relaxation oscillation. There is then a sharp rise and fall in x as t varies (see Fig. As increases.13(b)). the variation of x with time t changes from essentially sinusoidal in Fig. so that the reservoir is emptied suddenly and the cycle can be repeated. 13.12(c). 0) and is always unstable (spiral or node). there is a mechanical analogy in the seesaw mechanism (see Fig. 13. 13.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 325 The only critical point is at (0.12 In each case there is a periodic orbit attractor.

both attractors and repellers. Relaxation oscillations have also been used to model natural phenomena. 13. fortunately and memorably recorded on film. The cycle of torsional oscillations.29) This equation was studied by Van der Pol (1926) in order to model various electrical circuits and in his study of the heartbeat. but it is important to note that some systems exhibit bifurcation phenomena as a control parameter is varied. at least up to its spectacular collapse on 7 November 1940.326 Classical Mechanics Fig.13 There are many mechanical and electrical examples of Rayleigh’s equation and of another which may be derived from it by the substitution √ x = v/ 3.1 we referred to the way in which critical points and phase portraits may have very different character when control parameters are varied. Analytic demonstration of the existence of limit cycles. like geysers and earthquakes. The bridge became known as ‘Galloping Gertie’.5 m in the bridge deck. up to 1. Consider now that the stability of a focus can change as a control parameter c is varied. drew its energy from a constant wind flow across it. in such a way that the system dynamics ‘gives birth’ to a limit cycle. ¨ ˙ (13. A spectacular example of a limit cycle was in the behaviour of the Tacoma Narrows bridge near Seattle. The equation for v is then (see Problem 10) ˙ v − v(1 − v 2 ) + v = 0. This is usually known as a Hopf bifurcation and it is . Hopf bifurcation At the end of §13. is beyond our scope here.

near a subcritical Hopf bifurcation even a small perturbation can take the system outside the repelling limit cycle and then far away in the phase plane. However. 13.) The effect of a supercritical Hopf bifurcation is relatively benign (‘soft’) in that the change results in the system remaining very much in the same neighbourhood of the phase plane when it is subject to a perturbation.) For the subcritical bifurcation an unstable focus becomes asymptotically stable at the critical value of c. For the supercritical bifurcation an asymptotically stable focus becomes unstable at a critical value c0 at which an attracting limit cycle appears. despite the asymptotic stability of the critical point in the linear analysis — the effect is ‘hard’. . 13. The ‘Brusselator’ is a simple model of chemical oscillation proposed by Prigogine and Lefever (1968).14(a).Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 327 Fig. (See Fig.14(b). (See Fig.14 termed supercritical or subcritical respectively according as the resulting limit cycle is an attractor or repeller. 13. at which a repelling limit cycle appears.

b/a). once chosen. are kept constant. −b −a2 In consequence the critical point is asymptotically stable when b < 1+a2 . b = 3). 13.15 1 2 3 4 x Brusselator limit cycle attractor (a = 1.15. at (a. y 4 3 2 1 0 Fig. b are concentrations of other reactants which. ˙ y = bx − x2 y. . ˙ (13. b = 3). y(t) of two particular reactants are related by the equations: x = a − (1 + b)x + x2 y. Find the nature of the attractors for this model. with a. When b > 1 + a2 the critical point is unstable (a spiral or node according as b < or > (1 + a)2 ). 13. There is only one critical point. b both positive.328 Classical Mechanics Example: The ‘Brusselator’ The chemical concentrations x(t). so that the unstable critical point is accompanied by a limitcycle attractor (see Fig. with Jacobian matrix b − 1 a2 . At b = 1 + a2 there is a supercritical Hopf bifurcation. where a = 1.30) Here a.

with principal moments of inertia such that I1 < I2 < I3 . J2 . I3 ω3 ) to obtain ˙ J1 − I2 − I3 I2 I3 J2 J3 = 0 (13. 3.41) in terms of angular momentum components (J1 . while the centres are at the axes of the largest and the smallest moment.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 329 13. for second-order systems. but in this section we will consider third-order systems which exhibit certain properties typical of systems of order higher than second. there may also be limit cycles. choose to express the equations (9. but it is often known as the tennis racquet theorem. In the (J1 . Many higher-order systems are special.8. for first-order systems. of course. the existence of constants of the motion. . I1 I2 I3 (13.16. for example. which were introduced in §9. 13.32) with J. J3 ) phase space each trajectory is then the intersection of two surfaces (see Problem 12) sphere: ellipsoid: 2 2 2 J1 + J2 + J3 = J 2 .) If we take J to be fixed and look at the critical points on the corresponding phase sphere. The first of these relations expresses the constancy of the magnitude of the angular momentum vector J and the second expresses the constancy of the kinetic energy T . Rigid-body rotation Consider the equations of rotational motion of a rigid body. J3 ) ≡ (I1 ω1 . since the saddle-point geometry leading to instability is at the axis of the intermediate principal moment of inertia. there are point attractors and repellers and. for all rigid bodies (from a match-box to a space station). I2 ω2 . for convenience. Some important specific examples of this will be given in Chapter 14 for systems of fourth order and beyond. 2 J2 J2 J1 + 2 + 3 = 2T. through. When the rotation is about the centre of mass and external forces have zero moment we may. 2. in that their dynamical behaviour is effectively lower-dimensional. (See Fig. it is evident that Fig 13. The result holds. T constant.16 confirms the results obtained in §9.31) and two similar equations obtained by cyclic interchange of 1.6 Systems of Third (and Higher) Order We have seen that. J2 .8.

can be very complicated. there is similar symmetry in the phase space. when the external force moment G is not special.17. 13.330 Classical Mechanics Fig. Relative to axes fixed in space J is itself fixed and the angular velocity vector ω precesses around J in the way described in §9. for example.e.9. as in §9.) In this case J3 is constant so that J3 = I3 Ω (say). J2 of angular momentum are simple harmonic with frequency [(I3 − I1 )/I1 ]Ω. Some of the complexity which may result is indicated by the following examples of other physical systems. Hence the precession rate for the Chandler wobble of the Earth is about Ω (i. while the precession rate is about 1 Ω for a 2 spun pass with an American football and about 2Ω for a spun coin. ω2 (I3 /I1 )Ω. once per day). 13. while the components J1 .16 When there is axial symmetry of the rigid body. with principal moments of inertia such that I1 = I2 < I3 .9. discus or dinner plate! The problem of rotational motion. In Ω then this precession rate is given approximately by the case ω1 . although it is of course an important one for many feedback control problems in. (See Fig. . the aerospace industry.

• ρ quantifies the temperature difference applied across the slab of fluid. ˙ (13. ρ. β are positive control parameters. 13. . 13. is an important system which was originally put forward by Lorenz in 1963 to provide a very simple and idealized model of convection in a slab of fluid. The parameters have the following physical meaning. see Lorenz. ˙ z = −βz + xy.18.33) where σ. after scaling: • σ quantifies the ratio of diffusion rates of momentum and heat in the fluid (σ ≡ kinematic viscosity/thermal conductivity).17 The Lorenz system The system of equations x = σ(y − x).) For a general discussion of the origins of this system. (See Fig. ˙ y = ρx − y − xz. • β quantifies the slab geometry through an aspect ratio. The aim was to gain insight into the dynamics of weather systems. The Essence of Chaos. UCL Press (1993).Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 331 Fig.

P3 ≡ ± β(ρ − 1). 13. z) phase space can be summarized as follows (see Problem 14): • 0 < ρ < 1: The origin P1 ≡ (0. We can find the critical points of the system and examine their local character through the methods of §13.332 Classical Mechanics Fig.3 and Appendix C. • 1 < ρ: The origin P1 is now unstable and two new critical points appear.18 Despite its geophysical origin the system (13. (ρ − 1) .33) and its wide range of behaviours have been the subject of extensive study. z) phase space. P2 .19(a)). β fixed and with a sequence of different values of ρ. 0. 0) is the only critical point of the system. with regard to stable and unstable manifolds according to the sign of real eigenvalues. When σ. and it is a point attractor. * 1 < ρ < ρcrit = (σ − β − 1) . so that there are three eigenvalues. It can be shown that when: σ(σ + β + 3) in the practical case σ > β + 1. 13. It is instructive (from both a practical and a theoretical point of view) to look at the (x. for example in the study of lasers.33) in the (x. say with σ. ± β(ρ − 1). β are indeed fixed the behaviour of the system (13. suitably extended. still apply. However the characteristic equation is now a cubic. This corresponds physically to the case of no motion and steady heat conduction across the slab (see Fig. although the general principles. y. y. particularly because the system finds application in other physical contexts.

19(b)). P3 are negative real or have negative real part. This corresponds physically to steady convection rolls in either of the two senses (see Fig. such that for ρ < ρ there ¯ ¯ is a highly disordered motion. so that a single point attractor does not exist.34) everywhere.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 333 all the eigenvalues in the analysis of P2 . (See §12. P3 can be shown to be via a subcritical Hopf bifurcation. it turns out that there is a value ρ. P2 . In fact the loss of asymptotic stability of P2 . since ˙ ∇·x= ∂x ∂y ∂z ˙ ˙ ˙ + + = −(σ + 1 + β) < 0 ∂x ∂y ∂z (13. Trajectories in the phase space tend asymptotically towards a structure which is multi-leaved on a hierarchy of scales (a ‘fractal ’) and . so that P2 .) In fact. P2 . which means that the phase-space volume elements are reduced ˙ progressively in volume by the flow x. * ρcrit < ρ. P3 and there should be an attractor. the points P1 . 13. 13. P3 are point attractors. Fig.5 and relation (A. P3 are all unstable.19 We can show that trajectories are attracted towards a bounded region containing the points P1 .24). which corresponds physically to turbulent convection.

(Lecture Notes in Mathematics. Springer 1977)] For the particular values of σ. However. and a fractal geometric structure. The Rikitake two-disc dynamo In order to model irregular reversals of the Earth’s magnetic field Rikitake put forward (in Proceedings of the Cambridge Philosophical Society. 114.06. on account of its peculiar properties. 13. β = 8 and ρ = 28. 3 Fig. Evidently in a (here) ¯ small range ρ < ρ < ρcrit there are actually three attractors — two points ¯ (steady convection) and one strange (turbulent convection). This is called a chaotic or strange attractor.7). The strange attractor has zero phase-space volume on account of (13. states which are close initially are stretched out along the attractor exponentially with time. 615.334 Classical Mechanics looped around the unstable critical points P2 . Fig 13. 89– .34) above. β chosen here a strange attractor of this general type is found to occur when ρ > ρ = 24. so that ρcrit = 24. The latter property is characteristic of chaotic systems and there is more discussion of this property in the following section (§13. In practice each of these will have its own basin of attraction of states attracted to it. 54.20 Lorenz attractor [Lanford. so that the attractor which is observed to occur depends on the initial state of the system. P3 . (See for example.74).20 in which σ = 10.

35) where Y ≡ Y1 = Y2 + A and A. µk 2). the current in each disc feeds the coil of the other. Y2 are scaled rotation rates of the discs.) Fig. which are driven by a constant external torque. the apparent centre behaviour associated with the pure imaginary pair of eigenvalues is here not carried through for the full system. X2 .21. Then the equations may be written ˙ X1 = Y X2 − µX1 . µ are control parameters.22) mimic the field reversals of the Earth’s magnetic field which are known. For this system there are two critical points in the (X1 . ±i k 2 + 1/k 2 . of course. at (±k. 1958) a system containing two identical coupled disc dynamos which does mimic this type of behaviour. 13. with µ positive.) Although the three eigenvalues in the local linear approximation are −2µ. ˙ Y = 1 − X 1 X2 . (13. no suggestion that the two-disc dynamo provides other than an interesting analogy for features of the magnetohydrodynamic . to have occurred at irregular intervals during more than the last 160 million years. ±1/k.21 If X1 . from the interpretation of geological records. The critical points correspond to senses of North/South magnetic polarity and the irregular reversals which are associated with this model (see Fig. Y ) phase space. (See Fig.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 335 105. 13. There is. X2 are scaled currents and Y1 . (See Problem 15. ˙ X2 = (Y − A)X1 − µX2 . where A = µ(k 2 − 1/k 2 ). 13.

Ω are control parameters.36) where m. l. Y ) plane of a trajectory in phase space for µ = 1. 68. ω = −Aω − sin θ + B cos φ.1 and §13. Ω are changed.22 Projection on the (X2 .37) where A. K = 2 [Cook and Roberts (Proceedings of the Cambridge Philosophical Society.3 is subjected to damping and forcing we may write the equation of motion in the form ¨ ˙ mlθ + λθ + mg sin θ = F cos Ωt. The forced damped pendulum If the simple pendulum of §2. through the sin θ. ˙ ˙ φ = Ω. 13. (13. . so that we study the equivalent third-order autonomous system ˙ θ = ω. The nonlinearity of this system. B. B. 547–569. λ. F. This equation may be scaled suitably. makes for a very rich variety of behaviour as A.336 Classical Mechanics Fig. Ω are control parameters. 1970)] motions in the Earth’s core — it is a ‘toy’ system. cos φ terms. (13. g.

13. on average. whose trajectories remain in a bounded region and do not intersect one another. for example. This behaviour is not typical and. 13. Fig. states which are initially close. (See Fig. 13. but systems have to be ‘special’ in order to be effectively reducible to lower order via. y0 ).23 Now.and higher-order continuous systems. in this special case. typically. if the system is the simple harmonic oscillator (see §13. move apart at a rate which is at most essentially uniform.) Q ≡ (x0 + ∆x0 . if Fig.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 337 The variety of behaviours instanced in this whole section is common for third.23 . 13. constants of the motion. Systems need to be of at least third order if they are to exhibit chaotic behaviour.3) then.23. y0 + ∆y0 ). If we examine a dynamical system with closed trajectories in phase space. we can examine the evolution of two neighbouring initial states P ≡ (x0 . the period along each closed orbit is the same and it can be shown that the (‘Pythagorean’) distance in phase space between P and Q remains bounded in time. In the line and plane.7 Sensitivity to Initial Conditions and Predictability An important consequence of the effective order of a dynamical system is in the way that the resulting dimension of the phase space can restrict the evolution along trajectories of states which may be initially close together.

(See Fig. in general. it should be evident that different orbits have different periods. For this.) Fig. the distance between P and Q increases broadly linearly with time.24. leading to a set of Lyapunov exponents. (See Fig. in such a way that the distance d in phase space between them increases with time. 13. which is equal to the dimension of the phase space. as measured along the orbit. A useful analogy is to consider runners travelling at slightly different rates in neighbouring lanes of a running track (see Problems 16.and higher-dimensional phase spaces the neighbouring trajectories can diverge exponentially from one another within a bounded region. 13. without crossing one another. The parameter λ in the exponent is called a Lyapunov exponent . When a typical small volume of initial states in phase space is considered. libration motions of a simple pendulum. The strong divergence is called sensitivity to initial conditions and it is the prime property which identifies the irregular behaviour now called chaos. Each of the positive exponents leads to a corresponding strong divergence of initial states. 13. In three. like eλt . They can do this by wrapping over and under one another in a complex tangle. for example. We can evidently test flows in phase space for this divergence property.338 Classical Mechanics is taken to represent. 17). on average. . it is evident that dynamical evolution will result.) This geometrical behaviour is central to the ‘strangeness’ of a strange attractor to which we referred in §13.20 and Fig. which may still have a layered structure. the more typical situation. There will be a number of principal deformations. The states which are initially close move apart. in stretching and squeezing of this volume. with λ positive.

in this world view. can have an essentially stochastic (‘random’) output. (See Problem 18. The Laplacian point of view identifies the initial state of a system as the cause. However the typical outcome for the resulting distribution of shot along the channels at the base is.33). A direct attack is made on the long-standing philosophical idea of determinism and on the concept of a ‘clockwork universe’. is impossible to predict. from which (if it is known precisely) the effects may be calculated with infinite precision indefinitely far into the future. except on a very short time scale. if not most. which has experienced an explosive growth in application. A good illustration of this apparent paradox is provided by the Galton board (see Fig. leads to a loss of predictability. This comes about because the e inevitable imprecision in the initial description of even a classical system. no room for chance or free will. which falls through such an array of pins.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 339 The effect on the global behaviour of dynamical systems produced by sensitivity to initial conditions is often called the butterfly effect . The consequences for all dynamical systems and for the real situations they model are immense. leads later to a vastly greater imprecision in its predicted fate. The sensitivity to initial conditions. where the mechanisms may be known completely and precisely.) . The path of an individual piece of lead shot. The point he was making is that chaotic regimes in weather systems can render predictions of them utterly useless. The term ‘butterfly effect’ has become a much used metaphor for describing chaos. There is. which was first put forward by Lorenz in an address to the American Association for the Advancement of Science in December 1972 — ‘Predictability: Does the flap of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil set off a tornado in Texas?’ — printed in his book The Essence of Chaos referred to above in the description of the Lorenz system (13. systems and is made very apparent by the geometrical approach pioneered by Poincar´.25) where small spheres of lead shot fall through a regular array of scattering pins. 13. because of the sensitivity of the collisions at individual pins. In this way predictability of the fate of an individual piece of lead shot gives way to a collective predictability for many pieces in the form of chance. however small this may be. It is in this way that deterministic systems. which is typical of many. so that outcomes can be predicted only as a matter of probability. very like the normal probability distribution. or into the past. in this case.

8 Summary The analysis of the geometry of dynamical systems in phase space is a very powerful way of investigating their behaviour for all possible initial conditions.340 Classical Mechanics Fig. for the latter. the divergence will be essentially exponential and this leads to a breakdown of predictability. so that there is a corresponding change in the phase portraits and in the behaviour of the system. For a strange attractor.25 13. This has profound implications for our view . the character of critical points and limit cycles may change. As control parameters are varied. 13. In systems of third (or higher) order additional attractors may arise which can have a fractal and sensitive structure — strange (chaotic) attractors. limit cycles. at most. The consequence is that deterministic systems can produce effectively stochastic output. The dynamics is dependent crucially on attractors and on their stability. in systems of third or higher order. For systems which are dynamically one-dimensional or two-dimensional the only attractors are critical points (equilibria) in the phase line and the phase plane and. In the phase plane the system trajectories are constrained such that the divergence of initial states takes place essentially at a uniform rate.

whose displace2 ment x(t) satisfies x + µx + ω0 x = 0. 4.Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry 341 of physical and other dynamical systems. The population x(t) of fish in a pond is a function of time t and when the fish are removed at a constant rate f the function x(t) satisfies equation (13. Show that the phase trajectories are given by m0 c2 / 1 − y 2 /c2 + 1 kx2 = constant 2 and sketch the phase portrait for this system. of which only one is asymptotically stable. y). [Hint : Use the 1 substitution u = tan 4 {θ − (2n + 1)π}. where n is an integer. in the phase plane (x. Show that on the separatrices θ(t) = (2n + 1)π ± 4 arctan[exp(ωt + α)]. where ¨ ˙ . Problems 1.6). (b) If the fish population is initially in stable equilibrium (with f = 0 ¯ and fishing commences at a rate f > f . The relativistic equivalent of the simple harmonic oscillator equation for a spring with constant k and a rest mass m0 attached is d dt m0 y 1 − y 2 /c2 + kx = 0 with x = y. Why would it not be prudent to fish at a rate f which is only just less ¯ than f? ¨ 2. show that x → 0 and in a finite time t0 (which need not be found explicitly!).] 3. ¯ ¯ (a) Show that there is a critical fishing rate f such that for f < f there are two equilibrium fish populations. Draw the phase portrait of the damped linear oscillator. ˙ where c is the speed of light. For the pendulum equation θ + (g/l) sin θ = 0 find the equations of the trajectories in the phase plane and sketch the phase portrait of the system. α = constant and ω = g/l. it can also be expected to affect the relationship between classical physics and its quantum counterpart.


Classical Mechanics

y = x. Distinguish the cases ˙ (a) under- (or light) damping (b) over-damping (c) critical damping 0 < µ < 2ω0 , µ > 2ω0 , µ = 2ω0 .

5. Consider the gradient system (13.17) in the case U (x, y) = x2 (x−1)2 +y 2 . Find the critical points and their character. Sketch the phase portrait for the system. 6. For the Lotka–Volterra system (13.18) show that the trajectories in the phase plane are given by f (x, y) = constant as in (13.20). In the first quadrant x ≥ 0, y ≥ 0, the intersections of a line y = constant with a trajectory are given by −c ln x + dx = constant. Hence show that there are 0, 1 or 2 such intersections, so that the equilibrium point (c/d, a/b) fore this system is a true centre (i.e. it cannot be a spiral point). Using the substitution x = ep , y = eq , show that the system takes on the Hamiltonian canonical form (13.22). 7. Consider the ‘competing species’ system (13.23). For the case k1 = 1 σ1 = α1 = 1, k2 = 2 , σ2 = 1 , α2 = 3 find the critical points and their 4 4 character in order to confirm all the features of Fig. 13.9. What happens in the case k1 = 1, σ1 = 2, α1 = 1 , k2 = 3, σ2 = 2, α2 = 4? 2 8. For the Arms-Race model system (13.26) with all parameters positive show that there is an asymptotically stable coexistence or a runaway escalation according as c1 c2 > a1 a2 or c1 c2 < a1 a2 . 9. *A simple model for the dynamics of malaria due to Ross (1911) and Macdonald (1952) is x = abM y(1 − x) − rx, ˙ N y = ax(1 − y) − µy, ˙ where: x, y are the infected proportions of the human host, female mosquito populations, N, M are the numerical sizes of the human, female mosquito populations, a is the biting rate by a single mosquito, b is the proportion of infected bites that result in infection, r, µ are per capita rates of recovery, mortality for humans, mosquitoes, respectively. Show that the disease can maintain itself within these populations or

Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry


must die out according as R= M a2 b > 1 or < 1. N µr

10. Show that Rayleigh’s equation in the form (13.28) has a single critical point at (0, 0) and that this is always unstable. Making use of substitu√ tion x = v/ 3 show that v satisfies the Van der Pol equation (13.29). ˙ 11. Show that the origin is the only critical point for the system x = −y + αx(β − x2 − y 2 ), ˙ y = x + αy(β − x2 − y 2 ), ˙ where α, β are real parameters, with α fixed and positive and β allowed to take different values. Show that the character of the critical point and the existence of a limit cycle depend on the parameter β, so that the system undergoes a supercritical Hopf bifurcation at β = 0. (Hint : Make the change from Cartesian co-ordinates to plane polars.) 12. *For the rotation of a rigid body about its centre of mass with zero torque the equations for the angular momentum components J1 , J2 , J3 are given by (13.31).
2 2 2 (a) Show that J1 + J2 + J3 = J 2 (constant), so that the angular momentum J must lie on a sphere in (J1 , J2 , J3 ) phase space. (b) When I1 < I2 < I3 show that there are six critical points on this phase sphere and show that, in local expansion, four of these are centres and two are saddles. (Hence the tennis racquet theorem of §13.6.) (c) Show that when I1 = I2 = I3 then J3 is constant (≡ I3 Ω) and that J1 , J2 are simple harmonic (with frequency [|I3 − I1 |/I1 ]Ω). (d) A space station with I1 < I2 < I3 is executing a tumbling motion with ω1 , ω2 , ω3 nonzero. It is to be stabilized by reducing ω to 0 with an applied torque −|µ|ω, with µ constant, so that the righthand side of (13.31) becomes −|µ|ω1 , etc. About which of its axes does the space station tend to be spinning as ω → 0?

13. *The simple SIR model equations for the transmission of a disease are ˙ S = −aSI, ˙ I = aSI − bI, ˙ R = bI,


Classical Mechanics

where S(t), I(t), R(t) are respectively susceptibles, infectives, removed/recovered and a, b are positive constants. (a) Show that the overall population N = S +I +R remains constant, so that we may consider (S, I) in a projected phase plane. Hence show that a trajectory with initial values (S0 , I0 ) has equation I(S) = I0 + S0 − S + (b/a) ln(S/S0 ). (b) Using the function I(S) show that an epidemic can occur only if the number of susceptibles S0 in the population exceeds the threshold level b/a and that the disease stops spreading through lack of infectives rather than through lack of susceptibles. (c) For the trajectory which corresponds to S0 = (b/a) + δ, I0 = with δ, small and positive, show that, to a good approximation, there are (b/a) − δ susceptibles who escape infection [the Kermack– McKendrick theorem of epidemiology (1926/27)]. 14. *Consider the Lorenz system (13.33). (a) Show that the origin P1 (0, 0, 0) is a critical point and that its stability depends on eigenvalues λ satisfying the cubic (λ + β)[λ2 + (σ + 1)λ + σ(1 − ρ)] = 0. Hence show that P1 is asymptotically stable only when 0 < ρ < 1. (b) Show that there are two further critical points P2 , P3 ≡ [± β(ρ − 1), ± β(ρ − 1), (ρ − 1)],

when ρ > 1, and that their stability depends on eigenvalues λ satisfying the cubic λ3 + λ2 (σ + β + 1) + λβ(σ + ρ) + 2σβ(ρ − 1) = 0. (c) Show that when ρ = 1 the roots of the cubic in (b) are 0, −β, −(1+σ) and that in order for the roots to have the form −µ, ±iν (with µ, ν real) we must have ρ = ρcrit = σ(σ + β + 3) > 0. (σ − β − 1)

(d) By considering how the roots of the cubic in (b) change continuously with ρ (with (σ, β kept constant), show that P2 , P3 are asymptotically stable for 1 < ρ < ρcrit and unstable for ρ > ρcrit .

Dynamical Systems and Their Geometry


(e) Show that if z = z − ρ − σ, then ¯
1 2

d 2 1 (x + y 2 + z 2 ) = −σx2 − y 2 − β[¯ + 2 (ρ + σ)]2 + 4 β(ρ + σ)2 , ¯ z 1 dt

¯ so that (x2 + y 2 + z 2 )1/2 decreases for all states outside any sphere which contains a particular ellipsoid (implying the existence of an attractor). 15. *For the Rikitake dynamo system (13.35): (a) Show that there are two real critical points at (±k, ±1/k, µk 2) in the (X1 , X2 , Y ) phase space, where k is given by A = µ(k 2 − 1/k 2 ). (b) Show that the stability of these critical points is determined by eigenvalues λ satisfying the cubic (λ + 2µ) λ2 + k 2 + 1 k2 = 0,

so that the points are not asymptotically stable in this approximation. (For the full system they are actually unstable.) (c) Show that the divergence of the phase-space flow velocity is negative, so that the flow causes volume to contract. ¯ √ (d) Given that Y = 2(Y − A/2), show that
1 2

√ ¯ d 2 2 2 ¯ (X 2 + X2 + Y 2 ) = −µ(X1 + X2 ) + 2Y dt 1

and use this result to determine in which region of the space the trajectories all have a positive inward component towards X1 = 2 2 ¯ ¯ X2 = Y = 0 on surfaces X1 + X2 + Y 2 = constant. 16. For the simple harmonic oscillator system (13.8) we may solve for the equation of the trajectory which passes through x(x0 , y0 , t), y(x0 , y0 , t). If we now consider perturbations ∆x0 , ∆y0 in the initial data (x0 , y0 ) at t = 0, find the resulting changes ∆x, ∆y in x, y and show that they remain bounded in time, so that the Pythagorean distance d ≡ (∆x)2 + (∆y)2 then remains bounded. 17. *In contrast to Problem 16, consider the perfectly elastic bouncing of a ball vertically under gravity above the plane x = 0. We have x = y, y = ˙ ˙ −g and we can solve for x(x0 , y0 , t), y(x0 , y0 , t) in terms of the initial data (x0 , y0 ) at t = 0. Show that in this case the resulting perturbations ∆x, ∆y essentially grow linearly with time t along the trajectory when we make perturbations ∆x0 , ∆y0 in the initial data. That is to say the


Classical Mechanics

distance along the trajectory d ≡ (∆x)2 + (∆y)2 ∼ κt when t is large and κ is a suitable constant. 18. For the Galton board of Fig. 13.25 we may arrange things so that each piece of lead shot has an equal chance of rebounding just to the left or to the right at each direct encounter with a scattering pin at each level. Show that the probabilities of each piece of shot passing between the pins along a particular row n are then given by n ( 1 )n where the binomial r 2 coefficient n = n!/[(n − r)!r!] and r = 0, 1, . . . , n. Use the result r n n+1 n r+1 = r + r+1 to generate the probability distribution for row n = 16. (For large numbers of pieces of shot and large n the distribution of shot in the collection compartments approximates the standard normal error curve y = k exp(−x2 /2s2 ) where k, s are constants.)

Chapter 14

Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems

In this chapter we consider the geometrical aspects of the particular class of dynamical systems which have the Hamiltonian structure described in Chapter 12. The dynamics of these systems depends crucially on the number of symmetries which they possess, leading to conserved quantities. It will become apparent that the larger the number of symmetries the greater is the restriction in the freedom of a trajectory in the corresponding phase space and the more ordered is the motion. In contrast a deficit in the number of such symmetries allows the development of irregularity, or chaos, in the evolution of states along the system trajectories. 14.1 Integrability

In §12.6 we discussed the direct relation between symmetries and conservation laws, indicating that conserved quantities (constants of motion) may be used to reduce progressively the effective order of a system. If there are enough symmetries and independent conserved quantities, then the reduction may be complete, in that it leads to the full solution of the system of equations (‘integrability’). For a system with n degrees of freedom the Hamiltonian H may depend on the co-ordinates q1 , . . . , qn , momenta p1 , . . . , pn and on time t. While there is no unique definition of integrability, it turns out that, for the complete solution to be obtainable via a sequence of integrations, we need n independent functions Fi (i = 1, . . . , n) of the same variables, which are themselves constants of the motion. That is to say, we require the same number of symmetries as there are degrees of freedom in the system and the system is then said to be ‘integrable (in the sense of Liouville)’. If there is not such a full set of n conserved quantities then the system is said to be non-integrable.


Classical Mechanics

Recalling (12.33), dFi ∂Fi = + [Fi , H] = 0. dt ∂t (14.1)

We will confine our discussion here to autonomous systems, for which H and other Fi have no explicit dependence on t, and we then have n Poisson-bracket relations [Fi , H] = 0 from (14.1). Of course H itself can be taken as one of the functions Fi and the invariance of H corresponds to symmetry with respect to time translation. An additional technical condition required of the Fi is that for each pair of them we require [Fi , Fj ] = 0 for i, j = 1, . . . n. (14.2)

The functions Fi are then said to be in involution. Each of the n functions Fi = constant confines a particular trajectory to a (2n−1)-dimensional subspace of the full 2n-dimensional phase space of the system. So the complete set of these restrictions confines a trajectory to the n-dimensional intersection M of these subspaces. That this is a strong dimensional restriction on the way that a trajectory can move in the full phase space is indicated by Table 14.1.
Table 14.1 Number of degrees of freedom Dimension of: phase space surface Fi = constant M 1 2 1 1 2 4 3 2 3 6 5 3 n 2n 2n − 1 n

Naturally the values of co-ordinates and momenta at a given initial time determine the n values of the Fi constants and hence pick out the particular M to which the trajectory having these initial values is then confined for all time. Now at each point on a particular (2n − 1)-dimensional surface Fi = constant, the normal to the surface is in the direction given by the 2ncomponent gradient vector (∇q Fi , ∇p Fi ). (See §A.5.) The Poisson-bracket relation (14.2) is a scalar-product relation and it expresses the orthogonality conditions between members of a set of n vector fields v j = (∇p Fj , −∇q Fj ), j = 1, . . . , n and the above gradient vector. It is apparent therefore that the vector fields v j at a particular point in the phase space are all parallel to the surface M which contains that point. The

Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems


fields v j allow us to define a co-ordinate grid continuously over the surface M and without any singularity. The topology of M is then necessarily that of a torus — an n-dimensional ‘ring doughnut’ embedded within the full 2n-dimensional phase space. For a system of one degree of freedom each M is a 1-torus F1 ≡ H = constant, i.e. a one dimensional loop in the two-dimensional phase space. (See Fig. 14.1(a).) Evidently v 1 here is tangent to the curve at each point of M . For different values of F1 we obtain different loops M , members of a set of ‘nested’ tori, as for example in Fig. 13.4. For a system of two degrees of freedom each M is a 2-torus, i.e. a two-dimensional ‘ring doughnut’ surface embedded in the four-dimensional phase space. (See Fig. 14.1(b).) In this case we can take v 1 , v 2 everywhere parallel to distinct loops which can parametrize the surface. It is the case that M cannot have, for example, the topology of a sphere, because all v 1 , v 2 parametrizations of such a surface are necessarily singular, at least somewhere. In Fig. 14.1(c) the attempt to use a grid of lines of latitude and longitude is singular at the poles. That all such attempts for a sphere are bound to be singular is a consequence of the ‘hairy ball theorem’ of topology; this theorem also implies, among other things, the existence of at least one crown parting in the combing of a head of hair, and that a spherical magnetic bottle must leak!

Fig. 14.1

The n-tori for an integrable system of n degrees of freedom in its 2ndimensional phase space are often called invariant tori because a trajectory (orbit) which is initially on one of them (M ) remains on it for ever. Different initial conditions then lead to tori which are nested within the phase space.


Classical Mechanics

On a particular torus M the separate vector fields correspond to n independent types of linking circuit (see Fig. 14.1(a),(b)), and the integrable motion is then exactly equivalent to the combination of n separate corresponding periodic motions, one for each type of linking circuit. Each of these periodic motions of an integrable system is a nonlinear normal mode, similar to those detailed in §11.3, but now with an analysis which is exact — no approximation has been made for small oscillations. This makes integrability a very special property. The separate normal modes have associated natural frequencies ω i , i = 1, . . . , n on a particular torus M and any trajectory on M has n associated natural periods 2π/ωi . The trajectory is then said to be multiply periodic. If the trajectory on M is closed (see Fig. 14.2(a)) then it does not fill M and is exactly periodic. For closure it is required that the frequencies of the the modes are rationally related, i.e. ωi /ωj is rational for all i, j. This degeneracy is the exception rather than the usual case, so that closure is a special property. If the trajectory on M is not closed, because of irrational ωi /ωj , then typically the trajectory covers M densely eventually (see Fig. 14.2(b)) — we have quasiperiodicity and the trajectory is said to be ergodic on M .

Fig. 14.2

Two important examples are given by: Example: Double harmonic oscillator and central force motion Find suitable independent constants F1 , F2 for (a) the double harmonic oscillator, (b) central force motion.

F2 and so they reside on different tori. since then [Fi . H] = 0. Here we may take F1 . (b) Central-force motion was discussed in Chapter 4. When a full complement of constants of the motion does not exist. in general. F2 to be any pair of H. so that the distance between the states increases essentially linearly with time t. just as for the discussion of the libration motions of a simple pendulum in §13. The oscillator describes an ellipse with centre at the origin and the frequencies of radial and transverse motions are related by ωr = 2ωθ . so that [Fi . H2 .3 all bounded trajectories are closed. leading to the familiar Lissajous figures. The Hamiltonian takes the form (12. H] = 0.3) above.8) and we can take F1 = H. H1 .2 Surfaces of Section If we consider two dynamical states which are initially close in the phase space of an integrable system.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 351 Are trajectories closed? (a) For the double harmonic oscillator we have H= 1 2 2 2 2 2 (p + p2 ) + 1 m(ω1 q1 + ω2 q2 ) ≡ H1 + H2 2 2 2m 1 (14. For the inverse square law attractive force of §4. then trajectories have much less restriction on their room to manoeuvre and sensitivity to initial .3) with H1 . have different values of F1 . The frequencies are ω1 . H2 the Hamiltonians for the two separate oscillators. So. there is for an integrable system no exponential divergence of states with time and no sensitivity to initial conditions — the motion is ordered. For the isotropic harmonic oscillator of §4.1 we can take ω1 = ω2 in (14. The evolution of these states along their respective trajectories takes place with slightly different frequencies.7. ω2 and this evidently leads to closed trajectories (periodicity) only when ω1 /ω2 is rational. That the isotropic harmonic oscillator and the inverse square law of attraction are the only such force laws for which all bounded orbits are closed is known as Bertrand’s theorem. so that all trajectories are closed. F2 = pθ . They are ellipses in general. so that we have a system which is not integrable. they do. with the centre of force at a focus and ωr = ωθ . 14.

3 When we map different (q1 . If we look at a particular trajectory of the system and identify the points at which this intersects the section (in the same sense) then the dynamics induces a map of the section to itself. Fig. e For integrable systems we may take a section through the nested tori of §14. In Fig.7. q2 . If e we consider an autonomous system with two degrees of freedom. 14. p1 ) points using different trajectories we develop a Poincar´ return map of the section to itself. and this may or may not be planar according to convenience. as indicated in §13. The successive points P are twisted around the curve C. A method of detecting these ordered and chaotic behaviours was put forward by Poincar´ and involves the concept of a surface of section. then P2 .1. 14. with three-dimensional surfaces of constant ‘energy’ (H = constant). p1 ) plane successively. p1 . For two degrees of freedom the section through a 2-torus (ring doughnut) is a closed curve C (see Fig.352 Classical Mechanics conditions is certain in at least some regions of the phase space — there is then inevitably chaotic behaviour.4) and a particular point P0 on this curve is mapped successively by the trajectory through it to P1 . then we can consider taking a ‘slice’ through the space. and so on. however.1) then we have a periodic motion and the map has the property that after N steps. 14. for some integer N . so that we have a four-dimensional phase space. If the trajectory is closed (see §14. it carries P0 back to P0 .3 we have H(q1 . If the motion is only quasiperiodic. p2 ) = constant and we have chosen a section q2 = 0 (with p2 > 0) to demonstrate how a trajectory maps points in the (q1 . there is no such .

) . For systems which are not integrable the full torus structure does not exist. For two degrees of freedom we expect the system to explore the full three-dimensional ‘energy’ surface.g. It should be noted that the Poincar´ return map for a Hamiltonian e system can be shown to be area-preserving. This property is related to Liouville’s theorem. The section return map is then generally two-dimensional and is not confined to points and lines. although it is not derivable from it. respectively. (There is some reference to the properties of discrete maps in Appendix D. When these effects are combined with a folding of trajectories. When the dynamics involves dissipation the equal-area property is replaced by area reduction at each iteration of the map — this would be the case e. treated in §12.4 exact repetition and the successive points P eventually fill the whole curve C. Integrable systems are characterized by a finite set of discrete points or by curve-filling in the surface of section. 14. the map induced by a particular dynamical system typically involves stretching and squeezing of finite and infinitesimal area elements.5. Despite the equal-area property.7) whose effects balance.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 353 Fig. associated with.6 — and here the effect of a negative Lyapunov exponent overcomes the effect of one which is positive. it is clear that the divergence of neighbouring trajectories leading to the sensitivity to initial conditions of chaos can then typically occur. For systems which are not Hamiltonian the concept of a Poincar´ return e map for a surface of section is still useful. for the Lorenz system of §13. positive and negative Lyapunov exponents (see §13. necessitated by confinement to a bounded region of phase space. Systems which are non-integrable are characterized by area-filling in the surface of section.

Table 14. . 14.2 Old description (qi . . .2). For integrable systems there is a natural set of co-ordinates and momenta which is particularly convenient and useful. .3 Action/Angle Variables Quite often the initial choice of variables qi . 14. so that a suitable choice for I is derived from the area within the corresponding trajectory in . . representing libration motions. apparent that the new momenta Ij are all constants of the motion and that the evolution of each φj is given by φj = ωj t+βj . βj are constants. Evidently the angle variables evolve at a uniform rate. • the new momenta Ii are functions of the Fi .354 Classical Mechanics 14.5(a).3). . We recall that these systems have n distinct constants of the motion (Fi = constant) and we can transform to a new set of co-ordinates φi and momenta Ii . . in such a way that • the Hamiltonian form of the equations of motion is preserved.) We need to choose the action I to be a suitable function of H. For such an autonomous system we have H = constant (‘energy’) closed trajectories in the phase plane. of course. pi (i = 1. . such that the phase plane in the new description is as given in Fig. let us consider how the change of variables may be effected for a system of one degree of freedom (n = 1). pi ) (i = 1. . n) K(Ij ) ≡ H ∂K ˙ ≡ ωj (Ii ) φj = ∂Ij ∂K ˙ =0 Ij = − ∂φj It is. . n) used to describe a system of n degrees of freedom may not be the best. (See Fig.5(b). For a suitable choice the φi are angle variables and the Ii are the corresponding canonically conjugate action variables (see Table 14. pi ) ∂H qi = ˙ ∂pi ∂H pi = − ˙ ∂qi New description (φj . where ωj . Although these are general results. I) preserves areas. Ij ) (j = 1. . For Hamilton’s equations to be preserved in form it is necessary that the change of variables (q. p) → (φ. • the new co-ordinates φi are all ignorable (as in §12. . n) H(qi .

∆I in H.5) It also follows from the preservation of area that the defining relation for φ is given by φ= ∂ ∂I q 0 p dq ≡ ω ∂ ∂H q p dq.2) ω(I) = ∂H ∂K ≡ . (14. (14. (See Fig. where R = 2I in order to maintain the preservation of area property. 14.8) .5(a).7) 2m[H − V (q)] and √ 1 2 2m I= p dq = 2π 2π q2 q1 H − V (q) dq. ∂I ∂I (14.5(c).1 and §13.5 the (q. 14.) For the oscillator problems of §2. 2m (14. I respectively. 14. p) phase plane by I= 1 2π p dq. and the natural frequency of the system for the corresponding trajectory is then given by (see Table 14. Naturally I depends directly on H. 14.5(a). The ‘angle’ nature of the φ variable can be emphasized by a further change of variables √ to polars (R. p) = so that p = ± p2 + V (q) = E.4) as indicated by the equality of the shaded areas //// in Fig.3 we have H(q.6) again as indicated by the equality of the shaded areas \\\\ in Fig.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 355 Fig.(b). φ).(b) for small changes ∆H. 0 (14.

) Fig. 14. where ω0 = k/m. (14.6 For the simple harmonic oscillator we have action ≡ energy/frequency. so that 2 I = H/ω0 . . 2mω0 ∂ ∂I q 0 q (14.9) 2H/k and since p dq is the area within an ellipse with semi-axes √ 2mH.356 Classical Mechanics Example: Simple harmonic oscillator Find action/angle variables for the simple harmonic oscillator.12) 0 = mω0 = arcsin q ≡ ω0 t + β.11) p dq = 0 2mω0 I − kmq 2 dq dq 2mω0 I − kmq 2 mω0 2I (14. (See Fig. Here V (q) = 1 kq 2 .10) p2 + kmq 2 .6. 14. Evidently ω= and action I= with the angle variable φ= ∂ ∂I q ∂H = ω0 ∂I (here) (14.

Fig. the original variables q. The elastic bouncer For a perfectly elastic ball bouncing normally between two walls (see Fig. So we have the following: Central force motion (See Chapter 4. p variables. The method may be extended to deal with rotations. 14.) . and to deal with systems which have two or more degrees of freedom. which we will not consider further here.7 The results are hardly very surprising for these two cases. Here the ac2 √ tion I = 2mH L/π so that ω = π 2 I/mL2 ≡ πv/L and the period of this ‘oscillation’ is τ = 2π/ω = 2L/v (of course).Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 357 Of course. but the method provides a powerful means of obtaining the frequency (and so the period) of a general nonlinear libration oscillation.7) the Hamiltonian is H = p2 /2m ≡ E = 1 mv 2 . p can be found in terms of φ. I in the form q= 2I sin φ.13) These relations. 14. mω0 p= 2mω0 I cos φ. together with the linear evolution of φ with time give the evolution of the original q. (14.

since the semi-major axis a of the elliptical orbit of negative energy E is given by a = −|k|/2E (as in (4. so that the orbits are closed. In fact this is just Kepler’s third law of planetary motion (4.14) with constants of the motion F1 = H. τ (14. −H (14.32).16) Show that in this case the nonlinear normal mode frequencies are the same. 2(I1 + I2 )2 (14. 2m pr dr = 2π √ p2 θ H− − V (r) dr. We can then calculate the action variables as I2 = 1 2π pθ dθ = pθ . (See §14.) where τ is the period.358 Classical Mechanics We may write the Hamiltonian in plane polars in the form H= p2 p2 r θ + + V (r) ≡ E. by design.1.17) The Hamiltonian depends only on the action variables.30)). The natural frequencies for this system are then given by ω1 = ω2 = mk 2 m ≡ (I1 + I2 )3 |k| − 2E m 3/2 ≡ 2π . which leads to orbital closure. 2mr2 (14.15) 1 I1 = 2π Example: Inverse square law For the inverse square attractive force law V (r) = −|k|/r (see §4. .18) Note that important results for this system have been obtained without explicit calculation of the form of the angle variables: • The equality of the natural frequencies of the radial and transverse modes of oscillation.3 and Problem 9) we obtain I1 = −I2 + |k| 2 2m . and the corresponding angle variables are ignorable. F2 = pθ . 2m 2mr2 (14. Evidently H=E=− mk 2 .

so that it cannot exhibit the property of sensitivity to initial conditions characteristic of chaos. Orbital motion — n-body problem In §§14. By making use of conservation of energy and conservation of angular momentum we can reduce the order to eight. We may reduce this to order twelve by making use of the conservation of linear momentum. However the three-body problem is. is integrable. Again the system must also then have fewer symmetries (leading to conservation laws) than are required to give integrability and order.) Less intuitively apparent is that the motion of a particle in a plane under the inverse square law of attraction to two fixed centres may also be integrated. By further device and restricting our consideration to motions which are planar. was the strong motivation for Poincar´ e in his general considerations for dynamical systems.1.5. (See §7.4 Some Hamiltonian Systems which Exhibit Chaos We have seen in Chapter 13 and in previous sections of this current chapter that a system must have at least two degrees of freedom in order to have a phase space of large enough dimension to exhibit any chaotic behaviour. even when it is restricted (as in Chapter 10.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 359 • The relation between the period of oscillation and the energy E of a bound orbit. Problem 15). Even after all these reductions the problem is still extremely complicated and has kept mathematicians busy for several hundred years. A further important property of the action variables will be indicated later in §14.2 we indicated that the central force problem of Chapter 4. the order can be reduced to four. with a fixed centre of force and two degrees of freedom. Problem 15). This is the best that can be done in general. together with the extension to more bodies. in general. This is also true for the two-body problem in the centre-of-mass frame. 14. The three-body problem has nine degrees of freedom and so gives rise to a system of differential equations of order eighteen. not integrable. this problem. In the frame of . As an indication we can consider the equations of the planar circular restricted three-body problem (Chapter 10. by going to centre-of-mass co-ordinates. i.2.e. 14.

19) This system can be expressed in Hamiltonian form with two degrees of freedom and there is only a single conserved quantity. so that 2 (x2 + y 2 ) + V is a constant. the motion with given initial conditions is restricted by the curves of zero velocity at which x = 0 = y.e. ˙ ˙ (See Problem 12 of this Chapter. Problem 12) there are also motions which are highly chaotic. i. 14. The primaries . M2 about their centre of mass (see Fig. r1 r2 (14. 14. While there are some stable equilibria for this system (depending on the mass ratio M1 /M2 .) Interest in the restricted problem reflects the hierarchical nature of our Solar System and an increasing interest in space missions. which is known as the Jacobi integral. see Chapter 12. the Hamiltonian 1 ˙ ˙ itself. However. the equations for the third (small mass m) body can Fig. GM1 GM2 − .8 be written in the form x − 2ω y = − ¨ ˙ ∂V ∂x ∂V .8).360 Classical Mechanics reference rotating with the primary masses M1 . y + 2ω x = − ¨ ˙ ∂y with V = − 1 ω 2 (x2 + y 2 ) − 2 and r1 = (x + a1 )2 + y 2 . r2 = (x − a2 )2 + y 2 .

Problem 16 are apparent in these applications — as sites for orbiting observatories and as staging points for more extended missions by NASA and ESA. m3 has a relative equilibrium (with the masses not in a straight line) if and only if the triangle formed by the masses is equilateral and find the rotation rate Ω.20) (14. together with Gm1 m2 (r 2 − r1 ) Gm1 m3 (r 3 − r 1 ) + = −m1 Ω2 r1 . m2 . The five relative equilibria referred to in Chapter 10.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 361 are variously Sun–Jupiter (Chapter 12. 3 3 r12 r31 (14. Fig.9 Note that the origin in this figure is at the centre of mass. Then we have m1 r 1 + m2 r 2 + m3 r3 = 0. It is apparent that the masses remain in a plane. Example: Three-body problem Show that the three-body problem with three general masses m1 . Problem 13). The Lagrangian equilateral triangle rotating in its plane about its centre of mass is actually a relative equilibrium for the three-body problem with general masses. Earth–Moon (Problem 12) and so on.21) . 14.

particularly on account of close two-body encounters in their evolution. and by substitution we obtain Ω2 = G(m1 + m2 + m3 )/a3 . which then leads to r12 = r31 = a (say). typically. the system will separate. it is exact and extensive searches have uncovered further exotic n-body solutions. Of course the similar equations give r23 = a also. so that the Kepler inverse square law force of attraction towards the origin (having full rotational symmetry about all three axes) is supplemented by a Hooke attraction towards the B field axis (having rotational symmetry only about this axis). 2000). leading to the Larmor precession of the Kepler elliptical orbit around the magnetic field vector. As a result the Hamiltonian system is not integrable — it is.21) we obtain a relation αr 2 + βr 3 = 0 where α. stability of this configuration is quite another matter — in general it is surely unstable and. 2m r (14. m3 . in effect.22) Here the constant B field defines the z axis and ρ2 = r2 − z 2 . While this solution is extremely special. we must have α = β = 0. r 3 are by hypothesis not parallel. 881–901. visiting in turn each of the Euler three-body straight-line equilibria with one mass at the mid-point of the line joining the other two (see Chenciner and Montgomery. a ‘many-body’ Hamiltonian and exhibits chaos. The search for exact periodic solutions of the three-body problem has resulted in an astonishing solution for the case of three equal masses — the masses follow one another round a ‘figure of eight’ in a plane. Annals of Mathematics. In general the vast majority of n-body systems are chaotic. We assumed there that the magnetic field was sufficiently weak for the quadratic term in B to be neglected. β are scalars.5 as an example of rotating frames of reference we considered the effect of a magnetic field B on a charged particle moving in an orbit around a fixed charge. This broken symme- . Since r 2 . If the weak magnetic field approximation is not made. 152. From (14. Charged particle in a magnetic field In §5. then the equation of motion of the moving charge can be written relative to the frame which rotates about the magnetic field with the Larmor frequency in terms of the Hamiltonian H= |k1 | 1 p2 − + 2 |k2 |ρ2 .20) and (14. Naturally.362 Classical Mechanics and two similar equations for m2 .

pivoted at a point on its axis of symmetry. Physics Reports.12. More complicated systems abound when the equations of rotational motion of an asymmetric body are considered.10 . We assume motion in a straight line between collisions with the wall.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 363 try of e.8 with general torques G. simple reflection at each bounce and no dissipation. pϕ . various asymmetric ‘tops’ appear to exhibit ordered and chaotic motion regimes and this is common for systems which are modelled by the Euler equations of §9. 37–79. 14.10) and bouncing perfectly on the wall. 1981) we can consider the motion of a point ‘ball’ moving within a closed boundary (see Fig.3 and in §§12. so that it is non-holonomic.g. The problem has three degrees of freedom and there are three independent conserved quantities H. For example. so that the system is integrable and the motions detailed are regular and ordered. 2. The ball follows a path just like that of a light ray with a boundary wall which is a perfect mirror.e. pψ . 14. we assume that the Hamiltonian is H = p2 /2m within the enclosure. 1989). i. or where the system involves rolling motion. Billiard systems After Berry (European Journal of Physics. 91–102. the classical hydrogen atom is complex. 183.3. Friedrich and Wintgen.g.4 we indicated the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian descriptions of the symmetric top. Fig. but very important in its implications for the quantum mechanical treatment of the same problem (see e. Tops In §10.

(b) typical orbit (never closing).11). with dynamics depending particularly on the shape of the enclosure.12) there is in each case another conserved quantity leading to integrability and order. pn+1 ) which preserves area and leads to a Poincar´ section for the dynamics — the slice through the overall dynamical e space is the (non-planar) boundary shape. |p|. For motion in a planar region of this kind the system has two degrees of freedom and H is a constant of the motion. 14. elliptical (see Fig. Show that there is a second conserved quantity (independent of H) for the circular billiard. where s is the distance measured along the boundary and p = cos α. (Note that p here is not the magnitude of the linear momentum. circular (see Fig. p. The dynamics can be examined using natural canonical variables. 14. (c) two closed orbits. Example: Circular billiard Fig.) This leads to a successive bounce map (sn .364 Classical Mechanics Despite its apparent simplicity. (d) phase-space trajectories for orbits in (b) and (c). s. . pn ) → (sn+1 . this system turns out to be very rich and instructive. where α is the angle of incidence (and reflection) at the wall. For some special enclosure shapes e.11 Billiards in a circle: (a) basic orbit geometry. 14.g.

12 Orbits in an ellipse: (a) repeatedly touching a confocal ellipse.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 365 Evidently the billiard trajectory for a circular enclosure is a succession of chords.) Fig. 14. Note that when a chord meets the circular boundary the angle α between it and the tangent to the circle is the same at each bounce — the bounce map for a particular trajectory therefore consists of a finite number of points or a line (each at p = cos α) according as the trajectory is closed or is not closed. For the elliptical enclosure the second conserved quantity is the product of the angular momenta of the ball measured about the two foci of the ellipse. So the angular momentum of the ball about the centre √ (= a 2mH p. (c) ellipse billiard mapping. where a is the radius and p = cos α) remains constant through successive bounces at the boundary. (b) repeatedly touching confocal hyperbolae. . (See Problem 10. The angular momentum is the second conserved quantity and is evidently independent of the Hamiltonian H. each at the same perpendicular distance from the centre of the circle.

When the shape of the boundary is not so special.) Billiard systems with various different properties have been used to model other types of physical behaviour. For each of these types of system the effects of small changes in physical geometry can be large in the statistical properties of the outcomes (see §13. the bounce map has regions in which there is area filling.366 Classical Mechanics In these cases the bounce map (Poincar´ section) is made up of points e and lines characteristic of integrability. so that for typical shapes the motion can be highly chaotic.e. Whereas billiards (see above) involve a regular object bouncing on an irregular boundary. (See Fig. when moving and rotating through space.13. Dice and coins The motion when dice and coins are thrown is regular when there are no external torques.7). i. Fig. whether any dissipation which may be present is very small or if it is such as to lead to rapid energy decay. as well as regions where ordered motion predominates. leading to chaos. 14. 14. dice (and coins) are a sort of ‘dual’ in that they are irregular objects bouncing on a regular surface. without any air resistance. there are impulsive forces which act at each bounce. However. .13 Oval billiard mapping: 25 orbits followed through 200 bounces.

2m(1 + µ) 2mr2 with µ = M/m. in general. 895–903. each 1% change in this geometric measure leads to a 3. m connected by a light inextensible string which passes over a small pulley and through a small hole in a smooth vertical plane. British Association for the Advancement of Science. 1984) and has been the subject of various subsequent papers. (14. when a regular cubical die is subject to a small change ∆ in aspect ratio (away from 1 for the perfect cube). In the case µ > 1 we can show that the motion of m is always bounded by a curve of zero velocity (p = 0).4% change. Abbott and Griffiths (American Journal of Physics. in the probabilities associated with the faces displayed.23) and the motion is not. approximately. 14. (See . which consists of two masses M. The string is such that collisions of masses with pulley or hole can be discounted. so that the mass m can rotate in this plane. The swinging Atwood’s machine A simple physical system which exhibits a variety of dynamical behaviours is the swinging Atwood’s machine. 1985). a change modelled locally by √ ∆2 2/π(4 2/3 − 3) (Berkshire. (See Fig.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 367 For example. 52. The Hamiltonian for the system is H= p2 p2 r θ + + mgr(µ − cos θ).14. integrable. which is an ellipse whose shape depends on the mass ratio µ and on the energy H. 14.14 This system was introduced first by Tufillaro. since H is usually the only constant of the motion.) Fig.

It is certainly not yet clear what ‘physical’ property is represented by this ‘hidden symmetry’. In that special case. y 2m x (14. e. pθ . Under these circumstances the system dynamics can show all the features of sensitivity to initial conditions and loss of predictability indicated in §13. the Hamiltonian itself. in general. We ˙ ˙ θ note that while J is also quadratic in the momenta pr .g. 1964) in order to model the motion of a star in a galaxy which has a simple smoothed-out gravitational potential to represent the attraction of the other stars.7. 73–79. with the analogy of a small ball rolling under gravity in an asymmetric bowl. r = pr /4m. pr = (p2 /mr3 ) − mg(3 − cos θ). When µ = 3 the motion is completely ordered. 14. The system is integrable in the case µ = 3 and apparently only for this particular value of the mass ratio. For all other mass ratio values there are at least pockets of highly irregular and chaotic motion. This system. it is independent of the Hamiltonian H. bounded for any energy and eventually the mass M passes over the pulley. pθ = −mgr sin θ. The H´non–Heiles system e From the previous examples it should be apparent that a paradigm of chaotic dynamics is provided by a Hamiltonian system with two degrees of freedom which has only one conserved quantity. there is a second conserved quantity given by J= pθ 4m pr cos θ θ 2pθ − sin 2 r 2 + mgr2 sin θ θ cos2 . ˙ ˙ θ ˙ = pθ /mr2 .15) so that its Hamiltonian is H= where V = 1 (x2 + y 2 ) + x2 y − 1 y 3 2 3 ≡ 1 r2 + 1 r3 sin 3θ 2 3 1 2 (p + p2 ) + V (x. 69.24) From Hamilton’s equations. one can show by brute force that J = 0. .368 Classical Mechanics Problem 11. As a final example consider the motion of a particle of unit mass in a two-dimensional asymmetric potential well (see Fig. was introduced by H´non and Heiles (Astronomical e Journal.) When µ ≤ 1 the motion is not. 2 2 (14.25) in plane polars. y).

but . on a scale of many basic oscillation periods. provided that the change of parameters is made slowly enough.1.g.2. while I stays as near constant as we want. consisting as it does of a combination of normal modes as obtained by the methods of Chapter 11. The change of parameters is then said to be carried out adiabatically and the action variables are then called adiabatic invariants. i. e For small energies the cubic terms in V are insignificant when compared with the quadratic terms and in that limit the motion is integrable. Of course the motion for small energies is just that of the isotropic oscillator of §4.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 369 Fig. 14. Now a general proof of this property is beyond our scope here. For larger energies corresponding to larger displacements away from the potential minimum at the origin the motion becomes highly irregular.5 Slow Change of Parameters — Adiabatic Invariance Let us suppose that in a cyclic system (librating or rotating) we allow some of the control parameters to change on a very long time scale. so let us consider by way of illustration the simple harmonic oscillator of §2. 0). There are very similar consequences for many other such systems. when we now allow θ.15 H´non–Heiles potential contours of V near the local minimum at (0. 14.1. the double pendulum system of §11.e. e. ϕ not to be restricted to be small. in the sense that we can change the parameters by as large an amount as we may want. Then it emerges that the change in an action I is then also very slow.

That is to say x + [ω(t)]2 x = 0. ω dt ω (14. Over a single period (during which ω does not change appreciably) we may write x(t) = a cos[ω(t)t − θ]. where ω/ω ˙ ω. This is. be brought about by a spring constant k which varies on a time scale which is very long compared with the natural period τ = 2π/ω. so that e.31) 1 τ τ 0 (14. ¨ (14. Particular physical applications are very common and valuable conclusions can be drawn about the variations of other variables on the assumption of the applicability of the principle of adiabatic invariance.26) with ω = k/m. The variation in ω could. ˙x ˙ ˙ ˙ By averaging over a period of the oscillation. The energy of the oscillation is 1 ˙ E = 2 m(x2 + ω 2 x2 ) ≡ 1 mω 2 a2 . and this now changes with time at the slow rate ˙ E = m(x¨ + ω 2 xx + ω ωx2 ) = mω ωx2 . (See (14.g.28) essentially. as in (2. our measure of the action I of this oscillator.29) E dτ = (14. for example. ≡ ω We obtain immediately d dt E ω = ω ˙ 1 d E − 2 E = 0.) For more general systems the demonstration is carried out via the definition (14.20). . 2 (14.30) so that E /ω is essentially constant.370 Classical Mechanics now with a frequency which is slowly-varying. Example: Pendulum with slowly varying length Find how the amplitude of (small) oscillation of a simple pendulum changes as the length is varied slowly. of course.27) (14.4) of the action variable. E = E (above) we obtain d E = mω ω x2 = 1 mω ωa2 ˙ ˙ 2 dt ω ˙ E .9).

on the assumption that the change in l is effected sufficiently slowly. Attractive central force problem with varying strength Evidently the force of attraction. obtain the relationship that pressure ∝ (density)5/3 for adiabatic change. then the principle of adiabatic invariance tells us that L H should be essentially constant. e. although this is not usually a simple pendulum and politeness may well rule out the necessary long time scale for consumption! However.3 we considered a perfectly elastic ball bouncing √ normally between two walls and the action I for that case was found to be 2mH L/π where m. We then need only put x = lθ in the above analysis of the simple harmonic oscillator. together with ω = g/l.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 371 We can consider the simple pendulum of §2. and we can simplify considerably by confining ourselves to small oscillations. so that v ∝ 1/L and energy H ∝ 1/L2 (see Problem 14). A practical problem to contemplate when considering this matter is the consumption of a piece of spaghetti. a long time. maximum acceleration of the pendulum bob change as l is changed. (14. We can note here that we can model a monatomic gas with elastic molecules bouncing in a cubical box and. In this case the action I is given by 1 I = E/ω = 2 mωa2 = 1m 2 gl3 (θmax )2 . H can change by orders of magnitude.32) since a = lθmax here. of the Sun. would diminish as its mass decreases over what is. displacement. the mass and energy of the ball and L is the distance between the walls.g. but now with length l(t) changing slowly with time. If the walls are now moved either towards or away from one another very slowly√ (‘adiabatically’). particularly with regard to the dangers of spaghetti sauce! The elastic bouncer In §14. respectively. The assumption that I is invariant leads to θmax ∝ l−3/4 (see Problem 13) and we can find from this how the energy. the general principle is the same. while the action I remains essentially constant. It has also been suggested . Again it should be noted that v.1. under reasonable assumptions. H are. possibly by orders of magnitude. for us.

but it turns out that the only real difficulty with the perturbation expansions (as power series in ) is associated with attempting to expand near where the basic frequency ω0 of the unperturbed system H0 is zero. we can ask what happens for a system which is not itself integrable. (See Problem 16.6 Near-integrable Systems When we have a system which is Hamiltonian with H = H0 (q. where I2 is an exact invariant and I1 can be taken now as an adiabatic invariant.) The adiabatic invariance of the action variables has enormous importance in the transition to quantum mechanics. In either case we can look to the action/angle formulation in §14. the period and the semimajor axis of the Kepler elliptical orbit of a planet both increase (as we might expect).372 Classical Mechanics by Dirac that the gravitational ‘constant’ may. The expansions for the n = 1 case contain denominators ω0 . although they generally work well elsewhere. A simple remedy would seem to suggest itself strongly — avoid separatrices! For systems with at least two degrees of freedom (n ≥ 2) the perturbation analysis seems to be plagued by a similar difficulty. when the foundations of quantum mechanics were being laid. change on a long time scale. The perturbation expansions break down in this neighbourhood. but which is close by. When there is only one degree of freedom (n = 1) there is a welldeveloped perturbation theory. As a consequence we can show. makes the action variables the prime candidates for quantization. 14. but much worse in implication. but that (rather unexpectedly) the eccentricity of the orbit remains constant and the orbit retains its shape. so that its dynamics are regular and ordered. An example of this is provided by the simple pendulum and the libration/rotation orbits which are situated close to the separatrices (at which ω0 = 0). That is to say this latter system has Hamiltonian H = H0 + H1 where is very small. We won’t detail this here. The pendulum with slow variation in length was a discussion problem for Lorentz and Einstein in 1911.3. . in the classical formulation as control parameters are changed very slowly. in fact. p) and integrable. which allows us to find out how the action/angle variables for the H0 system are changed by the perturbation H1 . The effective constancy of the action variables by the principle of adiabatic invariance. as the strength |k| of the attracting force decreases. in particular. that.

is the phase space torus structure itself preserved. by the following: • Rational approximation. would cause the torus structure of an integrable system to collapse irretrievably. in that some of the normal frequencies have rational ratios. but the trouble is that. but all such efforts seemed doomed to failure. • Fractals. Key roles are played in the theory. It seemed that the slightest perturbation.e.1) about which we are trying to expand our series solution. although distorted. Very elaborate methods have been developed in an attempt to patch up the expansions in the general case. Fig. because the torus breakdown grows with the perturbation around the resonant (ω 0 with rational ratios) tori. This work has led to an explosion of research. These are ‘self-similar’ structures in maps. as long as the perturbation introduced to a smooth system is itself smooth enough. in Poincar´ e sections (like e. This is usually called the problem of small denominators and it seems to imply that. This is important. only if the perturbation H1 to our Hamiltonian H0 is such that H = H0 + H1 is still integrable through the preservation of a sufficient number of conserved quantities. we can apparently make choices of N components in order to make ω 0 · N as close as we might (not) like to zero — thus destroying the usefulness of our expansion. which involved about twenty years of endeavour. Now when this denominator is actually zero we have a degeneracy (or resonance). Properties of maps are explored briefly in Appendix D. i. however small. Arnol’d and Moser (KAM) in work originating between 1954 and 1963. KAM showed that. even for ω 0 not exactly resonant in this manner. . 14.13) and in full phase space. then the torus destruction with a perturbed system is progressive as the size of the perturbation increases. This is bad enough.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 373 so that the expansions become non-uniformly valid near ω0 ∼ 0.g. results and applications. That this is not in fact the case was demonstrated by Kolmogorov. Especially noteworthy is a tour de force by Delaunay for the Sun–Earth–Moon system (‘lunar theory’) undertaken in the middle of the nineteenth century. and with convergent perturbation expansions. and its consequences. This means the closeness by which real numbers can be approximated by rationals. For the = n ≥ 2 case we find in the expansions denominators like ω 0 · N where the lattice vector N has integer components and ω 0 is the vector of normal frequencies of the particular torus (see §14.

To the big question ‘Is the Solar System stable?’. The Solar System is an n-body problem. the theory provides the answer ‘a (definite) maybe’. . so that the effect of e. leading to ‘extreme sensitivity to initial conditions’ (see §13. planet/planet interactions is of lower order than the planet/Sun interactions which produce Kepler ellipses. which has motivated a lot of work in Mechanics. to be reassuring apart from the possibility of asteroid impact — in practice the fate of the whole Solar System is actually rather likely to be determined largely by dissipative and other non-gravitational forces.7) and to chaotic behaviour. so that in an idealized system we might not be able to tell from (necessarily) imprecise observations quite what regime we are in! However we should find the hierarchical nature of our system.g. • Lack of predictability. with a strong central Sun. 14.7 Summary In this chapter the importance of the number of symmetries of a Hamiltonian system (leading to conservation laws) has been shown in the restrictions they impose on the freedom of the system trajectories in the appropriate phase space. Integrability of the system leads to a natural formulation in terms of action/angle variables. The action variables are effectively constant when system control parameters are changed very slowly. Examples have been given of simple/important Hamiltonian systems which have regimes which exhibit chaos and a resulting breakdown of predictability. so that we lose knowledge of the connection between cause and effect. i. We have effectively stochastic output resulting even from strictly deterministic systems. which is markedly hierarchical. possibly by orders of magnitude on these long time scales.374 Classical Mechanics • Divergence of trajectories. which has non-intuitive and useful consequences for the way in which other quantities of physical interest may change. stable and unstable regimes may well be closely interwoven. For this reason the broad structure of the system is robust (fortunately for the human race!). modes which are exact and involve no approximations for small-amplitude motions. For large configurations. Breakdown of the torus structure gives freedom to system trajectories to diverge strongly from their neighbours. This principle of adiabatic invariance is a general result.e. which allow us to detail the nonlinear normal modes of such a system.

(Hint : the substitution q = h sin2 θ is helpful!) By considering the limit R/h → 0 show that the result is in accord with Kepler’s third law (4. When the particle does return show that the time taken to do this is t0 = √ 2m h R dq .3) show that we may take 2 2 F = p2 /2m + 1 mω1 q1 as the second constant. It is fitting that this book should end with the mention of results (KAM) which point the way to a whole host of future developments.14) show that we may take F = p θ as the second constant. Classical Mechanics is a very old subject. There are other routes to chaos. Show that the Hamiltonian is given by H = p2 /2m − |k|/q (with k constant). such that [F. |k|/m. A particle of mass m is projected outward radially from the surface (q = R) of a spherical planet. distinguishing between trajectories which correspond to the particle returning and not returning to the planet’s surface. |E| Evaluate this integral to find t0 in terms of h. R. For an autonomous Hamiltonian system with two degrees of freedom the Hamiltonian H is a constant of the motion and such a system is integrable if another constant F (independent of H) can be found — i. Indeed e. by no means the least of which is the question of how to quantize a system which is classically chaotic! As we said in the Preface.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 375 The adiabatic invariance of action variables identifies them as prime candidates to be quantized in the transition from classical to quantum mechanics. so that H is a constant of the motion (≡ energy E). the limit cycles of Chapter 13.e. 2. . However it is very much alive! Problems 1. When trajectories are stretched.32). E + |k|/q where h = |k| . each with a single-point Poincar´ section. (a) For the double harmonic oscillator (14. Sketch the phase portrait in the (q. squeezed and folded then chaos and ‘mixing’ typically result. H] = 0. can go through a periode doubling cascade to chaos (see Appendix D) as parameters are changed.g. p) phase plane for q ≥ R. 1 2 (b) For central force motion (14.

and that the period of small oscillations about this motion is 2π 2r0 /3g.4 that it has magnitude given by the eccentricity e of the conicsection orbit and is directed from the centre of force along the major axis towards the position of closest approach (‘perihelion’). Show that when a stable circular√ motion is disturbed the resulting small oscillations are only closed if 3 sin α is a rational number. θ) are the polar co-ordinates of the particle on the plane and pr . One mass moves horizontally on the plane and the other mass hangs vertically downwards. A string of length l with a mass m at each end passes through a hole in a frictionless horizontal plane. Show that a suitable Hamiltonian for the system is H= p2 p2 r θ + − mg(l − r). J respectively linear. Show that a steady motion with r = r0 is possible (for any r0 > 0). 6.e. Sketch the curves H = constant in the (r. angular momentum) are constants of the motion.376 Classical Mechanics (c) *When the potential V (r) = −|k|/r. pr ) projection of the full four-dimensional phase space for this system.14). i. For central force motion with an inverse square law force of attraction the Hamiltonian is (14. as in Chapter 12. Consider again the particle sliding on the inside of a smooth cone. 4. Identify two constants of the motion. 5. show that the components of the vector A= p∧J r − m|k| r with p. Problem 1. z) plane on a smooth cycloid curve given paramet- . 4m 2mr2 where (r. H= p2 |k| p2 r θ + (≡ energy E). (A is the Laplace–Runge–Lenz vector. pθ are the corresponding momenta. show that r is bounded (r1 ≤ r ≤ r2 ) only when −k 2 m/2p2 ≤ E < 0 and that the energy minimum corresponds to θ an orbit in physical space which is a circle. − 2m 2mr2 r If we fix pθ . if pθ is chosen suitably. Consider this projection in the light of the discussion of surfaces of section in §14. A particle of mass m is constrained to move under the action of gravity in the vertical (x.) 3.2. It can be shown using the results in §4.

+ cos θ) Use action/angle variables to show that the frequency of oscillation of the particle is independent of its amplitude.1. Discuss how the dependence of q on the angle variable φ may be found and then the dependence of q on the time t. z = l(1 − cos θ). If the particle always moves in a straight line. Show that E = ( IΩ + β 2 − β)2 . so that it is able to move freely along the x-axis if its distance from the origin is less than l. What happens in the (separate) limits of small and large energies E? 8. (The substitution s = sin 1 θ is useful. λ. Sketch the potential and the phase portrait. The integral x2 x1 (x2 − x)(x − x1 ) √ dx = 1 π(x1 + x2 ) − π x1 x2 2 x where x2 > x1 > 0 and x = q 2 will prove useful!) 9. Explain briefly where I is the action. i. *A particle of mass m moves in a one-dimensional potential V (q) = 1 2 2 2 (kq + λ/q ). β = 2k l/π.e. it leads to some quite accurate clock mechanisms. Problem 15. Show that the energy E and action I are related by √ E = kλ + 2I k/m and that the period is then independent of amplitude. (This one-dimensional problem models the purely radial part of the motion of the isotropic harmonic oscillator of §4. *A particle of mass m is attached to the origin by a light elastic string of natural length l. *For central force motion with an inverse square law force of attraction (see Problem 5) confirm the result of (14.) 7. √ k/m. q > 0. Ω = (without detailed calculation) how the angle variable φ conjugate to the action may be found in the form φ(x) and how x may be found as a function of the time t. Contrast the tautochrone property with the brachistochrone property of Chapter 3. in principle at least. sketch the potential and the phase-plane trajectories for different values of the energy E. but otherwise moves in a 1 potential V (x) = 2 k(|x| − l)2 for |x| > l. This tautochrone property of 2 the cycloid was known to Huygens in the seventeenth century and.16) that the radial action I1 = . it is the same for all initial conditions with |θ| < π.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 377 rically by x = l(θ + sin θ). where k. Show that a suitable Hamiltonian is H= 4ml2 (1 p2 θ + mgl(1 − cos θ).

*Show that the equations of motion (14. (b) Show that when µ ≤ 1 the motion is not in general bounded for any E by sketching the zero-velocity curves for mass m in the r. 14. Problem 24). (Hint : The results of §B.) 12. *Consider the motion of the swinging Atwood’s machine (see Fig. Show that. considering particularly those values of C corresponding to the three ‘equilibria’ on the x axis and to the two Lagrangian equilateral triangle ‘equilibria’ — see Chapter 10. (In order to evaluate the integral in (14. show that Λ = (cosh2 λ − cos2 θ)−1 (sinh2 λ p2 − sin2 θ p2 ) and that H = θ λ [2mc2 (cosh2 λ − cos2 θ)]−1 (p2 + p2 ).2 will prove helpful in identifying the zerovelocity curves.378 Classical Mechanics 1 −I2 + 2 |k| 2m/(−E). (Note that for the Earth/Moon system with M1 /M2 = 81. so that it is conserved and therefore a constant of the motion.3 there is in consequence a value of C below which an Earth–Moon transfer is not possible. (a) Show that when µ > 1 the motion of m is always bounded by a zero-velocity curve which is an ellipse.] 11. y plane. Problem 16. Using elliptical co-ordinates (see Chapter 3. where I2 = pθ . so that the natural frequencies of radial and transverse motions of the system are the same. θ plane (in various cases). For the billiard in an elliptical enclosure (Fig. whose shape depends on µ and on the constant energy E. 14.19) for the restricted threebody problem may be put into Hamiltonian form using the substitution ˙ ˙ px = x − ωy. ˙ ˙ 2 Hence sketch the regions V ≤ C of possible motions in the x. for various values of C and of the mass ratio M1 /M2 .15) the result given at the end of Problem 8 will prove similarly useful!) 10. 1 (x2 + y 2 ) + V = C. py = y + ωx. where C is a constant of the motion (Jacobi).14) for various different values of the mass ratio µ = M/m. Problem 2 to show that the product Λ of the angular momenta of the ball measured about the two foci of the ellipse is preserved through each bounce. since the system is autonomous. Hence show that the reflected traλ θ jectory from the boundary x2 /a2 + y 2 /b2 = 1 is necessarily tangent (when Λ > 0) to the ellipse λ = arcsinh Λ/2mc2H. [Closure for such a trajectory implies closure for all trajectories tangent to the same inner ellipse — an example of a general result due to Poncelet (1822).) .12) use the result of Appendix B.

an increasing risk for spaghetti eaters from sauce detachment!) 14. by assuming that each molecule has the same speed v and that one third of the molecules move normally to each pair of faces of the box! If intermolecular collisions do not affect these assumptions then L can be changed very slowly. . so satisfying the ideal gas law: (pressure)×(volume) ∝ (temperature).e.e. 15. being measured upwards along the plane from a fixed point q = 0 at which the particle is perfectly elastically reflected at each impact. α and q0 (the amplitude of the motion). Assuming that the kinetic energy of the molecules gives a measure of temperature and that the gas is ‘ideal’. The particle Hamilto˙ nian is H = p2 /2m + mgq sin α (= E) where p = mq. For the elastic bouncer (see Fig. confined within a cubical box of side L. Given that the angle α now decreases very slowly use the principle of adiabatic invariance to show that during the long time in which α decreases from π/3 to π/6 the energy of the system decreases by about 31% and the amplitude and period increase by about 20% and 44% respectively. 16. *For central force motions with an inverse square law force of attraction the relation between energy E and actions I1 . If the strength of the force (i. τ increases). A particle of mass m moves smoothly up and down a smooth inclined plane (inclined at an angle α to the horizontal). (Note that this last result implies. We can model (crudely) a monatomic gas. use the principle of adiabatic invariance to show that the period τ of a bounded orbit (an ellipse. see Problem 5) varies so that τ ∝ k −2 (i.17). I2 is (14.7) between two walls whose separation is being changed slowly (‘adiabatically’) show that the bouncer speed v ∝ 1/L. For the small oscillations of a pendulum whose length l is varying very slowly show that the maximum angular displacement θmax ∝ l−3/4 . |k|) decreases slowly (‘tired sun’). Show that the energy E and action I for this oscillator are related by E = [(9π 2 /8)g 2 m sin2 α]1/3 I 2/3 and find the frequency ω of small oscillation in terms of g.Order and Chaos in Hamiltonian Systems 379 13. Find how the semi-major axis of the ellipse varies with k and show that the eccentricity of the ellipse remains constant. 14. demonstrated in Problem 9. Hence show that the maximum sideways displacement from the vertical is ∝ l1/4 and that the maximum acceleration is ∝ l −3/4 . the co-ordinate q ≥ 0. as l decreases slowly. obtain the relationship (pressure) ∝ (volume)5/3 for adiabatic change of a monatomic gas.

380 Classical Mechanics .

which is specified by a magnitude alone. It is to be contrasted with a scalar.1 Definitions and Elementary Properties A vector a is an entity specified by a magnitude. and a direction in space.1. A.1 381 . The vector a may be represented geometrically by an arrow of length a drawn from any point in the appropriate direction. k r z j O x y i Fig. A. we give a summary of the properties of vectors which are used in the text. In particular. A. the position of a point P with respect to a given origin O may be specified by the position vector r drawn from O to P as in Fig.Appendix A Vectors In this appendix. written a or |a|.

2 a+ b b is defined similarly by Fig. A. and say that x. with respect to a given set of Cartesian axes.382 Classical Mechanics Any vector can be specified. if c < 0. then we write r = (x.1. 0) of length 0 and indeterminate direction. it is a vector in the same direction as a. A. it is in the opposite direction. If c > 0. ay . . az are its components. (This is the ‘parallelogram law’ for addition of forces — or vectors in general.) Subtraction a b θ a Fig. When P coincides with O. and of length |c|a. by three components. A. ay − by . as in Fig. In terms of components. az − bz ). If x. we write a = (ax .3. a a−b b Fig. a = a/a. we ˆ obtain the unit vector in the direction of a. az ). In particular. with O as origin. Addition of two vectors a and b may be defined geometrically by drawing one vector from the head of the other.) We often speak of P as ‘the point r’. (See Fig. and of length ca.2. The product of a vector a and a scalar c is ca = (cax . For a general vector. A.3 a + b = (ax + bx . z are the Cartesian co-ordinates of P . A. z are the components of r. y. 0. its position vector is the zero vector 0 = (0. y. where ax . y. cay . ay + by . az + bz ). a − b = (ax − bx . if c = 1/a. z). caz ). ay .

For example. z-axes. however. a vector a is an object represented with respect to any set of axes by three .2) and comparing with (A. A. k = k.1 that any vector r can be written as a sum of three vectors along the three axes. y . What we mean is that these three numbers must transform in the correct way under a change of axes. respectively. z of P with respect to the new axes are defined by r =xi +y j +z k .4 i = i cos ϕ + j sin ϕ. j . They form what is known as an orthonormal triad — a set of three mutually perpendicular vectors of unit length. j = −i sin ϕ + j cos ϕ. k. k related to i. A. j. that when we say that some physical quantity is a vector we mean more than just that it needs three numbers to specify it. Substituting (A. etc. Physically.1) Mathematically. (A. (A. pointing in the directions of the x-.2) The co-ordinates x . A. k by a rotation through an angle ϕ about the z-axis (see fig. then. or equivalently x = x cos ϕ + y sin ϕ. we see that x = x cos ϕ − y sin ϕ. It is important to realize. y-.4): j′ j r ϕ ϕ x x′ y′ y i′ i Fig.1). j. It is clear from Fig. any set of three quantities may be grouped together and regarded as the components of a vector. r = xi + yj + zk. etc. consider a new set of axes i .Vectors 383 It is often useful to introduce three unit vectors i.

4) as (a + b)2 = a2 + b2 + 2a · b. (A.3) az az 0 0 1 A. (See Fig. i.) b θ a⋅b Fig. similarly.5) (A. or vice versa.e. It is useful to define their scalar product a · b (‘a dot b’) as a · b = ab cos θ.. Thus we can write (A. and. (A.5. ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤⎡ ⎤ cos ϕ sin ϕ 0 ax ax ⎣ay ⎦ = ⎣− sin ϕ cos ϕ 0⎦ ⎣ay ⎦ .4) Note that this is equal to the length of a multiplied by the projection of b on a. . the square of a is a2 = a · a = a2 . A.2 The Scalar Product If θ is the angle between the vectors a and b. y. A. z). the square of the difference is (a − b)2 = a2 + b2 − 2a · b.384 Classical Mechanics components (ax . ay . az ) which transform under rotations in the same way as (x.5 a In particular. then by elementary trigonometry the length of their sum is given by |a + b|2 = a2 + b2 + 2ab cos θ. in matrix notation.

More generally. if we take the scalar product of two vectors a and b.) To distinguish between the two opposite directions along the axis.7) (A. both). that is. of course. this is the case if θ = π/2. k are i · j = j · k = k · i = 0. A. (For example. A. and in particular. |a ∧ b| = ab sin θ.6) Any two non-parallel vectors a and b drawn from O define a unique axis through O perpendicular to the plane containing a and b. The scalar products of the unit vectors i. Thus. but we can find two non-zero vectors a and b for which a · b = 0. It is useful to define the vector product a∧b (‘a cross b’. the commutative law of addition. ab = 0 implies that either a = 0 or b = 0 (or. we introduce a convention: the direction of a ∧ b is that in which a right-hand screw would move when turned from a to b. A.6. if a ⊥ b. j · r = y.2. taking the scalar product of each in turn with (A. k · r = z. a + b = b + a is obvious from Fig.3 The Vector Product (A. save one. if the vectors are orthogonal: a·b =0 i2 = j 2 = k2 = 1.1). j. and the other laws can be deduced from appropriate figures. These relations express the fact that the components of r are equal to its projections on the three co-ordinate axes. we find a · b = a x b x + ay b y + az b z . (A. In fact. r 2 = r2 = x2 + y 2 + z 2 .8) (See Fig. .) The one exception is the following: for two scalars. sometimes also written a × b) to be a vector along this axis whose magnitude is the area of the parallelogram with edges a and b. we find i · r = x.Vectors 385 All the ordinary rules of algebra are valid for the sums and scalar products of vectors.

10) i ∧ k = −j. A. we reverse the sign of the vector product: b ∧ a = −a ∧ b. as opposed to an ordinary. If we choose our co-ordinate axes to be right-handed. velocity and force are polar vectors. k ∧ j = −i.6 A vector whose sense is merely conventional.9) It is essential to remember this fact when manipulating any expression involving vector products. a ∧ a = 0. In particular. . or polar. property. a ∧ b vanishes if θ = 0 or π: a∧b=0 if a b. More generally.386 Classical Mechanics a∧b b A £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ £ θ a Fig. is called an axial vector. but unfamiliar. The vector product has one very important. but angular velocity is an axial vector (see §5. k are i ∧ i = j ∧ j = k ∧ k = 0. j ∧ i = −k. (A. The vector product of two polar vectors is thus an axial vector. j. For example. and would be reversed by changing from a right-hand to a left-hand convention. j ∧ k = i. If we interchange a and b. the vector product of a vector with itself is the zero vector. vector.1). then the vector products of i. k ∧ i = j. (A. i ∧ j = k.

b. or from its geometric interpretation. bx by bz (A. A. then (a ∧ b) · c = |a ∧ b|c cos ϕ = Ah = V.Vectors 387 Thus. For. but (i ∧ k) · j = −1. This relation may conveniently be expressed in the form of a determinant i j k a ∧ b = ax ay az . we can form the scalar triple product (a ∧ b) · c. A. We find ax ay az (a ∧ b) · c = bx by bz .7 and a ∧ b.11).12) Either from this formula.7). (i ∧ j) · k = 1. Geometrically. b. when we form the vector product of two arbitrary vectors a and b. In terms of components. c form a right-handed triad. c (see Fig. cx cy cz (A. if ϕ is the angle between c a∧b ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ Fig. we see that the scalar triple product is unchanged by any cyclic permutation of ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ a ¤ ¤ ¤ A ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ c ϕ h b ¤ ¤ . and negative if they form a left-handed triad. and h = c cos ϕ is the height.11) From any three vectors a. The volume is reckoned positive if a. it represents the volume V of the parallelepiped with adjacent edges a. For example. b. we can evaluate the scalar triple product by taking the scalar product of c with (A. where A is the area of the base. we obtain a ∧ b = i(ay bz − az by ) + j(az bx − ax bz ) + k(ax by − ay bx ). c.

and must therefore be a linear combination of these two vectors. c. A. More generally. b. A. is sometimes used. ∆t→0 ∆t dt (A. a more symmetrical notation. c].8. Moreover. From three vectors we can also form the vector triple product (a ∧ b) ∧ c.) The velocity. Since this vector is perpendicular to a ∧ b. as the limit of a ratio. ˙ r= ∆r dr = lim . It is not hard to show by writing out the components. The vector distance travelled by the particle in a short time interval ∆t is ∆r = r(t + ∆t) − r(t).) Note that the scalar triple product vanishes if any two vectors are equal.388 Classical Mechanics a.17) . (See Fig. b. it vanishes if a. a ∧ (b ∧ c) = (a · c)b − (a · b)c. but changes sign if any pair is interchanged: (a ∧ b) · c = (b ∧ c) · a = (c ∧ a) · b = −(b ∧ a) · c = −(c ∧ b) · a = −(a ∧ c) · b. Similarly. [a. or parallel. (A. r(t).15) Note that these vectors are unequal.16) (A. c are coplanar. for example the position vector of a particle as a function of time. that (a ∧ b) ∧ c = (a · c)b − (b · c)a. so that we cannot omit the brackets in a vector triple product. we may interchange the dot and the cross: (a ∧ b) · c = a · (b ∧ c).4 Differentiation and Integration of Vectors We are often concerned with vectors which are functions of some scalar parameter. is defined just as for scalars. it must lie in the plane of a and b. b. or derivative of r with respect to t.13) (For this reason. It is useful to note that in both of these formulae the term with the positive sign is the middle vector times the scalar product of the other two. (A.14) (A.

A. In terms of co-ordinates. so that r = 0. ˙ ˙ ˙ Derivatives of other vectors are defined similarly. ˙ r = (x.8 In the limit. the direction of this vector is that of the tangent to the path of the particle. For example. z). is not the same thing as the magnitude of the derivative. dt dt dt though in this particular case one must be careful to preserve the order of the two factors. we can ¨ differentiate again to form the acceleration vector r = d2 r/dt2 . ˙ ˆ ˙ (A.Vectors 389 r(t+∆t) ∆r v r(t) Fig. if the ˙ particle is moving in a circle. |dr/dt|. da db d (a ∧ b) = ∧b+a∧ . In particular. y. Note that the derivative of the magnitude of r. because of the antisymmetry of the vector product. but clearly |r| is ˙ not zero. r is constant. and its magnitude is the speed in the usual sense.18) d 2 d ˙ (r ) = (r 2 ) = 2r · r. For example. applying the rule for differentiating a scalar product to r 2 . we obtain 2rr = ˙ which may also be written r = r · r. In fact. . dr/dt. It is easy to show that all the usual rules for differentiating sums and products apply also to vectors. dt dt Thus the rate of change of the distance r from the origin is equal to the radial component of the velocity vector.

y. z). and the initial value of r. r(t0 ). Divergence and Curl There are many quantities in physics which are functions of position in space. y.19) This is equivalent to three scalar equations for the components. for example.20) Now. Hence we conclude that the direction of ∇φ is the direction in which φ increases most rapidly. for example. that the integral in (A.5 Gradient. then the position at any later time is given by the definite integral t1 r(t1 ) = r(t0 ) + t0 v(t) dt. ∂φ/∂y.19) may be expressed as the limit of a sum. (A. then we also write r= v dt. exactly as for scalars. We note that if r and r + dr are two neighbouring points. . or occasionally ‘nabla φ’). t1 x(t1 ) = x(t0 ) + t0 vx (t) dt. Such quantities are known as fields. ∂φ/∂x. One can show. or electric field. known as the gradient of φ. or ∇φ (‘del φ’. then this scalar product takes on its maximum value when dr is in the direction of ∇φ. ∂x ∂y ∂z (A. then the difference between the values of φ at these points is dφ = φ(r + dr) − φ(r) = ∂φ ∂φ ∂φ dx + dy + dz = dr · ∇φ. and say that r is the integral of v. temperature. To show that they really are the components of a vector. if the distance |dr| is fixed. Now let us consider the three partial derivatives of a scalar field. and written grad φ. ∂φ/∂z. A. They form the components of a vector field. we have to show that it is defined in a manner which is independent of the choice of axes. z) of position in space. gravitational potential.390 Classical Mechanics We can also define the integral of a vector. A scalar field is a scalar function φ(x. If v = dr/dt. a vector field is a vector function A(x. If we are given v(t) as a function of time. We can also indicate the position in space by the position vector r and write φ(r) or A(r).

given by ∇=i ∂ ∂ ∂ +j +k . ∂x ∂y ∂z (A. ∂x ∂y ∂z We can also apply it to a vector field A.) To understand the physical significance of these operations. over a short time interval dt. We are often interested in the value of the scalar field φ evaluated at the position of a moving particle.21) The symbol ∇ may be regarded as a vector which is also a differential operator (like d/dx).23) (Instead of curl A.) Clearly. Consider first the length δx. (This is the reason for the name ‘gradient’. we could define ∇φ by these properties. (A.22) and the curl of A to be the vector field i j k ∂ ∂ ∂ . the length δx changes because the x components of velocity. and try to find its rate of change as it moves with the fluid. The divergence of A is defined to be the scalar field div A = ∇ · A = ∂Ay ∂Az ∂Ax + + .Vectors 391 Moreover. which are independent of any choice of axes. φ(r(t)). δV = δx δy δz. it is helpful to think of the velocity field in a fluid: v(r) is the fluid velocity at the point r. Let us consider a small volume of fluid. To a first approximation. at its two ends are slightly different. vx . by .20) it follows that the rate of change of φ is dφ(r(t)) ˙ = r · ∇φ. the velocity components in the y and z directions are irrelevant. dt (A. curl A = ∇ ∧ A = ∂x ∂y ∂z Ax Ay Az This latter expression is an abbreviation for the expanded form ∇∧A=i ∂Az ∂Ay − ∂y ∂z +j ∂Az ∂Ax − ∂z ∂x +k ∂Ax ∂Ay − ∂x ∂y . therefore. its magnitude is the rate of increase of φ with distance in this direction. the alternative notation rot A is sometimes used. particularly in non-English-speaking countries. From (A.

Thus we have ∇ · (A ∧ B) = B · (∇ ∧ A) − A · (∇ ∧ B). It is possible to show in a similar way that a non-zero ∇ ∧ v means that locally the fluid is rotating. For example. represents the local angular velocity of rotation (times 2. equivalently. the change in δx is d δx = (∂vx /∂x) δx dt. we have d (δx δy δz) = dt or. whence ∂vx d δx = δx. ∇ · (A ∧ B) is a sum of two terms. But. dt (A. when vector products are involved. This vector. Thus in a time dt. and. In particular. and similarly ∇ · (φA) = A · ∇φ + φ∇ · A. ∇ ∧ (φA) = φ(∇ ∧ A) − A ∧ (∇φ). if the fluid is incompressible. called the vorticity. then ∇ · v = 0. dt ∂x Taking account of similar changes in δy and δz.24) ∂vx ∂vy ∂vz + + ∂x ∂y ∂z δx δy δz. we have to remember that the order of the factors as a product of vectors cannot be changed without affecting the signs. The gradient of a product of scalar fields can be written ∇(φψ) = ψ∇φ + φ∇ψ. similarly. The rule for differentiating products can also be applied to expressions involving ∇. negative ∇ · v compression. see Problem 10). d δV = (∇ · v) δV. in one of which ∇ acts on A only and in the other on B only. Thus ∇ · v represents the proportional rate of increase of volume: positive ∇ · v means expansion. .392 Classical Mechanics an amount (∂vx /∂x) δx.

its z component is ∂ ∂x ∂φ ∂y − ∂ ∂y ∂φ ∂x = 0. For example. gives the curl of a curl.27) An important identity. the change in φ along this element of length is . dx First. we find that the curl of a gradient vanishes. ∂x2 ∂y ∂z (A. ∇ ∧ (∇ ∧ A) = ∇(∇ · A) − ∇2 A.28) It may easily be proved by inserting the expressions in terms of components. x1 x0 df dx = f (x1 ) − f (x0 ).20). (A.26) Similarly. ∂x2 ∂y 2 ∂z 2 (A. The divergence of the gradient of a scalar field φ is called the Laplacian of φ. Just as a ∧ a = 0. ∇2 φ = ∇ · ∇φ = ∂2φ ∂2φ ∂2φ + 2 + 2. (A. then according to (A.25) Some operations always give zero.9). A. consider a curve C in space. running from r 0 to r1 (see Fig. where of course ∇2 A = ∂2A ∂2A ∂2A + + .Vectors 393 We may apply the vector differential operator ∇ twice. Let the directed element of length along C be dr. If φ is a scalar field.16). analogous to the expansion of the vector triple product (A. ∇ ∧ ∇φ = 0. one can show that the divergence of a curl vanishes: ∇ · (∇ ∧ A) = 0. A.6 Integral Theorems There are three important theorems for vectors which are generalizations of the fundamental theorem of the calculus.

r1 r0 dr · ∇φ = φ(r 1 ) − φ(r 0 ).31) C for all closed loops C.30) When F is conservative. then r V (r) = − r0 dr · F . This condition may be simplified by using the second of the integral theorems — Stokes’ theorem. integrating from r 0 to r 1 . to r. then the . (A. Physically. bounded by the closed curve C.30). Thus. if F = −∇V . Thus we require dr · F = 0. and the force must be conservative.) This theorem may be used to relate the potential energy function V (r) for a conservative force to the work done in going from some fixed point r 0 . it is often more convenient to place the differential symbol dr to the left of the integrand.394 Classical Mechanics dr r r0 r + dr r1 Fig.29) The integral on the left is called the line integral of ∇φ along C. A. (A. Conversely. this means that no work is done in taking a particle round a loop which returns to its starting point. as here. The integral round a closed loop is usually denoted by the symbol C . Consider a curved surface S. If one side of S is chosen to be the ‘positive’ side.30) should be equal whenever their end-points coincide may be restated by saying the the line integral round any closed path should vanish. (Note that. this integral depends only on its end-points. Thus. if this condition is satisfied. we obtain the first of the integral theorems. we can define V by (A. (A. and not on the path C chosen between them. The condition that two line integrals of the form (A. where V is chosen to vanish.9 dφ = dr · ∇φ.

one from each edge. then the surface integral must vanish for all surfaces S. Then the directed element of area is defined to be dS = n dS. and let n dS S C ¥ ¥ ¥ ¥ ¥ ¥ Fig. (The proof proceeds by splitting up the surface into small sub-regions.34) The line integral consists of four terms. (A. (A. (A. If the line integral round C is required to vanish for all closed curves C.10). Then dS = k dx dy. Stokes’ theorem states that if A is any vector field.32) S C The application of this theorem to (A.) Suppose S is a rectangle in the xy-plane. of area dx dy. But this is only possible if the integrand vanishes identically. Take a small element of the surface. The two terms arising from the edges parallel to the x-axis involve the x component of A evaluated for different values of y. of area dS. so the surface integral is k · (∇ ∧ A) dx dy = ∂Ax ∂Ay − ∂x ∂y dx dy. A. ∂y . it is easy to verify for a small rectangular surface. However. They therefore contribute Ax (y) dx − Ax (y + dy) dx = − ∂Ax dx dy. and directed towards its positive side.33) We shall not prove Stokes’ theorem. So the condition for a force to be conservative is ∇ ∧ F = 0.Vectors 395 positive direction round C may be defined by the right-hand-screw convention (see Fig.31) is immediate. then dS · (∇ ∧ A) = dr · A.10 n be a unit vector normal to the element. A.

Consider the faces parallel to the xy-plane. The volume integral is ∂By ∂Bz ∂Bx + + ∂x ∂y ∂z dx dy dz.37) come from the other pairs of faces. such a field must satisfy ∇ · B = 0. (A. B = ∇ ∧ A.37) The surface integral consists of six terms. then for any vector field B. the other terms of (A. Thus they contribute Bz (z + dz) dx dy − Bz (z) dx dy = ∂Bz dx dy dz.35) The proof that this is also a sufficient condition (which we shall not give in detail) follows much the same lines as before. (S closed) S and then use the third of the integral theorems. the other pair of edges yields the first term of (A. one for each face. evaluated for different values of z. and the positive side of S is taken to be the outside. (A.27). dV ∇ · B = dS · B.36) V S where dV denotes the volume element dV = dx dy dz. By (A. One can show that it is sufficient that the surface integral of B over any closed surface should vanish: dS · B = 0. One can also find a necessary and sufficient condition for a field B(r) to have the form of a curl. Their contributions involve k · B = Bz . with directed surface elements k dx dy and −k dx dy. Gauss’ theorem. dV = dx dy dz. This states that if V is a volume in space bounded by the closed surface S. . It is again easy to verify Gauss’ theorem for a small rectangular volume.34). ∂z Similarly.396 Classical Mechanics Similarly. (A.

Maxwell’s equations separate into a pair of electrostatic equations. ∂t 0∇ · E = ρ. The second equation in (A. where all the fields are time-independent. Then φ becomes the ordinary electrostatic potential. (A.42) define the same fields E and B as do φ and A. There is one pair of homogeneous equations.38). ∂t ∇ · B = 0. then the potentials φ =φ+ ∂Λ . (A. they may be expressed in terms of two fields. The basic equations of electromagnetic theory are Maxwell’s equations. (A. the electric field E and the magnetic field B. µ−1 ∇ ∧ B − 0 0 ∂E = j.40) Then. In the absence of dielectric or magnetic media. ∂t A = A − ∇Λ (A. substituting in the first of the equations (A. satisfying .39) in which µ0 and 0 are universal constants. ∇∧E+ ∂B = 0.41) These potentials are not unique. If Λ is any scalar field. we find that ∇ ∧ (E + ∂A/∂t) = 0.7 Electromagnetic Potentials An important application of these theorems is to the electromagnetic field. ∂t (A. This is called a gauge transformation. We may eliminate this arbitrariness by imposing an extra condition.38) is just the condition (A.43) In the static case. for example the radiation gauge (or Coulomb gauge) condition ∇ · A = 0. It follows that there must exist a scalar potential φ such that E = −∇φ − ∂A .38) and a second pair involving also the electric charge density ρ and current density j.35). and a magnetostatic pair. It follows that there must exist a vector potential A such that B = ∇ ∧ A.Vectors 397 A. (A.

divergence and curl in terms of curvilinear co-ordinates. Using (A. Consider a set of orthogonal curvilinear co-ordinates (see §3.44) This is the analogue of Poisson’s equation. we find ∇2 A = −µ0 j.398 Classical Mechanics Poisson’s equation (6.46) Now consider a scalar field ψ. q3 ). in cylindrical polars hρ = 1. |r − r | (A. hθ = r.40) satisfies ∇ ∧ (∇ ∧ A) = µ0 j. and two neighbouring points (q1 . h1 ∂q1 (A. we may calculate the potentials φ and A.8 Curvilinear Co-ordinates Another use of the integral theorems is to provide expressions for the gradient.48) .15). Hence we find (∇ψ)1 = 1 ∂ψ . (A.28).43). For example.5) q1 . q3 . and hence the fields E and B. while in spherical polars hr = 1. h3 dq3 . (A.48). and imposing the radiation gauge condition (A.47) hϕ = ρ. The solution is of the same form as (6. q2 . A. q2 . The vector potential. q2 . hz = 1. given any static distribution of charges and currents. q3 ) and (q1 +dq1 . (A. hϕ = r sin θ. ∂q1 where (∇ψ)1 is the component of ∇ψ in the direction of increasing q1 . namely A(r) = µ0 4π j(r ) 3 d r. Let us denote the elements of length along the three co-ordinate curves by h1 dq1 . Then the difference between the values of ψ at these points is ∂ψ dq1 = dψ = dr · ∇ψ = h1 dq1 (∇ψ)1 . h2 dq2 .39) and (A. by (A.45) Thus.

we use Stokes’ theorem in a similar way. The volume integral is (∇ · A) h1 dq1 h2 dq2 h3 dq3 . (A. ∇·A= and ∇·A= 1 ∂(sin θ Aθ ) 1 ∂Aϕ 1 ∂(r2 Ar ) + + .49) To find an expression for the divergence. we use Gauss’ theorem. and comparing with the volume integral.Vectors 399 with similar expressions for the other components. Then the surface integral is (∇ ∧ A)3 h1 dq1 h2 dq2 . . .51) In particular. in cylindrical and spherical polars.53) ∂Az 1 ∂(ρAρ ) 1 ∂Aϕ + + . applied to a small volume bounded by the co-ordinate surfaces. (A. we have ∇ψ = and ∇ψ = 1 ∂ψ ∂ψ 1 ∂ψ . bounded by curves of constant q1 and of q2 . evaluated for two different values of q3 . Let us consider a small element of a surface q3 = constant. Thus in cylindrical and spherical polars. ∂q3 Adding the terms from all three pairs of faces. we obtain ∇·A= 1 h1 h2 h3 ∂(h2 h3 A1 ) ∂(h3 h1 A2 ) ∂(h1 h2 A3 ) + + ∂q1 ∂q2 ∂q3 . the terms arising from the faces which are surfaces of constant q3 are of the form A3 h1 dq1 h2 dq2 . They therefore contribute ∂ (h1 h2 A3 ) dq1 dq2 dq3 . (A. ρ ∂ρ ρ ∂ϕ ∂z (A.52) To find the curl. In the surface integral. ∂r r ∂θ r sin θ ∂ϕ . r2 ∂r r sin θ ∂θ r sin θ ∂ϕ (A. ∂ρ ρ ∂ϕ ∂z .50) ∂ψ 1 ∂ψ ∂ψ . .

adding the contribution from the other pair of edges. (A. the two edges of constant q2 involve A1 h1 dq1 evaluated for different values of q2 . ∂q2 Hence.56) .57) .59) r2 sin2 θ ∂ϕ2 1 ∂ ρ ∂ρ ρ ∂ψ ∂ρ + ∂2ψ 1 ∂2ψ + . (A. combining the expressions for the divergence and gradient. and so contribute − ∂ (h1 A1 ) dq1 dq2 .54) with similar expressions for the other components. (A. ∇2 ψ = 1 ∂ r2 ∂r r2 ∂ψ ∂r + ∂ 1 r2 sin θ ∂θ sin θ ∂ψ ∂θ + ∂2ψ 1 . we obtain (∇ ∧ A)3 = 1 h1 h2 ∂(h2 A2 ) ∂(h1 A1 ) − ∂q1 ∂q2 . − . in spherical polars.58) . ∇2 ψ = and. In cylindrical polars. It is ∇2 ψ = ∂ 1 h1 h2 h3 ∂q1 h2 h3 ∂ψ h1 ∂q1 + ∂ ∂q2 h3 h1 ∂ψ h2 ∂q2 ∂ h1 h2 ∂ψ + ∂q3 h3 ∂q3 (A. − r sin θ ∂ϕ r ∂r r ∂r ∂θ 1 ∂Az ∂Aϕ ∂Aρ ∂Az 1 ∂(ρAϕ ) ∂Aρ − . we can find the Laplacian of a scalar field.55) (A. r sin θ ∂θ ∂ϕ 1 ∂(rAϕ ) 1 ∂(rAθ ) ∂Ar 1 ∂Ar − . ρ2 ∂ϕ2 ∂z 2 (A. − ρ ∂ϕ ∂z ∂z ∂ρ ρ ∂ρ ∂ϕ . in cylindrical and spherical polars ∇∧A= and ∇∧A= 1 ∂(sin θ Aϕ ) ∂Aθ − . in particular.400 Classical Mechanics In the line integral around the boundary. Thus. Finally.

obtained by reflecting in the leading ˜ diagonal. Note that in general this is not the same as a · T · c. we may write (A. and described by 1.g.62) ˜ where T is the transposed tensor of T. often called dyadics.2) giving the velocity v as a function of position r in a body rotating with angular velocity ω.60) as b = T · a. 3. ˜ The tensor T is called symmetric if T = T. to mean a tensor of valence 2.) In this section. j. if Tji = Tij for all i. e.e. In fact.61) For example. Scalars and vectors are called tensors of valence 0 and valence 1.60) bz Tzx Tzy Tzz az An example is the relation (9. The nine elements of the 3 × 3 matrix in (A. c · T · a. which we shall denote by the sans-serif capital T. i. components.61) with another vector. the tensors of valence 2. Tensors occur most frequently when one vector b is given as a linear function of another vector a.17) between the angular momentum J and angular velocity ω of a rigid body. but there is then a possibility of confusion with a different usage of the same word in matrix theory.60) are the components of a tensor. It is a linear relation and so may be . 27. We can go on to form the scalar product of (A. c. according to the matrix equation ⎤⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ Txx Txy Txz ax bx ⎣by ⎦ = ⎣Tyx Tyy Tyz ⎦ ⎣ay ⎦ . ˜ It is antisymmetric if T = −T.9 Tensors Scalars and vectors are the first two members of a family of objects known collectively as tensors. we shall be concerned with the next member of the family. . j. 9.. respectively. (A. We shall use the word ‘tensor’ in this restricted sense. (A.Vectors 401 A. An interesting example of an antisymmetric tensor is provided by the relation (5. By an obvious extension of the dot product notation for the scalar product of two vectors. ˜ a · T · c = c · T · a. .. . where I is the inertia tensor.17) may be written J = I · ω. Txy = Tyx . (9. (Sometimes the word rank is used instead of ‘valence’. obtaining a scalar. or Tji = −Tij for all i. (A.

I= m(r2 1 − rr). so the brackets are in fact unnecessary. 1 · a = a = i(i · a) + j(j · a) + k(k · a) = (ii + jj + kk) · a. with no dot or cross. ⎡ ⎤ 1 0 0 1 = ⎣0 1 0⎦. with the property that 1 · a = a for all vectors a. for any vector a. i. 0 0 1 called the unit tensor or identity tensor.2) formally as a = R·a. written T = ab. vz −ωy ωx 0 z There is an important special tensor.16) between angular momentum and angular velocity in the form J= m(r2 ω − rr · ω) = I · ω. Tij = ai bj . If we symbolize (A. Note that T·c = (ab)·c = a(b ·c). In matrix notation. (This denotes a product of three 3 × 3 matrices. where the inertia tensor I is given explicitly by . ab is the product of the column vector a and the row vector b. For example.) The use of the tensor product allows us to write some old results in a new way. We can deduce the correct transformation law of a tensor under a rotation of axes: its components transform just like the products of components of two vectors. specifically as ⎤⎡ ⎤ ⎡ ⎤ ⎡ 0 −ωz ωy x vx ⎣vy ⎦ = ⎣ ωz 0 −ωx ⎦ ⎣y ⎦ . Similarly. we may write the relation (9. (A.60). while the scalar product (or inner product ) a · b is the row a times the column b. whence ii + jj + kk = 1. then the correct ˜ transformation law of a tensor is T = R · T · R. we can form a tensor T by multiplying their elements together (without adding). From any two vectors a and b.e.. This is the tensor product (or dyadic product or outer product ) of a and b.402 Classical Mechanics written in the form (A.63) as may easily be verified by writing out the components.

To see this. det(T − λ1) = Txz Txx − λ Txy = 0. a∗ .10 Eigenvalues. T · a2 = λ2 a2 . say λ1 .e. Now. a∗ ). . then T = ba. Let T be a symmetric tensor. or else one real and one complex conjugate pair. whence in particular the inertia tensor I is symmetric.62). this means that λ∗ = λ. (Compare (11. we obtain T · a∗ = λ∗ a∗ .) The condition for the existence of a non-trivial solution is that the determinant of the coefficients vanishes. λ2 . and a∗ = (a∗ . Since a∗ · a = |ax |2 + |ay |2 + |az |2 = a · a∗ . a3 . taking the complex conjugate of T · a = λa. for a symmetric tensor T with real elements the latter possibility can be ruled out. with eigenvalue λ.. For. suppose that λ is a complex eigenvalue. i. where λ∗ denotes the complex conjugate of λ. Tyx Tyy − λ Tyz Tzx Tzy Tzz − λ This is a cubic equation for λ. a2 . (We consider the case where two eigenvalues are equal below.17). a1 . ˜ Note that if T = ab. by (A. if T · a1 = λ1 a1 . equivalently (T − λ1) · a = 0. Multiplying x y z these two equations by a∗ and a respectively. (A. It is easy to check that the nine components of this equation reproduce the relations (9.15). λ3 . λ must be real. But since T is symmetric. Hence the right-hand sides must be equal too. Thus we have shown that there are three real eigenvalues. Diagonalization of a Symmetric Tensor In this section. we discuss a theorem that has very wide applicability.64) or. and a · T · a∗ = λ∗ a · a∗ . and let a be the corresponding eigenvector. Its three roots are either all real. and three corresponding real eigenvectors. A. A vector a is called an eigenvector of T.) Next. whose components may also be complex. the left-hand sides of these equations are equal.Vectors 403 Note the difference between the unit tensor 1 and the inertia tensor I. if T · a = λa. we show that the eigenvectors are orthogonal. we obtain a∗ · T · a = λa∗ · a. However. which is also an eigenvalue equation.

T · e1 is simply the first column of T.2. So long as = 0. defining e1 = a1 /a1 . we obtain λ1 a2 · a1 = λ2 a1 · a2 . (A. and the eigenvalues the principal moments of inertia. The simplest way to do this is to add a small quantity to one of the diagonal components of T. namely T = λ1 e1 e1 + λ2 e2 e2 + λ3 e3 e3 . and this must be λ1 e1 = (λ1 . then a1 · a2 = 0. Similarly for the other columns. since e1 = (1. The procedure for finding normal co-ordinates for an oscillating system. the tensor must have three orthonormal eigenvectors. Indeed. then the three eigenvectors are orthogonal. In that case. By continuity. we have to show that these results still hold if two or three eigenvalues coincide. e3 . it is the potential energy function that is brought to ‘diagonal’ form. Moreover. using the tensor-product notation. this must still be true in the limit → 0. 0. as will be seen in a different context in Appendix C. If we choose these as axes. therefore. that any symmetric tensor may be diagonalized by a suitable choice of axes. 0. discussed in §11. If all three eigenvalues are distinct. Eigenvalue equations also appear in the . 0). it is clear that if a is an eigenvector.) We have shown. this does happen for non-symmetric tensors. because without the consequent orthogonality of eigenvectors we could not exclude the possibility that two eigenvectors that are distinct for = 0 have the same limit as → 0. This relationship between T and the eigenvectors may also be expressed.404 Classical Mechanics then. This was the result we used for the inertia tensor in Chapter 9. multiplying the first equation by a2 and the second by a1 . the eigenvectors are the principal axes. 0). e2 . In that case.66) Finally. and again using the symmetry of T. then T must take the diagonal form ⎡ ⎤ λ1 0 0 (A. 0 0 λ3 For. Thus if λ1 = λ2 . Then the three normalized eigenvectors form an orthonormal triad. (The symmetry of T is important here. so that we may choose to normalize it. e1 . in a co-ordinate-independent form.65) T = ⎣ 0 λ2 0 ⎦ . then so is any multiple of a. is essentially the same. to make the eigenvalues slightly different.

where a. a ∧ c and a ∧ (b + c). 2. 1) and c = (2. 2). λ(a + b) = λa + λb. b. −1). Show that (a ∧ b) · (c ∧ d) = a · c b · d − a · d b · c. c need not be coplanar. 10. (b) Describe the contour curves of u and v in the xy-plane. in particular playing a big role in quantum mechanics.Vectors 405 analysis of dynamical systems in Chapter 13 and in many other branches of physics. Find ∇φ if φ = x3 − xyz. and evaluate ∇2 φ. Find the angles between the vectors a ∧ b and c. c are as in Problem 1. Hence show that (a ∧ b)2 = a2 b2 − (a · b)2 . a · c and a · (b + c). We require that δu should vanish for . 3. Draw appropriate figures to give geometric proofs for the following laws of vector algebra: (a + b) + c = a + (b + c). (a) Find the gradients of u = x + y 2 /x and v = y + x2 /y. and show that they are always orthogonal. If the vector field v(r) is defined by v = ωk ∧ r. verify that ∇ · v = 0. a ∧ b. What does (a) tell you about these curves? 6. 5. (a ∧ b) · c and (a ∧ c) · b. (Hint : On v = 0 only two coordinates can vary independently. and evaluate the vorticity ∇ ∧ v. b = (0. (a ∧ b) ∧ c and (a ∧ c) ∧ b. −1. 9. Thus δz for example can usually be expressed in terms of δx and δy. 1. the maxima and minima of u on the surface v = 0 are points where ∇u = λ∇v for some value of λ. (a · c)b − (b · c)a and (a · b)c − (b · c)a.) 7. where a and b are any two vectors. Express ∇ ∧ (a ∧ b) in terms of scalar products. Interpret this equation geometrically. a · (b + c) = a · b + a · c. Problems 1. Verify that ∇ ∧ ∇φ = 0. if u and v are scalar fields. find: (a) (b) (c) (d) (e) a · b. 4. 8. Show that c = (ab + ba)/(a + b) bisects the angle between a and b. Given a = (3. *Show that. b. (Note that a. 2. and between a ∧ c and b.

while this force is acting. j. of magnitude µ = πa2 I.) *The trace of a tensor T is the sum of its diagonal elements. j. (Such tensors are said to be orthogonal. y. Find the divergence and curl of A. Then express your answer in spherical polars. What is the role of the equation ∂w/∂λ = 0? *Evaluate the components of ∇2 A in cylindrical polar co-ordinates by using the identity (A. [Hint : Consider first a point (x.) Show that this force does not satisfy Newton’s third law. Evaluate 1 : 1 and 1 : rr. Find the force on another segment. one must assume that. treat the current element as a collection of moving charges.] Hence find the magnetic field — the field of a magnetic dipole. Show that they are not the same as the scalar Laplacians of the components of A. carrying current I . of length ds . where the tensor R is R = i i+ j j + k k. *Calculate the vector potential due to a short segment of wire of directed length ds. tr(T) = i Tii . carrying a current I. 13. 15. z). some momentum is transferred to the electromagnetic field. k back into i. (To compute the force.28). 16. a vector normal to the loop. k? Show that R · R = 1. λ) = u − λv as a function of the four independent variables x. and that the determinant det(T) is equal to the product of the eigenvalues. *Find the radiation-gauge vector potential at large distances from a circular loop of radius a carrying an electric current I. Show that the trace is equal to the sum of the eigenvalues. 14. Express the results in terms of the magnetic moment µ. Here λ is called a Lagrange multiplier. keeping only the linear term.) *Given u = cos θ and v = ln r. *The double dot product of two tensors is defined as S:T = tr(S · T) = i j Sij Tji . k into i . 12. j .406 Classical Mechanics 11. (To preserve the law of conservation of momentum. z and λ. What is the tensor corresponding to the ˜ rotation which takes i . Show that 1 (3r r − r 2 1) : (rr − 3 r2 1) = 3(r · r)2 − r 2 r2 . . j . evaluate A = u∇v − v∇u. *Show that the rotation which takes the axes i. Evaluate the corresponding magnetic field. k may be specified by r → r = R ·r. placed at the origin. and verify that ∇ · A = u∇2 v − v∇2 u and that ∇ ∧ A = 2∇u ∧ ∇v. at r. 0. all infinitesimal variations satisfying this constraint. 17. Write down the matrix of components of R if the rotation is through an angle θ about the y-axis. and expand the integrand in powers of a/r.) Show that this problem is equivalent to finding the unrestricted maxima and minima of the function w(r.

Q. where Q is the quadrupole moment defined in Chapter 6. Show that tr(Q) = 0. Show also that the gravitational quadrupole tensor is related to the inertia tensor I by Q = tr(I)1 .19) of the potential may be written φ(r) = 1 4π 0 rr − 1 r2 1 r 1 3 + ··· q + d · 3 + 1Q : 2 r r r5 . *In an elastic solid in equilibrium. − 2 Q. These are the components of the stress tensor T. Show also by considering the equilibrium of a small rectangular volume that T is symmetric. and write down an expression for the quadrupole tensor Q. By considering the equilibrium of a small volume. What physical significance attaches to its eigenvectors? . Denote the ith component of force per unit area across an area with normal in the jth direction by Tij . 18. the force across a small area may have both a normal component (of compression or tension) and transverse components (shearing stress). and that in the axially symmetric case it has diagonal el1 1 ements − 2 Q.3I. show that the force across area A with normal in the direction of the unit vector n is F = T · nA.Vectors 407 Hence show that the expansion (6.

408 Classical Mechanics .

F are real constants. . . Let us assume for the moment that A and C are both non-zero (we will come back later to the special case where that isn’t true). but by choosing the axes appropriately we can reduce this to a simpler form. where A. we look at the quadratic part. We then forget about the original co-ordinates. B. we can move it to the other side of the equation. It is always possible by rotating the axes to eliminate the constant B. The name derives from the fact that they can be obtained by making a plane section through a circular cone. A x 2 + C y 2 . . and drop the primes.Appendix B Conics Conic sections.. x = x + D/A) so as to remove D and E.10.3 and §A. It may be useful to gather together the relevant mathematical information. and divide by −F . particularly in the theory of orbits under an inverse square law force. Ax2 + 2Bxy + Cy 2 . or conics for short. First. B. If F is also non-zero. e. Then we can choose to shift the origin (adding constants to x and y. They turn up in several physical applications. This is another example of the diagonalization process described in §11. are most simply defined as curves in a plane whose equation in Cartesian co-ordinates is quadratic in x and y.1 Cartesian Form The most general conic would have an equation of the form Ax2 + 2Bxy + Cy 2 + 2Dx + 2Ey + F = 0. to get the standard form of the 409 .g. The quadratic part of the equation is then reduced to a sum of squares. . The nature of the curve is largely determined by the ratio A/C of the new constants.

) 2. (In the special case y b a x Fig. 2 a b (B. We cannot allow both A and C in (B.1). Note that this curve has two . a2 b (B. A and C have opposite signs. we simply interchange the x and y axes.2). defining A = 1/a2 and C = −1/b2 . although it is no longer necessarily true that a is the larger. Again. B.410 Classical Mechanics equation. we get y2 x2 − 2 = 1.) Defining new positive constants a and b by A = 1/a2 and C = 1/b2 . Without loss of generality we can assume that A ≤ C. we finally arrive at the canonical form of the equation. (If A > C.1) F = 0 is a degenerate case: if A and C have the same sign.1) to be negative. Ax2 + Cy 2 = 1. we can assume that A > 0 and C < 0. (B. the only solution is x = y = 0. the equation factorizes. a is the semi-major axis and b is the semi-minor axis. we have a circle of radius a. without loss of generality. if they are of opposite sign. So we can distinguish two cases: 1.2) This is the equation of an ellipse (see Fig. B. the equation would then have no solutions at all.1 a = b. Here a ≥ b. y = ± −A/C x. and so represents a pair of straight lines. x2 y2 + 2 = 1. B. So. Both A and C are positive.3) the equation of a hyperbola (see Fig. a and b are still called the semi-major axis and the semi-minor axis respectively.

it asymptotically approaches the two straight lines y = ±(b/a)x shown on the figure. otherwise we have simply a linear equation. As before. (B.2 separate branches on opposite sides of the origin.) Without loss of generality. On the other hand. representing a straight line. B. At large distances.3 in the x direction to make F = 0 (by setting x = x + F/2D). we can choose the origin y l l/2 x Fig.3).Conics 411 y b a x Fig. which is the equation of a parabola (see Fig. This time. we can shift the origin in the y direction to eliminate E. D cannot be zero (otherwise x doesn’t appear at all in the equation). B. B. Finally. (They cannot both vanish.4) . defining l = −D/C. we may assume that A = 0 and C = 0. we arrive at the canonical form y 2 = 2lx. We still have to consider the special case where one of the constants A and C vanishes.

412 Classical Mechanics Areas are easy to compute using the Cartesian form of the equation.2). we can solve (B.2) for y and integrate to find the area of the ellipse.5) where e and l are constants satisfying e ≥ 0. the result. For example.9) . The form of the equation that emerged from the discussion in §4.8) The only difference is that the origin is not at the centre of the ellipse: (B. 2 a b an ellipse with centre at (−ae. where a= l . I. is πab.2 Polar Form When we are looking for orbits under the action of a central force.7) is equivalent to y2 (x + ae)2 + 2 = 1. 1 − e2 (B. l > 0 (the upper and lower signs refer to the attractive and repulsive cases.) B. which generalizes the familiar πr 2 for a circle. we obtain for both signs the equation x2 + y 2 = (l − ex)2 .4 was r(e cos θ ± 1) = l.5) and square it. If e < 1. 2 1−e 1 − e2 (B. respectively). this reduces almost to the form (B. the ellipse may be thought of as a circle of radius a which has been squashed uniformly in the y direction in the ratio b/a. It is interesting to see how this form is related to the Cartesian form above. If we rearrange (B. it is usually convenient to use polar co-ordinates. (B. 1 − e2 l b= √ . 0). which one depends on the value of e. (In fact.6) This can easily be put into one of the canonical forms above. (B. we can ‘complete the square’ in (B.6) and write it as (1 − e2 )x2 + 2elx + l2 e2 l 2 + y2 = . (B.7) Dividing by l 2 /(1 − e2 ).

(B. 0). and hence that the sum of the two distances is a constant. For a hyperbolic mirror with a source at one focus.) The reason for the name is an intriguing geometric property (see Problem 2): if we have a perfect mirror in the shape of an ellipse light from a source at one focus will converge to the second focus. If e > 1. and drawing a curve while keeping the string taut. (This result provides a commonly used method of drawing an ellipse.12) which is a parabola with its apex at (l/2. Finally. (±ae. if e = 1. meeting it at (ae + a. y = b sin ψ. a source at the focus of a parabolic mirror generates a parallel beam.Conics 413 II.2) of an ellipse can be written in parametric form as x = a cos ψ. Similarly.10) This is a hyperbola with centre at (ae. obtaining y2 (x − ae)2 − 2 = 1. Show [using the identity b2 = (1 − e2 )a2 )] that the distances between the point labelled ψ and the two foci. the position of the origin is one focus of the conic. while the right-hand one. the reflected light will appear to come from a virtual image at the second focus. In all these cases. corresponds to an orbit under an attractive inverse square law force. 0). we complete the square in the same way and divide by l2 /(e2 − 1).4). intersecting the x-axis at (ae − a. Problems 1. corresponds to the repulsive case. for the parabola. and oriented in the opposite direction to (B. the equation can be written y 2 = l2 − 2lx. which makes parabolic mirrors ideal for certain applications. (The plural of focus is foci.) . are a(1 ∓ e cos ψ). In cases I and II there is a second focus symmetrically placed on the other side of the centre. The equation (B. 0). III. by tying a string between two pegs at the foci. the second focus is at infinity. b= √ 2−1 e (B. The left-hand branch. −1 l . a2 b where now a= e2 l .11) (B. 0). stretching it round a pencil. 0).

both peaceful and otherwise.414 Classical Mechanics 2. 2 imply that all radiation originating at one focus of an ellipse at a particular time is then reflected to the other focus with the same time of arrival — a consequence with many applications.) [The results stated in Problems 1. This result provides a proof of the focussing property: light from one focus converges to the other. show that the slope of the curve is given by dy/dx = −(b/a) cot ψ.] . Hence show that the angles between the curve and the two lines joining it to the foci are equal. *Using the parametrization of the previous question. (One way is to find the scalar products between the unit vector tangent to the curve and the unit vectors from the two foci.

3 that. Consider M= a b . 415 . c. η = 0.1 Linear Systems and their Classification We saw in §13. For the critical point itself.11). d are real constants. so that M is singular. y). C.14) by neglecting higher-order terms in the expansion. η = 0.Appendix C Phase Plane Analysis near Critical Points In this appendix we give a summary of the types of behaviour exhibited by a general autonomous dynamical system near critical points in the phase plane (n = 2).1) which is obtained from (13. (13. b. normally. η η η ˙ dt (C. as in (13.13). then there is at least a critical line through ξ = 0.3. as indicated in §13. If this condition is not satisfied. The 2 × 2 Jacobian matrix M [a tensor of valence 2 (§A. to be an isolated critical point it is necessary that the determinant of M is non-zero. the key to the local behaviour and to the stability of the equilibrium at the critical point is. That is to say ad − bc = 0 and M then has an inverse. in the local expansion near a critical point (x0 . rather than just the single point. which are found as derivatives of the functions F (x.10)] has constant entries. G(x. y0 ). c d where a. y) evaluated at the critical points (x0 . we do not consider this case further here. y0 ). at which ξ = 0. the behaviour of the linear system ˙ d ξ ξ ξ ≡ =M .

although M may not now be symmetric.1) in the form ξ(t) ≡ then we require M ξ0 = λξ 0 (C. ξ02 respectively. because of the linearity of the system. c2 corresponding to given initial conditions. in principle. λ2 satisfy the quadratic equation λ2 − (a + d)λ + (ad − bc) = 0. In this case. the trace of M and λ1 λ2 = det M .) Here the eigenvalues λ1 . since the matrix M is not necessarily symmetric we have eigenvalues which may not be real and a set of eigenvectors which may not be orthogonal or even complete. ξ02 are independent in this case and any vector can be expressed as a linear combination of them.4) so that λ1 + λ2 = trM . η0 η (C. 1. the determinant of M (see Appendix A. c2 constants.5) with c1 . In this situation we can carry out a linear change of variables ¯ ξ ξ =S . In particular ξ 0 ≡ ξ(0) leads to the unique values of c1 . There are various cases depending on the nature of the eigenvalues and we can consider separately the cases λ1 = λ2 and λ1 = λ2 . λ1 = λ2 . η η ¯ .3) ξ ξ = 0 eλt ≡ ξ 0 eλt .10. but. (C. we can write ξ(t) = c1 ξ 01 eλ1 t + c2 ξ 02 eλ2 t .2) and this is an eigenvalue/eigenvector problem. (See §A. that is λ2 − (trM )λ + (det M ) ≡ (λ − λ1 )(λ − λ2 ) = 0. (C. The eigenvalues λ1 . λ2 lead to corresponding eigenvectors ξ 01 . Problem 16). The vectors ξ 01 .416 Classical Mechanics If we seek a solution to (C.

The system (C. It should be noted here that λi . in each case the directions of the arrows indicate evolution with time t along the trajectories.e. ξ02 ] and the diagonal matrix in (C. but even then (C. ci (i = 1.Phase Plane Analysis near Critical Points 417 similar to the change to normal co-ordinates in §11. ξ0i .5) is the formal expression of the solution for ξ. S is a rotation matrix .6) . η ¯ (C. λ2 there are then various possible cases to consider. Depending on the eigenvalues λ1 . c2 constants. These are listed below together with sketches of typical patterns of local trajectories. The orientation and sense of rotation in these patterns depends on the system concerned.4. η ¯ (C. and all non-zero vectors are eigenvectors! (b) If there are not two distinct eigenvectors corresponding to λ then the best that can be done by a linear transformation is to reduce the system to ¯ d ξ λ 0 = ¯ 1 λ dt η ¯ ξ . 2) could be complex. However. e + c2 = c1 t 1 η ¯ with c1 . λ is necessarily real and we may find that the matrix reduction to diagonal form indicated above may. In this similarity transformation the 2 × 2 matrix S = [ξ 01 . (C. in such a way that ¯ d ξ λ 0 = 1 0 λ2 ¯ dt η ¯ ξ .6) above then takes the form S −1 M S. i. λ2 are real and the eigenvectors ξ 01 .7) since the diagonal form is not now achievable.7) has the solution ¯ 1 λt 0 λt ξ e . If the eigenvectors are normalized to have unit ˜ length then S −1 ≡ S. since the matrix M = λI in this case. .8) . In this case. be possible: (a) If we can find two distinct eigenvectors corresponding to λ then the above machinery will go through trivially. 2. ξ 02 are orthogonal. In the case when M is symmetric then the eigenvalues λ1 . or may not. where I is the unit matrix. λ1 = λ2 (≡ λ).

If the sign of λ1 . Fig. λ2 real.2 . C. C. This type of critical point is always unstable. C.418 Classical Mechanics Case 1 λ1 . The critical point is asymptotically stable. equal or unequal magnitude. opposite sign =⇒ saddle (or hyperbolic point ) (Fig.2). unequal.g. e. The critical point is then unstable. Case 2 λ1 .1 All trajectories except for one pair approach the critical point tangent to the same line. λ2 is positive then the local structure is similar to that above. λ2 real. negative sign (Fig. C. but with the sense of the arrows reversed. Fig.1). same sign =⇒ (improper ) node.

but with the sense of the arrows reversed.g. The critical point is then unstable. C.4 . source or sink as appropriate. Fig. focus.Phase Plane Analysis near Critical Points 419 Case 3 λ1 = λ2 = λ (necessarily real). λ negative (Fig. When M = λI we have a (proper ) node. C. λ negative (Fig. This critical point is asymptotically stable. 1. e.3). so that there is only a single eigenvector corresponding to λ. This critical point is asymptotically stable. we have an improper (or inflected ) node. C.3 If λ is positive then the local structure is similar to that above. Fig. C.g. e.4).) 2. (A proper node is sometimes called a star. When M may not be diagonalized.

e. (C.) Case 5 λ1. λ2 in terms of trM and det M obtaining 1 λ1. with µ = 0 =⇒ spiral (point ). but this type of critical point is always stable.4) for the eigenvalues λ1 .420 Classical Mechanics If λ is positive then the local structure is similar to that above. µ negative (Fig.9) where the discriminant ∆ = (trM )2 −4(det M ).5 This critical point is asymptotically stable.6). Fig.g.2 = 2 (trM ± √ ∆). C. We can solve equation (C.2 a pure imaginary conjugate pair ±iν =⇒ centre (or elliptic point) (Fig. Case 4 λ1.2 a complex conjugate pair µ ± iν. but with the sense of the arrows reversed. The sense of the arrows may be different. C. The critical point is then unstable. We may then represent the types of behaviour in the phase plane near a critical point schematically. If µ is positive then the local structure is similar to that above. The critical point is then unstable. .5). C. (A spiral is sometimes called a spiral source or spiral sink as appropriate. but with the sense of the arrows reversed.

C. C. C.2 Almost Linear Systems We have seen that the local analysis near a typical critical point in the phase plane leads to (13.1) .7.1) in that it includes some higher-order terms. Fig.14) the classification of the corresponding linear system (C.7 C.14) and this equation differs from the linear system (C.6 (See Fig.) Note that along the line det M = 0 the critical point is not isolated. For the almost linear system (13.Phase Plane Analysis near Critical Points 421 Fig.

Whether (13.14) has a true centre or an unstable or asymptotically stable spiral has to be resolved by a closer scrutiny of the particular system in hand. If > 0 then the critical point is unstable.e. we can examine the system dx = x.e. However. the stability of the critical point would still be just that predicted by the linear system analysis. y = 0). Naturally a centre would still indicate that the critical point is stable. So.10) which has only one critical point (at the origin x = 0. Small changes produced by the higher-order terms are evidently going to be crucial. It is the case. However. 0 −1 . dt dy = −y + x2 . where is small. in the expansion about the origin we have M= 1 0 . whereas if < 0 then the critical point is asymptotically stable.422 Classical Mechanics determines the local phase portrait and the type of stability in almost every case. For example. where is small. that the trajectories near a critical point in the phase plane have a topological equivalence in the linear and almost linear systems except when there is a zero eigenvalue (i. a centre) — this is guaranteed by a theorem due to Hartman and Grobman. it is only when the exactly linear analysis of §C. λ (node) could split to give λ ± (node) or λ ± i (spiral ). if at all. For the linear system. Case 5 The pure imaginary conjugate pair of eigenvalues ±iν (centre) could become ±i(ν + ) (centre) or ± iν (spiral ). the critical point is not isolated) or when the eigenvalues are pure imaginary (i. only in the particular cases: Case 3 The equal real eigenvalues λ. in fact. for the systems we are considering.1 predicts that a critical point is a centre that we need to be suspicious of the predictions of the exactly linear analysis. the spiral would be crucially dependent for its stability on the sign of the new real part of the eigenvalue pair. dt (C.

6. C. That is to say the critical points are found and local analysis effected about each of . The exact family of trajectories near the origin is indicated in Fig. C. are indicated in Fig. The trajectories near the origin.11) together with a second solution x = 0 (for all y). For the exact nonlinear system (C. λ2 = −1 with eigenvectors 1 . C.8(a). It should be noted that the trajectories which go directly into and directly out of the critical point O (respectively the stable and unstable manifolds) correspond directly at and near O for the exactly linear and almost linear systems — a general result usually known as the stable manifold theorem.10) we can write y dy = − + x. which is a saddle.3 and earlier in this appendix. 3 x with c constant. Fig. dx x so that y= x2 c + . higher-order systems can be analyzed in a similar fashion to that carried out in §13.8(b).3 Systems of Third (and Higher) Order As we indicated in §13. 0 0 1 respectively.Phase Plane Analysis near Critical Points 423 so that the eigenvalues are λ1 = 1. (C.8 C.

then the critical point is asymptotically stable. For the nonlinear oscillator equation x + x = x3 .9. with the others either both real or a complex conjugate pair. then the critical point is unstable. ˙ ˙ x = 3x + y. The resulting eigenvalue/eigenvector problems determine the local stability of the critical points and the local phase portrait structures normally determine the global phase portrait for the complete system. Even if only one of the eigenvalues is positive or if the complex conjugate pair has positive real part. For a third-order system. We only note here that. ˙ ˙ x = −2x − y + 2. ˙ x = sin y. y = y 2 − x2 .424 Classical Mechanics them by linearization. y = ˙ ˙ x in the cases ω 2 < α and ω 2 > α. y = 4x − 2y. (b) the equation of the separatrices through the saddles is 2y 2 = x2 (x2 − 2) + 1. the matrix M for a particular critical point is 3 × 3 [again a tensor of valence 2 (§A.g. Find the critical points of the following systems and classify them according to their local linear approximations: (a) (b) (c) (d) (e) (f) x = −3x + y. ˙ ˙ ˙ x = 4 − 4x2 − y 2 . . if all the eigenvalues are negative real or have negative real part. This implies that at least one of the eigenvalues must be real. y = xy. y) phase plane. ˙ ˙ x = −6x + 2xy − 8.6. write x = y and show ¨ that there are two saddle points and one centre in the linear approximation about the critical points in the (x. y = 3xy. so that the three eigenvalues satisfy a cubic equation. Integrate the equations of the system to obtain an ‘energy’ equation and use this to show that (a) the centre is a true centre for the full system.10)]. ˙ 2. ˙ ˙ ω 2 −α−y 2 1+x2 (g) x = y. Problems 1. y = x + x3 . the Lorenz system of §13. e. y = 2x + 2y.

1) for n = 0. where the e evolution of a system through its dynamics induces a map of a Poincar´ e section onto itself. and with F a known function. . . 2. will give insight into mechanisms of chaotic breakdown in continuous systems as well. for example.Appendix D Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps In this appendix we consider discrete dynamical systems in which a space is effectively mapped onto itself repeatedly. in their own right. we may write xn + n = X. 1. and.2 the concept of a Poincar´ return map. as we iterate to find successively x1 = F (x0 ).3) 425 . and consider possible behaviours of xn for suitable initial values x0 . for each n. x2 = F (x1 ) ≡ F F (x0 ) ≡ F (2) (x0 ). we can expand F (xn ) in (D. (D. . D. (D. . often the case for biological systems. We can expect to find any fixed points X as solutions of X = F (X).1 One-dimensional Maps We consider a map given by xn+1 = F (xn ). which are not necessarily equal — this is.1) in the form F (xn ) = F (X − n) = F (X) − nF (X) + 1 2 2 nF (X) + . Also we saw in §14.2) To examine the stability of the fixed point X. etc. Examining properties of maps. . We recognized in Chapter 13 that for some systems it is appropriate and useful to observe at discrete time intervals. when n is small. (D. .

n (D. We may consider different cases (where n → 0): • 0 < |F (X)| < 1 =⇒ n+1 first-order convergence. non-negative). say. • r = 1: xn = x0 for all x0 [steady state].g. quantifying the ability of the population to reproduce.4).4) with r constant (and.426 Classical Mechanics where F (X) = [dF (x)/dx]x=X . • r > 1: xn = x0 exp(n ln r) [exponential growth]. The very simplest map is the linear map: xn+1 = rxn . derived from (D. which quantifies the effect of overcrowding. In a biological context the rate constant r. (D. is balanced by the parameter s. • F (X) = 0. and we have 2 n 1 − 2 F (X) as n → ∞. a seasonal breeding population xn . is xn+1 = rxn − sx2 . F (X) n+1 n as n → ∞. so that we can find all the roots by judicious choices of x0 . If this were a biological model. and that the case |F (X)| = 1 depends more specifically on the function F (X). Here there are various behaviours depending on r: • 0 ≤ r < 1: xn → 0 for all x0 [asymptotic stability of X = 0]. Here xn+1 = xn − f (xn )/f (xn ) and each root has a basin of attraction. and it is evident that xn = rn x0 in this case. The logistic map A simple nonlinear map. and we While this sequence may be continued. etc. of e.3). A fixed point X is asymptotically stable (and therefore an attractor) if |F (X)| < 1. F (X) = 0 =⇒ have second-order convergence.5) which is called the logistic map and has apparent similarity with the logistic differential equation (13. We note that the case |F (X)| > 1 leads to instability of X. This model formed the centrepiece of what has become a very influential paper — ‘Simple . then the rate constant r is crucial in determining the fate of any initial population x0 . the key criterion is that stated above for |F (X)|. A familiar example of what is normally second-order convergence is the Newton–Raphson iteration process to find roots of a single equation f (x) = 0.

with r the single key parameter. Nature. D.1(a) for example.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 427 mathematical models with very complicated dynamics’. and it is ¯ evident that the overbar may then be dropped. D. . F (X) = r(1 − 2X). 459–467. [X = 1 − 1/r is a point attractor — .3) the maps (D. It is helpful for maps to consider [see Fig. 1976.6) onto [0. D. . Naturally the primary physical/biological interest is in the case where the x interval [0. ¯ x ¯ A simple scaling xn = sxn /r leads to xn+1 = r¯n (1 − xn ).6) — at X = 0. in each case. and thus see whether or not it might converge. Despite the apparent similarity with the continuous system (13. [X = 0 is a point attractor — if the corresponding linear model population cannot sustain itself then overcrowding makes it worse!] • 1 < r < 3: X = 0 is unstable and X = 1 − 1/r is asymptotically stable — see Fig. 1].1(a)] a plot of y = x and y = F (x) so that by tracing the vertical and horizontal lines between the two we can follow the sequence x0 → x1 → x2 → . May.1 The behaviours of the map (D. in order to find the map xn+1 = rxn (1 − xn ). We see immediately that there are two fixed points of (D. (D. (D. 1] is mapped by (D. X = 1 − 1/r — and. Fig. 261. which requires 0 ≤ r ≤ 4 — for other applications this r restriction might well be absent.6) for different values of r can be summarized as follows: • 0 ≤ r < 1: X = 0 is asymptotically stable and X = 1 − 1/r is unstable. .6) have some very different and complex properties.6) which is the logistic map in standard form.5).

564 40 · · · : xn → an asymptotically stable 8cycle.428 Classical Mechanics exponential growth is stabilized by overcrowding. until * r = 3.3).g. If we examine xn+2 = F (xn+1 ) = F (2) (xn ). and so on (each time in a shorter interval in r) .2.569 94 · · · : Accumulation point of 2∞ -cycle. the period-3 cycle in Fig. Here the r-intervals ∆i between bifurcations and the measures di of width in X of successive cycles .2. As r increases successive ‘period-doubling bifurcations’ occur as asymptotic stability is exchanged between lower.569 94 · · · < r ≤ 4: For some values of r there are asymptotically stable cycles of different lengths.] • 3 < r ≤ 4: X = 0 and X = 1 − 1/r are now both unstable. * 3. 1 − 1/r. in that the period-doubling cascade is broadly repeated as other-period asymptotically stable cycles become unstable — e.449 48 · · · < r < 3. √ for positive r. such that F (X1 ) = X2 . D.678 57 · · · . are roots of the quadratic r2 X 2 − r(r + 1)X + (r + 1) = 0. The nontrivial solutions X1 . That the period-doubling proceeds broadly in geometric fashion in the limit was discovered by Feigenbaum in 1975. The logistic map attractors are shown in Fig. in an apparently random fashion. then we obtain an equation of degree 4 for the fixed points of this iterated mapping. * 3.544 09 · · · : xn → an asymptotically stable 4cycle found from an equation of degree 16. D. 3 < r < 1 + 6. It should be noted that this figure has an approximate self-similarity at higher magnification. Of course X = 0. D. X = 1 − 1/r are two of the roots of this equation. For asymptotic stability it is necessary (see Problem 1) that |4 + 2r − r 2 | < 1 or equivalently. give 4-cycles arising through a different process).and higher-order cycles (termed a supercritical flip bifurcation): √ * 3 < r < 1 + 6 = 3. but for others the xn values range seemingly over a whole continuous interval.449 48 · · · : xn → an asymptotically stable 2-cycle (or period-2 solution). in very similar fashion to the behaviour of the logistic differential equation (13. four more roots are the trivial solutions 0. The numbers along the top are the cycle periods. * 3. F (X2 ) = X1 [see Fig.1(b)]. when real. X2 (the other roots. X1 . .544 09 · · · < r < 3. An intriguing fact is that odd-period cycles only appear for r > 3. X2 . .

8) (see Feigenbaum. .3) ∆i /∆i+1 → δ = 4. . which are similar up to a rescaling. . The universality leads to δ.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 429 Fig. so describing this universal property: g(x) = −αg g −x α (D. D. .7) in each case in the limit as i → ∞. D.2 are such that (see Figs. . . which is self-reproducing under such rescaling and iteration. di /di+1 → α = 2. y = F (2) (x). y = F (4) (x). . 669–706.502 907 8 . Journal of Statistical Physics. 21. D. Feigenbaum noted that essentially all ‘humped’ mapping functions F (x) lead to intersections of y = x with y = F (x). . . α as universal constants and δ is usually identified as the Feigenbaum number .2. (D. 1979). .669 201 6 . In a process of ‘renormalization’ the precise form of F (x) is lost and in 1976 Feigenbaum discovered a universal function g(x).

This theorem can be proved using a continuity/intermediate value theorem argument. but do so via a rather different process which may be examined by similar methods to those employed above.54409 3. D.9 ⇐ 2 . for every q which precedes p in the sequence: 1⇐ 2⇐4 ⇐ m · · · ⇐ 2 .5 ⇐ 2 .3 9⇐ 7⇐ 5⇐ ······ 2 ······ ······ m ······ · · · ⇐ 2n ⇐ m ······ m ······ ··· ······ 2 ······ 2 ······ 2 ······ ··· ⇐ · · · ⇐ 2.9 ⇐ 2 .3 3. or the ranges of r (in our logistic example) for which they may be observed.9 ⇐ 2.3 r As to the onset of cycles with other periods. The vast majority of these cycles are unstable when all are present.5 ⇐ 2.7 ⇐ 2 . due to Sarkovskii (1964). which is as follows: If a mapping function F (x) has a point xp which is cyclic of order p. For example. then it must also have a point xq of period q. there is a theorem. However it says nothing about stability of these cycles.430 Classical Mechanics X Schematic attractor diagram 2 ∞ accumulation ‘Chaos’ and stable windows 1 2 d1 d2 ∆1 ∆2 d3 ∆3 0 1 3 3. the existence of a 3-cycle implies the existence of cycles of all the other periods! Naturally the odd periods cannot arise from period-doubling.7 ⇐ 2 .5 ⇐ 2 .7 ⇐ 2.44949 3. and it is this which leads to a brief summary statement in the form ‘Period 3 .3 · · · ⇐ 2 .56995 Fig.

2). rather than to asymptotically stable cycles? Analytically this is a tough problem.011 01 . since each digit in the binary expansion of θ0 could be chosen with equal likelihood to be a 0 or a 1. D. 1]. This is not especially interesting. As a consequence of θ being uniformly distributed. . since xn → 2 as we should expect. . as essentially random behaviour of iterates xn occurs (Li and Yorke. However the latter possibility (r = 4) allows us to substitute xn = 2 1 2 [1 − cos(2πθn )] ≡ sin (πθn ) and this leads us to θn+1 = 2θn and then n θn = 2 θ0 . . Then θ1 = 0. it happens that there are two positive values of r for which a formal exact solution of (D. D. with period 1. etc. . . However. What can be said about values of r in the logistic map which lead to distributions of iterates.4. Indeed x has a probability distribution given by P (x) = 1/[π x(1 − x)] (see Figs. θ2 = 8 0.101 101 . 985–992. D. Here θ is evidently periodic. in that the same x is generated by θ and by θ + 1. . Thus we may write any θ0 we choose in a binary representation just using negative powers of 2 — for example. then x is not.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 431 implies chaos’. 1975. . 82. the term chaos was first introduced!). . incidentally. The former (r = 2) allows (1 − 2xn+1 ) = (1 − 2xn )2 leading to xn = 1 1 2n 2 [1 − (1 − 2x0 ) ]. For almost all choices of θ0 then the θn will be uniformly distributed on the interval [0. since the integer part may be cancelled at each stage on account of the periodic property. 1 1 1 θ0 = 2 + 1 + 16 + 64 + · · · = 0. .6) is known — r = 2 and r = 4. American Mathematical Monthly.4 1 x . in which.110 1 . P(x) = 1/ [π√x(1−x)] 0 Fig.

7). The distribution attractors are also characterized by an exponential divergence of iterates. . In measuring λ empirically in a particular practical case. For other values of r there are theoretical results for the corresponding probability distribution attractors (via an equation for the distribution function — Perron–Frobenius). then we have λ n→∞ lim 1 ln n 1 n n−1 i=0 d (n) F (x) dx ln |F (xi )| . so that we expect: • 0 < r < 1: λ = ln r. leading to the sensitivity to initial conditions characteristic of chaos. then n 0 exp(λn) on average. For the logistic map Fig.9) = lim n→∞ Values of λ can be found by numerical computation. We also average over various different x0 . Here λ is a Lyapunov exponent (see §13. • 1 < r < 3: λ = ln |2 − r| (leading to an infinite spike when r = 2). with 0 very small.236)]. λn Since we have F (n) (x0 + 0 ) − F (n) (x0 ) 0 e . the regions of r for which there are positive values of λ indicate the sensitivity to initial conditions at these r values. • r = 4: since P (x) = 1/[π x(1 − x)] so we have 1 1 λ= 0 (ln |F (x)|)P (x) dx = ln |4(1 − 2x)| dx π x(1 − x) = ln 2 = 0. (D. in the sense that for almost all choices of x0 the distribution of xn will approach P (x) for large n. in order to avoid an atypical result through a single unfortunate choice. D. Here F (x) = r(1 − 2x). While there are other measures of the complexity/disorder of the iterates in these cases — . It is called an invariant probability distribution. .432 Classical Mechanics We note that P (x) itself is the attractor here for r = 4. 0 In any event.5 shows a plot of λ as r varies. √ 1 • 3 < r < 1 + 6: λ = 2 ln |r(1 − 2X1 )| + 1 ln |r(1 − 2X2 )| [leading to an 2 √ 1 infinite spike when X1 = 2 (requiring r = 1 + 5 = 3. but no slick result like that above for r = 4. we allow n to become large enough so that our estimate of λ can settle down to a steady value. and we have divergence or convergence of iterates according as λ > 0 or λ < 0.693 147 . If we choose to examine x0 and x0 + 0 . .

10) . the system ‘entropy’ — these will not be pursued further here. see Problem 4 for another (and simpler) example of a chaotic map. 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press. The loss of information about initial conditions. is associated with the non-invertibility of the mapping function F (x). However. and eventually from 2n possible x0 . together with other similar maps. etc.g. each xn can come from 2 possible xn−1 . so that states diverging exponentially are still broadly confined to a bounded region. Hence system memory of initial conditions becomes blurred! Many continuous systems — for example the Lorenz system of §13. 4 possible xn−2 . D.. D. The logistic map (D. e.6). involves stretching and folding. yn+1 = G(xn .Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 433 Fig.5 1996)] [Baker and Gollub (Chaotic Dynamics.2 Two-dimensional Maps For two-dimensional maps any new universality has proved harder to find! However. yn ). while xn+1 is uniquely determined from xn . i. yn ). We may write our generic map in the form xn+1 = F (xn . there are interesting phenomena.e. (D. as the iteration process proceeds in a chaotic regime.6 — exhibit a similar period-doubling in their dynamics.

Y = G(X.14) (x. (D.13) other than the fixed points of (D. Geometrically the map may be considered . (x. 1976): xn+1 = 1 − ax2 + yn . we then typically (X2 . The asymptotic stability of this 2-cycle depends on the eigenvalues of the matrix product M1 M2 = and so on. G known functions.10) found earlier and which satisfy (D.Y2 ) (D. near X.Y ) It now follows that (xn . This map was constructed to exhibit some behaviours similar to those of the Lorenz system of §13. Y ) if and only if the eigenvalues of the matrix M all have modulus less than 1.y)=(X. Y ). (D.6. Y = G[F (X. G(X. b real parameters. When instability sets in as parameters are changed. with M = yn − Y ∂F ∂x ∂G ∂x ∂F ∂y ∂G ∂y .Y1 ) with a.434 Classical Mechanics for integer n and with F. Y ). Y1 ) are the solutions of X = F [F (X.y)=(X2 . (D.11). this is needed to force M n → the zero matrix as n → ∞.15) ∂F ∂x ∂G ∂x ∂F ∂y ∂G ∂y ∂F ∂x ∂G ∂x ∂F ∂y ∂G ∂y .y)=(X1 . Y ). Y and similar to that carried out in §13.3 and in Appendix C. Y ) as solutions of X = F (X. 69–77.12) (x. and where the normal physical interest is in |b| ≤ 1. The H´non map e Probably the most celebrated example is the H´non map (H´non. n yn+1 = bxn . Y2 ) and where these points have a 2-cycle to examine with (X1 . Y ). G(X. yn ) → (X. Y )]. 50. (D. Again we may seek fixed points (X. we obtain xn+1 − X yn+1 − Y M xn − X . Commue e nications in Mathematical Physics.11) By a Taylor expansion. Y )].

6 . (1 − b)2 + 4a]/2a. s one unstable tabl et fixed point w 3 a1 = 4 −(1−b) 2 o-c yc ∞ le a0 a1 a(2 ) −1.25 0. For a > a1 .16) 1 and these are real and distinct if and only if a > a0 = − 4 (1 − b)2 .1225 0. (D.75 −0.3675 a(*) 1. The two-cycle stability is determined through (D.3 −0. D. both fixed points are unstable and we get period-doubling to a 2-cycle.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 435 to be a composition of three separate simple maps — an area-preserving fold.40 b=0 corresponds to the one-dimensional logistic map (see Problem 2) Fig. One of the fixed points is then always unstable and the other is asymptotically 3 stable if a < a1 = 4 (1 − b)2 (see Problem 7).6). an area-preserving rotation. 4-cycle. etc.06 0 0.14) by the eigenvalues of the matrix product M1 M2 = 4a2 X1 X2 + b −2aX1 . There are two fixed points given by X = X± ≡ [−(1 − b) ± Y = Y± ≡ bX± .40 −1.3 −1 1 a0 = − 4 −(1−b) 2 * 0 1 Henon chaotic attractor 2 3 4 5 6 a −1 b a2 one stable. −2abX2 b This leads to asymptotic stability of the 2-cycle only when a1 < a < a2 1 with a2 = (1 − b)2 + 4 (1 + b)2 . The period-doubling cascade then continues (see Fig. b 1 0. a contraction |b| in the x direction. D.

Smale ‘stretched’ the unit square in one co-ordinate direction and ‘squeezed’ it in the other direction. b) values where the attractor is very complex (see. Fig.7.4. and embedded among other-period cycles. proving its existence for a particular system may be very tough.436 Classical Mechanics Beyond the cascade. This chaotic attractor — termed ‘strange’ — has some similar features to the Lorenz attractor of Fig. D. b = 0. .20. The repetition of stretching. Fig. D. while it guarantees the ‘sensitivity to initial conditions’ of chaos. then placing the resulting strip (with one ‘fold’) over the original square — with inevitable overlap. Infinite repetition of this sequence of operations leads to the identification of an attractor consisting of all the points which remain within the original square indefinitely. there are (a.. where a = 1.3). This attractor has great topological complexity and. e.7 Here there is stretching along the strands of the attractor and squeezing across them — with associated Lyapunov exponents which are respectively positive (along) and negative (across) (see Problem 8). 13.g. It also has a fractal character in that it has a broad similarity in features and relative scale at all magnifications. squeezing and folding onto the original region is characteristic of a technical construct — the Smale ‘horseshoe’ (1960) — which is now known to be a trademark of chaotic systems.

If we make use of action/angle variables. 14. we can .4). Some consequences are explored briefly in §D.2 we introduced the concept of a Poincar´ surface of section. In passing (and for reference in §D. 1991). 73–169.3 Twist Maps and Torus Breakdown In §14. Here α is the rotation number . as in §14. as e a slice through the dynamical structure. 133. For the H´non e map this is the case only when |b| = 1. as described in §14. in polars: rn+1 θn+1 rn θn + 2πα(rn ) rn θn = ≡T . In §14.17) When a perturbation Hamiltonian is introduced. which is the ratio of normal frequencies characterizing the particular torus concerned — it therefore depends on r.6.12) and then the stretching and squeezing exactly compensate each other (see Problem 11). then the closed curves of the Poincar´ section can be taken as concentric circles.3) we note that a map which preserves area would have | det M | = 1 in (D. The intersection points e of a trajectory with its own particular one of these circles (of radius r) will necessarily be twisted successively around the origin (the centre of the circle) through an angle 2πα.3 and particularly in the polar form of Fig.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 437 A formal demonstration of chaotic dynamics for the H´non map is cone tained in a paper by Benedicks and Carleson (Annals of Mathematics.2) has the equal-area property.1 we noted that each trajectory of an integrable Hamiltonian system with n degrees of freedom is confined to the surface of an n-torus in the 2ndimensional phase space. Equal-area maps are of special interest since the Poincar´ return map for a section through a Hamiltonian e system (see §14. The n-tori corresponding to the range of initial conditions are ‘nested’ in the phase space. D. For n = 2 degrees of freedom this section of the nested torus structure is a continuum of closed curves.5(c). We can then introduce the notion of a twist map. each one of which is intersected by one of its own torus trajectories in a sequence of points (see Fig. T [Moser (1973)]. 14.3. (D.

α+ irrational. (We have here chosen to take α to be an increasing function of radius r. . anticlockwise respectively — this is so since 2πsα− < 2πk and 2πsα+ > 2πk. This is also true for the corresponding torus in the full phase space. and their tori. As in the discussion of the problem of small denominators in §14. leading to sensitivity to initial conditions and chaos. s positive integers and with α− . If α is an irrational number then. as the perturbation quantified by in T grows from zero — i. for small enough. which break down under perturbation.9. All points of C are fixed under the iterated mapping T (s) .17) for three neighbouring circles C− . C+ twisted ‘rigidly’ clockwise. As we shall see. α+ > k/s (say). g known smooth functions. the sensitivity to initial conditions is strongest for the rational α = k/s with small values of s. α = k/s. but dense’ among the real numbers (see Problem 12) and these α correspond to resonances in the system. D. as the integrable system T becomes a near-integrable system T . in such a way that area is still preserved. α+ are irrational the circles C− .e.438 Classical Mechanics model the modified situation using a perturbed twist map.18) with small and positive and with f.e. the circle undergoes some distortion (perturbation) but is certainly not destroyed. leading eventually to complete breakdown of the torus structure.6. In fact the answer to this question depends on the rotation number α corresponding to our particular circle chosen. C+ are only mildly distorted when we apply the map T successively s times instead — i. However. which is mapped to itself (with a twist) by T .) Then applying the twist map T successively s times we find that the effect of T (s) (see Fig. Let us examine the twist map (D. θn ) ≡T rn θn . the inner and outer circles C− . with k. θn ) θn + 2πα(rn ) + g(rn . it is circles for (D. when we (s) iterate to consider the effect of T . C. C+ are still twisted clockwise.6.8) is to map the circles to themselves. corresponding to rational α. anticlockwise respectively — see Fig.17). C+ corresponding respectively to α− < k/s. As the perturbation grows with . the breakdown associated with each such rational α broadens. D. so that progressive overlap occurs. Since α− . This result is in accord with the KAM theory referred to in §14. (D. The rational α are ‘scanty. We can now ask what happens to a circle of a particular radius. with C invariant and with C− . T : rn+1 θn+1 = rn + f (rn .

T For the map T to model a section of a Hamiltonian dynamical system (s) — must be one (as. D. By considering all possible radius arms we construct the closed curve C consisting of all such points P which are mapped only radially by (s) ¯ — to C.9 Moving outwards radially from O in any direction we can. find a point on that radius arm which undergoes no net twist when the (s) is applied — P is mapped only radially (to Q) by this iterated map T process. of course. does T itself) the map T — and hence T of equal-area. D. as reflected in §14. .2.8 (s) T ε C+ E H (s) T ε C− H P Q E O C E H C The action of the perturbed twist map Fig.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 439 C+ O C− C Invariant circles under the twist map Fig. by continuity.

forming a homoclinic tangle.v.440 Classical Mechanics ¯ Since the areas contained within the curves C and C must be equal. where n is a positive integer (usually 1). which (s) correspond. Recognition by Poincar´ of the existence of such tangles was e the first mathematical realization of the presence of what we now call chaos. D. of course. also in §C. These points are all that remains fixed from the original invariant circle C of the unperturbed iterated map T (s) . while maintaining the equal-area property of the return map.2 and this forces a dense interweaving of ordered and chaotic motions within Hamiltonian systems (Fig.2) for neighbouring such points in the same family cross to form what are called homoclinic intersections. This results in the stretching. where the iterated mapping sense of flow is indicated. D. squeezing and folding associated with the Smale horseshoe referred to in §D. to fixed points of the iterated map T . of their multiplicity and their alternating stability is a result known as the Poincar´–Birkhoff e Theorem (1927).10 There are evidently in all 2ns such fixed points of the iterated map T .11). in order not to self -intersect. in that trajectories of the system have to twist and turn. (s) . We now note that the fixed points are of ¯ alternating type as we move around C (or C) — see Fig. The statement of existence of these fixed points.10. D. (a) Elliptic point (E) stable (b) Hyperbolic point (H) unstable Fig. The resulting instability at all scales leads inevitably to sensitivity to initial conditions. It turns out that the elliptic fixed points E are themselves surrounded (at higher scales) by elliptic and hyperbolic fixed points corresponding to even higher-order frequency resonances. there is in general an even number of intersections of these curves. For the hyperbolic fixed points H the unstable and stable manifolds (q.

D. e For further exploration of breakdown to chaos under parameter change. *Allowing r and xn to be complex in the logistic map (D.6) for xn 1 with xn .Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 441 KAM torus Schematic chaotic breakdown KAM torus Hyperbolic point H Elliptic point E Fig. yn related linearly by yn = α + βxn and a = 4 r(r − 2).13). (c) Sketch the corresponding regions when these results are expressed in terms of the complex a plane for the yn map of Problem 2. b. (b) a 2-cycle attractor. (d) Hence determine the principal period-doubling bifurcation points for the logistic map on the range −2 ≤ r ≤ 4. [This is 2 an example of the fact that all quadratic maps yn+1 = A + Byn + Cyn are essentially just the logistic map.6). .11 An example of a map in which some of the breakdown to chaos in a Poincar´ section is apparent is that for the oval billiard map (Fig. Show that the map yn+1 = 1 − ayn is just the logistic map (D. see Problem 13. in that (D.] 3. s can be found such that yn satisfies the logistic map with parameter s (= r) and xn = a + byn . 14.6) can be obtained by a suitably chosen linear relation between yn and xn .6) with r non-negative: (a) Show that there is a point attractor for 0 ≤ r < 3. √ (b) Show that there is a two-cycle attractor for 3 < r < 1 + 6. For the logistic map (D. find regions of the complex r plane for which the map has (a) a point attractor. 2 2. Problems 1. (c) Show that a.

. xn+1 = a sin xn . The tent map xn+1 = 2xn . To determine stability. 2(1 − xn ). show that there is one asymptotically stable fixed point.] 8. Explain e how the semi-axes of the ellipse are related to Lyapunov exponents λ1 . Explore the two-dimensional maps of Problems 7–9 using a computer. 1]. √ when 1 < a < 2 there are two such fixed points at X = ± a − 1. Show that this map exhibits extreme sensitivity to initial conditions. y) = bx. What happens when a becomes > 2? 6. λ2 with b 0 λ1 λ2 = −b. 1 (b) *when 3 (1 − b)2 < a < (1 − b)2 + 4 (1 + b)2 there is an asymptotically 4 stable 2-cycle. *Show that a small circle of radius centred at any (X. in that an uncertainty 0 in x0 is rapidly magnified. *The Lozi map is (D. it is useful to consider a sketch of the function f (λ) ≡ b/λ − λ and look for points where f (λ) = 2aX in order to find (a. Y ) becomes a small ellipse under a single iteration of the H´non map (D. −2aX 1 the eigenvalues of M are λ1 . G(x. 10. where a. λ2 and show that λ1 + λ2 = ln |b| with λ1 > 0 > λ2 . For the cubic map xn+1 = axn − x3 . b) such that both the eigenvalues satisfy |λi | < 1.15) show that: e 1 (a) when − 4 (1 − b)2 < a < 3 (1 − b)2 there are two real fixed points. 5.15). implying simultaneous ‘stretch’ and ‘squeeze’. λ1 + λ2 = −2aX. [Hint : Since M = (a) When |b| < 1 and |a| < 1 − b. ( 1 < xn ≤ 1) 2 1 (0 ≤ xn ≤ 2 ) has unstable fixed points. (b) Find the 2-cycle when |b| < 1 and a > 1 − b and determine its stability. when n |a| < 1. show that. there is an asymptotically stable fixed point X = 0 and that. y) = 1 + y − a|x|. 4 one of which is asymptotically stable. 9. where a is real. Further interesting examples are xn+1 = exp[a(1 − xn )]. Estimate the number of iterations after which the range of uncertainty in the iterates is the complete interval [0. b are real parameters. 7. For the H´non map (D. Explore the one-dimensional maps of Problems 1–5 using a programmable calculator or (better) a computer.442 Classical Mechanics 4.10) with F (x.

ω2 in the light of the discussion of periodicity and degeneracy in §§14. there are vastly more irrationals than rationals — unlike the former the latter are ‘countable’.3). despite (a). 52. 2 (0 ≤ xn < 1 ). periodic orbits and bands of chaos as tori I = constant undergo progressive breakdown.6 and the real ratio ω1 /ω2 . 1 2 (yn + 1)) ( 1 ≤ xn ≤ 1). (Note: This equal-area map models the twist around a Poincar´ section e by the dynamics (as in §14. so that the rationals are ‘scanty. φ). yn+1 = xn + 2yn (each modulo 1). *As an exercise on near-integrable systems explore the ‘standard map’ (Chirikov–Taylor) analytically/computationally: In+1 = In + K sin φn .1. Show that for numbers on the real line: (a) between any two irrationals we can certainly find a rational. yn+1 ) = (2xn . Physics Reports.Discrete Dynamical Systems — Maps 443 11. (b) between any two rationals we can certainly find an irrational. 1979. when the integrable case (K = 0) is expressed in action/angle variables (I.2 and in more detail in §D. but dense’. 263–379. See Chirikov. although it is still the case that for any irrational ω1 /ω2 there are rationals arbitrarily close by. (Note that. As K increases there appear resonance zones.14.) . φn+1 = φn + In+1 . Consider a system of two degrees of freedom with two natural frequencies ω1 . This emphasizes that for most systems periodicity (closure) is relatively rare. By calculating Lyapunov exponents examine sensitivity to initial conditions of the equal-area maps of the unit square (0 ≤ x. 2 12. 1 yn ) 2 (2xn − 1. (b) The baker’s transformation (xn+1 . y ≤ 1): (a) Arnold’s cat map xn+1 = xn + yn .) 13.

444 Classical Mechanics .

Earlier by (2a/v) − (2/ω) arctan(ωa/v). 2. t = 0. oscillation between two turning 1 points if k < 0 and E < 0. 8.9 .76◦ E of N. 5. 10. 7 N.2 m. 8. 1 turning point if k > 0 and E < 2 ka2 . 7 N. |x| < a.6. 2 2a/k. 3. −1. 2.214) = Re[(−3 − 4i)e2it ]. (b) 1 turning point.2 mm. (±0. |x| > a. 11. 4.9.107 s. m1 /m2 = r2 /r1 .322 s. (a) no turning points. 445 . 2GM (R−1 − a−1 ). V = 2 kx2 − c ln x.2 × 10−3 )◦ = 7. 8 km s−1 . 14. 60. F = mk. oscillation. c/2m a2 . 1. 10 N. x = ±a. 0.2). 400 N. (x in m. CHAPTER 2 1. F = kx. mA /mB = 3. r = (m2 r2 + m3 r 3 )/(m2 + m3 ). 5. otherwise no turning points. 130 km.12 m. F = 0. F ij = F ij . 1.7◦ s−1 . V = 4 cx4 . 10. 2m¨ = F = F 21 + F 31 .66◦ sin πt = 10◦ cos(πt + π/3). 4. F = −mk.Answers to Problems CHAPTER 1 1. 3. x = c/k. ω = k/m. V = −GM m/x. ω = 2k/m. 300 N.6 min. rij = r ij . −1. 0.447 s. 7. (c) 1 or 2 turning points. θ = 5◦ cos πt − 8. (2. −0.62◦ W of S. 9. 3v/4. r 0.4. z = −(mg/k)(1 − cos ωt). 6. arcsin 0. 1 7. t in s) x = −3 cos 2t + 4 sin 2t = 5 cos(2t − 2. pi = pi − mi v.2). 8. 15. 1 6. (0.135 = 7.

g/k. γ = k/m. v 2 = 4ka2 /3m. F = c[3(k · r)r − r2 k]/r5 . 32.35 km.05 s. z → −g/γ. 6. 10. 7. 0. 22. ω1 = ω0 + γ 2 ± γ. 7 m s−1 . τ = 1. z = (mg/k)[−1 + (1 + γt)e−γt ]. 2π s−1 . 7. z = (g/γ 2 )(1 − e−γt ) − gt/γ. √ 16. 2. 9. F not conservative. ¨ ˙ 12. (i) 0. −5ka/6m. For θ = π − α.017 × 2π l/g. θ = 2F/ma − (g/a) sin θ. 1. ¨ 19. F0 = 0.17◦. W = 2πmγω1 a2 . . v/2. θ = θ0 cos( g/l t). α = π/4 + β/2. √ 15. gk arctan( k/g u). 18. 17.18 km. 883 m. G(t) = (e−γ− t − e−γ+ t )/m(γ+ − γ− ). 1 1 27. π/ω. 202 m. (a) πa2 . an = c/mω 2 n(1 + n2 ). 382 m. (b) v < − c/ma or c/ma < v < 2c/ma. mω 3 l4 /r3 . Fϕ = 0. 17. 23. Fθ = c sin θ/r3 .446 Classical Mechanics 12. a2 + v 2 /4ω 2 ± v/2ω. Fr = 2c cos θ/r3 . 30◦ . ˙ 13. x = a tanh( c/m at).362 mg. 1 2 2 ¯ 26. 21. 2π 2ma3 /c. √ 28.006 s. 2 25. 2 4. x= c m 1 γ+ −γ− 1 −γ− t 2 e γ− − 1 −γ+ t 2 e γ+ − 2γ 4 ω0 + t 2 ω0 . T = 364. ± 2(g/l)(cos θ − cos θ0 ). 8.33◦ .7 s. 8.5 J. 29.2 s. z = x tan α − gx2 /2v 2 cos2 α.3◦ . 6. 3 10.95 s. CHAPTER 3 1 1. x = a. 3. 2π l/g. 11. (c) V = −ar2 sin θ sin ϕ. 2 3. 31. (a) V = − 2 ax2 − ayz − bxy 2 − 1 bz 3 . E = 4 ma2 (ω1 + ω0 ). final velocities: −6 m s−1 . 14. 20. θ2 = 4F θ/ma − (2g/a)(1 − cos θ). 7. (b) 0. x = −a. 1. (gk)−1/2 ln(ekh − e2kh − 1). (1/2k) ln(1 + ku2 /g). z = wx/u − gx2 /2u2 − γgx3 /3u3. F may be conservative. 10 m s−1 . 4ω. c/m(a2 − x2 ). ∆T = 2 mω 2 l2 . α = (g/l)α. 16 mm. (a) |v| < c/ma. vn = en 2gh. 5.89 km. 3 1 (f) V = − 2 (a · r)2 . 5. 42. t > 0. (c) v > 2c/ma. (ii) 1 a. 4ka/3m. 1 a + b. x = (v/ω)e−γt sin ωt → vte−γt . 823 m.

62 m s−2 . others zero. 25. CHAPTER 4 1.6 km s−1 . ei · p = mhi qi . ∂eϕ /∂ϕ = −(er sin θ + eθ cos θ). mc [(cosh λ − cos θ)θ 2 25.38 km s−1 . ∂eθ /∂θ = −er . θ2 = (θ − 1 + cos θ)2g/3a. θ = 7π/6. 14. ¨ 1 ˙ ˙ ˙˙ 24. θ = π. 17. 2.33. 84. 9. 18. mc2 [(cosh2 λ − cos2 θ)λ + 2 sinh 2λ(λ2 − θ2 ) + sin 2θ λθ] = Fλ . m 4 ξ+η ξ ¨ ξ − 1η 2 ˙ ξ ξ − η ˙ η 2 = Fξ . 7. θ = 0. 10. (2/3π) yrs = 77.61 × 105 km. pi = mh2 qi . ˙˙ ˙ 23. 13. 11. F = mg(1 + 2 sin θ)/6. 2.5 days. r = a. x2 + y 2 − 2by = a2 .2 km s−1 . 6. x = c−2 (θ − 2 sin 2θ). b constant. 38.4 min. 19.8◦ . 13. 4. b. 60. 2. λ constants. r = 2a.1 km s−1 . 0. unstable. r = (¨ − ρϕ )eρ + (ρϕ + 2ρϕ)eϕ + z k = (¨ − rθ2 − r sin2 θ ϕ2 )er + ρ ˙ ˙˙ ¨ ¨ ˙ ˙ (rθ + 2r θ − r sin θ cos θ ϕ2 )eθ + (r sin θ ϕ + 2r cos θ θϕ + 2r sin θ ϕ)eϕ . a. (a) only: r = k/(c − g). 1. 4. 11. 3. 2 2 2 ˙ ˙ ˙˙ ¨ − 1 sin 2θ(λ2 − θ2 ) + sinh 2λ λθ] = Fθ . 12. y = λ + a cosh[(x − b)/a]. 7. ˙ v = mg sin α cos α/(M + m sin2 α). 173 min. 5.22 × 104 km.176 au = 2. ∂er /∂θ = eθ . (θ0 . z = c−2 sin2 θ. . 1. ω = 5/2 ω0 . √ 1 k/m a. (a) and (b): r = k/(c + g). ∂eθ /∂ϕ = eϕ cos θ. 1 2 20. stable. m 4 ξ+η η η − 1ξ ¨ 2 ˙ ξ ξ − η ˙ η 2 = Fη . α = arcsin(2/3) = 41. u = (M + m)g sin α/(M + m sin2 α).8 m s−2 . ˙ 1 15.9 yrs. 2. 108 min. θ = (1 − sin θ)g/3a.013. r2 = 2 a2 (3 + 2 cos α ± 5 + 4 cos α). cot θ = cot θ0 cos(ϕ − ϕ0 ). T = 2 m i h2 qi . 0.24 radial oscillations per orbit.Answers to Problems 447 ¨ ˙ 13. 8. Ratio is 1. thereafter the two bodies move independently until string tautens. ˙ i ˙ i ˙ 2 ˙ ¨ ¨ ˙˙ ¨ r ˙ 21. ω = 1/2 ω0 . 1/r2 = mE/J 2 + (mE/J 2 )2 − mk/J 2 cos 2(θ − θ0 ). A circle. 1.64 × 107 km. 26. ϕ0 constants). 1 U = J 2 /2mr2 + 2 k(r − a)2 .4 km s−1 . a.0 × 1011 MS (assuming that the mass distribution is spherical — this is the mass inside the radius of the Sun’s orbit). 5.46 yrs. 134. ∂er /∂ϕ = eϕ sin θ.

1 × 103 s−1 . decreasing weight and a Coriolis force of 79 N. in plane normal to Jupiter’s orbit.2 au. 4. 30. dσ/dΩ = kπ 2 (π − θ)/mv 2 θ2 (2π − θ)2 sin θ.46 t wt. 28.448 Classical Mechanics 14. ω = (−ka2 + c)/ma5 . 21. 29.7 km s−1 . 16.013 mbar km−1 .123 m. 82◦ ahead of Jupiter. 14. 5. at 23. rad. 0. 100 kg wt. E = 0 : re±nθ = r0 .13 × 10−11 m. 97◦ ahead of Earth. = −J 2 /m2 lr2 .4 mm. 8.6 au. x = a(e − cosh ψ). 5. (a) 542 m s−1 . 15. 60◦ . 12. 9. −GM m/a. 26. 5. J 2 + mk < 0. 1. 23. 8.8 au. 0. J 2 + mk < 0. 6. 5. 2.29 t wt. r = eJ 2 cos θ/m2 lr2 .45 km s−1 . 14. 6. 4. 0. Hyperbola with origin at the centre. 19. E > 0 : r sinh n(θ − θ0 ) = ±b. 2. cos θ = (1 − l/R)/ 1 − l/a.7 km s−1 .44 m. (a) 99.7 km s−1 .5◦ to orbital direction.20 mm.0 s.3 km s−1 . (c) 99.88 t wt. E > 0 : r(θ − θ0 ) = ±b. 18. 1.2 m s−2 = 0. 16. E < 0 : r cosh n(θ − θ0 ) = b. opposite to Jupiter’s orbital motion. . 17. (b) 100. ˙ ¨ CHAPTER 5 2. 3. GM m/2a.53 × 10−3 N to south. 3. J 2 + mk < 0. r = a(e cosh ψ − 1). 2. b2 = J 2 /2m|E|: J 2 + mk > 0. 20.2 yrs. 10. 16.8 km s−1 .26RE. r = eJ sin θ/ml. E > 0 : r cos n(θ − θ0 ) = b.2 yrs. 27. 2.1 × 10−3 m s−2 = 1. 0. 465 m s−1 . 7. (c) 743 m s−1 . 1.086 gJ.87 yrs. 8. accel. 23RJ .46 × 10−3 N up. J 2 + mk = 0. 25.3 s−1 .3 km s−1 at 23.5◦ to Jupiter’s orbital direction. 15. With n2 = |1 + mk/J 2 |. 3. 7. 78 mm. 4. 24.9 × 106 km = 56RJ . ω = (−ka2 − c)/ma5 .9 × 10−5 gS . 7.3 km s−1 . 5.155◦. 20 kg wt.4◦ . 22. (b) 187 m s−1 . 47.5 au. 9. t = (abm/J)(e sinh ψ − ψ). y = b sinh ψ. 38.77 days.

E = (3qa2 /4π 0 r7 ) (3x2 − 7y 2 − 2z 2 )x. 124 m. z |z| 5. m¨ ⎤ F ⎡ ma. −Gm/r + (Gma2 /r3 )(3 cos2 θ − 1).28 J m−2 . ⎡ r∗ = − ⎤⎡ ⎤ x cos ωt − sin ωt 0 x 19. 2. G = 2G. 13. 4. 1 Q = − 2 qa2 . 10. (7x2 − 3y 2 + 2z 2 )y. E = (3d · rr − r2 d)/4π 0 r5 . . depends only on m/q. 14. G = G = 0. (d) F = F = 0. 6. (ME /MM )2 (RM /RE )4 = 35. 0.7 × 106 yrs. −6Gm/r + (7Gma4 /4r5 )[3 − 5(x4 + y 4 + z 4 )/r4 ]. 79 m. r x = (mv/qB) sin(qBt/m).089 m. 16.5 mins.0 × 1040 J. 11. (c) F = −F = 3i(dd /4π 0 r4 ). 8. E → k(σ/2 0 )(z/|z|).76 × 1011 s−1 . for θ = 0. 3 2 1 2 5 (q /4π 0 a).0.5. 15.5 × 10 C. 7. When d is in same direction as E. 13. 6. 18. z = (2mE/qa2 B 2 )y 2 . 1/9. (b) F = −F = 3k(dd /4π 0 r4 ).Answers to Problems 449 11. φ = (q/2π 0 a2 )( a2 + z 2 − |z|). G = −G = −k(dd /4π 0 r3 ).8 km. g = (Gm/2a3 )(x. 5 4.1 × 1016 s−1 . y = (mv/qB)[cos(qBt/m) − 1]. −2z). G = −j(dd /4π 0 r3 ). G = G = 0. 2 8πσ0 a4 /5. − √ z a2 +z 2 . z = qEt2 /2m. −Gm/a + (Gm/4a3 )(2z 2 − x2 − y 2 ). ∼ 105 T. E = 2 × 106 V m−1 . V = (r2 d · d − 3d · r d · r)/4π 0 r5 . 2 (q /4π 0 a). − (8πGρ0 a3 /3)(r−1 − a−1 ). 12. E = (qk/2π 0 a2 ) 2. l = πmv/qB.3 × 1016 s−1 . 3. 4. CHAPTER 6 √ 1. 78 RE . φ ≈ (q/4π 0 )(1/z − a2 /4z 3). ⎣y ∗ ⎦ = ⎣ sin ωt cos ωt 0⎦ ⎣y ⎦. T = 2 m(r + ω ∧ r)2 . 17. 3. 14.9 mins. l = 0. 5. 1 V = 2 i=j (qi qj /4π 0 rij ). 29. B = Bk. (a) F = −F = −6k(dd /4π 0 r4 ). 12. y. 14. 15. 2πσ0 a3 /25 0. 1. z∗ 0 0 1 z 1 ˙ 20. 5(x2 − y 2 )z . 2 2 2 3qa (x − y )/4π 0 r5 . F = m¨ = q(E + v ∧ B) with E = Ek. −3. 9.

143 kg. 6.e. 17. 7.43 × 10−6 s−1 . 3 × 10−6 . 1 z1 = l + m1 vt/M − 2 gt2 + (m2 v/M ω) sin ωt.9 yrs (should be 18. 23. 0.7 × 1011 Pa =1. 258 days. with ω = k/µ and v < lω. → 1 or 0.07 =) 3. (3.5 m. 4. 26.44 + 1. 2πGρ2 R2 /3 = 1. 0. −q. 6 ln 10 / ln 2 ≈ 20. (0. 5.15v. 11.3 km s−1 . i. 7. (The second term comes from recoiling target particles. 2.48 =) 3. CHAPTER 7 1. 14. Φ = −kρ. 1. 164 kg. 15. 1.15v.2 MeV. 12. +2. (0. 2. −1.65v. same for both.4 × 105 km from centre of Sun. 45◦ . 2.071. 7. 1 2 z2 = m1 vt/M − 2 gt − (m1 v/M ω) sin ωt. 17.07 − 0. 4.48 × 105 kg. qµ2 e−µr /4π 0 r.8 MeV. 8. m1 ≥ 0.) 1. CHAPTER 8 1.6 km. m1 /m2 = 1. 55. 0.6 yrs). 10. 24. T2 = m1 Q/M . −0.7◦. 0. 2. 45◦ . 0). 2. 12. (|v 2 | = 2 3v/5).00125 M0. (2. 10.91 km s−1 .99 km s−1 . 16.28◦ .74 km s−1 . 25.13. 3 stages. 13.0 km s−1 .2 km s−1 .00125 M0 .4 min. 2 M0 u (1 − e 44.06 km s−1 .8 × 103 s−1 . 0).35v. 33. 5. just outside the Sun. z = 2qE/mω 2 . 9. √ √ If u1 = (v. a2 cos θ(1/ sin4 θ + 1/ cos4 θ).13 t. where a = e2 /2π 0 mv 2 . 0. 12. 640 keV. ± 3)v/5.9 km.. ∗ ∗ T1 = m2 Q/M. 3. 51 days. a = πk/4G. 1 ¨ r 2mR = 0. 90◦ . . 8. 19. 2 m¨ = qE − (q 2 /4π 0 r3 )r. 4. 6. 3. T ∗ /T = m2 /M . 0)v/5. 0.41b. 9. 6.0◦ . 1 2 −v/u ). 0): (−1. +450 km.7 Mbar.8 × 106 kg. 3. 62. (8π/5)ρ0 d0 r4 . 22.450 Classical Mechanics 18. (3.

14. 60◦ . δa = −2(I/m) (1 + e)a3 /GM (1 − e). (b) J about leading edge. (b) (M g/8)(−9 sin 2ϕ.44 Hz (Ω = 21. 2)M a2 /3. 14.097 × 103 J. 11. 13. (a) 3M g cos ϕ. 2M (a5 − b5 )/5(a3 − b3 ). (b) 3.2 h.15 d. dissipated to heat.3 × 10−3 N.4 d. da/dt = dl/dt = −2ρAva/m.Answers to Problems 451 10. M mg/(M + 2m). 10. 64 r. 2. 11.9 km. 1. 3. (a) E. 4 2a/3.. 3g/7. 0. 1. 21. ∗ ∗ ∗ I1 = I2 = 51M a2 /320. 1. (b) 1.83 m. 22. −3.85 d. 5. 11 + 9 cos 2ϕ). 3.m. 4. (a) 1. 25. I3 = I3 . 6.50 × 10−12 s−1 = 16. I1 = I2 = 3M (a2 + 4h2 )/20. 4. .6 s−1 ). 40.44. 3bX/4M a2. 112 s. 5. 18.6 s. CHAPTER 10 1. because scattering is isotropic.3 s. g/7. P . (3 2g/4a)1/2. (a) (8. −5g/7. 17. ±g/4. 1 + cos 2ϕ). 3bX/4a. I3 = 3M a2 /10. Z = 3h/4. (a) 6. 4mgl/(M + 2m)a2 . 3v/8a. 6. 4a/3. √ [16( 2 − 1)ga/3]1/2 . 12.031 s. (1. 7. 8.011 s.64 Hz (Ω = 16.3 × 10−6 J from work done by insect. 25 × 10−6 kg m2 . 5/8. 24mg/7. 9. 20.37 s. 6. −16.6 s−1 ). b = 4a/3.55 s. 0) × 10−4 kg m2 s−1 . (c) E. −20. (3M g/2)(− sin 2ϕ. 9 × 10−6 kg m2 . 12mg/7. A = πr2 . 8.p. −ρAv 2 . (b) 3. CHAPTER 9 √ √ 1. (a) 2. 2.78 km. 2)M a2/3. M 2 mg/k(M + 2m)2 .9 s.244 s−1 . 1/2. 11. 16 × 10−6 kg m2 .3 yr−1 . 1. 12.08. 15. 7. −2. 8. (b) (11. 2. 13.

347 s−1 (cf. x − 2ω y − ω 2 x = −GM1 (x + a1 )/r1 − GM2 (x − a2 )/r2 . 2M a/(M + m). x = x0 − y/4. 7.0399 sin 63.5025 mm. 371. east and west. ω 2 = ω0 . 2. 3√ y = a(2 cos ω1 t cos ω2 t + 2 2 sin ω1 t sin ω2 t). ϕ0 /5. ω0 + 3ωs . large Ω is bigger. −m/M . y = a − 2act/l. 1 : −2 : 1. √ 2 2 2 2 2 2 13. x0 = 2mg/k. √ 1 where ω1. ω 2 = (3 ± 5)k/2m. small Ω is slightly smaller. 2a/3. (b) y = 0. (c) y(x. 1 3. 1.0025 s. (t in s). 2 2 2 11. g/l + k/M + k/m. (M + m sin2 θ)lθ + mlθ2 cos θ sin θ + (M + m)g sin θ = 0. 5. l/c) = −y(x. q2r+1 = (−1)r 4 2la/π 2 (2r + 1)2 . 8. Ω2 = ω 2 − g 2 /l2 ω 2 .). (a) ω 2 = k/m. ω1 = q 2 /4π 0 a3 m. 3 3 15. H = (px − py )2 /6m + p2 /2m + 2 ky 2 − mgy. (0. t = 1 s. AX /Ax = 1. 10. γ2 = (α + 2β)/2m.2 ω).40 s−1 . 9. I3 = I3 .62 s−1 . (a) as at t = 0 except that for l/2 − ct < x < l/2 + ct. 2 12. 3(1 − a/l)k/m. ¨ 10. 2.m. 0). ∗ ∗ 11. I3 are replaced by I1 < I1 . 62. ω2 = 4ω1 . r2 = (x − a2 )2 + y 2 . 2 2 2 2 2 4. ω0 + ωs .0t) mm. 0. √ 14. y0 = 3mg/k. y y = mg(1 − cos ωt)/k.2 − ω 2 + 2iγ1. √ 3. no. ω 2 = 4k/3m.2 = (F/ 2m)(ω1.27t − 0.3◦ . I1 ϕ = I3 ω3 Ω sin λ cos ϕ − I1 Ω2 sin2 λ sin ϕ cos ϕ. 6.452 Classical Mechanics 8. ω 2 = (M + m)g/ma. 1 : 0 : −1. ω 2 = g/l. 14. Ax : Ay : Az = 1 : 1 : 1. 1. φ = (q/4π 0 )[14/a + (4x2 + y 2 )/2a3 ]. with ω1 = ω0 . ω2 = ω0 + 2ωs . with ¨ ˙ 2 2 r1 = (x + a1 )2 + y 2 . I1 .5 s−1 (3548 r.099 75 s. ¨ ˙ 9. arcsin(1/ 3) = 35. A1. α > 3k/ω0 . 0. ω 2 = g cos α/r sin2 α. ω = g/l.3◦ . θ = (ϕ0 /10)(cos 2πt − cos 3πt) (t in s).2 = 2 (ω+ ± ω− ) and ω± = (2 ± 2)g/l. ω 2 = GM/a3 . g/2a. 4. . CHAPTER 11 1√ 1. √ γ1 = α/2m. √ 12.065 s−1 ). g/l. a. CHAPTER 12 √ 1. 3k/m. x = a(cos ω1 t cos ω2 t + 2 2 sin ω1 t sin ω2 t). arcsin(1/ 3) = 35.p. q2r = 0.401 sin 6. 4. (b) ω 2 = (1 − a/l)k/m. 3g/l. ¨ ˙ 2 3 3 y + 2ω x − ω y = −GM1 y/r1 − GM2 y/r2 . (I1 /I3 )Ω sin λ.

2 Nearly all initial conditions lead to extinction for one or other species in Fig. (0. x+ is ¯ ¯ asymptotically stable. 1): 2 2 4 . 3 ) and ( 1 . practice. 11. (0. 1): unstable node. (a) f = k 2 /4σ. . 0) which is (i) asymptotically ˙ ˙ stable spiral. 2 2 13. Ω = −p = 1 ω 2 {1 ± 1 − 27M1 M2 /(M1 + M2 )2 }. 1 (0. (0. − 2 with (1. reduced by a factor I1 /I1 . 1 7.Answers to Problems 453 4.2 = −1. 2 with eigenvectors (1. (pϕ − pψ z)2 − 2I1 (1 − z 2 )(E − M grz − p2 /2I3 ) = 0. − 4 ): asymptotically stable √ 1 1 1 node.2 = (−5 ± 57)/16 with (− 2 . q m/π 0 qB 2 . 3). 0) is a saddle. 1 + λi ): saddle. − 4 with (1. ϕ = ˙ mρ2 ∂ρ mρ3 mρ ∂z mρ CHAPTER 13 ¯ 1. In ˙ ¯ is not precisely known or constant. H = X + 2 ∗ ∗ 2M 2(I1 + M R2 sin θ) 2I1 sin2 θ 2 pψ 2 ∗ 2 ∗ + ∗ + M gR cos θ.2 = 1. M1 /M2 > 2 (25 + 621) = 24. 2I3 7. ( 1 . Trajectories 2 θ2 − (g/l) cos θ = constant (= g/l on separatrices). 0) and (1. p2 p2 q 2 B 2 ρ2 qq ϕ ρ + + . 2 4. f (x) = −c ln x + dx has a single minimum and f → +∞ when x → 0+ and when x → +∞. (b) x ≤ f − f < 0 =⇒ t0 ≤ k/σ(f − f ). Second set of parameters =⇒ (0. Critical point (0. 2 ) has λ1. y = −ω0 x − µy. H = 2 2ml 2(M + m sin2 θ)l2 p2 p2 + p 2 (pϕ − pψ cos θ)2 Y θ + 6. equilibria x± = (k ± k 2 − 4f σ)/2σ.4 yrs.2 = −1. (0. f 1 ˙ 2. 0): unstable node.96. 5.] 6. 5.9 =⇒ no stable coexistence. y). 2 [Note that the nodes are local minima of U (x. ψ 8. 0). (0. J2 qJBρ ∂U qJBz ∂U J =− . 2) has λ1. − 14. √ 1 12. 0) has λ1. 0): saddles. ( 2 . − 9. 0) are asymptotically stable nodes. = . 2 147. a2 /4b. 0) has λ1. ( 1 . 1 3 (1. (1. (iii) (inflected ) asymptotically stable node. (ii) (improper ) asymptotically stable node. 0 < b < a. J 2 = p2 + p2 / sin2 θ. H = (p − qA)2 /2m + qφ. H = 2 2m 2mρ 4π 0 ρ 2m √ 10. 13. 3ωL . ω3.90 yrs. 11. ϕ θ (lpx − pθ cos θ)2 p2 θ + + mgl(1 − cos θ).min = 4I1 M gR/I3 . 1): asymptotically stable node. 0). x = y.

asymptotically stable node. Then M= a1 −c2 c1 c2 > a1 a2 =⇒ λ1 . (µR+a) . µ(R−1) a(R−1) Critical points at (0.2 = αβ ± i. R < 1: asymptotically stable node. so we have an asymptotically stable spiral ˙ (β < 0). (0.3 = −|µ|/I1. so maximum. (b) (±J. ).2. so S+ is arbitrarily close to b/a − δ and these susceptibles escape infection. ˙ ˙ ˙ (a) J1 J1 + J2 J2 + J3 J3 = 0. opposite sign: saddle in third quadrant and trajectories run away → +∞.3 and eigenvectors (1. 9. coexistence in first quadrant. S+ . (0. As ω → 0. 0). I t (S0. saddle. Write S = b/a + ξ and expand =⇒ trajectory passes through (b/a − δ. R(a+µ) . 0). 0. unstable spiral ( < 2) or node ( ≥ 2). I0) 0 S+ b/a S− S . I0 = . Disease maintains itself only when R > 1. 0. ¨ ˙ (c) J3 = 0 =⇒ J3 = I3 Ω. 13. R > 1: saddle. 0. (0. ±J. and c1 c2 < a1 a2 =⇒ λ1 . 0). 0). 0) are saddles. 0). 11. in this case there is asymptotically stable coexistence. λ1. ±J) are centres on the sphere. negative: asymptotically stable node. Since S0 can be made arbitrarily close to S− . 12. 1). 0. −c1 a2 =⇒ λ2 + (c1 + c2 )λ + (c1 c2 − a1 a2 ) = 0. √ At (0. λ2 real. I3 . In polars. 0. I = 0 at S = S− . asymptotically stable node. for β > 0. then integrate to get |J | = constant. ω → rotation about axis with the largest moment of inertia.2 satisfy Ji + [(I1 − I3 )/I1 ]2 Ω2 Ji = 0. 0). J1. 1.454 Classical Mechanics 8. with λ1. 10.2. ˙ ˙ (a) dN/dt ≡ 0 and dI/dS = I/S = −1 + b/aS. unstable spiral (β > 0) or centre (β = 0). r → β as t and θ → ∞.2 = ( ± 2 − 4)/2. (0. λ2 real. (c) S0 = b/a + δ. λ1. (d) Critical point (0. ˙ r → 0. when β < 0. (b) dI/dS = 0 when 2 2 S = b/a and d I/dS = −b/aS 2 < 0. 0). θ = 1 √ 2 and r = αr(β − r ). At (0.

is an ellipsoid (oblate). so that (∆x)2 + (∆y)2 ∼ κt for t increasing.. 17. we have 2 .3 = − 2 (σ + 1) ± 1 (σ + 1)2 − 4(1 − ρ)σ. y. Evidently. in successive rows. Y. (b) For a critical point (X1 . β ⎡ 15. (c) ρ = 1 =⇒ cubic becomes λ(λ + β)(λ + σ + 1) = 0. For a critical point (X. µν 2 = 2σβ(ρ − 1) =⇒ result for ρcrit . ∆x = ∆x0 cos ωt + (∆y0 /ω) sin ωt. When n = 16. Y ). where C > 0. i. z) ¯ from O ≡ (0. the matrix M = ⎣ρ − Z −1 −X ⎦. (d) Write ρ = 1 + (with σ.e. If the cubic has the form (λ + µ)(λ2 + ν 2 ) = 0 then µ = σ + β + 1. Y ) is below the paraboloid Y = µ(X1 + X2 )/ 2. Each is bounded and so is (∆x)2 + (∆y)2 . ∆y = −ω ∆x0 sin ωt + ∆y0 cos ωt. ( 1 . Trajectories in the xy-plane are parabolic arcs in x ≥ 0.e. 18. constant. Trajectories move towards smaller C values 2 2 √ ¯ ¯ whenever (X1 . −X2 −X1 0 2 2 ¯ ˙ (c) ∇ · (x) = −2µ < 0. ∆y = ∆y0 .. (d) X1 + X2 + Y 2 = C. The higher the energy the longer the period of oscillation (between successive bounces). Z). 16. 1 ). and bounces don’t affect this result. Between bounces. ( 1 . ∆x = ∆x0 + ∆y0 t. i.3 are real and are both negative only when 0 < ρ < 1. Y X −β 1 (a) λ1 = −β < 0. small) and find changes in eigenvalues by putting λ = λi + ξ( ) and performing a linear analysis of the cubic in (b). so that 2 λ2. the matrix ⎡ ⎤ −µ Y X2 M = ⎣Y − A −µ X1 ⎦. we have (1). X2 . X2 . 0. λ2. 1 ). ρ + σ) decreases where RHS < 0. outside the ¯ ellipsoid and so a fortiori outside any sphere centred at O which contains it.Answers to Problems 455 ⎤ −σ σ 0 14. 2 2 4 2 4 ( 1 )n × (row of Pascal’s triangle). 1 . etc. ν 2 = β(σ + ρ). (e) Evidently RHS = 0 is an ellipsoid and the distance of (x.

11440. (r. Small oscillations r = r0 + ∆ =⇒ SHM for ∆ with frequency 3g/2r0 . 2 7.30). a different point for each choice of θ section.1]. i. 4. pr ) e curve.8008. Explicitly. H (≡ E) and pθ are constants of the motion. √ √ ω = Ω E/( E + β). ω = g cos α/r0 sin2 α.16. t0 = h3 m/2|k| π 2h3 m/|k| π/2 − arcsin R/h + as R/h → 0. rotation rate at r0 . For the isotropic k oscillator there are two radial oscillations for each complete elliptical trajectory.8008. consistent with (4.560. corresponding to (r. Kepler’s third law for a flat ellipse. (r. In (c). 12870. (Then the orientation of the orbit may be specified using α = arctan(Ay /Ax ) and |A|2 = 1 − (2J 2 |E|/mk 2 ).) √ 2 (R/h)(1 − R/h) → 1/2 . Small oscillations √ r = r0 + ∆ =⇒ SHM for ∆ with frequency ≡ 3(ω sin α).16. parabola. and frequency 2 ω = ∂H/∂I = 1 g/l. CHAPTER 14 1. 1820.4368. We always have closure for this system — given E. circle. θ) ellipses. θ) hyperbolae.11440. [F.4368.120.) 3. Small E =⇒ T → ∞ as E −1/2 . Evaluating φ(q) gives q(t) = E + E k−λk sin(ωt + β) . Steady r = r0 when 2 pθ = mr0 Ω0 with Ω0 = ± g/r0 . large E =⇒ T → 2π/Ω. pr ) curves closed (around r = r0 ) when θ E < 0.. H ≡ E here. Effective potential p2 /2mr2 − |k|/r =⇒ minimum −k 2 m/2p2 when θ θ r = r0 = p2 /m|k|. Action I = (2l/π) 2mE + E/Ω =⇒ E = IΩ + β 2 − β.1820. φ(q) = (∂/∂I) p dq ≡ ωt + β. Closure √ for rational 3 sin α. (Note. x φ(x) = (∂/∂I) p dx with φ = ω(I)t + constant. 5. 2. Poincar´ section is a single point on an (r. with ω = ∂E/∂I = 2 k/m. Oscillation√ between x = ±[l + √2E/k].560. I = 2 mk[E/k − λ/k] =⇒ E(I). Return trajectories have −|k|/R ≤ E < 0. T = 2π/ω. 6. E ≥ 0 curves stretch to r → ∞.456 Classical Mechanics 1 ( 2 )16 [1. major axis h in this limit.e. √ q 1 8. H] = 0 in each case.120. Action I = 2E l/g =⇒ E = 1 g/l I. the vector A may be considered using Cartesians or polars.

Since τ ∝ a3 /|k| (see (4. px = ωpy − ω 2 x + ∂U/∂x. 11. 0).69. Since eccentricity 2 e = 1 + 2EI2 /mk 2 (see (4. Consider the lines from a bounce point to the foci and the angles they make with the trajectory just before and just after the bounce.44. 7. a increases.18)). 2. (d) (−3. (b) circles passing through the origin with centres on x.Answers to Problems 457 tangency condition. Action I = (2m/3π) 2gq0 sin α and E = mgq0 sin α =⇒ result. So E2 /E1 = 0. Maximum sideways displacement = lθmax ∝ l1/4 . Λ = [(x + ae)py − px y][(x − ae)py − px y]. −3).20. (c) −15. (2x/y. −xz. 4. Action I ∝ L H and H ∝ v 2 =⇒ v ∝ 1/L.or y-axes. where 2 r1 + r2 = −|k|/E and r1 r2 = −I2 /2mE =⇒ result.2◦. I = constant =⇒ E ∝ (sin α)2/3 . 2 2 2 ˙ Turning value for λ is when pλ = 0 =⇒ pθ = mc (cosh λ − cos θ)θ. (a) Motion within curve (E/mgµr) = 1 − (1/µ) cos θ (ellipse). Frequency ω = 2π g sin α/8q0 . √ r 9.30)). Hamilton’s equations: x = px + ωy. (−6. py = −ωpx − ω 2 y + ∂U/∂y and H = 2 (px + ωy)2 + ˙ 1 2 2 (py − ωx) − U . ˙ 12. 3. 3. (b) µ = 1: bounding curve E = 2mgr sin2 (θ/2). 16. (−3. (e) as (d). 0). Action I1 = ( −2mE/π) r12 (r2 − r)(r − r1 )(dr/r). H = constant. Change to λ. period 2π/ω ∝ (sin α)−2/3 . −xy). Action I = E/ω. 2y/x. 10. System autonomous. Problem 24 using pλ = mc2 (cosh2 λ − cos2 θ)λ. ω1 /ω2 = 1. ˙ 1 ˙ y = py − ωx. (a) (1 − y 2 /x2 . I2 ) and ω1 = ∂E/∂I1 ≡ ω2 (see (14. 164. √ 14. 3. 5. 15. µ < 1: curve as in (a) — hyperbola for E = 0. (a) 1. U ≥ C for possible motion and for the Earth/Moon system the critical C is that corresponding to the ‘equilibrium’ point between Earth and Moon. 0).31)). 11). 16. intersecting at right angles. H ˙ from Chapter 3. (b) (−3. e remains constant. APPENDIX A 1. 8). respectively. Evidently E ∝ k 2 and τ ∝ k −2 . −3. . q02 /q01 = 1. (3x2 − yz.2◦ . So E(I1 . Maximum acceleration |ω 2 lθmax | ∝ l−3/4 . 3). Temperature ∝ 1/L2 =⇒ pressure ∝ 1/L5 =⇒ pressure ∝ (density)5/3 . 2. 6x. θ variables. 3 15. a ∝ 1/|k| =⇒ k decreases. two straight lines for E = 0. q0 ∝ (sin α)−1/3 . 1 − x2 /y 2 . Evidently. (−1. 4. so E ∝ ω ∝ l −1/2 . 13.

⎡ ⎤ cos θ 0 sin θ 15. Br = µ0 µ cos θ/2πr3 . −2. √ (0. eigenvectors (−1.2 = −1 ± i. 1. 14. 2ωk. centre (∴ stable). asymptotically 2 stable node.2 = − 2 ± 1 17. B = (µ0 /4πr5 )(3µ · rr − r2 µ). (∇2 A)z = ∇2 (Az ). Aϕ = µ0 µ sin θ/4πr2 . Bθ = µ0 µ sin θ/4πr3 .2 = ±i2 6. λ1. unstable node. (1. Q = ρ(r )(3r r − r 2 1)d3 r . (∇2 A)ρ = ∇2 (Aρ ) − 2 Aρ + 2 . eigenvectors (−2.2 = −5 ± 5. Ar = r−1 cos θ. (b/a) sin ψ). 0. λ1. ρ ∂ϕ 1 ∂Aρ (∇2 A)ϕ = ∇2 (Aϕ ) − 2 Aϕ − 2 . unstable spiral. √ (e) (0. 1 ∂Aϕ 11. Distances r1. 2). a(∇ · b) + (b · ∇)a − b(∇ · a) − (a · ∇)b. . 0). centre (∴ stable). APPENDIX B 1. eigenvectors (1. B = (µ0 I/4πr3 )ds ∧ r. Tangent vector is t = (−a sin ψ. saddle (∴ unstable). Aθ = r−1 ln r sin θ. λ1. ρ ∂ϕ 12. 3 + λi ). 2. (b) (0. − sin θ 0 cos θ 17.458 Classical Mechanics 8. λi + 8).2 are given by 2 r1. λ1.2 = 5 ± i 55. (d) (0. 0). λ1. −1).2 = 1. asymptotically stable spiral .2 = 4. 9. √ (4. λ1. F + F = (µ0 II /4πr3 )r ∧ (ds ∧ ds ) = 0. APPENDIX C √ 5 1.2 = ±i2 6. −2). asymptotically stable node.2 = (a cos ψ ∓ ae)2 + (b sin ψ)2 = a2 (1 ∓ e cos ψ)2 . (a) (0. 2r−2 sin θ). r−2 (1 + 2 ln r) cos θ. Aϕ = 0. 4). A = (µ0 /4πr3 )µ ∧ r. ⎣ 0 1 0 ⎦. unit vectors from two foci are n1.2 = ±ae sin ψ. λ1. √ (c) (−1. scalar products are t · n1. 2).2 = (1 ∓ e cos ψ)−1 (cos ψ ∓ e. λi + 2). eigenvectors (1. b cos ψ). λi − 3). 13. 0) λ1. F = (µ0 II /4πr3 )ds ∧ (ds ∧ r). (0. Ar = Aθ = 0. Bϕ = 0.

range limit r 2→1 1 → −1 √ −1 → 1 − 6 −1. saddles.57 −2 X 1 − 1/r 0 X1 (r). etc.2 = 8. y = x3 − x =⇒ (0. resp. eigenvectors (1. saddle (∴ unstable).57 4 Y 0 1 − 1/s Y1 (s). 0). (b). saddles (∴ unstable). 0).2 = ± ω 2 − α. x = y. range limit √ 2. so ω 2 > α.) 2. (Note: In each case. (−1. 4 2 APPENDIX D d 1. i. nπ). (b) dx F (2) (x) = F (x)F (F (x)) =⇒ asymptotically stable when √ |F (X1 )F (X2 )| < 1 =⇒ | − r2 + 2r + 4| < 1 =⇒ 3 < r < 1 + 6 (if r ≥ 0). (a) X = 0 asymptotically stable in circle |r| < 1. 1). 0). − x2 + 2c. eigenvectors (1. 3. r = 1 ± 1 + 4a. resp.Answers to Problems 459 (1. (c) a = 1 − 1/r. (±1. 3. eigenvectors (1. = 1 x4 − 1 x2 + c. 0). X2 (r) 2∞ accum. symmetry about x axis rules out spirals.e. 0). λ1. yields asymptotically stable points/cycles: s=2−r 0→1 1→3 √ 3→1+ 6 3. (f) (0. or √ √ |r − 1 − 5|. resp. n even: λ1.. β = −2α = r/a.2 = ±i.|r − 1 + 5| < 1 (two disjoint ovals). λ1. (0. −1). . 0). centres (∴ stable). centre (∴ stable).2 = ±1.. 1). consider local sketches near the critical points and how these build into the global phase portrait. Y2 (s) 2∞ accum. n odd: λ1. s = 2 − r. X = 1 − 1/r asymptotically stable in circle |2 − r| < 1. ˙ ˙ (a) dy/dx = (x3 − x)/y =⇒ y=± 1 4 2x 1 2 2y 1 (b) separatrices given by c = 4 . centre.. (d) Applying (c) to (a).. b = 2/r − 1. saddle (∴ unstable). √ (g) (0. (b) asymptotically stable 2-cycle when | − r 2 + 2r + 4| < 1. saddle (∴ unstable) and ω 2 < α. 1). (0. (1. λ1.2 = −8. −3. 0).

the 2-cycles yield a circle |a − 1| = 4 . 1986): 2 4. Fixed points at X = 0. √ 5. X = 0 asymptotically stable if |a| < 1.460 Classical Mechanics Note: If we continue in this way. followed by a period-doubling cascade. adding the regions of the complex r plane in which there are cycles of any finite length we arrive at the figure shown: (c) In the complex a plane. The Beauty of Fractals. there is period-doubling on each branch. At a = 2. Springer. . The entire set yields the Mandelbrot ‘signature’ (see Peitgen and Richter. X = 3 have |F (X)| = 2 =⇒ instability. Note: n = 0 2n =⇒ Lyapunov exponent λ = ln 2 > 0. the circles become a heart-shaped region 1 1 with a cusp at a = − 4 . X = ± a − 1 asymptotically stable when |3 − 2a| < 1. n Uncertainty n = 0 2 ≥ 1 when n ≥ ln(1/ 0 )/ ln 2. or 1 < a < 2.

(1 − µ1 )(1 − µ2 ) < 0 =⇒ 0 < µ1 < 1 < µ2 (say) =⇒ Lyapunov exponents λ1 > 0 > λ2 . (a) = =⇒ eigenvalues = =⇒ ηn+1 ηn y 1 2 Y +η √ µ1. Hence X1. Circle ξ 2 + η 2 = 2 becomes ¯ √ √ ¯ ¯ [ξ + (2aX/b)¯]2 + η 2 /b2 = 2 . ellipse with semi-axes / µ1 . (X− .Answers to Problems 461 7.6931. If |b| < 1 and |a| < 1 − b only P1 exists. / µ2 η where µ1 µ2 = 1/b2 .1 . Area of ellipse = π|b| 2 =⇒ area reduction. η = bξ. (b) Nontrivial 2-cycle =⇒ Xi roots of a2 X 2 − a(1 − b)X + (1 − b)2 − a = 0. real 3 roots if a > 4 (1 − b)2 . µ1 + µ2 = 1 + (1 + 4a2 X 2 )/b2 . Q2 = (X2 .2 = 3 ± 1 5 =⇒ Lyapunov exponents λ1. x 1 1 X +ξ ξn ξn+1 11. (a) Fixed points P1 = (1 + a − b)−1 (1.2 = ± ln 2 = ±0. Y1.2 = bX2. yn+1 = bX + η . b) if a > b − 1. ¯ ¯ 8. X2 must (b) For nontrivial 2-cycle Q1 = (X1 . b) if a > 1 − b.9624 — stretch and squeeze. (X+ . Y1 ) be of opposite sign.2 = ln µ1. (a) Both |λ1 |. Eigenvalues λ of M1 M2 satisfy 2 2 λ − (4a X1 X2 + 2b)λ + b2 = 0 =⇒ for asymptotic stability |b| < 1 1 and |4(1 − b)2 − 4a + 2b| < 1 + b2 =⇒ a < (1 − b)2 + 4 (1 + b)2 [using an argument similar to that in the Hint]. ¯ with ξ = −2aXξ + η. X1 .618 = 2 2 ±0. λ − b/λ = −a =⇒ P1 asymptotically stable. |λ2 | < 1 =⇒ |b| < 1 and also |2aX| < 1 − b. xn = X + ξ. See diagram: (b) eigenvalues µ1 = 2.2 = (1 − b ∓ a)/[a2 + (1 − b)2 ]. µ2 = diagram: 1 2 =⇒ λ1. Y− ) is 3 always unstable. yn = Y + η =⇒ xn+1 = 1 − aX 2 + Y + ξ. with Y = b(1 − aX 2 )/(1 − b). 9.2 = ± ln 2. Y+ ) is asymptotically stable if a < 4 (1 − b)2 . See . P2 = (1 − a − b)−1 (1. Y2 ).

See diagram: .462 Classical Mechanics 12. β distinct irrationals with β − α > > 0. (a) α..g. (b) Since 2 is irrational. mesh integer multiples of 1/N . at least one is √ between α and β. √ √ (1 − 1/ 2)(p1 /q1 ) + (1/ 2)(p2 /q2 ) is irrational and lies between the rationals p1 /q1 and p2 /q2 . then e. 13. We may take both θ and I to be 2π-periodic here. then choose integer N such that > 1/N .

: Classical Mechanics. vol. V. 2nd ed.P. and Walecka. and Shaw. Weinstein.: Dynamics — the Geometry of Behavior. A. Cvitanovic.D. 1995. Abraham. Vogtmann and A..: Universality in Chaos — a reprint selection. G. 1990. 463 . Springer–Verlag. Gutzwiller. 1994. Addison–Wesley. J. and Holmes.P..: Theoretical Mechanics of Particles and Continua. V. Fetter. J.: Evolutionary Games and Population Dynamics. C. McGraw–Hill. 1995. Feynman. P. 1963. 3rd ed.: Mathematical Methods of Classical Mechanics. R. Chandrasekhar. J.V. 1996. V.: Chaotic Dynamics — an Introduction. Arnol’d.L. and Bifurcations of Vector Fields. H.I. Springer–Verlag. Kozlov. 1980. M. and Gollub. Guckenheimer..D. and Sigmund. Abraham. A. R.L. 2nd ed. Springer. 1996. Arnol’d. R. Baker. K.H. 2nd ed.I.: Foundations of Mechanics.: Chaos in Classical and Quantum Mechanics.. 2002.: Nonlinear Oscillations. 2nd ed. Dynamical Systems.: Newton’s “Principia” for the Common Reader. P.. 2nd ed. J. 1989.: Mathematical Aspects of Classical and Celestial Mechanics. Adam Hilger/IOP Publishing.. Goldstein. Cambridge University Press. 2nd ed. 1983. Poole. J.C. translated by K.I. 1998. I. and Marsden..L.. S. Addison–Wesley. Springer–Verlag.Bibliography The following is a short list of selected books which may be found helpful for further reading on classical mechanics and related subjects. J. Clarendon. Benjamin/Cummings.. Addison–Wesley. 1992 [originally published by Aerial Press]. Cambridge University Press. Hofbauer.: Lectures on Physics. C. and Neishtadt.P. and Safko.E.

Dover. 1965 [reprinted by Oxbow Press].: Introduction to Dynamics. E. 1989. 2nd ed. Peitgen. 1992. 1982. Jackson.: Regular and Stochastic Motion. and Dermott.. Pars.: Stability and Complexity in Model Ecosystems. Jammer. H. Cambridge University Press. 2002. 1 of Course of Theoretical Physics). M. Cambridge University Press. 1993. and Richards.. Princeton University Press. S. D. 1990..N. 1997.J.A. Heinemann.: Solar System Dynamics.A. and Lifshitz. E. May. Butterworth–Heinemann. Murray. . 1982.. L. 3rd ed.: Classical Dynamics and its Quantum Analogues. D.A. Lorenz. 1999.-O.. and Lieberman. u Springer–Verlag. Landau. Ellis Horwood.F. M. C. E. Springer. 1983. J¨rgens. S. R. UCL Press/University of Washington Press.D.D.: Concepts of Mass in Classical Mechanics. 2nd ed. L. Lichtenberg. E. H.M. 1999.C.464 Classical Mechanics Hunter. M. Jammer. A.M.. Springer–Verlag.: Concepts of Force: A Study in the Foundations of Dynamics. 1983. D. Park. Percival.: The Essence of Chaos. I.: A Treatise on Analytical Dynamics. Cambridge University Press.: Mechanics (vol. 1974 and 2001. Cambridge University Press.: Chaos in Dynamical Systems. Dover.: Chaos and Fractals. Ott.: Mechanics of Continuous Media. 2nd ed. and Saupe. 2nd ed.: Perspectives of Nonlinear Dynamics.

280. 161. 205–208. 54. 130 in rotating frame. 181–183 of rigid body. 51. 76. 379 adiabatic invariance. 99. 111–112 polar components of. 25 of damped oscillation. 235 apparent gravity. 142 area of ellipse. 222 instantaneous. 401 aphelion. 7 action integral. 218 of two-body system. 15. 258 of forced oscillation. 112–113. 65. 12 adiabatic change. 369 action/angle variables. 182 angular velocity. 296–297 conservation of. 65 about centre of mass. 121. 293. 103. 197. 182. xv. 167 amplitude. 121 as generator of rotation. 102 apparent force. 144. 123. 183 and Euler angles. 190 action variable. 185–186 of precession. 3. 181–183 total. 181. 87. 112. 203–204 rate of change. 214. 395 area-filling map. 6 absolute nature of. 101 antisymmetric tensor. 369–372 principle of. 74. 437 addition of vectors. 28 angular momentum. 105. 292. 63. 216–218 of Earth. 162 perpendicular components. 161. 353 . 314. 105 anomaly. 382 additivity of mass. 354 angular frequency. 66. 3 gravitational. 412 area. 127. 265 angle variable. 54 465 about an axis. 32 complex. 183–188 of many-body system. directed element of. 296–297 of Earth–Moon system. accelerated frame. 354. 71 accelerator. 304 action and reaction. 283. 105–106 and Euler angles. 385 almost linear system.Index Note: Page numbers in italics refer to items in the problems. 54. 156. 23 at resonance. 354–359. 222 and Larmor effect. 55. 96. 369 aircraft. 199. 31. 421–423 alpha particle. 145 acceleration. xv. 237 vector. 25. 126 algebra of vectors. 370 adiabatic invariant.

8 centre of. 4. 441 body cone. 159. 70 Bertrand’s theorem. 420. 114. 6. 55–57 and angular momentum conservation. 415 general second-order. 339 calculus of variations. 77. 121. 378 autonomous system. 386 axioms of Euclid. 334. 324 Arnold’s cat map. 235. 383 axial vector. 111 Chandler wobble. 84. 137 charge density. 94 attractor. 207 baker’s transformation. 334. 363–366. 126 boost. 291 internal. 304 astronomical unit. 66. 363 Brusselator. 365. 137 total. 298–300 bounce map. 138. 378 circular. 259. 443 asteroid. 224 Bohr orbit. 72 cause and effect. 351 bicycle wheel.466 Classical Mechanics area-preserving map. 309. 70 broken symmetry. 338 Atwood’s machine. 87. 5. 367–368. 366 bouncing ball. 55. 310. 164. 426 beam. 124 bifurcation. 112. 162–164 centrifugal force. 194 atmospheric pressure. 422. 418. 314. xv atmospheric tides. 3 arms race. 189. 302 . 357–359. 98 asymptotically stable point. 224. 426 atmospheric drag. 224 axis of symmetry. 338. 283–284. 105. 364 elliptical. 428 billiard balls. 159. 295. 371 potential energy of. 426. 1 axioms of mechanics. 422 true. colliding. 150. 178. 88 rotation of. 98. 328 butterfly effect. 134. 383 unit vectors along. 279. 84. 181. 397 charge-to-mass ratio. 241–244. 198 centre. 443 basin of attraction. 41 billiard systems. 353 Aristotle. 345 boundary conditions. 76. 121 attenuation. 249 potential energy of. 375 chaotic attractor. 137 centre of mass. 382 catastrophe. 45. 177 equation of motion of. 61 brachistochrone. 73–98. 187 atomic spectrum. 90 of varying strength. 350. 436 strange. 105 instantaneous. 310. 424 centre of charge. 66 central force. 175 Trojan. 313 axes of orbit. 217. 59–62. 334 characteristic equation. 101. 169 Bernoulli. 314 charge. 130 charged particle in electromagnetic field. 141. 233 canonically conjugate pairs. 294. 301 Cartesian co-ordinates. 347 routes to. 8. 364. 375 Hamiltonian for. 309 catenary. 419. 11 axis of rotation. 309. 334. 330 chaos. 279 impulsive. 218 centre-of-mass frame. 378 oval. 366. 239 centripetal acceleration. 75. 52. 315. 339 central conservative force. 337.

229. 39–42. 18. 50. 79–80 co-ordinates Cartesian. 318–322. 42 multiple. 94. of vector. 253–256. 124 curvilinear co-ordinates. 2. 200–202 cone. 160. 409–413 Cartesian form. 364 circular orbit. 76. 188–190. 5. 170 cube. 58. 11. 395 impulsive. 78. 55. 398–400 elliptic. 11. 8 coupled oscillators. 231–232. 189 potential energy for. 39. 240 continuous dynamics. 296–297 of energy. 397 current loop. 249 Coulomb gauge. 391 in polar co-ordinates. 239 and Lagrange multiplier. 50. 284 in polar co-ordinates. 265 components. 41. 296 conservation laws. 415 cross-section. 171. 90–94. 165–173 combat model. 4. 198. 394 current density. 168–173 differential.Index 467 chemical oscillation. 66. 12. 261–266 critical damping. 239 of angular momentum. 89. 18. 331 Coriolis acceleration. 282–285 normal. 291–293. 172 total. 264–266 orthogonal. 79–80 Coulomb’s law. 394 conservative system. 97. 25. 410 velocity in. 125. 393 of gradient. 398–400 . 172 inelastic. 65. 74. 57–59. 5. 312 control parameters. 398 parabolic. 40. 182. 207 moments of inertia. 166. 71 polar. 169. 283. 280. 415 critical point. 382 composite body. 58. 40 internal. 322–323 comet. 178. 112. 90–97. 26. 178 position of. 280–282. 307. 46 critical line. 95 two-body. 29. 63. 114–120. 83 clockwork universe. 58. 378 ignorable. 308 convection. 165–173 hard-sphere. 311. 178 force on. 342 competitive exclusion principle. 99 competing species. 178 compound pendulum. 366 collision. 393 vanishing. 398–400 coefficient of restitution. 382 curvilinear. 295 of momentum. 93. 227 particle on. 397 Coulomb scattering. 42 coins. 9. 169. 327 circular billiard. 178 mass of. 76 conservative force. 412–413 conservation law in constrained system. 81. 14. 400 of curl. 347 for symmetric top. 72. 51. 442 curl. 313. 409–412 polar form. 37 elastic. 25–26. 301 conics. 321 complex amplitude. 415–424 isolated. 31. 188–190 condition for. 49–51. 76–78 and symmetries. 14. moments of inertia. 291–301. 17–18. 210 cubic map. 14. 258 of forced oscillation. 315–317 constraint equation. 74. 339 closest approach distance. 76. 111 Coriolis force. 86.

163. 130. 274. 350. 302 eigenvalue equation. 410. 109. 341 day. xv. 14. 140–144. 8 electric dipole. 8. 97 hard-sphere. 130 electrostatic potential. 113. 1. moments of inertia of. 357. 192 elastic bouncer. 132 electromagnetic field. 378 . 88 ecliptic. 10. 9. 282. 241 electron. 109 cyclotron frequency. 260. 399 of curl. of Jacobian matrix. 304 cylinder. 77. 403–404 dice. 110. 140–144. 171 differentiation of vector. 339 diagonalization. xv.468 Classical Mechanics unit vectors for. 314 eigenvector. 71. 186 degeneracy. 132. 65 damped oscillator. 334 motion near rotating. 294 Delaunay. 398–400 kinetic energy in. 353 discrete systems. 87. 241. 57–59. 169. 343 divergence. 72. 150. 3 ellipse. 345 Earth. 3. 167 electrostatic force. 232. 239 for inverse square law. 71 cycloid. 88. 165–173 electric charge. 373 degrees of freedom. 369 double star. 336 escape velocity. 93 for Rutherford scattering. 131 magnetic. small. 215 effective potential energy. 129–131 elements. 163 Earth–Moon system. 214. 84. xv. 210 cylindrical polars. 412 ellipsoid. 406 double pendulum. 393 divergence of trajectories. 41. 373 denominators. 258. 214 angular velocity of. 105. 183–188. 312 discrete map. 334–336. 397–398 particle in. 65. 384 of tensors. 215 eccentric anomaly. 93. 80 for symmetric top. 255–257. 388 dipole electric. 401 double dot product. 119 cyclotron. 224 shape of. 78. 110. 374 dot product. 124. 283 for constrained system. 371. 100 precession of axis of. 154. 119 determinant. 379 elastic collision. 70. 154. 210 elliptic co-ordinates. 403. 75. 406 dipole moment. 416 eigenvalues. 174 dyadic. 258. 401 dynamo. 416 determinism. 235 for central force. 14. 307. 397 electric quadrupole. 27–29. 172 in CM frame. 207 moments of inertia. xv. 391 in polar co-ordinates. 101 eccentricity. 302 electromagnetic force. 86 of Earth’s orbit. 241–244. 366 differential cross-section. 403 Einstein. 112–113 orbit of. 98. 288. 105. 9. 314. 285. xvi. 131 electric field. 376 cyclone. 258. 425–441 disease. 235. 163. 214 Earth–Moon distance. 82 magnetic field of. 373 depression. 185–186 core of. 137 discrete dynamics. 171 in Lab frame. xv. 81. 58 Lagrange’s equations in.

311 condition for. 55–57. 12 dissipative. 202. 64. 82 Euclid’s axioms. 253. 312. 256 hydrostatic. 295 conservation of. 75. 99 from Earth. 188 lost in inelastic collision. 18. 114. 362 first-order convergence. 378 energy. 341 fixed point. 189. 414 folding. 178. 235 conservative. 436. 198 solution. 188–190. 82–83. 280 transferred in elastic collision. 14. 394. 437 equations of motion for relative motion. 25–26. 6. 433. 146 incompressible. 250 of centre of mass. 159. 308 fluid. 241. 50. 9. 253–271 of rigid body. 108 on composite body. 433 equal-area map. 181. 61. 241 magnetic. 218 of rigid body. 242. 241 electrostatic. 201. 17. 169 flywheel. 413. 9. 148–152. 419 of charged-particle beam. 313 stability of. 235 as basic quantity. 10. 397 electromagnetic. 434. 235. 188–190. 178 periodic. 440 elliptical billiard. 440 flow. 130 external. 365.Index 469 elliptic orbit. 114. 160 in electromagnetic field. 177 external potential energy. 22. 397–398 figure of eight. 151 field equations. 9. 390 electric. 382 apparent. 413. 198 central conservative. 397–398 gravitational. 218 of small oscillations. 279. 283–284. 290. 90. 110. 40. 49. 161. 14. 392 velocity field in. 129. 166 energy levels of hydrogen atom. 17–18. 190. 73–98. 86. 162. 12 addition of. 8. 114–120 definition of. 15 central. 198 extinction. 112. 37. 66. 40. 161. 147 equivalence principle. 226 ergodic behaviour. 110. 112. 394 total. 2 Euler angles. 50. 132. 18. 280–282. 241. 428 Feigenbaum number. 6. 84 entropy. 177 generalized. 130 impulsive. xv. 420. 291 kinetic. 13. 227 focus. 142. 357–359. 375 centrifugal. 78–84. 130. 1 Euclidean geometry. 76. 259 equipotential surface. 9. 62 external forces. 231 Euler–Lagrange equations. 8. 321 Feigenbaum. 49–51. 189. 13. 202. 425. 130. 50. 199. 112. 150. 429 field. 198. 155 motion near. 126 of conic. 256–257 equilibrium. 130 equivalent simple pendulum. 8. 42 potential. 26 electromagnetic. 440 force. 291 ergodic trajectory. 358 Lorentz. 395 Coriolis. 350 escape velocity. 74. 47 . 426 fish population. 94. 77. 30–36. 25–26 and time translation symmetry. 141. 391 flux of particles. 191. 234 gravitational. 226 inverse square law. 20–25. 86–87 elliptic point. 353. 265 saw-tooth. 18. 221–223.

298–300 free motion of rigid body. 34. 231–233 generalized force. 191 gravitational force. 229. 341. 117 four-cycle. 30–39 isotropic. 302 for symmetric top. 70 gradient. 112–113. xv. 100. 162–164 inertial. 151 uniform. 390. 7 tidal. 144. 30–39. 350. 63. 345 action/angle variables. 90–94. 10 gravitational potential. 145 centre-of-mass. 342 gravitational acceleration. 183. 346 gauge transformation. 8. 169. 105–125. 15. 280 Foucault’s pendulum. 10 Galton board. 278 and total energy. 39 three-body. 284 rate of change of. 235. 369 Hartman–Grobman theorem. 147. 26 heat conduction. 192 generalized co-ordinates. 349 half-width of resonance. 142 of Earth. 232–233. 399 general relativity. 130 gravitational mass. 36 Fourier series. 27–29. 73–76. 23 angular. 51. 280 for central conservative force. 75 with varying frequency. 33 Hamilton’s equations. 332 helium nucleus. 375 forced. 130. 159–161. 35 step-function. 398 gradient system. 109 fundamental. 8. 396. 317. 321 hard-sphere collision. 234 for angular co-ordinate. xv gravitational constant. 49. 212. 6 two-body. 219. 24–25 damped. 2. 436 frame. 270 Larmor. 152 Green’s function. 127. 61. 341 double. 218. 245 Hamiltonian function. 356–357 anisotropic. 234 generalized momentum. 239 transformation to moving. 82 gravitational field. 165 rotating. 6. 188. 99 Galilean transformation. 96 . 277–280 Hamilton’s principle. 121 of normal mode. 214. 73 complex representation of. 127 frequency. 435 Fourier integral theorem. 295–301 Galileo. 184 total. 271 fractal. 397 Gauss law. 14. 339. 228. 9 Galaxy. 295 laboratory. 377 orbit of. 265–266 forced system. 130 apparent. 99. 398 in polar coordinates. 172 harmonic oscillator. 64. 277 in electromagnetic field. 3–4. 350 friction. 312–313. 64. 223–225 freely falling body. 242 generating function. 333. 177 work done by. 51. 234 forced oscillation. 373. 14. 239. 150 Gauss’ theorem. 65. 3. 20–26. 73–76. 279 for charged particle. 4 accelerated. 25 cyclotron.470 Classical Mechanics square-wave. 250. 37 gyroscope. 250 hairy ball theorem. 234 for stretched string. 115–117. 1. 280 Hamiltonian system. 129–131. 422 heat. 292 geodesic. 26.

174 KAM. 198 conservative. 98. 189. 37 velocity. 169. 62–66. 181. 438 Kepler’s first law. 375 Kermack–McKendrick theorem. 304 effect on Sun. 88. 390 internal force. 300 involution. 85–89 inversion symmetry. 231–248 for conservative system. 72. 207 of stretched string. 233. 188 of natural system. 402 insect. 161. 294. 282–285 impact parameter. 326–328. 109 H´non map. 432 invariant torus. 235 for many-body system. 298–300 inertial mass. 349 inverse cube law. 368 holonomic system. 163. 360 Jacobian matrix. 226 incompressible fluid. 358 orbit. xv. 3–4 transformation of. 410 in polar form. 89 improper node. 234 Lagrangian density. 26. 100 iteration. 348 isobars. 245 . 442 e H´non–Heiles system. 49. 193. 418. 6. 10 infinite precision. 358. 223 in CM frame. 253 of forced system. 87. 199. 343 Huygens. 226 integrability. 368–369 e hidden symmetry. 178 isotropic harmonic oscillator. 280 of particles on string. 440 Hopf bifurcation. 233. 35 laboratory frame. 244 of two-body system. 103 Kepler’s third law. 437.Index 471 helix. 198 transferred. 392 inelastic collision. 373. 172 Lagrange multiplier. 195. 415 Jupiter. 154. 240. 406 Lagrange’s equations. 161 in polar co-ordinates. 188. 171. 401 inertial frame. 82. 83–84. 78–84. 102 inverse square law. 126 hyperbola. 266 of rotating body. 128. 79. 79. 40. 190–192 for non-conservative force. 180 impulsive force. 290. 440 invariant probability distribution. 434. 103 Kepler’s second law. 300 impulse. 239 of many-body system. 51. 344 kinetic energy. 177 central. 73–76. 188 in orthogonal co-ordinates. 17. 58. 347. 166 Kronecker’s symbol. 49 and Euler angles. 125. 415 isolated system. 339 inner product of vectors. 377 hydrogen atom. 440 ignorable co-ordinate. 57. 254 near equilibrium. 295. 413 hyperbolic point. 165 differential cross-section in. 425 Jacobi integral. 202. 189 invariant circle. 162. 37. 353. 314. 100. 119 isolated critical point. 205. 235 homoclinic intersection. 393–396 integration of vector. 249. 232. 347–351 integrable system. 17. 42 inertia tensor. 64–66. 103. 418 improper transformations. 234 for two-body system. 166 rate of change. 437. 438 integral theorems.

432. 426. 376 Laplacian. 251. 12. 203 calculation of. 397 of Earth. 415–421 Liouville’s theorem. 177–192 angular momentum of. 344. 181–183 energy conservation in. 178 reduced. 275 Laplace–Runge–Lenz vector. 241 Lorentz transformation. 426 logistic map. 62. 442 e linear. 245 for symmetric top. 191 Lagrangian points. 108–109. 324–328. 342 Lozi map. 342 magnetic bottle. 161 in uniform gravitational field. 427 Lorentz force. 188–190 Lagrange’s equation for. 373 Lyapunov exponent. 352. 151. 186 moment of force. 265 for many-body system. 120–124. 424. 353. 199. 121. 434. 436 Lorenz system.472 Classical Mechanics Lagrangian function. 6 additive nature of. 199 Lanchester’s law. 309–311. rotating. 12 gravitational and inertial. 349 magnetic dipole. 393. 1–12. 373. 425–441 area-filling. 354 limit cycle. 442 nonlinear. 238 for stretched string. 22 linear map. 460 many-body system. 428 in standard form. 426 logistic. 437. 14 laws of nature. 433. 366 cubic. 353 Arnold’s cat. 397 mean free path. 406 Larmor effect. 1 Legendre polynomial. 378 lamina. 381 malaria. 131 libration. 442 twist. 289–291 liquid surface. 339 Lorenz attractor. 441 attractors. 441 Lozi. 331–334. 438 Maskelyne. 353 area-preserving. 331. 241. 400 of vector field. 442 Macdonald. 323 Laplace’s equation. 375 line integral. 191 for pendulum. 443 bounce. 94–96 Mercury. 126. 64. 10 measurement of. 303. 236 for two-body system. 243 magnitude of vector. 434 Lotka–Volterra system. 364. 342 Mandelbrot set. 144. 228. 10 of composite body. 443 tent. 220 maximum scattering angle. 307. 353 equal-area. 160 matchbox. 235 for charged particle. 303 laws of mechanics. 353. 53 moment of inertia. 442 discrete. 110. 301 Lorenz. 426 linear system. 426. 353 e standard. 125 Lissajous figures. 190–192 maps. 114. 442 lunar theory. 208–211 . 242 for coupled oscillators. 393 in polar co-ordinates. 124. 351 logistic equation. 338. 432. 314. 351. 406 magnetic field. 120–124 uniform. 168 Maxwell’s equations. 394 linear independence. 316. 334 particle in. 15 mass. 437. 362 Larmor frequency. 318–321. 426 Poincar´ return. 437 H´non. 432.

235. 120. 14. 65. 89. 426 node. 178. 46 isotropic. 157 tides due to. 95 multiply periodic trajectory. 39. 11. 160. 232 non-integrable system. 296 conservation of. 4. 359–362. 140. 101 hyperbolic. 274 forced. 383. 353 non-invertibility. 6 as generator of translation. 183–188 precession of orbit. 350 n-body problem. 193 orientation of rigid body. 253–256. 345 action/angle variables. 425–433 orbit. 269–271 nucleus. 6. 406 orthogonality. 88–89 in phase space. xv. 280 nautical mile. 7. 8 Newton’s laws. 30–39. 437 Newton. 178 of rigid body. 75 of satellite. 312–313. 277 in CM frame. 132. 120 inverse cube law. 398 orthogonal tensor. 81 elliptical. 270 non-holonomic system. 156 precession of. 86–87. 100. 341. 24–25 damped. 349. 143. 98 of oscillator. 141 of Jupiter. 264–266 for stretched string. 102 neap tides. 5–10 Newton’s second law. 100. 298–300 multiple collisions. 232–233 condition for. 178. 102 inverse square law. 206 shift of origin. 64. 84–89 Bohr. 98. 73–76. 372–374. 308 in rotating frame. 27–29. 30–39. 9. 88. 426 normal co-ordinates. 208 momentum. 178 Newton’s third law. 100 of Jupiter. 261–266 . forced. 197 monopole. 84 circular. 377 with varying frequency. 418 proper. 437 natural system. 99 of Earth. 163. 82 Newton’s law of gravity. 178. 12. xvi. coupled. 260 of particles on string. 369 oscillators. 20–26. 266–269 of stretched string. 356–357 complex representation of. 406 Newton–Raphson iteration. 154 moving frame. 139 of Earth. 348 of eigenvectors. 146 near-integrable system. 261–266 of double pendulum. 178 Newton’s gravitational constant. 374 n-torus. 162 of many-body system. 103. 438 nested tori. 296 generalized. 11. 15. 347. 197 rate of change. 2. 143 transfer. 85–89 of comet. 265–266 oscillator. 403 orthonormal triad. 8. 274 normal modes. 154 one-dimensional maps. 144–148. 433 nonlinear map. 404 oscillation. 73–76. 350 of coupled oscillators.Index 473 principal. 96 oblateness. 422 improper. 51. 159. 242. 221 orthogonal co-ordinates. 58. 99. 419 nodes on stretched string. 6. 70 Newton’s first law. 137 Moon. 258–271 nonlinear.

126. 308 pion. 78 near equilibrium. 101. 364. 181. 441 parabola. 387 moments of inertia. 114 parallax. 415–424 phase portraits. 226 forced damped. 189. 78. 382 parity. 293. 307–309 phase velocity. 261–266 double. 402 oval billiard. 424 phase space. xv. 77. 304. 163 Poincar´. 413 parabolic co-ordinates. 265 periodic trajectory. 40 . 64. 178 relative. 18–19. 209 parallelepiped. shortest. e 443 Poincar´–Birkhoff theorem. 7. 46. 56 polar vector. 260. 239 of harmonic oscillator. 300 particle. 52. 428 period-doubling cascade. 71 velocity in. 71 Lagrange’s equation in. 386 position vector. 200 of rotation. 353 e Poincar´ section. 437. 59. 369 equivalent simple. 341 compound. 182. 61. 114. 129–152 electrostatic. 152 of centrifugal force. 238–241. 226. 87. 20. 134 of spheroid. 140 of quadrupole. 210 parallelogram law. 200–202 constrained. 397 polar co-ordinates. 132 of Earth. 309–312 phase of forced oscillation. 366. 6. 30–36. 55. 174 parallel axes theorem. 302 coupled. 129–131. 132 of spherical distribution. 5 path. 162. 307–309 local or global. 161. 366. 45. 189 internal. 15. 397 tidal. 175 planet. 350 Perron–Frobenius equation. 64–66 unit vectors for. 71 paraboloid. 151 expansion at large distances. 428. 43. 312–318. 285. 189. 129–131.474 Classical Mechanics outer product of vectors. 316–317. 249. 80. 299 potential. 352. 23. 195 plumb line. 435 periodic force. 117 hanging from trolley. 6. 141 of dipole. 289. 394 effective. 151. 90. 379 period of. 441. 103. 336 Foucault’s. 50 of impulsive force. 105 period-doubling. 5. 74. 201. 370. 82. 191. 440 e point particle. 256 of central force. 48 perihelion. 255–257. 381 of composite body. 66 of centrifugal force. 198 in many-body system. 348 Poisson’s equation. 339 e Poincar´ return map. 33 at resonance. 139 scalar and vector. 144 potential energy. 159. 227. 302 of varying length. 437 phase line. 432 perturbed twist map. 50. 398–400 acceleration in. 57–59. 283. 101 period of orbit. 5 Poisson bracket. 191 inverse square law. 288 external. 239. 411 in polar form. 70 pendulum. 112. 34 phase plane. 375 period-doubling bifurcation. 137 gravitational. 241. 307. 5. 163 of oscillation. 31. 143 Pluto–Charon system. 235. 20. 18. 141. 44.

206. 267 of simple pendulum. 324 right-hand rule. 330 Larmor. 182. 127 range of. 384 prolate spheroid. 67. 157 of rolling wheel. 181. 105. 329 Principia. 218. 160 reflection symmetry. 226 rectangular plate moments of inertia. 216–218 energy of. 68 projection of vector. 14. 325 relaxation time. 179–181. 334–336.Index 475 of particles on string. 205. 300 pulley. 9. 108. 53. 41 relativity. 299 in elastic collision. 362 of Earth’s axis. 7. 205–211 rotation about. 350 radial energy equation. 2. 51–53. 10. 200–203. 228. 143. 33 Richardson. 222 rigid-body rotation. 109. 50 precession. 249 planetary. 198 free motion of. 83. xv. 192 principle of. 2. 159. 210 reduced mass. 20. 139 proper node. 155 prey–predator system. 318–321 Prigogine and Lefever. 324–326. 133. 343 reaction on axis. 207. 155. 68. 139 of Earth. 198. 203 shift of origin. 28. 229 of orbit. 236–237. 7. 102. 78 radiation gauge. 52. 214–215. 186 rocket. 92. 208 projectile. 120. 10. 218 angular velocity of. 373 Rayleigh’s equation. 68. 374 pressure. 102 trajectory of. 330 of equinoxes. 244 rate of change. 1. 342 . in fluid. 207–208. 148. 3. 228 generalized co-ordinates for. 171 rational approximation. 203–208. 231 kinetic energy of. 218–220 principal moment of inertia. 221 angular momentum of. 197. 397 range of projectile. 77. 3–4. 147 rate constant. 156. 299 relative velocity. 2 probability distribution attractors. 213. 224. 140. 52. 19 of stretched string. 295–301 special. 103. 192 Ross. 432 product of inertia. 228 of symmetric top. 280 for inverse square law. 3 general. 310 resonance. 28 renormalization. 68. 329–330. 327 principal axes of inertia. 301 relaxation oscillation. 32–34. 345 Roche limit. 144 predictability. 52. 33. 102 range of tides. 162. 26. 373 half-width of. 343 Rikitake dynamo. 300 relative position. 197–225 and Euler angles. 82. 419 proton. 223–225. 339. 233 precession of. 144. 429 repeller. 385 rigid body. 199. 155 quadrupole tensor. 426 rate of particle detection. 132 quadrupole moment. 211–215. 337–339 loss of. 301 quasiperiodic trajectory. 154. 407 quality factor. 248 quadrupole. 199. 47 quantum mechanics. 187. 167 pseudoscalar. 211–215 symmetric.

353. 172 Rutherford. 143. 89. 65. 374 solid angle. 440 separatrix. 200 of rotating body. 98. 91 maximum. 318 Rutherford scattering. 291. 96–97 saddle. 168 Schiehallion. 220 of stretched string. 218–220 rotation matrix. 76. 93 source or sink. 360. 57–59. 210. 75. 253–271 of particles on string. 315 . 244–248. 90–94. 239 acceleration in. 139. 194 synchronous. 419 space. 343 slingshot. 384 scalar triple product. 163 orbit of. 98 semi-minor axis. 239 of vertical top. 198–202 stability of. 15 second-order convergence. 134 spheroid. 69 spring tides. 105–125. 89. 224 space translation. 422 spiral source or sink. 296 spacecraft. 13. 259 of Lagrangian points. 218. 241. 436. 317 rotation about an axis. 303 of rotation. 134 spherical shell. 419. 430 satellite. 310 similarity transformation. 105 sigmoid curve. 353. 397 scalar product. 341. 410 sensitivity to initial conditions. 384 squeezing. 418 Sarkovskii. 436. 269–271 Solar System. 437. 22.476 Classical Mechanics rotating frame. 96–97 scattering angle. xv. 251. 288–289 structural. 337–339. 417 SIR model. 4. 398–400 kinetic energy in. 100. 390 scalar potential. 387 scattering. 90–94. 58 Lagrange’s equations in. 96–97. 111–112 rate of change of vector in. 192 scalar. 209–211 runoff problem. 251 sphere moments of inertia. 419 spring. 227. 168–173 hard-sphere. 440 stability and Laplace’s equation. 180. 383 rotational symmetry. 417 rotation number. 165–173 by multiple targets. 300. 309 stable manifold. 232 spherical charge distribution. 2–4 space cone. 432. 87. 310 of equilibrium. 218–220. 90–97. 266–269 of pendulum. 205 and angular momentum conservation. 410 semi-latus rectum. 373 small oscillations. 146 square of vector. 426 semi-axes. 317. 207. 95 Coulomb. 440 small denominators. 134–136 spherical polars. 106–108 rotation. 79–80 cross-section. 228 spiral point. 135 rolling on plane. 372 sidereal day. 193. 71. 381 scalar field. 275 asymptotic. 88. 292. 227 potential of. 438 rotation of axes. 156. 87. 296–297 Routh’s rule. 410 of Earth’s orbit. 86 semi-major axis. 5. 101 Smale horseshoe. 65 volume element in.

304 true anomaly. 438 two-body collision. 304 angular position of. 236–237. 125. 442 terminal speed. 406. 333 steradian. 422. 407 stretched string. 266–269 stretching. 161 two-cycle. 98. 436 stress tensor. 400–405. 148. 39–42. 222 angular momentum of. 284. 428 superposition principle. 215 potential of. 396 symmetric rigid body. 347 synchronous satellite. 288–289 symmetries and conservation laws. 291–301. 12. 101 true centre. 251. 443 standing wave. 308 of projectile. 433. 416 trade winds. 119 trajectory closed. 437. 205. 329 tension in string. 402 tent map. 309 subcritical bifurcation. 228. 437 total cross-section. 440 structural stability. 213. 284–289. 403–404 tensor product of vectors. 97 trace. 434. 159–173 Lagrangian for. 14. 146 time. 222 free motion of. 223. 302 Hamiltonian for. 154. 207. 187 due to Earth. 284–289. 343 supercritical flip bifurcation. 415. 353. 2–4 time translation. 94 for Rutherford scattering. 401 symmetric top. 11. 144–148. 184. 155 spring and neap. 205. 14 tides. 363 torus. 295 top. 236–237 vertical. 334. 94 for hard-sphere scattering. 68 transient. 338. 244 tensor. 165 tautochrone. 223–225 kinetic energy of. 295–296 transposed tensor. 423 stable point. 359–362 restricted. 424 inertia. 244–248 normal modes of. 284 Lagrangian for. 236–237. 382 Sun. 165–173 two-body system. 141 surface of section. 114. 435 . 220. 93 Stokes’ theorem. 326 target particle. 154. 373 torus breakdown. 187 supercritical bifurcation. 205. 98. 94 and mean free path. 352. 303 three-body system. 351–353 surface. 327. 212. 314 standard map. 32 translation symmetry. 259 surface of rotating liquid. 327 subtraction of vectors. 387–388 Trojan asteroids. 233 symmetric tensor. 136 tides due to. 291 free to slide. 349. 419 steady convection. closed. 436. 144–148. 401 symmetric. 207–208. 45 three-body problem. 250. 377 tennis racquet theorem.Index 477 theorem. 424 turbulent convection. 174 effect on Earth’s rotation. 363 conservation laws for. 53. 401. 270 star. 52. 21. 155 due to oceans. 350 in phase space. 192 Tacoma Narrows bridge. 401 triple product. 269–271 particles on. 394 strange attractor. 333 twist map. 195 atmospheric. 236 precession of. xvi.

159–161. 393. 343 variation. 233 vector. 388 integration of. 392 war. 367. 243 unit vector. 314. 58 relative. 394 vector potential. of normal mode of string. 196 Volterra’s principle. 406 line integral of. 382 units. 324 virial theorem. 160. 99 in rotating body. 234 Zeeman effect. 378 . 390 polar. xvi universal function. 322–324 wave equation. 388 velocity. 26. 188. 310. 418. 419 valence. 382 zero-velocity curve. 321 vorticity. 183 uniform magnetic field. 121 zero vector. 4–5. of tensor. 56. 241. 32 work done by force. 180 Verhulst. xv of propagation. 301 uniform gravitational field. 108–109. 5. of resonance. 61. 381 angular velocity. 81 escape. 382 zero. 385 vector triple product. 397 vector product. 3 uncertainty principle. 246 wave. of integral. 178. 270 width. 386 components of. 382 vector field. 106–108 in rotating frame. 55. 299 velocity impulse. 309 vertical top. 49. 246 polar components of. 299 of light. 9 wavelength. 5. 315 unstable point. 433–437 unaccelerated observer. 326. 55. 381 unit. 400 Van der Pol equation.478 Classical Mechanics two-dimensional maps. 386 position. 390 Laplacian of. 105 axial. 382 differentiation of. 5. 101. 6 circular orbital. 7. 111 of centre of mass. 40. 288–289 violin string. 360. 429 unstable manifold. 105. 82–83. electromagnetic.

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