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P. 1

Classical Mechanics - Marion, Thornton5.0

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01/05/2016

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These are some notes on the use of the antisymmetric symbol* *ijk for

expressing cross products. This is an extremely powerful tool for manip-

ulating cross products and their generalizations in higher dimensions,

and although many low level courses avoid the use of* *, I think this is

a mistake and I want you to become proﬁcient with it.

In a cartesian coordinate system a vector*
*

*V* has components* V*i along

each of the three orthonormal basis vectors ˆ*e*i, or*
*

*V* = i*V*iˆ*e*i. The dot

product of two vectors,*
*

*A ·
*

*B*, is bilinear and can therefore be written

as

*
A ·
*

*B* = (

i

*A*iˆ*e*i)*·
*

j

*B*jˆ*e*j

(A.1)

=

i

j

*A*i*B*jˆ*e*i** ·**ˆ

(A.2)

=

i

j

*A*i*B*j*δ*ij*,
*

(A.3)

where the Kronecker delta* δ*ij is deﬁned to be 1 if* i* =* j* and 0 otherwise.

As the basis vectors ˆ*e*k are orthonormal, i.e. orthogonal to each other

and of unit length, we have ˆ*e*i** ·**ˆ

229

230

*APPENDIX A. *IJK* AND CROSS PRODUCTS
*

Doing a sum over an index* j* of an expression involving a* δ*ij is

very simple, because the only term in the sum which contributes is

the one with* j* =* i*. Thus j* F*(*i,j*)*δ*ij =* F*(*i,i*), which is to say, one

just replaces j with i in all the other factors, and drops the* δ*ij and the

summation over* j*. So we have*
*

*A ·
*

*B* = i*A*i*B*i, the standard expression

for the dot product1

We now consider the cross product of two vectors,*
*

*A ×
*

*B*, which

is also a bilinear expression, so we must have*
*

*A ×
*

*B* = ( i*A*iˆ*e*i)*×
*

( j* B*jˆ*e*j) = i

j* A*i*B*j(ˆ*e*i** ×**ˆ

which can therefore be written as*
*

*V* = k* V*kˆ*e*k. But the vector result

depends also on the two input vectors, so the coeﬃcients* V*k really

depend on* i* and* j* as well. Deﬁne them to be* *ijk, so

ˆ*e*i** ×**ˆ

k

* *kijˆ*e*k*.
*

It is easy to evaluate the 27 coeﬃcients* *kij, because the cross product

of two orthogonal unit vectors is a unit vector orthogonal to both of

them. Thus ˆ*e*1** ×**ˆ

the same argument to ˆ*e*2** ×**ˆ

of the cross product,*
*

*A ×
*

*B* =*−**
*

*B ×
*

*A*, we see that

* *123 =* *231 =* *312 = 1;* *132 =* *213 =* *321 =** −**1

and* *ijk = 0 for all other values of the indices, i.e.* *ijk = 0 whenever any

two of the indices are equal. Note that* * changes sign not only when the

last two indices are interchanged (a consequence of the antisymmetry of

the cross product), but whenever any two of its indices are interchanged.

Thus* *ijk is zero unless (1*,*2*,*3)** →**(

to the sign of the permutation if it exists.

Now that we have an expression for ˆ*e*i** ×**ˆ

*
A ×
*

*B* =

i

j

*A*i*B*j(ˆ*e*i** ×**ˆ

i

j

k

* *kij*A*i*B*jˆ*e*k*.* (A.4)

Much of the usefulness of expressing cross products in terms of* *’s

comes from the identity

k

* *kij* *k m =* δ*i *δ*jm*−**δ*im*δ*j *,
*

(A.5)

1

Note that this only holds because we have expressed our vectors in terms of

orthonormal basis vectors.

*A.1. VECTOR OPERATIONS
*

231

which can be shown as follows. To get a contribution to the sum,* k
*

must be diﬀerent from the unequal indices* i* and* j*, and also diﬀerent

from* * and* m*. Thus we get 0 unless the pair (*i,j*) and the pair (* ,m*)

are the same pair of diﬀerent indices. There are only two ways that

can happen, as given by the two terms, and we only need to verify the

coeﬃcients. If* i* =* * and* j* =* m*, the two* *’s are equal and the square

is 1, so the ﬁrst term has the proper coeﬃcient of 1. The second term

diﬀers by one transposition of two indices on one epsilon, so it must

have the opposite sign.

We now turn to some applications. Let us ﬁrst evaluate

*
A ·*(

*B ×
*

*C*) =

i

*A*i

jk

* *ijk*B*j*C*k =

ijk

* *ijk*A*i*B*j*C*k*.* (A.6)

Note that*
*

*A ·*(

*B ×
*

*C*) is, up to sign, the volume of the parallelopiped

formed by the vectors*
*

*A*,*
*

*B*, and*
*

*C*. From the fact that the* * changes

sign under transpositions of any two indices, we see that the same is

true for transposing the vectors, so that

*
A ·*(

*B ×
*

*C*) =*−**
*

*A ·*(

*C ×
*

*B*) =*
*

*B ·*(

*C ×
*

*A*) =*−**
*

*B ·*(

*A ×
*

*C*)

=*
*

*C ·*(

*A ×
*

*B*) =*−**
*

*C ·*(

*B ×
*

*A*)*.
*

Now consider*
*

*V* =*
*

*A ×*(

*B ×
*

*C*). Using our formulas,

*
V* =

ijk

* *kijˆ*e*k*A*i(*
*

*B ×
*

*C*)j =

ijk

* *kijˆ*e*k*A*i

lm

* *jlm*B*l*C*m*.
*

Notice that the sum on j involves only the two epsilons, and we can use

j

* *kij* *jlm =

j

* *jki* *jlm =* δ*kl*δ*im*−**δ*km*δ*il*.
*

Thus

*V*k =

ilm

(

j

* *kij* *jlm)*A*i*B*l*C*m =

ilm

(*δ*kl*δ*im*−**δ*km*δ*il)*A*i*B*l*C*m

=

ilm

*δ*kl*δ*im*A*i*B*l*C*m*−
*

ilm

*δ*km*δ*il*A*i*B*l*C*m

=

i

*A*i*B*k*C*i*−
*

i

*A*i*B*i*C*k =*
*

*A ·
*

*C B*k*−**
*

*A ·
*

*B C*k*,
*

232

*APPENDIX A. *IJK* AND CROSS PRODUCTS
*

so

*
A ×*(

*B ×
*

*C*) =*
*

*B
*

*A ·
*

*C −
*

*C
*

*A ·
*

*B.
*

(A.7)

This is sometimes known as the bac-cab formula.

Exercise: Using (A.5) for the manipulation of cross products,

show that

(*
*

*A ×
*

*B*)** ·**(

*C ×
*

*D*) =*
*

*A ·
*

*C
*

*B ·
*

*D −
*

*A ·
*

*D
*

*B ·
*

*C.
*

The determinant of a matrix can be deﬁned using the* * symbol. For

a 3** ×**3 matrix

det*A* =

ijk

* *ijk*A*1i*A*2j*A*3k =

ijk

* *ijk*A*i1*A*j2*A*k3*.
*

From the second deﬁnition, we see that the determinant is the volume

of the parallelopiped formed from the images under the linear map* A
*

of the three unit vectors ˆ*e*i, as

(*A*ˆ*e*1)** ·**((

In higher dimensions, the cross product is not a vector, but there

is a generalization of* * which remains very useful. In an* n*-dimensional

space,* *i1i2...in has* n* indices and is deﬁned as the sign of the permuta-

tion (1*,*2*,...,n*)** →**(

otherwise. The analog of (A.5) has (*n −*1)! terms from all the permu-

tations of the unsummed indices on the second* *. The determinant of

an* n ×n* matrix is deﬁned as

det*A* =

i1,...,in

* *i1i2...in

n

p=1

*A*p,ip*.
*

Appendix B

Aula 5 Distr. Binomial

Aula 4 Probabilidade

Aula 3 Descritiva

Aula 2 Descritiva.ii

Aula 1 Descritiva.I

Relatório II

Experimento I

1 - APOSTILA - RETIFICADORES NÃO CONTROLADOS

EDUCAÇÃO A DISTÂNCIA E FORMAÇÃO DE PROFESSORES

Aula 8 Estimacao.da.Proporcao

Aula-7-Aproximacao Da Binomial Pela Normal

Aula 6 Distr. Normal

Aula 5 Distr. Binomial

Aula-4-Probabilidade

Aula-9-Nocoes.Teste.Hipotese.I

Aula-2-Descritiva.II

Aula-1-Descritiva.I

Aula-3-Descritiva

MONOGRAFIA.DIDATICA

MONOGRAFIA.DIDATICA

Livro-facinio Do Universo

Relatorio Exp 07

Mecânica Quantica

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