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*Mudra* Physical Sciences For NET & SLET Exams Of UGC-CSIR

Part B and C
Volume-06

Contents
II. Classical Mechanics
1.1 Newtons Law of Motion 1
2.1 Phase Space Dynamics 8
2.2 Stability Analysis 9
3.1 Central-Force Motion 17
4.1 Two-body collisions 53
4.2 Centre-of-Mass Frames 56
5.1 Rigid Body Dynamics 59
5.2 Moment of Inertia 99
5.3. Non-inertial Frames of Reference 110
5.4. Comparison of Magnetostatics and Electrostatics 123

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II. Classical Mechanics

1.1 Newtons Law of Motion
According to Newton, any change in the motion of an object, described with respect to
given reference, is the result of the mutual interaction between the object and its environment.
The central problem of mechanics is to understand and quantify the connection between these
interactions and the resulting motion. It is natural to expect that the interactions causing the
motion can be quantified in terms of the measurable physical properties of the body and its
environment, e.g. mass, electric charge, magnetic dipole moment, etc.
Newton gave a programme to attack this problem which comprises two steps:
1. A vector quantity called force (F) is regarded as the cause of change in the state of
motions of a body or in other words, the vehicle of interaction between the moving
object and its environment. The force acting on the body can cause acceleration (a)
which is a vector quantity, like force.
2. The force acting on the body is calculated on the basis of the properties of the body
and its environment, requiring determination of the appropriate force laws.
Newtons formulation of step (1) above forms the basis of his laws of motion. These laws
of motion are valid in a class of reference frames called inertial frames. In fact, we can turn
around and define the inertial frames to be those frames of reference in which Newtons laws of
motion are valid.
Newtons laws can be stated as follows:
(i) Law of Inertia (1st Law):
In an inertial frame, every free particle has a constant velocity. The original version of
this law written in Latin was slightly different. When translated into English, it reads: every
body free of impressed forces either preserves a state of rest or continues in uniform rectilinear
In an inertial system a free particle undergoes equal displacement in equal intervals of
time. This fact defines a time scale or a clock for inertial frames called inertial time scale.
Motion of free particle in inertial frames will be in straight lines. For, if this motion were
on a curve with non-vanishing curvature, the velocity of this free particle, which is a vector
tangent toe the path of the particle, would change with time, contradiction the first law. Thus, a
path traced by a free particle in an inertial frame defines a straight line in that frame.
Since a free particle covers an equal measure of space in equal measure of time, ad
infinitum, it implies that along the straight line of the path, space is uniform or homogenous, and
so also time. Again, since the direction of the straight line path could have been any, it also
implies that space is isotropic. So an inertial frame is also interpreted to stand for the
homogeneity and isotropy of space, and homogeneity of time.
Since free particle travel in straight line of an ideal inertial frame would be the one that
has all the axes as straight lines. Only the oblique and rectangular Cartesian coordinate systems

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satisfy this requirement. Other coordinate systems, for example, a spherical polar coordinate
system has as coordinates the polar and the azimuthal angle , which cannot change without
violating the rectilinear property in inertial motion.
We see that the first law requires the motion of a free particle, which depends on the
definition of force given by the second law.
ii) Law of Causality (2nd Law):
If the total force exerted on a particle by other objects at any specified time is represented
by vector F, then-
F ma dp/dt 1

where, a= dv/dt is the acceleration of the particle at given instant, m is the mass of the particle, v
is the velocity of the particle at that instant and p=mv is the linear momentum.
The vector quantity F is called force and the above equation (1), is taken to be its definition. This
law is a complete law.
Newtons original version of the second law also reads somewhat differently: The
change of motion v is proportional to the motive force I impressed, and is made in the
direction of the right line in which that force is impressed. Thus if we consider all these changes
to take place in time t, and take the constant to proportionality to be 1/m, in the limit of t 0,
we get the usual form.
Through this law, the study of the motion of bodies became part of a new branch of
science called dynamics. For the first time it defined the motion of force through a directly
measurable quantity called acceleration and another quantity is called mass. Measurement of
mass or the quantity of matter, in a given body would have been extremely difficult. Newton
derived the first universal law of force, that is, the inverse square law of the gravitational force,
from a combination of Keplers law of planetary motion and his own three laws of motion, he
could then have many situations where he could know the value of mass, acceleration and force,
independent of his second law of motion, and therefore test its validity.
The second law is a prescription for formulation the dynamical equations of motion in
inertial frames. The first law has already defined what inertial frames are? They are rectangular
Cartesian frames in which a free particle either stays at rest or continues with uniform rectilinear
However, in real life situations we very often come across various kinds of contact or
surface forces, forces produced due to collision, or hindrance to natural motion. Since, Newtons
second law demands the a priori knowledge of the total force that a body experience, this force
must also include all the forces of reactions that it experiences; in the third law, Newton
prescribes the general nature of the force of reaction in relation to the force of action.
iii) Law of Reciprocity (3rd Law):
To the force exerted by every object on a particle, there corresponds an equal and
opposite force exerted by the particle on that object.

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For two interaction particle, if F21 is the force exerted by the first particle on the second,
and F21 is the force exerted by the second particle on the first, me must have-
F12 F21
Using the second law, we have, then
d
(p1 p2 ) 0
dt
where, p1 and p2 are the linear momenta of the two particles 1 and 2 respectively.
This means that the total linear momentum p1+ p2 is a constant of motion.
In other words, the total linear momentum of any isolated pair of mutually interaction particles,
expressed as a vector sum of quantities p1 and p2 is conserved.
iv) Law of Superposition:
The total force F due to several objects acting simultaneously on a particle is equal to the
vector sum of the forces Fk , due to each object acting independently, that is,
F Fk 2
k

This is a divide and conquer rule for solving mechanical problems involving complex
forces. There is no unique way of dividing the total F into a number of components. In other
words, for a given F there is, in general, infinity of solution of equation 2, though, of course, all
Fk `s cannot be mutually orthogonal. Newton did not write this law as a separate one, but it is
independent of the first three laws, and was first explicitly mentioned by Daniel Bernoulli in
1738.
Newtons laws of motion have been critically examined again over and again,
particularly to see whether all the three laws are independent or not. The most widely argued
point is that the first law is a special case of the second law, because as we put F=0, in eq. 1, it
implies that the acceleration a is zero and therefore guarantees rectilinear motion with constant
velocity.
Examples of Force Laws and the Corresponding Motions:
From the mechanical standpoint, forces can be divided into two classes: a) Body Force:
which act on each point on the body such gravitation, and b) Surface or Contact Forces: acting at
the surface only, for example, pressure, tension, elastic forces at the contact, all reactions due to
mutual contact between two bodies.
We shall give here a few specific examples of forces:
i) Hookes Law (1675):
Within a certain specified domain of space, the force F acting on a particle is attractive in
nature and is linearly proportional to the displacement (r) from the position of equilibrium. That
is,
F kr
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where, k is the constant of proportionality, called Hookes constant, and r is measured form the
position of equilibrium.
From Newtons law, the equation of motion of any particle under the above force law is,
..
m r kr 3
The general solution being,

r a cos ( k/m t ) b sin ( k/ m t ) 4

where, a and b are the constant of integrations, which can be related to the initial position ro and
initial velocity o by,

ro a and o k/ m b 5

The motion is, in general, elliptical with the center of the ellipse at the position of equilibrium.
ii) Newtons Law of Gravitation (1687):
All particles in the universe attracts all other particles along the line joining the two mass
centers with a force directly proportional to the product of their masses (m1, m2) and inversely
proportional to the square of the distance between them, that is,
G m1 m2
F12 3
r12 - F21 6
r12

where, r12 r1 r2 , F12 is the force on particle number 1 (having mass m1), exerted by the particle
number 2 (having mass m2) and G is the universal constant of gravitation.
A similar inverse square law but with a provision for both attraction and repulsion holds good for
any two static electric charges or two static magnetic poles, given by the French Physicist
Charles Coulomb (1784).
iii) Lorentzs Law of Electromagnetic Force (1892):
Any charged particle having mass m and electric charge e moving under the action of an
electric field E(r, t) and a magnetic field of induction B(r, t) experience a force F given by,
F e(E B) 7
This is essentially a two-component force, the first term representing the electric force
and the second term the magnetic force. The latter acts perpendicular to the direction of the
instantaneous motion of the particle.
For constant E and B, the equation of motion is
r (e/m) (E B)
Whose exact solution has been given, for example, by F. R. Gantmakher (1960) as follows:

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