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Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --- Summary sheet 1

Centre of Mass
1 1
For discrete masses: R  
mi r i For continuous bodies: 
M body
r dm
M i
Static equilibrium: the two conditions for a body in static equilibrium are:
(1) The vector sum of all the external forces acting on the body is zero.
(2) The sum of all the turning moments about an axis through any point is zero.
F ext   F i  0 Gext  G i
 Fl i i
 0.
Circular motion
i i i

For small angles <<1 radian, we can describe Q
rotation by a vector, θ , through O and along  B
OQ, in the direction of OQ and of magnitude
equal to θ O a A
We define the angular velocity vector: and the angular acceleration vector:

Moment of force: Force F acts at point P, which is at position
vector r from point O. The moment of the force is G = Fr sin( )
perpendicular to both r and F. The moment vector G = r  F
Moment of a couple: a couple is a combination of two equal
and opposite forces which are not in line with each other. The
moment of a couple is independent of the origin.

Perpendicular axis theorem: Relates moment of inertia of a laminar about an axis perpendicular to the plane to the moments in the x-y plane. Example: rod about end and about CoM (see above). . . Moment of Inertia: Rotational equivalent of the force F is the moment . so rotational equivalent of Newton 2 is . where is the moment of inertia. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. Disc about axis perpendicular to plane (also cylinder). Moment of inertia for continuous bodies: Examples.Mass m at radius r needs force . Parallel axis theorem: Relates moment of inertia about CoM to a parallel axis displaced a perpendicular distance a from it. Rod about end .Summary sheet 2 Angular acceleration: Rotational equivalent of acceleration is the angular acceleration . about centre of mass (CoM) .

Angular momentum is conserved in an isolated system. In general so. The rate of change of L: The value of Gint is zero since The internal interaction on the ith particle by the jth particle is in line and oppositely directed to the interaction on the jth particle by the ith particle by Newton 3. A particle at A of mass m and at position vector r relative to point B. has momentum P = mv and angular momentum L = r  P = mr  v . Period of small oscillations: . The angular impulse changes the angular momentum Rotational kinetic energy: Examples: compound pendulum. The impulse of a force changes the momentum: the angular momentum L is constant in time. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. L. Consider a system of N interacting particles.Summary sheet 3 The angular momentum. if the system is isolated and Gext = 0. is the moment of the momentum about a point.

Particle rotating at radius r = (x.Summary sheet 4 General motion of rigid body. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. 1) Centre of Mass R moves as the total mass M under sum of all external forces: 2) Rotation about CoM given by total moment of forces: Example: cylinder rolling down plane (v=a) Linear momentum: Angular momentum: Solving: Energy: rotational KE Linear KE Rotating frames.y). Centripetal force .

t).Summary sheet 5 Linear and rotational equivalents: Gyroscopes: Heavy flywheel under Couple G precesses at Angular velocity  About z-axis. y’=y. but others are commonly used. Cartesian frames are (x. We need a frame of reference in which to define positions. z’=z. L sin G In vectors: G = Ω  L = I Ω  ω Examples: Earth’s precession of equinoxes Zeeman effect. A frame of reference is a set of axes used to define points in space (or ‘events’ in space and time). Galilean transform between S and S’ moving at v in x: x’=x-vt. Magnetic Resonance Imaging Einstein’s theory of Special Relativity. . velocities. y=y’. and accelerations. Example: train passing signals. t=t’. z). z. z=z’. x=x’+vt’. y. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. y. t’=t. Examples: rotation of axes in space. In spacetime an event is given by (x.

This wasn’t evidence for the aether (relativity also predicts aberration). 2. The speed of light in a vacuum is the same for all observers.Summary sheet 6 Nineteenth-century physicists thought light waves must travel in a medium: the aether. Time intervals.192. Einstein (1905) argued that light travelled at a finite speed in a vacuum. Einstein devised a thought experiment that showed that a moving observer’s clock ran slower than a stationary observer’s clock: .631.770 cycles of caesium 133. where He predicted relativistic time dilation. . The moving observer thinks that the stationary observer’s clock is slower by the same factor. He formulated two postulates: 1. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. A coherent light beam was divided into two perpendicular paths which would have a time difference No aether drift was ever found. The SI second is defined to be exactly 9. The laws of physics are the same in every inertial (un-accelerated) frame. These postulates have far-reaching implications for space and time. Michelson and Morley set up an optical interferometer sensitive enough to detect aether drift. Bradley observed stellar aberration in 1725 due to motion of the Earth’s orbit 3104m s1 compared to the speed of light 3108 m s1  v/c  10 4 .

Please learn it. No length change perpendicular to motion. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --.y. A.Summary sheet 7 Einstein’s postulates lead to the following conclusions: Time dilation: Simultaneity: events simultaneous in one frame are not necessarily so in another. and such that x = x’ = 0 at t = t’ = 0 (standard configuration).t) as measured in the laboratory frame S. Also important are spacetime diagrams.z. Lorentz Transformation can be used to solve relativistic problems in a straightforward manner. . The Lorentz transformation: This is VERY IMPORTANT. An event. which occurs at position (x. The same event is also viewed in another frame S’. The twin paradox: the moving twin ages more slowly than her brother on Earth. The effect is tiny in every day life: 70 mph for 6 years causes a 1 s shift. with its axes parallel to those of S. moving at speed v along x. Length contraction parallel to motion: .

Murray & Townes (1964) showed that any effect is less that 0. so should travel only a few hundred metres before decaying. Jaseja. Simultaneity example. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. b = A. all of which transform using the same transformation matrix i. so most of them travel through many tens of km of atmosphere due to time dilation. Experimental evidence for Special Relativity Time dilation in the decay of muons produced by cosmic rays at the top of the atmosphere have lifetimes of 2 s.1% of that expected.Summary sheet 8 The Lorentz transformation: This is VERY IMPORTANT. Examples: Moving and stationary twins. where b and b are 4-vectors. Michelson-Morley experiment. Please learn it. Their speeds are close to c. This is evidence for the absence of the Aether. There are many example of 4-vectors in special relativity. Magnetic effects. GPS Clocks. The magnetic force between two l current-carrying wires can be calculated from relativistic modifications of the electrostatic forces between the charges in the wires. . Spacetime diagrams.b.e. The rates of the clocks in the Global Satellite Positioning System satellites need to be adjusted relative to those on the ground for both the time dilation of special relativity and the general relativistic effect of the difference in gravitational potential. Javan.

Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. So sin( ) = cos( )  . θ = 90°. The time and space between two pulses measured in frame S is . and the direction of the photon was incoming rather than outgoing. Relativistic Doppler effect.  v/c as Bradley measured. Consider a pulsing light source at rest in a frame S’.Summary sheet 9 Addition of velocities: particle moving at in S’. A photon emitted from a light source L stationary in frame S’ has a corresponding angle θ viewed from frame S given by the addition of speeds formulae: In Bradley’s case. The observer in S sees the light source move between pulses. but relativity also predicts aberration. . so that and . so the second pulse has further to go. Similarly so that Aberration of light: Bradley measured the aberration of light.

Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. Relativistic momentum. The vertical lines AA and BB represent the paths Through space of stationary observers. The conserved momentum is .Summary sheet 10 Spacetime intervals. The scale is given by the invariant distance x2 – c2t2 = 1. with v < c. The line CC is the path (world line) of a moving observer. The path of a photon is a straight line at 45° to the axes. with the geometry of Minkowski Space rather than Euclidean space. In 2-D Euclidean space the distance invariant is The equivalent of Pythagoras’s theorem in Special Relativity is Spacetime (Minkowski) diagrams: We plot events in spacetime.

Relativistic Dynamics: Summary. as in PR. ctPQ > xPQ. and yet another in which R occurs before P. i. separated only by a time interval.e. ct < x. as nothing can travel faster than light. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. P.e. it is possible to find a frame in which P and R are simultaneous.Summary sheet 11 Causality and spacetime structure: If one event. And it is possible to transform to another frame S in which P and Q both occur at the same place. . causes another Q then Q must lie in the future cone of P. If the interval is ‘space-like’ i. The time interval PQ is ‘time-like’. The event R lies in the ‘elsewhere’of P. It is then not possible for R to have been caused by P.

This means that the components transform by the Lorentz transformation but it also means that there is an associated invariant quantity (i. In the same way. i. and that the ‘length’ or norm of this four-vector was invariant under the Lorentz transformation.e. .Summary sheet 12 The Energy-Momentum invariant: We think of x and ct as two components of a space- time four-vector. Rotational Mechanics and Relativity --. The invariant is E2  p2c2 = E 2  p 2c2 = m2c4 . This is very powerful and helps to simplify problems considerably.e. p and E/c are also components of another four vector called the energy- momentum four vector. its ‘length’ or ‘norm’) which remains the same for a given system when viewed at any time in any inertial frame.


p is the total momentum of the given system. The value of m is the total mass in a frame (if there is one) in which all the particles of the system are at rest. For a system of more than one particle. use: 2 2     2   Ei   pi c is invariant. where E is the total energy.  i   i  ..

y.b. where b and b are 4- vectors and A is the transformation matrix which . z form the components of a 4-vector. and we can write the Lorentz transformation more generally as b = A.The energy-momentum 4-vector We saw previously that the Lorentz transform for space and time may be written as  ct     v c 0 0  ct      x     v  0 0  x  y    c  0 0 1 0  y      z     z     0 0 0 1  ct and x.

b = (E/c. py.e. pz):  E c    v c 0 0  E c      px     v  0 0  px   p    c   p   y   0 0 1 0  y  p    p   z   0 0 0 1  z  . i. px. is given by    v 0 0  c   v  0 0 A c   0 0 1 0  0 0 0 1  It can be shown that energy and momentum form a four vector.

Note The ‘length’ or norm of a 4-vector is invariant under the Lorentz transformation. The square of the norm is bb which in Minkowski geometry is given by bb = b12  b22  b32  b42 For the E-p 4-vector this is (E2/c2)  px2  py2  pz2 and for the t-r 4-vector it is (c2t2)  x2  y2  z2 .