Department of Physics and Astronomy: Publications and Other Research


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Published by Rinehart & Company, Inc, New York, 1958. Copyright (c) 1958 by Henry Semat and Robert Katz.


This book is intended for students of science and engineering; it aims to develop both an understanding of the important concepts of physics and some analytical skill in the solutions of problems. The mathematical level of the book is such that it may be used by students who are taking a course in calculus concurrently.

The notations and methods of the calculus are introduced early in the text, beginning with the concept of a derivative in the discussion of motion, and are then extended to more complex problems as the student progresses both in physics and in mathematics. Vector algebra is, of course, also used. The vector notation is introduced at the beginning of the text in treating displacements; it is then extended to include the use of the dot product and cross product of two vectors, and the resolution of a vector into components with the aid of unit vectors. These vector methods are used extensively in the sections on Mechanics and Electricity.

The method of exposition and the division of the subject matter into six parts--Mechanics, Heat, Wave Motion and Sound, Electricity and Magnetism, Optics, and Atomics and Nucleonics--follow closely those of the senior author's Fundamentals of Physics, now in its third edition. However, the treatment of much of the material is entirely new, as are over two hundred of the figures. The problems at the end of each chapter are graded in difficulty, and many illustrative examples are provided in the text both to clarify concepts and to guide the student in the analytical approach to the solutions of problems. Included among these problems are some involving selected derivations and some requiring the use of calculus. Answers to odd-numbered problems are given in the Appendix, and a booklet containing all the answers is available to the instructor and may be distributed to his students if he so desires.

Complete work is 927 pages; pdf file is 39 Mbytes.

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