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Analytical Mechanics and Field Theory

This is the study programme for 2020/2021.

The course gives an introduction to classical non-relativistic and relativistic mechanics, Lagrange and Hamilton formalism.

Learning outcome

The student shall acquire a set of tools to solve diverse mechanical problems, and the ability to select the most appropriate tool for the given problem, including the choice between the Lagrange and Hamilton formalisms, choice of suitable generalized coordinates, and simplification of the problem using symmetries. Furthermore, the student shall become familiar with important examples of classical field theories, their formulation in terms of a set of partial differential equations, and the solution of these equations in special cases.


Variational principle and the Lagrange formulation of mechanics, introduction to variational calculus, constrained systems and Lagrange multiplier method, symmetries and conservation laws, applications (for instance motion in central fields, dynamics of rigid bodies, oscillations), Hamilton formulation of mechanics.
Lagrangian formulation of special relativity, continuous systems and fields (electrodynamics is treated as a detailed example), decay and collision problems in special relativity, energy-momentum tensor for fields, particle motion in an external electromagnetic field, overview of important classical fields theories.

Classical mechanics:
1) Landau, Lifshitz: Mechanics: Volume 1 (Course of Theoretical Physics Series), 3 rd edition, Butterworth-Heinemann, 1976
2) David Morin: Introduction to Classical Mechanics, 1st Edition Cambridge University Press, 2008
3) Goldstein, Safko, Poole: Classical mechanics, 3 rd ed., Pearson, 2014

Lagrangian formulation of special relativity and electrodynamics:
4) Landau, Lifshitz: : The Classical Theory of Fields: Volume 2 (Course of Theoretical Physics Series) 4th Edition, , Butterworth-Heinemann, 1980

Required prerequisite knowledge


Recommended previous knowledge

FYS100 Mechanics, FYS300 Electromagnetism and Special Relativity, MAT100 Mathematical Methods 1


Weight Duration Marks Aid
Written exam1/14 hoursA - FCompilation of mathematical formulae (Rottmann).

Course teacher(s)

Course coordinator
Ipsita Mandal
Head of Department
Bjørn Henrik Auestad

Method of work

4 hours lectures and 1 hour exercises/seminars per week (number of seminars depending on student number).

Open to

City and Regional Planning - Master of Science
Computer Science - Master's Degree Programme
Environmental Engineering - Master of Science Degree Programme
Industrial economics - Master's Degree Programme
Robot Technology and Signal Processing - Master's Degree Programme
Engineering Structures and Materials - Master's Degree Programme
Mathematics and Physics - Master of Science Degree Programme
Mathematics and Physics, 5-year integrated Master's Programme
Offshore Field Development Technology - Master's Degree Programme
Industrial Asset Management - Master's Degree Programme
Marine- and Offshore Technology - Master's Degree Programme
Offshore Technology - Master's Degree Programme
Petroleum Geosciences Engineering - Master of Science Degree Programme
Petroleum Engineering - Master of Science Degree Programme
Technical Societal Safety - Master's Degree Programme
Risk Management - Master's Degree Programme (Master i teknologi/siviling.)

Course assessment

Use evaluation forms and/or conversation for students' evaluation of the course and teaching, according to current guidelines


Link to reading list

This is the study programme for 2020/2021.

Sist oppdatert: 08.08.2020