Einstein , Relativity and Quanta
Modern Physics and Cosmology:
Revolutions in Physics
Winter Semester 2000
Lecturer: Professor A.M. Saperstein; E-mail: ams@physics..wayne.edu
Web Page: http://hal.physics.wayne.edu/~ams/homepage.html
Office: Room 233 Physics, 666 West Hancock; Telephone: 577-2733
(577-2721 to leave message)
Office Hours: Monday, and Wednesday 11:40-12:30 or by appointment
& drop in)
Class Discussions 10:40-11:35 am Monday, Wednesday, Friday -
Room 185 Physics Bldg.
Honors Section-Extra Discussions 11:40 am-12:40 pm Friday - Room 245 Physics Bldg.
Texts Physics for Poets, Robert March. Fourth Edition
Quantum Reality, Nick Herbert. (Paperback), Doubleday Anchor
Is the world lumpy or smooth?
Connected or disconnected?
Is there really a "Real World" out there?
A Smooth World: Classical Continuum Space of Galileo and Newton
Time and Space - Galilean Relativity
Motion in Space - particles: mass, force, energy, momentum
Motion in Space - waves: frequency, wavelength, types, the Doppler
Gravity and Electromagnetism
Einstein and the contradiction in Galilean relativity - Special
General Relativity and Gravitation
A Lumpy World: The case against Aristotle - matter is lumpy
Molecules and Atoms
Energy and Light are also lumpy
Particles are waves and vice-versa????
Classical and Quantum Predictability
Can Events "Here" Influence Events "There"?
What glue holds stuff together - the field that binds
The world of elementary particles
A Real World: Is it there?
Can We Know It?
addition to some assigned homework and class work, there will be two hourly
exams and a final, all consisting of short (identify and signify) and long
(discuss and connect) essays. No drops will be signed
after March 31, 2000. (Students who fail to complete the required course work, and who have not officially dropped, will receive a grade I or E depending on the circumstance.)
Final grades for 3 credits based upon a maximum of 300 points:
A => 200 points; B => 100 points; C => 75 points.
Two hourly exams**:
Final exam 100 points
Collected homework*: 50 points
Interactive Question Papers* 40 points -in class (1 per session) and collected.
Honors students will be expected to turn in a term paper (worth 100 points), on a mutually agreed upon subject, in addition. Grades for honors students (4 credits) will be a weighed average of their paper grade and their 3 credit grade.
*Exams will be based - to a large degree - on questions from the Questions Papers and from the homework. Thus students who are conscientious in preparing their home and class work should do well.
**Missed hourly exams may be made-up, at the option of the instructor, by a term paper.
Homework Graded as G(10), S(5), U(0). Assignments in March's text.
Due Monday 1/31: Ch1.-2,4,10; Ch2.-1,2,4,9,10; Ch3.-4,5,7; Ch4.-2,3;
Ch5.-3,5,8; Ch6.-1; Ch7.-1,3,5a; Ch8.-2,3,4;
Due Monday 2/21: Ch10.-1,3; Ch11.-2,4,5,8; Ch12.-2,3;
Due Monday 4/3: Ch13.-1,2,3; Ch14.-1,2; Ch15.-2,4,5; Ch16.-1,3;
Due Monday 4/17: Ch19.-1,2,3,4.
class will be run as a combination of lecture and
discussion, with emphasis on the latter! Productive discussion requires
that you have read (and thought about!) the appropriate text materials
(M for March, H for Herbert) before class. The discussions are intended
to help you understand the test materials and their implications. If you
haven't read the materials before the class, you won't be able to
participate in the discussion - making for a very dull class! Also, you
will not be able to ask questions appropriately about the reading you do
not understand. Since the exams will cover both class and text material,
it would be wise to participate attentively in all class sessions as
well as to do all the reading carefully. Besides, discussing this
material should be fun and how can you discuss it if you have not read
the same stuff? "Interactive Question Papers" to stimulate discussion
will be distributed for each class.
Introduction, Outline of Course M-Intro.;
The Newtonian Revolution
Galileo: The Desciption of Motion
No Class - M L King Birthday
The Maxwellian Revolution
Electricity and Magnetism, Waves
The Einsteinian Revolution
Galilean Relativity, Einstein's Relativity
Postulate, Shrinking Ruler Sticks
Simultaneity: Absolute or Relative?
Mass and Laws of Force
General Relativity; The Expanding Universe
(M: Chapters 1-12)
The Quantum Revolution
The Advent of the Quantum
M-15, H-3; honors paper topic due
The Electron as Wave
The Nature of Electrons
W 3/8 Quantum
Quantum Uncertainties and Prediction
M-F 3/13-3/17 SPRING BREAK
M 3/20 What
are the Quantum Entities?
W 3/22 Is
the Cat - For Whom the Bells Tolls - Real? M-18,
M 3/27 EXAM
(M: Chapters 12-17; H: Chapters 1-7)
W 3/29 Quantum Measurement
F 3/31 Quantum Realities
M 4/3 Quantum Realities
W 4/5 EPR Paradox
F 4/7 "...For Whom the
M 4/10 Non-locality
The Quantum Field Revolution
W 4/12 Quantum Fields
F 4/14 Quantum Fields
Honors Papers Due
M 4/17 The strange Particle
W 4/19 QCD
F 4/21 QCD
M 4/24 Review
T 5/2 FINAL EXAM
8:00 - 10:30 am