Classical Mechanics: An Undergraduate Text – R. Douglas Gregory – 1st Edition


Gregory’s Classical Mechanics is a major new textbook for undergraduates in mathematics and physics. It is a thorough, self-contained and highly readable account of a subject many students find difficult. The author’s clear and systematic style promotes a good understanding of the subject; each concept is motivated and illustrated by worked examples, while problem sets provide plenty of practice for understanding and technique.

Computer assisted problems, some suitable for projects, are also included. The book is structured to make learning the subject easy; there is a natural progression from core topics to more advanced ones and hard topics are treated with particular care. A theme of the book is the importance of conservation principles.

These appear first in vectorial mechanics where they are proved and applied to problem solving. They reappear in analytical mechanics, where they are shown to be related to symmetries of the Lagrangian, culminating in Noether’s theorem.

Table of Contents

Part I. Newtonian Mechanics of a Single Particle:
1. The algebra and calculus of vectors
2. Velocity, acceleration and scalar angular velocity
3. Newton's laws of motion and the law of gravitation
4. Problems in particle dynamics
5. Linear oscillations
6. Energy conservation
7. Orbits in a central field
8. Non-linear oscillations and phase space

Part II. Multi-particle Systems:
9. The energy principle
10. The linear momentum principle
11. The angular momentum principle

Part III. Analytical mechanics:
12. Lagrange's equations and conservation principle
13. The calculus of variations and Hamilton's principle
14. Hamilton's equations and phase space

Part IV. Further Topics:
15. The general theory of small oscillations
16. Vector angular velocity and rigid body kinematics
17. Rotating reference frames
18. Tensor algebra and the inertia tensor
19. Problems in rigid body dynamics

Appendix: centres of mass and moments of inertia
Answers to the problems

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