__ COURSE TIME:__

Lectures: Tu. 5:10-6:00 pm, Physics-Geology 105.

Lab: Instructor will be in computer lab (Physics-Geology 505) Tu.
6:00-7:00 pm.

Lab: Teaching Assistant will be in computer lab Mo. and We.
3:00-6:00 pm.

__ COURSE LOCATION:__ Physics-Geology 105 (lectures) and 505 (lab).

__ INSTRUCTOR:__ Richard Scalettar, scalettar@physics.ucdavis.edu

__ OFFICE:__ Physics-Geology 409.

__ OFFICE HOURS:__ Tu. 1:00-2:00 pm.

__ TEACHING ASSISTANT:__ Peter Salzman, psalzman@landau.ucdavis.edu

__ OFFICE:__ Physics-Geology 436.

__ OFFICE HOURS:__ please contact via email.

__ TEXT:__ ``Computational Physics'', N. Giordano, Prentice Hall

ISBN 0-13-367723-0

### GENERAL DESCRIPTION:

This course is a continuation of Physics 105AL,
which serves as an introduction to computational physics,
and also to the computational resources in the physics department.
As with 105AL, we will cover
four representative numerical problems, each of which will involve
writing a fairly simple program illustrating a particular
computational technique and also some interesting physics.
We will assume knowledge of programming, the linux operating
system etc at the level of Physics 105AL.
### USEFUL LINKS FROM PHYSICS 105AL:

### SPECIFIC TOPICS:

PROJECT ONE:

Normal Modes. Last quarter we computed the normal modes of
coupled mass-spring systems. This quarter I plan to do the
problems where the masses alternate between two values
and where there is a single defect mass.
This will be a simple modification of
a code from 105AL, but a lot of fascinating physics.
In the case of alternating masses, the eigenspectrum develops a gap,
and there are interesting analogies to insulating behavior in solids.
In the case of a defect mass we will see localized modes develop.
PROJECT TWO:

We will use molecular dynamics techniques from 105AL to solve for
motion in the Kepler problem. We will look at
small perturbations to the 1/r potential and observe precession
of the orbit perihelion, and consider the case when the solar mass is
finite (i.e. study the joint motion of two similar size masses under
their mutual gravitational interaction).

PROJECT THREE:

Numerical integration of equations of motion of nutating top.
This problem will emphasize that when you get stuck analytically
you can turn to numerics and make a nice connection to 105B
lecture.

PROJECT FOUR:

Solution of two dimensional Laplace equation by "relaxation" methods.
Application will be to determining equilibrium temperature
distribution in a solid with known boundary conditions,
and equilibrium electric potential with known boundary conditions.

PROJECT FIVE:

If we get to it:
Solution of the (1+1)-d wave equation (1 space + time)
numerically. We might also look at a nonlinear equation
and solitons.