Catalog 2014-15

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Physics (PC)

Department Website:

http://departments.juniata.edu/physics/

Faculty:

Background Information:

Any quantitative study of those aspects of the universe that can be sensed or measured ultimately will require use of physics. Physics deals with the fundamental quantities of space and time, energy and matter, as well as charge and other basic quantifiable aspects of our world.  Physicists discover relationships governing the transfer of energy between material substances, for example, and deal with the structure of matter from the smallest quarks to the largest clusters of galaxies. The study, therefore, becomes fundamental to a deeper understanding of subjects such as chemistry, biology, astronomy, and engineering. A preeminent example of using physics knowledge and skills to further humankind’s understanding of nature is 1970 graduate, Dr. William Phillips, who shared the 1997 Nobel Prize in Physics for cooling and trapping atoms with laser light.

Special programs, facilities, or equipment:

Program of Emphasis

Student Designed Programs of Emphasis include:

Secondary Emphasis:

*The Department may waive the Modern Physics Lab requirement if the student is taking P-Chem Lab as part of a Chemistry POE, and they are taking two or more additional physics courses at the 300 or 400 level beyond PC 301.

Internship/External Research Experiences include:

Courses:

PC-120   Astronomy (Fall; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N) An exploration of how mankind's understanding of the universe has evolved and is still developing. Early astronomy, planets sun, stellar evolution, and galaxies are covered with emphasis on mankind's confrontation with the unknown. The present day fascination with pulsars, quasars, extra-solar system planets, and black holes are discussed.

PC-125   Musical Acoustics (Variable; Variable; 4.00 Credits; N,F) This course covers concepts of physics as applied to music. Topics include sound and resonance, pitch and tuning systems, psychoacoustics, anatomy of the ear, workings of musical instruments, electronic music fundamentals and literature, a review of musical notation, and aural recognition of intervals and pitches. Students will design and build a musical instrument, and participate in a performance.

PC-189   Physics Seminar I (Fall; Yearly; 1.00 Credit) Seminar series, required of all freshmen Physics/Physics-Engineering POEs, consisting of research seminars given by invited speakers and members of the department, both faculty and students. Discussions regarding specific career opportunities and preparation for graduate studies will also be an integral part of the seminar series.

PC-199   Special Topics (Variable; Variable; 1.00-4.00 Credits) Entry level treatment of a variety of academic/practical experiences in physics such as Microcontroller Electronics and Physics Phun Night Practicum. Note: Students may take each ST: course for credit.

PC-200   General Physics I (Fall; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N,QM) An algebra-based introduction to the basic principles of mechanics (including periodic motion, fluid static's and dynamics), heat and thermodynamics, molecular theory and wave motion (including acoustics). Note: a working knowledge of algebra and trigonometry is required. Corequisite: PC206.

PC-201   General Physics II (Spring; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N,QM) An algebra-based introduction to basic principles of electricity, magnetism, electromagnetic waves, and optics. Additional topics may include atoms and molecules, nuclear physics, relativity and solid state physics. Note: a working knowledge of algebra and trigonometry is required. Corequisite: PC207. Prerequisite: PC200.

PC-202   Intro Physics I (Fall; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N,QM) A calculus-based introduction to the basic principles of mechanics (including periodic motion, fluid static's and dynamics), heat and thermodynamics, molecular theory and wave motion (including acoustics). Corequisite: PC206 and either MA130 or MA230.

PC-203   Intro Physics II (Spring; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N,QM) A calculus-based introduction to basic principles of electricity, magnetism, electromagnetic waves and optics. Additional topics may include atoms and molecules, nuclear physics, relativity and solid state physics. Corequisite: PC207. Prerequisites: Take PC-202 or PC-204 and MA-130.

PC-204   University Physics (Fall; Yearly; 4.00 Credits; N,QM) A calculus-based introduction to the basic principles of mechanics (including periodic motion, fluid, statics and dynamics), heat and thermodynamics, molecular theory and wave motion (special relativity). This course includes an integrated introductory laboratory experience. This course is designed to be taken by students interested in a POE in Physics or Engineering Physics. Note: a special fee is assessed. Corequisite: MA130 and PC189.

PC-206   Physics Lab I (Fall; Yearly; 1.00 Credit; N) An introductory laboratory experience designed to accompany PC200 and PC202. The individual experiments will correlate with the beginning courses. Involves computer acquisition of data for some experiments. Note: A special fee is assessed. Corequisites: PC200 or PC202.

PC-207   Physics Lab II (Spring; Yearly; 1.00 Credit; N) An introductory laboratory experience designed to accompany PC201 and PC203. The individual experiments will correlate with the beginning courses. Involves computer acquisition of data for some experiments. Note: A special fee is assessed. Corequisite: PC201 or PC203.

PC-209   Electronics (Spring; Variable; 3.00 Credits; N) An introduction to the theory and application of analog and digital electronics, starting with basic AC and DC circuits. The unit explains the principles of operation of the power supply, amplifier, oscillator, logic circuits, micro controllers, and other basic circuits. An associated laboratory component allows construction of and measurements on the circuits under consideration. Note: a special fee is assessed.

PC-239   Nuclear Threat (Spring; Variable; 4.00 Credits; CA,N,H,CW) This course examines the development and ramifications of nuclear weapons. Students will learn the basic physics upon which these devices operate, and explore moral issues that arose in the interactions of communities impacted by their construction, use and testing, including the perspectives of scientists, government officials, and affected citizenry. Current issues and concerns regarding nuclear weapons will be studied as well. Prerequisites: Sophomore, Junior or Senior standing.

PC-289   Physics Seminar II (Fall; Yearly; 1.00 Credit) Seminar series, required of all sophomore Physics/Physics-Engineering POEs, consisting of research seminars given by invited speakers and members of the department, both faculty and students. Discussions regarding specific career opportunities and preparation for graduate studies will also be an integral part of the seminar series. Prerequisites: PC189.

PC-299   Special Topics (Variable; Variable; 1.00-4.00 Credits) Entry level treatment of a variety of academic/practical experiences in physics such as Musical Acoustics and Physics Phun Night Practicum. Note: Students may take each ST: course for credit.

PC-300   Modern Physics Lab (Fall; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N,CW) The origin and progress of physics in the 20th century, including relativity and quantum theory with applications in atomic and molecular physics, nuclear physics, elementary particles and possibly some solid state physics. Note: A special fee is assessed. Prerequisites: MA230 and PC203. Corequisite: PC301.

PC-301   Theoretical Modern Physics (Fall; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N) Same as PC300 without the lab.

PC-307   Advanced Physics Lab (Spring; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N,QS,CW) Provides laboratory projects at the intermediate level. A series of projects is offered which best meet the educational needs of the student. Prerequisite: PC300. Special fee assessed.

PC-314   Philosophy of Physics (Spring; Variable; 3.00 Credits; H,N) Explores philosophical issues in physics emphasizing problems of space, time, motion and difficulties concerning scientific explanation, causation and laws of nature. Topics may include the nature of geometrical knowledge, philosophical impact of relativity theory; absolute versus relative conceptions of space and time; problems of measurement, experimentation and testing hypothesis; and philosophical issues raised by quantum mechanics and/or other physical theories. Prerequisites: Sophomore standing or permission.

PC-320   Engineering Mechanics I: Statics (Fall; Variable; 3.00 Credits; N) A problem-solving approach to applied mechanics involving equilibrium of co-planar and non-planar force systems, analysis of frames and trusses, friction, centroids and moments of inertia. Prerequisite: PC202 or PC204.

PC-321   Engineering Mechanics II: Dynamics (Spring; Variable; 3.00 Credits; N) A problem-solving approach to applied mechanics involving the kinematics and kinetics of particles and rigid bodies. Techniques involving Newton's laws, work-energy and impulse momentum are presented and used extensively. Prerequisite: PC320.

PC-340   Mathematical Methods in Physics (Variable; Yearly; 3.00 Credits; N) An introduction to the mathematics used in advanced physical science courses. The emphasis is on early exposure to mathematical techniques and their applications rather than on rigorous derivation. Topics include series analysis, complex variables, theory, matrix mechanics, ordinary and partial differential equations, vector and tensor analysis, and Fourier series. Prerequisites: PC203 and MA230.

PC-350   Thermodynamics (Spring; Variable; 3.00 Credits; N) An intermediate level course treating the concept of temperature and its measurement, the concepts of heat and work, the laws of thermodynamics, applications of these concepts to physical systems, the elements of statistical mechanics and as many topics of current concern as time allows. Prerequisites: MA235 and PC301.

PC-389   Physics Seminar III (Fall; Yearly; 1.00 Credit) Seminar series, required of all junior Physics/Physics-Engineering POEs, consisting of research seminars given by invited speakers and members of the department, both faculty and students. Discussions regarding specific career opportunities and preparation for graduate studies will also be an integral part of the seminar series. Prerequisites: PC289.

PC-399   Special Topics (Variable; Variable; 1.00-4.00 Credits) Intermediate to advanced level treatment of a variety of areas within physics such as solid state physics, astrophysics, general relativity, and medical physics. Note: Students may take each ST: course for credit.

PC-402   Quantum Mechanics (Spring; Variable; 4.00 Credits; N) This course continues the discussion of the Schrodinger Equation, the particle-in-a-box, the harmonic oscillator, angular momentum, the hydrogen atom, and electron spin started in PC300 and/or CH305, but at a level that is mathematically much more detailed and proceeds from the postulates of quantum mechanics in a logical manner. With this beginning, the course then focuses on more complex problems such as the behavior of multi-electron atoms and molecules. Issues of the meaning of measurement such as embodied in the EPR paradox, the Bell Inequality, and the interpretation of associated experiments are also discussed. The course is heavily problem oriented requiring a strong mathematical background. Additional mathematics background such as PC340 and/or MA335 is suggested in addition to the formal prerequisites of MA235 and PC300 or CH305.

PC-410   Mechanics (Fall; Variable; 4.00 Credits; N) A study of classical mechanics including Newtonian, Lagrangianand Hamiltonian approaches. Emphasis is placed on developing the student's ability to analyze physical problems involving particles, systems of particles and rigid bodies. Insight is provided into a variety of techniques for solving such problems. Prerequisites: PC203 and PC340.

PC-430   Optics (Spring; Variable; 3.00 Credits; N) The wave theory of light as applied to interference, diffraction, polarization, and image formation. Major emphasis on Fourier techniques. Study of geometrical optics, quantum optics, and radiometry as time permits. Prerequisites: PC300 or PC301.

PC-450   Physics Research I (Fall & Spring; Yearly; 1.00-4.00 Credits; N) An opportunity for the student to do an independent research project under the guidance of a faculty member. Note: listed as Research: (title); may be taken multiple times for credit. Prerequisite: permission.

PC-451   Physics Research II (Fall & Spring; Yearly; 1.00-4.00 Credits; N) An opportunity for students to do a more advanced independent research project under the guidance of a faculty member. Prerequisite: permission.

PC-489   Physics Seminar IV (Fall; Yearly; 1.00 Credit) Seminar series, required of all senior Physics/Physics-Engineering POEs, consisting of research seminars given by invited speakers and members of the department, both faculty and students. Discussions regarding specific career opportunities and preparation for graduate studies will also be an integral part of the seminar series. Prerequisite: For Seniors with Physics or Engineering Physics POEs and PC389.

PC-490   Physics Internship (Fall & Spring; Yearly; 2.00-9.00 Credits; N) See chapter, " Special Programs " under internships. Note: may be repeated up to a total of 9 hours of credit. Corequisite: PC495. Prerequisite: permission and Junior or Senior standing.

PC-491   Electricity & Magnetism (Fall; Variable; 4.00 Credits; N) A study of electromagnetic phenomena, including electrostatics, electric fields in matter, magnetostatics, magnetic fields in matter, introductory electrodynamics including Maxwell's equations, and electromagnetic waves, potentials, and fields. Corequisite: PC340. Prerequisite: PC203.

PC-495   Internship Seminar/Research (Fall & Spring; Yearly; 2.00-6.00 Credits; N) Requires students to reflect on the internship experience and/or pursue research related to the placement. Corequisite: PC490. Prerequisite: permission.

PC-499   Special Topics (Variable; Variable; 1.00-4.00 Credits) Allows the department to offer titles not normally offered. Prerequisites vary by course.

PC-TUT   PC Teaching Assistant (Variable; Variable; 1.00-6.00 Credits) See Catalog.

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