20810333 - PHYSICS I

The course introduces the scientific method, presents newton's mechanics and the main electric and magnetic phenomena, together with the pertinent laws. The student becomes familiar with the basic models of classical physics and, in particular, with such concepts as physical quantity, field, conservation law. The student is able to apply the above concepts to the solution of simple problems by means of appropriate analytical procedures.
teacher profile | teaching materials


- Physical quantities and units
- Fundamentals on vector algebra

Kinematics of a material point
- Kinematics quantities in the rectilinear motion
- Uniformly accelerated rectilinear motion
- Simple harmonic motion
- Kinematics in 2-D and 3-D
- Motion trajectory
- Tangential and normal components of acceleration
- Parabolic motion
- Circular motion
- Relative motion

Dynamics of a material point
- Principles of Dynamics and Newton's laws
- Momentum and Impulse
- Equilibrium and constraint reaction forces
- Gravitational force
- Weight and motion under gravity
- Forces and motion
- Forces of dry friction
- Inclined plane
- Elastic force and mass-spring system
- Tension force in ropes
- Applications to circular motion
- Viscous force
- Electrical charge and Coulomb force
- Simple pendulum
- Inertial and non-inertial reference frames
- Inertial forces

Work and Energy
- Work and power
- Work of weight, elastic and dry friction forces
- Work-energy theorem. Applications
- Conservative forces. Potential energy
- Central forces
- Gravitational and electrostatic potential energies
- Conservation of mechanical energy. Applications
- Stability conditions for static equilibrium

Dynamics of systems of material points
- systems of material points. Internal and external forces
- First cardinal equation for systems dynamics
- Center of mass and its motion
- Conservation of momentum
- Moment of a force and angular momentum
- Second cardinal equation for systems dynamics
- Conservation of angular momentum
- Koenig theorems

Rigid body dynamics
- Definition of rigid body and its properties
- Continuous bodies. Density and center of mass
- Rigid body kinematics. Angular velocity
- Rigid body dynamics. Rotations around a fixed axis
- Moment of inertia
- Huygens-Steiner theorem
- Compound pendulum
- Rolling motion
- Equilibrium for a rigid body


- Collisions between two material points

- Elastic, inelastic and totally inelastic collisions

- Collisions between material points and rigid bodies

- Central forces
- Gravity
- Gravitational and inertial mass
- Gravitational potential energy

- Kinetic theory of ideal gases (brief notes)
- Temperature and pressure
- Thermodynamic systems and states
- Thermodynamic equilibrium
- Mechanical work and heat
- First law of thermodynamics
- Thermodynamic processes (adiabatic, reversible, irreversible)
- Heat capacity and specific heat
- Ideal gas law
- Specific heat of ideal gases
- Cyclic processes and the Carnot cycle
- Second law of thermodynamics
- Carnot's theorem
- Clausius theorem
- Entropy

Core Documentation

- P. Mazzoldi, M. Nigro, C. Voci, "Elementi di Fisica. Vol. I: Meccanica - Termodinamica", seconda edizione, Edises, Napoli
- R. Borghi, "Lezioni di Meccanica", amazon.com

Notes on selected arguments are also available on the course website, under the section "Complementi"

For further studies, the following is suggested:
- R. P. Feynman, "La Fisica di Feynman", volumes 1 and 2 (freely available at http://feynmanlectures.info/)

Type of delivery of the course




Type of evaluation

written and oral exam