This second edition of a popular text demonstrates how physics can be appreciated through a series of case studies spanning a complete university physics course. Highlights include three new chapters on Newton's laws (one on ancient astronomy up to the time of Galileo, one on Galileo, and one on Newton); a new chapter on dimensional methods, chaos and self-organized criticality; and a new chapter on the technology of cosmology. Although all the arguments are presented precisely in physical and mathematical terminology, the book is written in a relatively non-technical manner, intended to convey a deep understanding and appreciation of the incredible achievements of theorists in creating the structure of modern physics. First Edition Hb (1984): 0-521-25550-3 First Edition Pb (1984): 0-521-27553-9
|Publisher:||Cambridge University Press|
|Product dimensions:||6.85(w) x 9.72(h) x 1.30(d)|
Table of Contents
Preface; 1. Introduction; Case Study 1. The Origins of Newton's Law of Gravitation; 2. From Ptolemy to Kepler - the Copernican revolution; 3. Galileo and the nature of the physical sciences; 4. Newton and the law of gravity; Case Study 2. Maxwell's Equations; 5. The origin of Maxwell's equations; 6. How to rewrite the history of electromagnetism; Case Study 3. Mechanics and Dynamics - Linear and Non-linear; 7. Approaches to mechanics and dynamics; 8. Dimensional analysis, chaos and self-organised criticality; Case Study 4. Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics; 9. Basic thermodynamics; 10. Kinetic theory and the origin of statistical mechanics; Case Study 5. The Origins of the Concept of Quanta; 11. Black-body radiation up to 1895; 12. 1895-1900: Planck and the spectrum of black-body radiation; 13. Planck's theory of black-body radiation; 14. Einstein and the quantisation of light; 15. The triumph of the quantum hypothesis; Case Study 6. Special Relativity; 16. Special relativity - a study of invariance; Case Study 7. General Relativity and Cosmology; 17. An introduction to general relativity; 18. The technology of cosmology; 19. Cosmology; 20. Epilogue.