Confusion between Electrodynamics texts

  • #1
Mr.Husky
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Hello everyone,

I recently completed kleppner and kolenkow classical mechanics book. Next I am going to learn Electrodynamics. My brother is a EE major and he gave me his copy of "principles of electromagnetics" Matthew Sadiku 4th edition. But a lot of people here recommend Griffiths. So,

1.) Can I use Sadiku as a substitute for Griffiths?
2.) Does Sadiku book prepare me for more advanced em books like zangwill ?

Thank you in advance!!
Edit:- I know calculus 1,2 and linear algebra . Will be going to study ODE.
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #2
caz
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K&K is one of the more advanced beginner texts.
Sadiku is an intermediate text for EE. It should be able to prepare you for Zangwill. It will use vector calculus, so it might be too difficult for you.
 
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  • #3
Mr.Husky
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K&K is one of the more advanced beginner texts.
Sadiku is an intermediate text for EE. It should be able to prepare you for Zangwill. It will use vector calculus, so it might be too difficult for you.
Thank you caz for reply!!
Yes vector analysis is difficult but I have enough time to learn it. One more thing, should I have to go through the chapters on antennas, transmission lines, waveguides?
 
  • #4
vanhees71
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Well, usually EE texts on electromagnetic field theory are pretty good, but one caveat is that they sometimes have a different convention, particularly with regard to the Fourier transform. They often have the opposite sign in the time Fourier integral than physicists, i.e., they usually make the ansatz with ##\exp(+\mathrm{i} \omega t)## instead of ##\exp(-\mathrm{i} \omega t)## when describing harmonic time dependence. That usually drives me nuts when reading an EE text (of course they also use ##\mathrm{j}## instead of ##\mathrm{i}## for the imaginary unit, but that's a minor nuissance).
 
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  • #5
caz
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Thank you caz for reply!!
Yes vector analysis is difficult but I have enough time to learn it. One more thing, should I have to go through the chapters on antennas, transmission lines, waveguides?
Yes. Either you will need them in your future or it will be good for you to have been exposed to them once. As a requirement for Zangwill, the answer is no.
 
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  • #6
Mr.Husky
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Well, usually EE texts on electromagnetic field theory are pretty good, but one caveat is that they sometimes have a different convention, particularly with regard to the Fourier transform. They often have the opposite sign in the time Fourier integral than physicists, i.e., they usually make the ansatz with ##\exp(+\mathrm{i} \omega t)## instead of ##\exp(-\mathrm{i} \omega t)## when describing harmonic time dependence. That usually drives me nuts when reading an EE text (of course they also use ##\mathrm{j}## instead of ##\mathrm{i}## for the imaginary unit, but that's a minor nuissance).
Oh I got it vanhees71.
Does it creat any harm when studying quantum mechanics?
 
  • #7
Mr.Husky
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Yes. Either you will need them in your future or it will be good for you to have been exposed to them once. As a requirement for Zangwill, the answer is no.
Thank you caz.
 
  • #8
caz
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Oh I got it vanhees71.
Does it creat any harm when studying quantum mechanics?
No. If you cannot handle a different convention, you have other problems.
 
  • #9
vanhees71
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I don't think it creates any harm, but I think it's already hard enough to start electrodynamics. For me it was the most difficult subject in the early curriculum at university. In Germany it's taught in the experimental-physics course in the 2nd and in the theory course the 3rd semester. In my opinion that's too early, because of all the math one needs: It starts with vector calculus. Then you also need some of the math of partial differential equations (Laplace and Poisson equations for electrostatics; then of course the wave equation for electrodynamics) and the related ways to solve the corresponding boundary/initial value problems. Among them you need Fourier transformations and series (including generalized ones like the spherical and solid harmonics when it comes to the multipole expansion). For that latter subject the treatment of waveguides and cavities are great, because they provide some intuition for why these orthogonal systems of functions occur.

So it's good to first stick to one convention not to have to struggle with one more unnecessary complication. If you get used to the subject, it's not that difficult anymore to switch from one convention to another.
 
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  • #10
Mr.Husky
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No. If you cannot handle a different convention, you have other problems.
A small question caz:-
Actually Sadiku doesn't contain all the details which are present in Griffiths (as it is a EE book) and also it doesn't mention the word Fourier in it's index. But Sadiku spends more time explaining PDE's vanhees71 mentioned which I think it is good for me. So after Sadiku which EM book should I consult as it deals only with electrostatics.
Thank you vanhees71 for your reply!!
 
  • #12
dextercioby
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I would stay away from Zangwill. His book is called "Modern Electrodynamics", however he used the ##x_4 = ict## which is anything but modern. I would suggest D.J. Griffiths' text, even though he uses the ##-+++## metric.
 
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  • #14
Mr.Husky
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I would stay away from Zangwill. His book is called "Modern Electrodynamics", however he used the ##x_4 = ict## which is anything but modern. I would suggest D.J. Griffiths' text, even though he uses the ##-+++## metric.
Thanks Dextercioby. I am now looking for a book some advanced than Griffiths but still explaining things clearly.
 
  • #15
Mr.Husky
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Another question here :-
Can anyone explain more about the notation used in special relativity.
 
  • #16
caz
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A small question caz:-
Actually Sadiku doesn't contain all the details which are present in Griffiths (as it is a EE book) and also it doesn't mention the word Fourier in it's index. But Sadiku spends more time explaining PDE's vanhees71 mentioned which I think it is good for me. So after Sadiku which EM book should I consult as it deals only with electrostatics.
Thank you vanhees71 for your reply!!
Like I said earlier, Sadiku is an EE text. Zangwill is physics. So they emphasize different things. What advanced book you use depends on the direction you are heading; i.e., do not worry about it now.
 
  • #17
Mr.Husky
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Like I said earlier, Sadiku is an EE text. Zangwill is physics. So they emphasize different things. What advanced book you use depends on the direction you are heading; i.e., do not worry about it now.
Ok caz. I think it is waste of time now thinking what to study in future. Rather I am now interested in knowing more about special relativity. So can you answer my previous question in #15?
 
  • #18
caz
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The sign convention deals with how you do inner products for 4-vectors in relativity. In modern approaches, the time portion has a different sign than the spatial part so you can have -+++ or +---. An older approach uses i which allows you to define the inner product ”normally” because i2 changes the sign. The modern approach is preferable and eventually becomes required in general relativity. People get really worked up over the topic. Personally, it does not bother me in EM texts.
 
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  • #19
Mr.Husky
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The sign convention deals with how you do inner products for 4 vectors in relativity. In modern approaches, the time portion has a different sign than the spacial part so you can have
-+++ or +—-. An older approach, uses i which allows you to define the inner product
”normally” because i2 changes the sign. The modern approach is preferable and eventually becomes required in general relativity. People get really worked up over the topic. Personally, it does not bother me in EM texts.
I think it takes time to understand this stuff. Thank you caz for replying!!
 
  • #20
vanhees71
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I would stay away from Zangwill. His book is called "Modern Electrodynamics", however he used the ##x_4 = ict## which is anything but modern. I would suggest D.J. Griffiths' text, even though he uses the ##-+++## metric.
Well, one has to get used to the mess with the signature in relativity anyway. The HEP people usually use the west-coast convention ##\eta_{\mu \nu}=\mathrm{diag}(1,-1,-1,-1)## (though not all as e.g., Weinberg) and the GR people mostly use the east-coast convention ##\eta_{\mu \nu}=\mathrm{diag}(-1,1,1,1)## (though not all like e.g. the newer editions of Landau and Lifshitz and Adler). That's all fine, but the use of the old ##\mathrm{i} c t## convention is a sin. If only Sommerfeld wouldn't have done this, I'd say don't read any book using it, but Sommerfeld is so good (imho the best theory books on classical physics ever written)... His vol. 3 is also a very good intro to electricity and magnetism, while the (also highly recommended) treatment of vector calculus is in vol. 2 on hydrodynamics.

I don't know, what's modern on Zangwill's book. It's as old-fashioned as Jackson and his is very comprehensive and much better than Zangwill (at least the 2nd edition where he sticks consistently with Gaussian units, which are the 2nd-best choice for theoretical electrodynamics; the best being Heaviside-Lorentz units). A truely modern approach and still accessible for beginning graduate students is Landau and Lifshitz vol. 2. Another even more modern book is Lechner, making also use of modern theory of generalized functions/distributions, solving many of the age-old troubles with point charges (even massless ones), as far as this unphysical classical point-particle model makes sense at all (it doesn't really of course, but Lechner pushes it as far as one can, at least to my knowledge).

I'd, however, not bother with these advanced books for beginning. I like the book by Griffiths very much, including a very nice approach to what's infamously dubbed "hidden momentum" (although it's just relativistic momentum). Another somewhat older very good book is Abraham and Becker (available in a nice Dover edition). Particularly, it has a very good introductory chapter on vector calculus (of about 40 pages).
A more accessible "relativity first approach" is by Schwartz. Stay away from Berkeley physics course vol. 2 (Purcell) which at least I found confusing when I first studied the subject. We also liked the volume on electrodynamics in the theory series by Greiner. Last but not least another gem is of course vol. 2 of the Feynman lectures.
 
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  • #21
Mr.Husky
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Well, one has to get used to the mess with the signature in relativity anyway. The HEP people usually use the west-coast convention ##\eta_{\mu \nu}=\mathrm{diag}(1,-1,-1,-1)## (though not all as e.g., Weinberg) and the GR people mostly use the east-coast convention ##\eta_{\mu \nu}=\mathrm{diag}(-1,1,1,1)## (though not all like e.g. the newer editions of Landau and Lifshitz and Adler). That's all fine, but the use of the old ##\mathrm{i} c t## convention is a sin. If only Sommerfeld wouldn't have done this, I'd say don't read any book using it, but Sommerfeld is so good (imho the best theory books on classical physics ever written)... His vol. 3 is also a very good intro to electricity and magnetism, while the (also highly recommended) treatment of vector calculus is in vol. 2 on hydrodynamics.

I don't know, what's modern on Zangwill's book. It's as old-fashioned as Jackson and his is very comprehensive and much better than Zangwill (at least the 2nd edition where he sticks consistently with Gaussian units, which are the 2nd-best choice for theoretical electrodynamics; the best being Heaviside-Lorentz units). A truely modern approach and still accessible for beginning graduate students is Landau and Lifshitz vol. 2. Another even more modern book is Lechner, making also use of modern theory of generalized functions/distributions, solving many of the age-old troubles with point charges (even massless ones), as far as this unphysical classical point-particle model makes sense at all (it doesn't really of course, but Lechner pushes it as far as one can, at least to my knowledge).

I'd, however, not bother with these advanced books for beginning. I like the book by Griffiths very much, including a very nice approach to what's infamously dubbed "hidden momentum" (although it's just relativistic momentum). Another somewhat older very good book is Abraham and Becker (available in a nice Dover edition). Particularly, it has a very good introductory chapter on vector calculus (of about 40 pages).
A more accessible "relativity first approach" is by Schwartz. Stay away from Berkeley physics course vol. 2 (Purcell) which at least I found confusing when I first studied the subject. We also liked the volume on electrodynamics in the theory series by Greiner. Last but not least another gem is of course vol. 2 of the Feynman lectures.
Thanks for your recommendations vanhees71!!
Is it bad to supplement Griffiths with Sadiku??
And can Griffiths prepare me for Lechner because its contents look more promising than Zangwill.
 
  • #22
Mr.Husky
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Thanks for your recommendations vanhees71!!
Is it bad to supplement Griffiths with Sadiku??
And can Griffiths prepare me for Lechner because its contents look more promising than Zangwill.
After looking at couple of pages of Lechner's book, Does mathematical methods at the level of boas prepare me to tackle it?
 
  • #23
vanhees71
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Thanks for your recommendations vanhees71!!
Is it bad to supplement Griffiths with Sadiku??
And can Griffiths prepare me for Lechner because its contents look more promising than Zangwill.
I don't know Sadiku. So it's hard to say.

It's anyway wise to first check several books in the library, which you get along with best. I'd not recommend Lechner to start learning E&M. It's too much advanced. I think Boas ( Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences) is a good math for physicists book. Particularly the chapter on vector analysis should be very helpful to work through before starting electromagnetism.
 
  • #24
Mr.Husky
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I don't know Sadiku. So it's hard to say.

It's anyway wise to first check several books in the library, which you get along with best. I'd not recommend Lechner to start learning E&M. It's too much advanced. I think Boas ( Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences) is a good math for physicists book. Particularly the chapter on vector analysis should be very helpful to work through before starting electromagnetism.
Now I got it. After I complete Griffiths and Boas then I will move to Lechner. Thank you vanhees71 for your reply!!
 
  • #25
Mr.Husky
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Thanks all for your replies. I will be studying Griffiths from now. No more questions.
 

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