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Standard Mechanical Physics

  1. Jan 10, 2009 #1
    My current physics textbook is awful:

    -offers a small blurb (E.g. 3 sentences for Doppler effect.
    E.g. NO explanation as to why tension force is reduced when pulleys are present)

    -NO explanation or example problems or how to use the formulas.

    in turn, I am failing the courses and I can't do HALF of the hwk problems. My prof doesn't teach and I just don't have the time to google up everything I really need a COMPLETE textbook. I am doing my BSc Engineering in 1st year.

    Please help, I am desperate. I need a textbook that would provide me with everything I need to fully understand the material (need COMPLETE & accurate & EASY to understand. Please, suggest a good book. It need to cover the below topics. Suggest mutiple books for each topic if necessary.

    Thank You

    20. Traveling Waves.
    21. Superposition.
    22. Wave Optics.
    23. Ray Optics.

    # The Wave Model
    # Speed of Waves on a String
    # Sinusoidal Waves
    # Spherical Waves, Plane Waves
    # Sound and Light
    # Power and Intensity
    # The Doppler Effect
    # The Principle of Superposition
    # Standing Waves

    ƒ Electric Forces and Electric Fields
    ƒ Electric Potential Energy
    ƒ The Electric Potential
    ƒ Equipotentials and Energy in Capacitors
    ƒ Currents, Resistance, and Resistivity
    ƒ Circuits and Kirchoff’s Laws
    ƒ Magnetic Fields and Magnetic Force


    From Knight's Physics for Scientists and Engineers
    Waves (Chapters 20 – 23)
    Electricity & Magnetism (Chapters 26 – 33)
    The Special Theory of Relativity (Chapter 37)
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 10, 2009 #2
    if you just need a book to explain concepts you should consider the feynman lectures
  4. Jan 10, 2009 #3
    THe Feynman lectures are really good, but definitely not easy to understand. Furthermore, from an engineering pt of view, they might be unproductive (they are fabulous from a physicist's point of view). If you really have a lot of time to spare, the Feynman lectures are great. But they probably won't help you pass the course. They have few examples, and no practice problems.

    For less abstract and more easy physics, I have found Tipler's "Physics for scientists and engineers" to be very complete, accurate and to use great rigor in their derivations (strong emphasis on vector notation etc...). Some of the problems are challenging though, but it has full of worked out problems.

    For waves, I think the MIT opencourseware 8.03 lectures (Waves&Optics) to be awesome, perhaps the best lectures by Walter Levin. Concise, precise and rigorous. You can find the lectures on youtube.
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