Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

What Can Computational Physics do besides Numerical Integration?

  1. Jun 21, 2006 #1
    Are there many interesting computational physics problems out there? Are there any comet trajectories that will deviate from a standard ellipse? For some reason plotting the path of a baseball just doesn't spark my interest.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 21, 2006 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Some ideas:

    -- Modelling active feedback systems for snubbing skyscraper resonant vibrational modes in high winds and during earthquakes (or both at once!)

    -- Modelling bridge structures during the two same things.

    -- Modelling professional bicyclist wind drag reductions through bike design and apparrel design.

    -- Modelling turn stability in a MotoGP race bike.

    What topics in physics or sports or other competitions interest you?
  4. Jun 22, 2006 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Does looking for solutions to the 3D Ising model? Or how about a percolation problem, or a vortex simulation, or a band-structure calculation, or a molecular dynamics simulation, or a heat flow calculation, or a diffusion problem, or ... ?

    Did you think of maybe trying Google? Here's a few links to Computational Physics courses and books:

  5. Jun 22, 2006 #4

    Claude Bile

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    The infamous game of life...here is a link to a Java version.


    This 'game' actually orginated from studies on complex behaviour - a close relative to the field of chaos. Complexity is the study of the emergence of complex behaviour from simple rules and from what little I have studied of it, it is pretty fascinating stuff.

  6. Jun 24, 2006 #5
    Well, one needs such techniques to solve any non linear differential equation or any such equation for multi particle systems. So, to study ANY physical system in a realistic manner (this means : incorporating enough variables) one requires such methods

    So take your pick...

  7. Jun 24, 2006 #6


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Yes. Numerical simulation is becoming more elaborate. There is a joint program between Argonne National Lab, Purdue University and several other organizations to develop the next generation of simulators for nuclear reactors with much greater resolution. It will use a 45 group neutron transport code coupled with a CFD (computational fluid dynamics) code. It could be taken a step further with the integration of a FEM thermo-mechanical code.

    Multiphysics codes are now quite common, e.g. COMSOL and FEMLAB.

    Like Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, which got caught by Jupiter?


Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?

Similar Discussions: What Can Computational Physics do besides Numerical Integration?