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When is Hamiltonian mechanics useful

  1. Jun 30, 2012 #1
    Generally, what sort of problems are handled better by Hamiltonian mechanics than by Lagrangian mechanics? Can anyone give a specific example?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 30, 2012 #2
    Your first exposure to quantum mechanics will be made easier with a working knowledge of Hamiltonian Mechanics.

    Really they just provide a different way of looking at a problem, mainly through the more intuative phase space flows. Hamiltons and Lagranges equations are completely equivelant.
  4. Jun 30, 2012 #3
    Given that the lagrangian and Hamiltonian formalisms are exactly equivalent and based on the same principles, it's more a question of taste. For example, Roger Penrose says he finds the Hamiltonian approach to be more "symmetric".
    Come on, those poisson brackets are tasty :p
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