Physics Undergraduate Courses

 

PES 1050 - General Astronomy I

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
The methods and results of modern astronomy (solar systems and stars) at an elementary level. Approved for LAS Natural Science area requirement. GT-SC1.

 

PES 1060 - General Astronomy II

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
The methods and results of modern astronomy (solar systems, stars, galaxies, black holes, quasars, cosmology) at an elementary level. Approved for LAS Natural Science area requirement. GT-SC1.

 

PES 1110 - General Physics I - Calculus Based

[4 Credits (Minimum) 4 Credits (Maximum)]
Rigorous calculus-level course in classical physics for science and engineering students. Includes measurements, vectors, motion in one dimension, motion in three dimensions, particle dynamics, work and energy, linear and angular momentum, rotation of rigid bodies, static equilibrium, oscillation, and gravity. Coreq., MATH 1350.

 

PES 1120 - General Physics II

[4 Credits (Minimum) 4 Credits (Maximum)]
Topics covered include electrostatics, the electric field, Gauss's law, electric potential, capacitors and dielectrics, current and resistance, the magnetic field, Ampere's law, Faraday's law, inductance, oscillations, and electromagnetic waves. Prer., PES 1110, Coreq., MATH 1360.

 

PES 1160 - Advanced Physics Lab I

[1 Credits (Minimum) 1 Credits (Maximum)]
Advanced calculus-based labs covering all of the major topics in mechanics ranging from projectile motion to Newton's Laws to Conservation of Energy to Rotational Motion. Designed to be taken concurrently with PES 1110 or PES 1710.

 

PES 2130 - General Physics III

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
A continuation of PES 1120. Topics covered include fluid mechanics, waves temperature, heat and the first law of thermodynamics, kinetic theory of gases, entropy and the second law of thermodynamics, geometrical optics, interference, diffraction, light, and quantum physics. Prer., PES 1120; Coreq., MATH 2350.

 

PES 2160 - Advanced Physics Lab II

[1 Credits (Minimum) 1 Credits (Maximum)]
Advanced calculus-based labs covering all of the major topics in electricity and magnetism ranging from electric fields to circuit analysis to AC circuits to magnetism. Designed to be taken concurrently with PES 1120 or PES 1720.

 

PES 2500 - Sustainable Energy Fundamentals

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Past, present, and future of human energy use; rudimentary energy concepts and fundamental dimensions; efficiency of energy conversions; heat transfer; commercial electricity; alternative energy sources; environmental ramifications; energy conservation; computer simulation and web activities. This survey course is designed for science majors and assumes some knowledge of calculus and the physical sciences. Meets with ENSC 2500.

 

PES 3060 - Astrophysics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
A classic look at stellar characteristics, the structure and content of our galaxy and the universe in a rigorously mathematical fashion. The theory of stellar spectra is stressed along with stellar distances, magnitudes, and stellar evolution on the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. Prer., PES 2130.

 

PES 3130 - Modern Physics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Special relativity, development of wave-particle duality, atomic structure, Schroedinger wave equation, the hydrogen atom, atomic and molecular spectra, introduction to the solid state and band theory. Prer., PES 2130.

 

PES 3170 - Instrumentation Laboratory I

[2 Credits (Minimum) 2 Credits (Maximum)]
Design and operation of devices for modern physics experiments. Interfacing computers with real world experiments. Requires a knowledge of Labview. Prer., PES 2150.

 

PES 3180 - Instrumentation Laboratory II

[2 Credits (Minimum) 2 Credits (Maximum)]
Design and operation of devices for modern physics experiments. Interfacing computers with real world experiments. Requires a knowledge of Labview. Prer., PES 2150.

 

PES 3210 - Classical Mechanics I

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Newtonian mechanics, oscillations, Lagrange's and Hamilton's equations, central forces, scattering, and rigid body motion. Employs vector analysis and calculus. Prer., PES 2130; Prer., or Coreq., MATH 2350.

 

PES 3250 - Mathematical Methods of Physics and Engineering

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Survey of mathematical methods as preparation for advanced physics and engineering courses. Includes vector calculus, partial differential equations, special functions, Fourier analysis, and generalized functions such as the Dirac delta function.

 

PES 3310 - Principles of Electricity and Magnetism

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Elements of the mathematical theory of electricity and magnetism, including electrostatics, magnetostatics, polarized media, direct and alternating current theory, and introduction to electromagnetic fieldsand waves. Prer., PES 2130 and MATH 2350.

 

PES 3320 - Principles of Electricity and Magnetism II

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Continuation of PES 3310. Elements of the mathematical theory of electricity and magnetism, including electrostatics, magnetostatics, polarized media, direct and alternating current theory, and an introduction to electromagnetic fields and waves. Prer., PES 3310.

 

PES 3410 - Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Statistical mechanics applied to macroscopic physicalsystems; statistical thermodynamics; classical thermodynamic systems; applications to simple systems. Relationship of statistical mechanics to thermodynamics. Prer., PES 3130.

 

PES 3650 - Nuclear Physics and Energy Technology

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Nuclear structure, radioisotopes, nuclear reactions, fission, and fusion. Emphasis on nuclear power production and its environmental impact. Prer., PES 3130.

 

PES 3670 - Wind Energy

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
A survey of the technology of wind energy conversion, including climatic aspects, site selection and tower height, generator and propeller design, control systems, and legal aspects.

 

PES 3950 - Special Topics

[1 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Course covering subjects of current interest on a one-time basis. See schedule of courses for titles.

 

PES 3970 - Special Topics

[1 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Course covering subjects of current interest on a one-time basis. See schedule of courses for titles. Prer., PES 3130.

 

PES 4150 - Solid State Laboratory

[2 Credits (Minimum) 2 Credits (Maximum)]
Advanced laboratory on the measurement of fundamental properties of solids. Includes introduction to vacuum and cryogenic technologies. One lecture and one laboratory session per week. Prer., PES 2150 and 3130. Meets with PHYS 5150.

 

PES 4170 - Optics Lab

[2 Credits (Minimum) 2 Credits (Maximum)]
Advanced experiments in classical and modern physics are selected to accompany and supplement the previous semester lecture course in Optics, PES 4510. Among other topics, this rigorous lab course covers the emission and propagation of coherent and incoherent light, fiber optical devices, nonlinear optical effects, and introduction to devices and spectroscopic techniques based on modern optics. Prer., PES 3170, PES 3180, and PES 4510; Junior or Senior standing.

 

PES 4250 - Quantum Mechanics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
A sophisticated treatment of quantum mechanics including the Schroedinger equation, wave mechanics, hermitian and unitary matrices, the hydrogen atom, angular momentum and spin. Prer., PES 3130.

 

PES 4260 - Quantum Mechanics II

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Continuation of PES 4250, time dependent and time dependent perturbation theories, the Wkb approximation, variational principle and scattering. Prer., PES 4250.

 

PES 4300 - Celestial Mechanics I

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Study of the fundamental principles of celestial mechanics including Kepler's laws, Newton's laws, and the two-body problem. Study of celestial coordinate systems, time keeping, and computation of orbits from observations as well as an introduction to perturbation theory. Prer., PES 2130, MATH 2340.

 

PES 4460 - Solid State Physics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Theory of solids including crystal structure, x-ray diffraction, phonons, thermal properties of insulators, theories of metals, band structure, semiconductor impurities and doping semiconductors, junctions, superconductivity, and magnetism. Prer., PES 3130. Meets with PHYS 5460.

 

PES 4480 - Surface and Interface Physics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
An introduction to the solid state physics of surfaces and interfaces including structural, thermodynamic and electrical properties. Gas-surface interactions and characterization techniques will also be examined. Prer., PES 3130.

 

PES 4490 - Physics of Thin Films

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
A broad survey of the physics of thin films (emphasizing nucleation and growth) and common techniques for the production and characterization of thin films.  Prer., PES 3130. Meets with PHYS 5490.

 

PES 4510 - Optics

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
An advanced undergraduate treatment of topics in geometrical, physical, and quantum optics. Prer., PES 2130 and either PES 3130 or 3310.

 

PES 4600 - Special and General Relativity

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Investigates the theoretical and experimental basis for Einstein's Theory of Relativity. The concept of four dimensional space-time is introduced through Special Relativity. The concept of curved space-time is presented using the mathematics of tensors. Open to juniors and seniors only. Prer., PES 2130. Meets with PHYS 5600.

 

PES 4720 - Stellar Structure and Evolution

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Basic stellar astronomy and astrophysics. H-R diagrams. Principles of stellar structure includinggeneration and energy transport. Stellar formation and evolution to compact objects. Prer., PES 3060 and PES 3410.

 

PES 4810 - Senior Physics Seminar

[2 Credits (Minimum) 2 Credits (Maximum)]
Presentation methods in physics. Students present on a wide variety of topics in physics culminating in a formal presentation by the student on a current research topic. Student is graded by a faculty panel on his/her presentation, defense of topic and general knowledge of physics. Approved for LAS Oral Communication requirement. Prer., Senior status in physics or consent instructor.

 

PES 4850 - Senior Project

[3 Credits (Minimum) 3 Credits (Maximum)]
Special experimental or theoretical research project in a field of physics or physics-related energy science. Project to be chosen in conjunction with instructor and should represent a new contribution to knowledge in the field, or a repetition of current experimental research, or a literature search and demonstrated knowledge of current theoretical research. a written report is required. Prer., Senior status in department and permission of instructor.