TFY4345 - Classical Mechanics


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Written examination
Grade: Letters

Evaluation form Weighting Duration Examination aids Grade deviation
Written examination 100/100 4 hours C

Course content

Constraints and generalized coordinates. Virtual displacements, Lagange's equations. Variational calculus, Hamilton's principle. Lagrangian for a particle in an electromagnetic field. Constants of motion, symmetry properties. Virial theorem. Central forces. Elements of the kinematics and dynamics of rigid bodies. Special relativity. Normal coordinates. Hamilton's equations. Canonical transformations.

Learning outcome

- Understanding the physical principle behind the derivation of Lagrange and Hamilton's equations, and the advantages of these formulations.
- Being able to relate symmetries to conservation laws in physical systems, and apply these concepts to practical situations.
- Being familiar with the fundamental principles of the special theory of relativity.
- Understanding the intricacies of moving-reference frames and rigid-body motion.

- Analytic solving of differential equations of mechanical systems (equations of motion).
- Applying linear transformations for rotations, coupled differential equations and Lorentz transformations.
- Special techniques in Hamiltonian dynamics (Poisson brackets, generating functions).
- Applying computational (numerical) methods for solving mechanical problems.

General competence:
- Master different problem-solving strategies within mechanical physics and assess which of these strategies is most useful for a given problem.
- Understanding the contribution of the Lagrangian/Hamiltonian formulation of classical physics in statistical physics, electromagnetism, and quantum mechanics.

Learning methods and activities

Lectures and compulsory exercises. Computational physics components may be included in the lectures and the homework assignments. Expected work load in the course is 225 hours.

Compulsory assignments

  • Exercise

Further on evaluation

When lectures and lecture material are in English, the exam may be given in English only.

The re-sit examination (in August) may be changed from written to oral.

Specific conditions

Exam registration requires that class registration is approved in the same semester. Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department.

Course materials

Textbook: to be announced (check instructor's web site prior to start).

Reference material:
1) H. Goldstein, C. Poole and J. Safko: Classical Mechanics, 3. edition, Addison-Wesley, 2002.
2) D. Strauch, Classical Mechanics - An Introduction, Springer, 2009 (ebook, NTNU library).
3) D.W. Hogg, Lectures notes on special relativity, 1997 (pdf file available at

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
TEP4145 7.5 01.09.2009
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2020

No.of lecture hours: 4
Lab hours: 2
No.of specialization hours: 6

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Physics
  • Technological subjects
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Physics



Examination arrangement: Written examination

Term Status code Evaluation form Weighting Examination aids Date Time Digital exam Room *
Autumn ORD Written examination 100/100 C 2020-12-18 09:00 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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