Physics 2 (2019/2020)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Claudia Daffara
Claudia Daffara
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
II semestre dal Mar 2, 2020 al Jun 12, 2020.

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

The course provides the fundamental knowledge of Electromagnetism and Optics in Classical Physics aimed at:
1) achieving a deep level of understanding of the physical principles and phenomena illustrated during the course, rigorous in the theoretical aspects,
2) making the student familiar with the mathematical formalism that allows the modeling of these phenomena,
3) providing methodologies for solving an applied problem in the field.

At the end of the course the student will have:
1) solid knowledge of the fundamental physical laws of the electrical and magnetic phenomena,
2) ability in modeling a physical phenomena by determining the validity of known relations,
3) ability in applying the theory to different framework for solving problems in rigorous way and with a scientific method.


The course is based on theoretical lessons and exercises on the following topics:

Experimental facts. Electric charge. Structure of matter. Coulomb law. Electric field E. Work of the electric F. Electrostatic potential energy and electrostatic potential. Flux of the field E and Gauss law. Discontinuities of the electric field. Differential equations of the electric field. Poisson and Laplace equations.
Conductors in equilibrium. Electrostatic induction. Electrostatic surface pressure. Cavity in a conductor. Electrostatic screening. Capacity. Capacitors.
Equilibrium in the electrostatic field. Uniqueness of the solution of the Laplace equation. Image method.
Electric dipole. Dipole in external field E. Energy of a dipole. Dipole approximation.
Electric field in materials. Uniform / non-uniform polarization. Linear dielectrics. Electrostatics equations in dielectrics.
system of charges, system of conductors. Energy of a capacitor in vacuum and in dielectric media. Energy of the electric field. Energy of the point charge.
Motion of charges in electric field.
Electric current, electromotive force. Classical theory of electrical conduction. Continuity equation for the charge.
Ohm law, joule effect, resistors. Kirchoff laws, elementary circuits. Charge / discharge of a capacitor.
Experimental facts. Magnetic field B, F of Lorentz, II law of Laplace. Motion of charges in magnetic field. Hall effect. Magnetic dipole. Dipole in external field B. Field B of stationary currents. Circulation of the magnetic field B and Ampère law. Discontinuities of the magnetic field. Vector potential. I law of Laplace. Field B of a moving charge. Solenoidal fields, concatenated flux. Differential equations of the magnetic field.
Electromagnetic induction - experimental facts, flux law. Induced electric field and Faraday law. Lenz law. Energy balance. Mutual Inductance. Self-inductance, inductances. RL circuit and variable EMF.
Intrinsic energy of the current, system of stationary currents. Energy of the magnetic field. Energy of a magnetic dipole.
Maxwell equations in integral and local form. Displacement current and Ampère-Maxwell law. Radiation of a circuit. Energy of the electromagnetic field. Energy flux and momentum of the e.m. field. Continuity equation. Potentials of the e.m. field.
Recalls on waves: transverse waves, longitudinal waves, harmonic wave, plane waves, spherical waves. D'Alembert wave equation. Maxwell equations in vacuum and the solution of e.m waves. Speed ​​of light, energy transported, intensity. Polarization. Electromagnetic spectrum. Principles of Optics.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
P. Mazzoldi, M. Nigro, C. Voci Elementi di Fisica Vol. 2 - Elettromagnetismo e Onde (Edizione 2) EdiSES 2007 9788879594783
Alessandro Bettini Elettromagnetismo Zanichelli 2001 9788808038234

Assessment methods and criteria

To pass the examination the students have to demonstrate:

- knowledge and understanding of the principles and the physical phenomena of classical electromagnetism
- to possess critical skills in the observation of electrical and magnetic phenomena and to know how to model these phenomena with a scientific method and adequate mathematical formalism
- to know how to apply the principles and the laws of physics to the different contexts for solving complex problems of electromagnetism.

Written examination (3 hours):
The exam includes
1) electromagnetism exercises (related to the exercises program carried out);
2) theory questions (related to the entire program).

Optional oral examination:
on the topics of the course program