Classical Electromagnetic Theory II

Professor Thomas Curtright
PHY651, Section G
12 January - 24 April 2015
MWF 2:30-3:20 room 203
Grade = HW + Midterm  + Final

Time dependent E&B fields, multipole radiation, interaction of radiation with matter, radiation reaction, relativistic effects.  More or less ...

Home Work is due as assigned in class.

Midterm Exam, either in-class, 2:00-3:20 pm, Friday, 6 March, or take-home (to be decided).
Final Exam,
either in-class, 2:00-4:30 pm, Wednesday, 6 May, or take-home (to be decided).

Required text:  John David Jackson, Classical Electrodynamics, Third Edition (Wiley, 1999) [Jackson errata]. 

Of course, you may also buy other texts, if you have the means, and you are encouraged to read other books if you have the time.  In my opinion, Jackson is a great reference.  It is a classic treatise on the subject.  But I think it is not the best textbook for students.  In any case, we hope to cover material taken mostly from the second half of Jackson.

Graded homework problems:
These will be due about one or two weeks after being assigned in lecture.

Reading assignments:  Ideally, you should try to do all the exercises in the assigned Jackson chapters!  But I will only collect for grading those homework problems listed above.

Assignment #1:  For fun and profit:  Get the old E&M qualifier exams and solve them!
Assignment #2:  Read Jackson Chapters 6 & 9.
Assignment #3:  For a better appreciation of gauge transformations, read this and perhaps also this.
Assignment #4:  Electromagnetic momentum in a medium, and the controversy about it, is discussed at length here"Hidden" mechanical momentum is discussed here, but the subject is also not without controversy (see here and references therein). 
Assignment #5:  Read Jackson Chapters 11 & 14.  (Mind the units!)
Assignment #6:  Read Jackson Chapter 16.  (Again, mind the units!)
Assignment #7:  Jackson discusses Hertz potentials very briefly in Chapter 6, Section 13.  A thorough but accessible modern treatment that invokes concepts from differential geometry may be found here.
Assignment #8:  Read Jackson Chapter 10.
Assignment #9:  Read about the first experiment to detect cyclotron radiation from a single electron, as described here.

Other reading material:
    Some other textbooks.
    Some notes on various topics.
    A bit of history is here: Green, Maxwell, and Riemann

The content of the course is given, in summary, by the Lorentz force law
and Maxwell's equations:


An exact expression for the Coulomb constant is: MATH