Università di Pavia - Offerta formativa

FOUNDATIONS OF PHYSICS

Enrollment year

2020/2021

Academic year

2020/2021

Regulations

DM270

Academic discipline

FIS/08 (DIDACTICS AND HISTORY OF PHYSICS)

Department

DEPARTMENT OF MATHEMATICS "FELICE CASORATI"

Course

MATHEMATICS

Curriculum

PERCORSO COMUNE

Year of study

1°

Period

1st semester (01/10/2020 - 20/01/2021)

ECTS

6

Lesson hours

48 lesson hours

Language

Italian

Activity type

ORAL TEST

Teacher

INTROZZI GIANLUCA (titolare) - 6 ECTS

Prerequisites

Basic concepts of Classical and Quantum Physics, usually thought during a three years degree in Physics.

Learning outcomes

To reach the capacity to analyze and appreciate - by means of case studies in Classical and Modern Physics - the complex process of formulation of physical theories, their experimental corroboration, consequent acceptance by the scientific community, and the possible final obsolescence due to the formulation of alternative theories.

Course contents

Case studies in Classical Physics:

Ptolemy and the scholastic geocentrism - Copernicus and the heliocentric revolution - Kepler and the celestial mechanics - Galileo and the scientific method - Newton and the system of the universe - Laplace and the mechanical determinism - Carnot and thermodynamics - Helmholtz and the conservation of energy - Boltzmann and the statistical approach - Maxwell and the EM fields - PoincarĂ© and the dynamical instability - Einstein: the denial of ether and the early days of modern physics - Einstein epistemologist and philosopher of science.

Topics on Quantum Mechanics:

Plank quanta - Einstein quanta - Bohr atomic model - de Broglie material waves - Schroedinger equation - Optical and quantum interferometry - Copenhagen probabilistic interpretation - Bohm causal interpretation - Uncertainty relations (Fourier, Heisenberg, Kennard, Robertson, Bohm, Puri, Ozawa) - Bohr complementarity and duality (Greenberger/Yasin and Englert) - Different interpretations of the wave/particle dilemma - Other peculiar aspects of quantum mechanics: Entanglement, Schroedinger cat, EPR paradox, Bell inequalities and quantum decoherence.

Ptolemy and the scholastic geocentrism - Copernicus and the heliocentric revolution - Kepler and the celestial mechanics - Galileo and the scientific method - Newton and the system of the universe - Laplace and the mechanical determinism - Carnot and thermodynamics - Helmholtz and the conservation of energy - Boltzmann and the statistical approach - Maxwell and the EM fields - PoincarĂ© and the dynamical instability - Einstein: the denial of ether and the early days of modern physics - Einstein epistemologist and philosopher of science.

Topics on Quantum Mechanics:

Plank quanta - Einstein quanta - Bohr atomic model - de Broglie material waves - Schroedinger equation - Optical and quantum interferometry - Copenhagen probabilistic interpretation - Bohm causal interpretation - Uncertainty relations (Fourier, Heisenberg, Kennard, Robertson, Bohm, Puri, Ozawa) - Bohr complementarity and duality (Greenberger/Yasin and Englert) - Different interpretations of the wave/particle dilemma - Other peculiar aspects of quantum mechanics: Entanglement, Schroedinger cat, EPR paradox, Bell inequalities and quantum decoherence.

Teaching methods

Oral teaching and discussion. Some relevant documents are shown using slide presentation.

Reccomended or required readings

Written material covering the different topics is available.

Suggested readings:

Cini M., "Un paradiso perduto", Feltrinelli (1994)

(a conceptual history of physics, from Galileo to complexity)

Laudisa F., "Albert Einstein - Un atlante filosofico", Bompiani (2009)

(an interesting reconstruction of Einstein's epistemology)

Kumar M., "Quantum - Einstein, Bohr, and the Great Debate about the Nature of Reality", Icon Books (2008)

(a historical introduction to quantum mechanics)

Gribbin J., "Science - A History - 1543-2001", Allen Lane (2002)

(the story of the people who made science, their discoveries and the turbulent times they lived in)

Suggested readings:

Cini M., "Un paradiso perduto", Feltrinelli (1994)

(a conceptual history of physics, from Galileo to complexity)

Laudisa F., "Albert Einstein - Un atlante filosofico", Bompiani (2009)

(an interesting reconstruction of Einstein's epistemology)

Kumar M., "Quantum - Einstein, Bohr, and the Great Debate about the Nature of Reality", Icon Books (2008)

(a historical introduction to quantum mechanics)

Gribbin J., "Science - A History - 1543-2001", Allen Lane (2002)

(the story of the people who made science, their discoveries and the turbulent times they lived in)

Assessment methods

Oral exam.

The oral exam is based on two questions. The first one concerns the historical development of scientific theories, focusing on the causes (internals and externals) having as final result the success or the failure of a specific theory. The second one is about the foundations of quantum mechanics; specifically about one of the 12 topics discussed during the lectures.

The oral exam is based on two questions. The first one concerns the historical development of scientific theories, focusing on the causes (internals and externals) having as final result the success or the failure of a specific theory. The second one is about the foundations of quantum mechanics; specifically about one of the 12 topics discussed during the lectures.

Further information

Oral exam.

The oral exam is based on two questions. The first one concerns the historical development of scientific theories, focusing on the causes (internals and externals) having as final result the success or the failure of a specific theory. The second one is about the foundations of quantum mechanics; specifically about one of the 12 topics discussed during the lectures.

The oral exam is based on two questions. The first one concerns the historical development of scientific theories, focusing on the causes (internals and externals) having as final result the success or the failure of a specific theory. The second one is about the foundations of quantum mechanics; specifically about one of the 12 topics discussed during the lectures.

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