PHYS5010 Electrodynamics and Differential Geometry

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Honours option in Mathematics and Statistics; Physics [Bachelor of Science (Honours)]
This unit builds on a solid foundation of mathematics and physics established at the undergraduate levels in Physics, and develops some of the major elements of modern theoretical physics at an advanced level. The unit is comprised of the following two related 18 lecture modules with their objectives below: (i) Differential Geometry for Physicists; and (ii) Relativistic Electrodynamics.

The general aims of Differential Geometry for Physicists are to introduce the following elements of modern differential geometry and demonstrate their use in the context of modern physics: manifolds; differential forms; Riemannian geometry; De Rham theory; Lie groups and Lie algebras.

Building on the content of undergraduate level electrodynamics, the general aims for the Relativistic Electrodynamics model are to review and extend the understanding of following topics at a more mathematically sophisticated level: special relativity; charged particles in electromagnetic fields; the electromagnetic field equations; electromagnetic waves; the field of moving charges; radiation of electromagnetic waves; and geometric optics and diffraction.
Students are able to (1) communicate central ideas and concepts involved in differential geometry and advanced electrodynamics; (2) explain the relationships between the physical principles that apply in differential geometry and advanced electrodynamics; and (3) solve advanced problems in theoretical physics in the context of differential geometry and advanced electrodynamics..
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) assignments and (2) final examination. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Evgeny Bukhbinder
Unit rules
completion of the core and complementary units for the Physics major or equivalent.
Advisable prior study:
PHYS3004 Advanced Quantum Mechanics; PHYS3011 Mathematical Physics
Contact hours
lectures:3 x 45 minutes per week; practical classes: 1 x 45 minutes per week.
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.