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Mathematics Resources

Videos Explaining Math Relevant to Physics

Compiled by the Physics Faculty

  1. Cross products - used in the definition of angular momentum, torque, force on a charged particle moving in a magnetic field, Biot-Savart law for finding magnetic fields due to current line elements, etc.
    Several Khan Academy videos; first one -
  2. Line integrals - used in the concept of work, potential energy, electric potential.
    See Khan Academy, where the first video is at this link
    There are a substantial number of subsequent videos that gradually increase the level of complexity for handling line integrals.
  3. Eigenvalues and eigenvectors - used in moment of inertia tensor or matrix, normal modes of vibration, measureable values of operators corresponding to physical quantities in quantum mechanics, etc.
    See Khan Academy -
  4. Fourier Series - useful in mechanics to describe the forced harmonic oscillator, in E&M to describe time-varying fields, and in Quantum Mechanics to describe the wavefunctions for the particle in a box.
    See Khan Academy -
  5. Series solutions to differential equations - useful in E&M and in solving the Schrodinger Eqn for the hydrogen atom, etc.
    YouTube video -
  6. Fourier Transforms - useful in forced harmonic oscillator, E&M for describing Electric field pulses, Optical fields, Heisenberg uncertainty principle, resolution of a microscope, etc.
    YouTube video -
  7. The Del operator, gradient, divergence, and curl - used to determine force from potential and in the differential formulation of Maxwell's equations.


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