Mechanics 2 and Thermodynamics

Undergraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content


To provide a broad knowledge of classical mechanics, gravitation and basic thermodynamics


The course deals with classical mechanics and basic thermodynamics: oscillations, mechanical waves, gravitation, basic celestial mechanics, Lagrange-Hamilton formalism, thermodynamic processes and variables, the laws of thermodynamics, and heat transfer mechanisms. The course forms the basis for continued studies in e.g. physics, geophysics, and industrial processes.


Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course the student should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:



The student has gained knowledge about

  • harmonic motion, elasticity, waves, sound and interference
  • gravitation and basic celestial dynamics
  • Lagrange-Hamilton formulation of mechanics
  • Temperature and heat, states of matter and phase transitions, equations of state and state variables, work, internal energy and entropy, the laws of thermodynamics



The student can solve problems using

  • ideal springs, simple harmonic motion, sound speed in gases/fluids/solids, the Doppler effect, interference and standing waves
  • Kepler´s law and energy and angular momentum conservation principles applied to gravitation
  • the Lagrange-Hamilton formalism applied to few body mechanical systems
  • thermal expansion, heat conduction, the ideal gas law, kinetic gas theory, the laws of thermodynamics and Carnot's principle


General competence

The student has gained

  • increased ability for reflection and insight in how physics connects cause and effect for simple processes in nature
  • increased understanding on how basic concepts and methods are the foundations of more advanced fields
  • increased capability to recognize the basic concepts of physics at play in everyday life phenomena
  • training in analysing complex problems by decomposing them into simpler tasks
Grading Scale
The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, grade F is a fail.