KC4014 - Dynamics

What will I learn on this module?

This module is designed to provide you with knowledge in a special topic in Applied Mathematics. This module introduces Newtonian mechanics developing your skills in investigating and building mathematical models and in interpreting the results. The following topics will be covered:

Mathematics Review
Euclidean geometry. Vector functions. Position vector, velocity, acceleration.
Cartesian representation in 3D-space. Scalar and vector products, triple scalar product.

Newton’s Laws
Inertial frames of reference. Newton's Laws of Motion. Mathematical models of forces (gravity, air resistance, reaction, elastic force).

Rectilinear and uniformly accelerated motion
Problems involving constant acceleration (e.g., skidding car), projectiles with/without drag force (e.g., parabolic trajectory, parachutist). Variable mass. Launch and landing of rockets.
Linear elasticity. Ideal spring, simple harmonic motion. Two-spring problems. Free/forced vibration with/without damping. Resonance. Real spring, seismograph.

Rotational motion and central forces
Angular speed, angular velocity. Rotating frames of reference.
Simple pendulum (radial and transverse acceleration). Equations of motion, inertial, Coriolis, centrifugal effects. Effects of Earth rotation on dynamical problems (e.g. projectile motion).
Principle of angular momentum, kinetic and potential energy. Motion under a central force. Kepler’s Laws. Geostationary satellite.

How will I learn on this module?

In this module, you will learn through a combination of lectures, seminars and problem solving sessions. During the lectures, you will be taught the main concepts required and you will be provided with suitable examples or case studies in particle dynamics. Seminars will allow you to obtain help with problems associated with the module throughout delivery. Seminars are used to give you feedback on on-going learning activities.

You will be assessed by two summative assessments these taking the form of a formal written in-class test and a written exam to test concepts and methods at an appropriate level. In addition formative assessments/problems are provided on a weekly basis, and considered with the tutor in seminars, to provide on-going formative assessment, feedback and help regarding assimilation of material at an appropriate pace.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Lectures and seminars will be the main point of academic contact, offering you with a formal teaching environment for core learning. Seminars will provide you with opportunities for critical enquiry and exchanges. Generic and individual feedback will be provided during seminars.

Outside formal scheduled teaching, you will be able to contact the module team (module tutor, year tutor, programme leader) either via email or the open door policy operated throughout the programme.

Further academic support will be provided through technology-enhanced resources via the e-learning portal. You will have the opportunity to give feedback formally through periodic staff-student committees and directly to the module tutor at the end of the semester.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. Acquire a basis of knowledge on Newtonian mechanics.
2. Formulate and solve mathematical problems involving differentiation, integration and differential equations.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
3. Solve problem and analyse concepts in mathematics applied to Newtonian mechanics.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
4. To develop the ability of learning new concepts, describing and solving mathematical problems making use of appropriate materials/resources.
5. To effectively and concisely communicate physics-based concepts in written form.

How will I be assessed?

1. Coursework (20%) – KU2, PVA1
2. Examination (80%) – KU1, KU2, IPSA1, PVA1, PVA2

Exam/test feedback will be provided individually and also generically to indicate where the cohort has a strong or a weaker answer to examination questions. Formative feedback will be provided during seminars.





Module abstract

Dynamics will enable you to solve mathematical problems and develop your problem solving skills.

Dynamics follows a combination of lectures and practical approaches. During the seminars, you will work through problems to develop your knowledge of Newtonian mechanics with the support of a tutor. You will be assessed by one in-class test (20%) and one exam (80%).. These assignments will be designed to put forward your new skills and techniques. You will receive constructive feedback during seminars throughout the year semester, and eLearning Portal will serve as a point of contact, information and discussion with the tutor.

You will enhance your employability, enabling you to demonstrate a combination of mathematical and problem-solving skills that are highly prized by businesses in our modern economy and are directly relevant to further study.

Course info

UCAS Code F3F5

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Mathematics, Physics and Electrical Engineering

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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