Credit points: 15

Subject outline

In this subject students deal with the kinematics and dynamics of a particle and systems of particles, and some of the types of differential equations which arise in the mathematical descriptions of the motions studied. The main mechanical topics emphasize the study of particle dynamics and conservation laws, rigid rotating bodies and the two body problem with central forces, based on Newton's second law of motion. The new solutions of differential equations considered are solutions of second order differential equations with non-constant coefficients, with expansions about ordinary points and regular singular points. The subject covers applications of forces, momentum and kinetic and potential energy, for particles and rigid bodies, with a focus on orbits of planets. The subject also covers the solution of wave equations in two and three dimensions. The main tools used are derived from concepts in MAT2VCA.

SchoolEngineering and Mathematical Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorChris Taylor

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 2 - UG

Available as ElectiveNo

Learning ActivitiesN/A

Capstone subjectNo

Subject particulars

Subject rules



Incompatible subjectsN/A

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyN/A

Quota-conditions or rulesN/A

Special conditionsN/A

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Build simple mathematical models of mechanical systems, using Newton's second law and the ideas of conservation of momentum, angular momentum and energy.
02. Solve the linear differential equations that arise in mechanical modelling.
03. Solve simple problems in the theory of planetary orbits.
04. Solve partial differential equations in appropriate coordinates using the technique of separation of variables and the theory of series solutions for differential equations, and apply these solutions to the mechanics of continuous media.
05. Communicate your understanding of mechanics using both words and precise mathematical symbolism.
06. Explain mathematical arguments verbally to other students.

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne (Bundoora), 2021, Semester 2, Day


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorKatherine Seaton

Class requirements

LectureWeek: 30 - 42
Two 1.00 hour lecture per week on weekdays during the day from week 30 to week 42 and delivered via face-to-face.

PracticalWeek: 30 - 42
Two 1.00 hour practical per week on weekdays during the day from week 30 to week 42 and delivered via face-to-face.


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*

Active participation in blackboard practice classes (500 words equivalent)

N/AOtherIndividualNo5 SILO5, SILO6

Fortnightly assignments (equiv 1000 words)

N/AAssignmentIndividualNo25 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4, SILO5

One 3-hour examination

N/ACentral examIndividualNo70 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4, SILO5