Question Specific Discussion

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grapesmoker
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Re: Question Specific Discussion

Post by grapesmoker »

That seems like a pretty good "scattering" question. The partial wave expansion is a technique used to solve scattering problems, so I don't see any issues here.
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Steeve Ho You Fat
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Re: Question Specific Discussion

Post by Steeve Ho You Fat »

Well, I was going off of impact parameter, which was before it switched to process. Looking at Thornton and Marion, I don't see references to a "scattering problem" in a way that makes you think it's a term of art, just to things like "this is an example of a scattering problem," and I certainly don't mentioned it being discussed that way in class. However, I'm perfectly willing to add that to the list of things that were bad about my mechanics class, somewhere after not mentioning Lagrangians or Hamiltonians at all.
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Re: Question Specific Discussion

Post by gyre and gimble »

Plan Rubber wrote:Well, I was going off of impact parameter, which was before it switched to process. Looking at Thornton and Marion, I don't see references to a "scattering problem" in a way that makes you think it's a term of art, just to things like "this is an example of a scattering problem," and I certainly don't mentioned it being discussed that way in class. However, I'm perfectly willing to add that to the list of things that were bad about my mechanics class, somewhere after not mentioning Lagrangians or Hamiltonians at all.
I don't really think scattering problems in classical mechanics is a big deal because there are so few applications and it's mostly geometry anyway. That's probably why it's not given some designation as a special problem in your classical mechanics book. It's a huge deal in quantum mechanics, though, and also in particle astrophysics (at least we did a lot of scattering stuff in my cosmology class). My class used Griffiths too so I guess that's a sample size of 1 still, but I'm pretty sure Griffiths didn't just make up a whole new category of problems for no reason other than that you can do cool math with them. Anyway, most of the clues from that tossup are from quantum scattering so I wouldn't really worry about not learning that material in a mechanics class.
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Re: Question Specific Discussion

Post by Edmund »

As the science distribution pedant par exemplaire, I thought the scattering tossup was great. I use Landau + Lifschitz as my source for mathematical physics, and if you read their primer on classical mechanics, which is specifically geared for providing the mathematical tools to move on to quantum phenomena, you will be left in no doubt that the "scattering problem" is a thing. What is more, it is something with abundant theory that doesn't get tossed up very often, so I was pleased that someone chose to do so.
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