You are here: Home » Study Plan » Subject


Subject: PHYSICS I A (A.A. 2020/2021)

degree course in PHYSICS

Course year 1
Teaching units Unit Fisica generale I A
Physics (lesson)
  • TAF: Basic compulsory subjects SSD: FIS/01 CFU: 9
Teachers: Anna FRANCHINI
Exam type oral
Evaluation final vote
Teaching language Italiano
Contents download pdf download




Knowledge and understanding
The purpose of the course is to illustrate the basic concepts of classical mechanics of particles and extended systems.

Applying knowledge and understanding
Students are expected to become acquainted with the methods to solve mechanical problems.

Making judgements
At the end of the course students are expected to be able to develop a critical approach in dealing with mechanical concepts and problems.

Comunicating skills
One of the purpose of the course is to provide students with the terminology apt to comunicate mechanical concepts and discuss mechanical problems.

Learning skills
The course gives the basis for the future development of the professional career of the students.

Admission requirements

The student is supposed to be familiar with basic algebra and elementary geometry and to have attended a course on elementary physics in secondary school.

Course contents

Mechanics: Frame of reference, events, space-time continuum. Kinematics: velocity and acceleration, uniform motions, harmonic motions; circular motions. Vector algebra and analysis; motion in three dimensions. The principles of dynamics: solution of elementary problems. Forces, work of a force, work and kinetic energy; force fields, conservative force fields and potential energy. Gravitation field. Motion in central fields. Dynamics of extended bodies: linear momentum and first cardinal equation; linear momentum conservation; center of mass and its equation of motion. Elastic and anelastic collisions.

Thermodynamics: Thermodynamic systems and states. Thermodynamic equilibrium. Irreversibility.
Thermal interaction. Thermal equilibrium and temperature. Heat transfers.
First principle of Thermodynamics. Heat - work equivalence. Internal energy. State functions. Differential formulation of first principle.
Thermodynamic transformations. Adiabatic transformations. Reversible and irreversible processes. Heat capacity. Specific heats. Phase transformations. Latent heats.
Ideal gas thermodynamics. Ideal gas laws. State equation. Internal energy. Enthalpy.
Thermodynamic cycles. Reversible and irreversible cycles. Cycle efficiency. Fundamental cycles.
Second principle of Thermodynamics. Clausius and Kelvin's statements. Carnot's theorem. Gas thermometer. Absolute thermodynamic temperature. Entropy and Clausius inequality. Calculations of entropic variations in various transformations.
An outline of the third principle of Thermodynamics.

Teaching methods

Lectures - Numerical exercises - Mentoring by older students or doctoral. Theoretical lessons will normally be conducted remotely asynchronously (recorded) or synchronously (streaming) due to the health situation COVID19, while the exercises will be carried out in small groups and made available remotely synchronously or asynchronously. Mode for working students: Working students who can not attend regular classes, should contact the teacher to define the activities' of specific support. Office hours: Monday 15-17, Building Physics, office on the 4th floor or by appointment via e-mail.

Assessment methods

Written test with solution of problems of mechanics and thermodynamics for admission to the final oral exam. Any intermediate written tests. Written and oral tests could be carried out in the presence or at a distance depending on the evolution of the COVID19 situation.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding: Through numerical exercises at the end of the course the student will have developed the ability to analyze problems of mechanics and thermodynamics.
Applying knowledge and understanding: Through the interim and / or final written exams the student will have developed the ability to apply the methods of analysis of the problems of mechanics and thermodynamics illustrated in numerical exercises carried out in class.
Making judgments: With a variety of examples of physical systems in mechanics and thermodynamics illustrated at the end of the course the student will have developed the ability to choose for themselves the methods of analysis of the appropriate problems for classes of systems addressed during and to critically evaluate the results obtained.
Communication skills: The final interview will allow the student to develop the ability to support a scientific discussion with appropriate language.
Learning skills: After completing this course the student will have developed the ability to learn autonomously some side aspects of the topics covered in the course.


P. Mazzoldi, M. Nigro, C. Voci: "Fisica: vol I: Meccanica - Termodinamica" EdiSES
C. Mencuccini, V. Silvestrini:"Fisica : Meccanica e Termodinamica ", Ed CEA
M. Villa, A. Uguzzoni "Esercizi di Fisica - Meccanica - come risolvere i problemi", ed CEA