All courses, arranged by program, are listed in the catalog. If you cannot locate a specific course, try the Advanced Search. Current class schedules, with posted days and times, can be found on the NOW/Student Dashboard or by logging in to SiS.
This course is a continuation of 95.477 and serves as an introduction to solid state electronic and optoelectronic devices. The course will cover bipolar junction transistors, field effect transistors, integrated circuits, lasers, switching devices, and negative conductance microwave devices. Three or four practical demonstrations will also be performed with the analysis of the generated data assigned as homework. (offered as 95.548 for graduate credit)
An introduction to the most fundamental area of physics: the nature of motion, what affects it, and how it is measured. We examine Newton's laws, including the law of gravity, and how forces produce acceleration The course also examines the nature of energy - potential and kinetic - and how it relates to motion and forces. We will concentrate on how to analyze physical situations and solve the basic equations of motion. This course is intended to help teachers develop their understanding of the physics of motion.
Newton's laws of motion. Momentum and angular momentum. Energy. Oscillations. Variational principles. Central forces and planetary motion. Non-inertial systems of reference. Rotations of rigid bodies, tensors of inertia. Normal modes of oscillation.
This one-semester, 3-credit course intended for junior level science and engineering majors, is centered around the conceptual design of a spaceflight mission. In this project-based and team-based class, students will apply their science and technical knowledge to develop a spacecraft and mission concept tailored to answer a specific science question. Students will perform quantitative trade studies consistent with real-life constraints such as cost, schedule, manufacturability, team-expertise, operational environment, mission lifetime, etc. Students will 1) learn the fundamentals of key subsystems involved in a space flight mission and 2) apply their skills of inquiry, research, critical thinking to design a complete space science mission to solve a real-world problem while working within a multidisciplinary team.
An integrated study of the thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, review of the experimental foundations and historical development of classical thermodynamics; probability and statistical methods of studying macroscopic systems; atomic basis of the laws of thermodynamics and microscopic definitions of thermodynamics quantities using the method of ensembles; entropy and related quantities; TdS equations, Maxwell relations, equation of state, and applications: canonical and grand canonical ensembles; phase transitions; quantum statistics; application to radiation, magnetism, specific heats. (offered as 95.521 for graduate credit)
De Broglie waves, the Schroedinger equation, wave functions, wave packets, Heisenberguncertainty principle, expectation values, particle in a box, the simple harmonic oscillator, free particles, step barrier, barrier penetration, square well potential, time independent perturbation theory. (offered as 95.535 for graduate credit)
The three dimensional Schroedinger equation, the deuteron nucleus, angular momentum, spin, the hydrogen atom, spin-orbit interaction, Zeeman effect, Pauli exclusion principle, atomic structure, multi-electron atoms, the Fermi gas, X-rays.
This course will cover the use of lenses,mirrors,and other optics to construct optical systems. Topics will include paraxial optics, aberrations, two element systems (such as telescopes), and dispersive optics (such as diffraction gratings and binary optics). We will discuss transfer functions, zernike polynomials, ray tracing procedures, and other analysis techniques in order to understand the performance of systems and their aberrations. As time allows we will discuss wave effects including diffraction, interferometry, and other physical effects.
Wave nature of light, mathematics of wave motion, electro-magnetic theory of light propagation, reflection and refraction, Fresnel coefficients, polarization, interference, Young's experiment, fringe visibility and coherence, various interferometers, Newton's rings and applications, Fraunhofer diffraction by single and multiple apertures and diffraction gratings, Fresnel diffraction.
Optical properties of materials, including dispersion, absorption, reflection and refraction at the boundary of two media. Crystal optics and induced birefringence and optical activity. Polarization states and Jones matrices. Applications to electro-optic devices. Experiments and projects involving the study of optical sources and detectors , spectroscopy, polarization, birefringence, pockels' effect, optical fibers, and optical communication. (offered as 95.539 for graduate credit)
A one-semester course designed to teach the student several of the important techniques for characterizing the structural, optical, and electronic properties of materials. Experiments will include x-ray diffractometry, hardness measurements, elipsometry, visible and near infrared spectroscopy, far infrared spectroscopy, and raman spectroscopy.
The theory of electromagnetic fields using vector analysis: electrostatic fields and potentials in vacuum, conductors, and dielectric media, magnetic effects of steady currents in nonmagnetic media, magnetic induction and time varying currents and fields. (offered as 95.553 for graduate credit)
Magnetic materials, electric multipoles, solutions to Laplace's equation, boundary conditions, image charge problems, Maxwell's equations; propagation of electromagnetic waves in vacuum, conductors and dielectrics; reflection and refraction of electromagnetic waves; radiation from dipoles and antennas. (offered as 95.554 for graduate credit).
The course introduces the present knowledge of space phenomena and the physical understanding of the plasma environment from the sun to the earth's ionosphere and in the heliosphere. Regions in space to be discussed include the solar surface, solar wind, bow shock, magnetosheath, magnetosphere, magnetotail, radiation belts, ring currents, and the ionosphere. Among space plasma physic theories, single particle theory, kinetic theory, and magnetohydrodynamics, which describe charged particle motion in electromagnetic fields and its consequences, are introduced and applied to the space environment.
Pre-Reqs: MATH 2310 Calculus III, MATH 2340 Differential Equations, PHYS 3540 or 95.554 Electromagnetism II.
Our knowledge of the universe beyond the Solar System is derived almost entirely from our interpretation of the radiation we receive from the universe; Our knowledge of the Earth's upper atmosphere and the atmospheres of other solar system objects is heavily dependent on observations of electromagnetic radiation. To understand the atmospheres of Earth and other planets, stars, galaxies and the universe, we need to understand the processes which produce electromagnetic radiation, and how radiation interacts with matter and propagates through space. This course describes the basic processes which create and alter such electromagnetic radiation before it's detected here in the Solar System.
The course will consist of a combination of lectures, problem sets and class discussion sessions. The lectures will be expanded from the material in the text and will include additional material on the astrophysical and planetary context of radiative processes, drawn primarily from the following list of references. The discussion sessions will often be based on recent problem sets - regular participation of students in class discussions is expected.
Nuclear properties including size, mass, binding energy, electromagnetic moments, parity and statistics; nuclear shell model, collective structure, deformed shell model, radioactive decay law and the Bateman equations, radioactive dating, counting statistics, energy resolution, coincidence measurements and time resolution, lifetime measurements; nuclear barrier pentetration; angular momentum, Coulomb barrier, alpha decay and systematics, fission. (offered as 95.561 for graduate credit).
Pre-Req: 95.210 Introductory Modern Physics
The course aims to provide an overview of the main and common computational methods currently used in physics research. The course will cover the topics of basic concepts of computational physics, first and second order methods of integration of advection equations, kinetic methods and N-body methods, Monte Carlo and Particle in Cell (PIC) methods, finite elements, finite volume and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), spectral methods, girding methods and Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR), and introduction to parallel computing.
Pre-req: MATH.2310 Calculus III, and MATH.2340 Differential Equations, and PHYS.3810 Math Physics I, and PHYS.3820 Math Physics II.
Review of Special Relativity and a brief introduction to general relativity.
Introduction to the Standard Model of Particle Physics. Fundamental particles, Quarks, Leptons and Gauge Bosons. Conservation rules and symmetries. Parity Conservation and intrinsic parity of particles. Parity violation in weak interactions. Charge conjugation invariance and its violation in weak interactions. Gauge transformations and local gauge invariance in quantum field theories. Gauge invariance in electroweak theory. The Higgs mechanism of spontaneous symmetry breaking. Higgs Boson. Comparison of electroweak theory with experiment.
Introduction to Astrophysics and Cosmology. The expanding universe. The Hubble Constant. Olber's paradox. The Friedman equation. The age of the universe. Cosmic microwave radiation. Radiation and Matter Eras. Primordial nucleosynthesis. Baryogenesis and the matter-antimatter asymmetry in the universe.
Development and structure in the early universe. Horizon and Flatness Problems.
Quantum fluctuations and Inflation. Particle physics in the stars. Stellar evolution. Hydrogen burning and the pp cycle in the sun. Helium burning and the production of carbon and oxygen. Production of heavy elements. Electron degeneracy pressure and the white dwarf stars. Neutron stars and Pulsars. Solar neutrinos, neutrino oscillations.
There is currently no description available for this course.
The course aims to provide upper level undergraduate and graduate students from Physics and Engineering background in plasma physics, focusing on the fundamental physics principles, not any specific application or field of research. The course will cover the topics of basic plasma concepts, single-particle motion in an electromagnetic field, magnetohydrodynamics, plasma waves, plasma instabilities, plasma kinetics, and some advanced topics in plasma physics.
Pre-req: MATH.2310 Calculus III, and MATH.2340 Differential Equations, and PHYS.3530 Electromagnetism I.
Crystal structures, x-ray diffraction, crystal binding, lattice vibrations, free electron and band models of metals. (offered as 95.572 for graduate credit).
This course is an introduction to solid state electronic and optoelectronic devices for undergraduate science students (i.e. biology, chemistry, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, physics, etc.) graduate students just entering a scientific endeavor which utilizes solid state devices, and practical engineers and scientists whose understanding of modern electronics and optoelectronics needs updating. The course is organized to bring students with a background in sophomore physics to a level of understanding which will allow them to read much of the current literature on new devices and applications. The course will cover fundamental crystal properties, atoms and electrons, energy bands and charge carriers, excess carriers, junctions and p-n junction diodes (includes photodiodes and light-emitting diodes). Three or four practical demonstrations will also be performed with the analysis of the generated data assigned as homework. (offered as 95.577 for graduate credit)
Physics based introduction to modern Astronomy and Astrophysics. Aimed at students who have already studied E&M, Modern Physics, and Calculus. Focus on fundamentals of Stellar Astrophysics and Galactic Astronomy.
Pre-req: PHYS 1410 Physics I, or PHYS 1610 Honors Physics I and PHYS 1440 Physics II or PHYS 1640 Honors Physics II.
This course explores the essentials of cloud physics, beginning with the basic laws of thermodynamics of both dry and moist atmospheres. Condensation, nucleation, and drop growth are studied in detail at an advanced level.
Experiments in various branches of physics including optics, atomic physics, solid state physics and nuclear physics.
Vector analysis; matrices and determinants; theory of analytical functions; differential equations, Fourier series, Laplace transforms, distributions, Fourier transforms.
Partial differential equations, boundary value problems, and special functions; linear vector spaces; Green's functions; selected additional topics; numerical analysis.
Pre-Req: PHYS.6050 Math Methods of Physics I.
Knowledge of Lagrangian mechanics assumed. Central force problem, scattering, rigid-body mechanics, normal modes and special relativity. Hamiltonian dynamics, canonical transformations, Hamilton-Jacobi theory and action-angle variables. Continuous systems and fields. Simplectic formulation, stochastic processes, and chaos theory.
The representation of quantum states as abstract vectors. Superposition of states. Quantum operators and their matrix representations. Angular momentum operator as the generator of rotations. Eigenvalues and eigenstates of angular momentum. The uncertainty principle. Spin one-half and spin one as examples. Addition of angular momentum. The Hamiltonian operator and the Schrodinger equation. One dimensional examples. The momentum operator, eigenstates of position. Operator solution of the harmonic oscillator. I(3,0) Quantum Mechanics I The representation of quantum states as abstract vectors. Superposition of states. Quantum operators and their matrix representations. Angular momentum operator as the generator of rotations. Eigenvalues and eigenstates of angular momentum. The uncertainty principle. Spin one-half and spin one as examples. Addition of angular momentum. The Hamiltonian operator and the Schrodinger equation. One dimensional examples. The momentum operator, eigenstates of position. Operator solution of the harmonic oscillator.
Quantum mechanics in three dimensions. translational and rotational invariance and conservation of linear and angular momentum, center-of-mass coordinates. Position-space representation of the angular momentum operator, orbital angular momentum eigenfunctions. Bound states of central potentials, including the Coulomb potential and the hydrogen atom. Approximation methods: time-independent perturbations, applications to the Stark effect, the Zeeman effect, spin-orbit coupling in hydrogen. The variational method. Time dependent perturbations. Indistinguishable particles: multielectron atoms, covalent bonding. Scattering. Electromagnetic interactions: emission and absorption of radiation.
Dirac equation as a single particle wave equation, free particle spinors and plane waves, matrices and relativistic covariance, nonrelativistic approximation and the fine-structure of the H atom. Quantization of the e.m. field in the coulomb gauge; interaction of an atom with the quantized radiation field; radiative transitions in atoms; Thomson scattering; classical and quantized Lagrangian field theory; symmetries and conservation laws: quantization of the real and complex Klein-Gordon field; Dirac Field and the covariant quantization of the e.m. field; Feynman propagators; the interaction picture and the S-matrix expansion in perturbation theory and the Wick's Rule. Feynman diagrams and rules for calculating S-matrix elements in QED; formulas for cross-section and spin and photon polarization sums; calculation of cross-sections for (1) e++e- l++ l - (2) e++e- e++e- (3) Compton scattering and (4) scattering of electrons by an external e.m. field.
Introduction of physical concepts behind quantum information processing; Quantum description of physical systems, such as a harmonic oscillator and a single qubit, from an information processing point of view; More complex systems composed of entangled qubits; General tools, rooted in density-matrix formalism, used to describe entanglement and decoherence; Quantum error correction and how it can correct for qubit decoherence to realize fault tolerant computation; Recent advances in engineering quantum information processing platforms, teleportation, and quantum annealing.
Pre-req: PHYS.5350 Introductory Quantum Mechanics I, and PHYS.5360 Inrodutory Quantum Mechanics II, or Permission of Instructor.
Wave propagation in a linear anisotropic medium; Wave propagation in a nonlinear optical medium. Classical model for the origin of nonlinear optical effects; Second order nonlinear optical effects - second harmonic generation, sum and difference frequency generation, linear electro-optical effect; Third order nonlinear optical effects, Kerr effect and intensity dependent nonlinear index of refraction, stimulated Raman and Billouin scattering; Photorefraction; Nonlinear optical devices.
Electrostatics and magnetostatics with special attention to boundary value problems. Quasistatic fields and displacement currents. Maxwell's equations, special relativity, wave-guides, scattering, radiation from accelerated charges, propagation in material media and plasmas, Kramers-Kronig relations.
Electrostatics and magnetostatics with special attention to boundary value problems. Quasistatic fields and displacement currents. Maxwell's equations, special relativity, waveguides, scattering, radiation from accelerated charges; propagation in material media and plasmas, Kramers-Kronig relations.
The nucleon-nucleon force; nuclear models; nuclear reaction theory and partial wave analysis of scattering; fast neutron physics.
This course provides in depth knowledge of space phenomena and physical understanding of the plasma environment form the sun to the earth's ionosphere and in the heliosphere. Regions in space include solar surface, solar wind, bow shock, magnetosheath, magnetosphere, magnetotail, radiation belts, ring currents, and upper ionosphere. Among space plasma physics theories, single particle theory and magnetohydrodynamics are discussed in depth.
Pre-req: PHYS 5550 Introduction to Space Physics or ATMO 4840 Space Weather.
Special relativity and Lorentz transformations; Scalar and electromagnetic fields; Curved spacetime and the metric tensor; The equivalence principle; Geodesics, covariant derivatives, and Killing vectors; Einstein's field equations; The energy conditions; Relativistic cosmology and the expanding Universe; (Special topics: Schwarzschild solution and black holes; Penrose-Carter diagrams; Quantum gravity)
Pre-req: PHYS.3540 Electromagnetism II, and PHYS.3820 Mathematical Physics II, and PHYS.4130 Mechanics.
A series of invited lectures on current research topics in Physics.
involve presentations by students, faculty members, and visiting scientists of advanced topics, original research or journal articles.
A weekly series of presentations and discussions by students and faculty concerning research in progress and planned research at the 5.5 MV Van de Graaff Accelerator. Enrollment in the course is limited to students whose research projects involve the Van de Graaff accelerator.
A weekly series of presentations and discussions concerning experimental optics research in the University of Massachusetts Lowell Department of Physics and Applied Physics.
Presentations by students of progress in their research projects.
Course involves presentations by students , faculty members, and visiting scientists of advanced topics, original research for journal articales relevant to technologies at terahertz frequencies.
Seminar in Biomedical Optics, offered at the Advanced Biophotonics Laboratory by Dr. Anna N. Yaroslavsky, covers topics related to recent advances in biomedical optics. Examples include, but are not limited to, the development of individualized, image-based methods of light dosimetry and planning for cancer treatments, concepts and implementation of full inverse Monte Carlo technique for reconstruction of tissue optical properties, investigation of light scattering by complex biological structures and live tissues, development of steady-state and time-resolved polarization, fluorescence and elastic scattering methods for diagnostics and treatment of pathology.
Reading in preparation for research, or research not for thesis. If results of the research are to be subsequently incorporated into a thesis, credits earned in this course may be used to satisfy thesis credit requirements in M.S. or Ph.D. Thesis Research with the written permission of the thesis supervisor, provided such permission is granted at the time of registration for this course. If the results are incorporated in an M.S. project, not more than 3 credits are allowed.
Involves presentations by students, faculty members, and research scientists on advanced topics in heavy-ion spectroscopy, including both original research and journal articles.
This course is a weekly seminar covering the areas of conventional "space physics" and extending to "astrophysics" and 'Upper atmospheric physics". Each seminar is focused on a topic that is currently at the cutting edge in these fields while an extended introduction will be given based on diverse background knowledge at graduate level in physics and engineering.
Students will study the scientific literature on topics and concepts in nanoscale physics and technology, including nanoscale thermal properties, micro-and nano-fluidity, nano-optics, quantum confinement to electronic states, and other phenomena. Students will make presentations and lead discussions on these studies at the frontiers of the field. The presentations will help them to generate new ideas for their own graduate research. Every student will have the opportunity to lead more than one discussion session.
Current research topics in medical physics, discussed by faculty, students and invited speakers.
Selected topics courses cover recent advances and more advanced topics, not covered in the regular courses in these areas. Subject matter varies, depending on the interests of the instructor and the needs of the students. Subject matter varies sufficiently that these courses may be taken more than once for credit without repeating topics.
Research project leading to the Graduate Research Admission Examination (for Ph.D. candidates only.)
Note: Courses with 98 prefix are described in the Radiological Sciences and Protection section of this catalog.
Continued Grad Research
Cooperative Education in Physics