Department of Physics, Unit Catalogue 2011/12 

Credits:  6 
Level:  Certificate (FHEQ level 4) 
Period: 
Semester 1 
Assessment:  EX 100% 
Supplementary Assessment:  PH10003  Mandatory Extra Work (where allowed by programme regulations) 
Requisites:  While taking this unit you must take PH10007 and take PH10011 
Description:  Aims: The aim of this unit is to provide a preparation for work in the undergraduate physics laboratory by discussing dimensions and units, developing an understanding of basic concepts in dc and ac electric circuits, and introducing basic ideas of error analysis, statistics and probability relevant to the understanding and interpretation of experimental data. Learning Outcomes: After taking this unit the student should be able to: * apply dimensional analysis to expressions linking measurable variables; * use a systematic analysis method to calculate currents and voltages in passive dc circuits; * calculate the amplitude and phase of voltages and currents in ac circuits by means of phasor analysis; * analyse simple operational amplifier circuits from first principles; * apply the propagation of errors formula; * evaluate the standard error on a mean of experimental measurements; * apply leastsquares fitting to experimental data; * write down expressions for the fundamental probability distributions and apply them appropriately. Skills: Numeracy T/F A, Problem Solving T/F A. Content: Dimensions & units (1 hour): Fundamental SI units, measurement standards, dimensional analysis. Probability and statistics (6 hours): Dealing with uncertainty and error. Propagation of errors. The standard error of the mean. Fitting a curve; leastsquares. Fundamental notation and the rules of probability. Probability distributions and densities for discrete and continuous random variables. Expectation values. Binomial, Poisson and Gaussian distributions. Interpolation and extrapolation techniques. DC circuits (5 hours): Kirchoff's voltage and current laws. Ideal voltage and current sources. Analysis of simple circuits using nodal voltage technique. Impedance matching; input/output impedance, maximum power transfer. Diode circuits (1 hour): Diode models and applications. AC circuits (6 hours): AC voltage and current concepts (phase, rms value, amplitude, etc.). Capacitors and inductors as circuit elements. Phasors and phasor notation. Complex impedance. LCR circuits (resonance, Q factor, etc). Frequency dependence of circuits. Ideal operational amplifiers (2 hours): Simple applications. Negative feedback and its advantages. Transients (1 hour): Techniques for solving for transient waveforms in simple circuits involving inductors, capacitors, resistors and opamps. 
Programme availability: 
PH10003 is Compulsory on the following programmes:Department of Physics
