About this book
This book is, in essence, an updated and revised version of an earlier textbook, Newtonian Mechanics, written about fifteen years ago by one of us (APF) and published in 1971. The book has been significantly changed in emphasis as well as length. Our aim has been to produce a mechanics text, suitable for use at beginning university level, for students who have a background typified by the British sixth-form level in physics and mathematics. We hope, however, that the book will also be found useful in the teaching of mechanics at the upper levels of the secondary schools themselves. Calculus is freely used from the outset. In making the present revision we have drastically cut down on the amount of historical and more discursive material. Nevertheless, our goal has been to present classical mechanics as physics, not as applied mathematics. Although we begin at the beginning, we have aimed at developing the basic principles and their applications as rapidly as seemed reasonable, so that by the end of the book students will be able to feel that they have achieved a good working knowledge of the subject and can tackle fairly sophisticated problems. To help with this process, each chapter is followed by a good number of exercises, some of them fairly challenging. We shall be very grateful to receive comments and corrections from those who use this book.
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