Physics II
cod. 1010557

Academic year 2022/23
2° year of course - First semester
Academic discipline
Fisica sperimentale (FIS/01)
Formazione fisica di base
Type of training activity
52 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Integrated course unit module: Physics II and Laboratory

Learning objectives

At the end of the course, the student will be able to:
- Know and understand the main phenomena of an electrical, magnetic and optical nature. Know the fundamental laws and natural principles that govern electromagnetism and optics. (knowledge and understanding)
- Know the strategies for finding specific solutions to simple problems of electromagnetism and optics, with particular regard to the aspects related to the physical and chemical issues that characterize the Course. Knowing how to formally interpret, through analytical and numerical models, the basic physical knowledge of electromagnetism and optics. (applying knowledge and understanding)
- Know how to communicate with a correct, rigorous and understandable scientific language that allows you to clearly and completely expose the knowledge and solution strategies learned during teaching (communication skills)
- Develop critical skills in identifying the essential points of a physical problem, the validity of known relationships, their applicability. (making judgments)
- Apply the acquired knowledge for solving original problems and thus be able to undertake higher level academic studies with a sufficient degree of autonomy. (learning skills)


Some basic notions of Mathematical Analysis, operational knowledge of basic trigonometry, equations and systems of first and second degree equations, exponentials and logarithms, functions of real variables, limits, derivatives and integrals.
Prerequisites: Physics I.

Course unit content

Coulomb's law and electric fields.
Gauss's law.
Electric potential.
Conductors, capacitances and dielectrics.
Currents and resistances, simple direct current circuits.
Magnetic fields and currents.
Electromagnetic induction, self-induction and mutual induction.
Maxwell's equation and electromagnetic waves.
Wave optics: interference, diffraction and polarization.
Geometric optics.

Full programme

Electric charge, Coulomb's law and the electric field. The behavior of charges in materials. Gauss's law and its applications.
Electric potential energy and electrostatic potential. Electric fields and potential of a charge distribution. The electric dipoles. Conductors in electrostatic balance, electrostatic shield.
Capacitors. Capacitance of a capacitor. Connection in series and in parallel. Energy stored in the electric field. Dielectric properties of matter, polarization and dielectrics, the dielectric constant.
Stationary electric currents. Current density. Resistance and Ohm's laws. Resistors in series and in parallel. Electric circuits in direct current, Kirchoff's laws and notes on RC circuits.
The magnetic field. Magnetic force acting on a moving charge and on current-carrying conductors. Moment acting on a loop crossed by a current. Hall effect. Magnetic field generated by a current. Biot-Savart's law and Ampère's law. Solenoids. Forces acting between circuits crossed by current. Gauss's law for magnetic fields. Displacement current and Ampère-Maxwell law.
Faraday's law of electromagnetic induction. Electromagnetic induction and Lorentz force. Self-induction. The inductances. Mutual induction. Magnetic energy. Electric circuits in alternating current.
The unification of electrical and magnetic phenomena and Maxwell's equations of electromagnetism. Electromagnetic waves.
Propagation and properties of electromagnetic waves. Wave optics: interference, diffraction, diffraction gratings, polarization. Geometric optics: reflection, refraction, dispersion. mirrors and lenses.


Any textbook of Physics II at university level (for degree courses in Engineering or Physics) that deals with the subjects of the teaching can be equally considered valid for the purposes of preparation.
Recommended texts:
Gettys Fisica 2, McGraw Hill IV edition (with optics)
D. Halliday, R. Resnick, K.S. Krane Fisica 2, Casa Editrice Ambrosiana

Teaching methods

Frontal lessons in which the fundamental concepts will be discussed with an extensive illustration of examples. Each topic treated is accompanied by an adequate number of hours dedicated to carrying out exercises.
It is recommended that all students register on the Elly web page of the course before the start of the lessons and always check the didactic material available and the information provided by the teacher through the platform.

Assessment methods and criteria

The exam consists of a written and an oral test. To have access to the oral exam, the student must pass the written exam with a mark greater than or equal to 17/30.
The written test is divided into two partial tests, of which the first during the year (November), and the other at the end of the course (February) or, alternatively, through a single written test on the entire program at the scheduled exams.
The written tests consist of both exercises to be solved numerically and theory questions.

Other information

The distribution of study material for attending and non-attending students takes place through the Elly platform.