# Undergraduate Courses 2019-20

PHYS

Physics

Undergraduate courses marked with [BLD] or [ONL] may be offered in the mode of blended learning or pure online delivery respectively, subject to different offerings. Students should check the delivery mode of the class section before registration.

- PHYS 1001Physics and the Modern Society3 Credit(s)Exclusion(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x Physics or HKDSE 1x Physics; any PHYS courses at 1100-level or aboveDescriptionThis course is for students with no physics background. Course content: Principle of scientific theories and methods, Aristotle's law, Newtonian mechanics. Thermal physics, heat engine, energy crisis and global warming. Nature of waves and the physics of hearing and vision. Electricity and magnetism, electromagnetic waves and telecommunication. Relativity, quantum physics, nuclear energy and semiconductor. Developments and outlook of contemporary physics.
- PHYS 1002Introduction to Astrophysics and Astronomy3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x OR in HKDSE 1x PhysicsExclusion(s)PHYS 1006, PHYS 4054 (prior to 2015-16)DescriptionThis course introduces students to origin of modern astronomy, gravity, light and telescope, star light and atoms, stars (binary, formation, evolution, death), neutron stars and black holes, normal galaxies, peculiar galaxies, cosmology, the solar system, life on other world. Students without the physics prerequisite but have taken PHYS 1001 or equivalent may seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in the course.
- PHYS 1003Energy and Related Environmental Issues3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x OR in HKDSE 1x PhysicsDescriptionThis course will introduce the basic concepts of the physical principles behind energy. Various forms of energy and their use (including electricity, fossil energy, nuclear power, various forms of renewable energy), and their impacts on the environment both from a global and a regional perspectives will be discussed. Issues related to energy conservation and related environmental issues in Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta (PRD) will be discussed. Students without the physics prerequisite but have taken PHYS 1001 or equivalent may seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in the course.
- PHYS 1005Physics in Movies3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x Physics OR HKDSE 1x PhysicsExclusion(s)SISP 1111DescriptionFilms and movies are for entertainment. As such, actions and episodes in movies frequently violate the basic laws of physics. By analyzing the situations portrayed in movies, we seek to establish some basic principles of physics such as the laws of motions, conversation laws, principles of thermodynamics and notions of modern physics. Using films to illustrate the correct (or wrong) concepts of physics is a good way to help the students to comprehend and apply the basic principles of science in an enjoyable way. Movies and films also frequently describes, sometimes in a grossly exaggerated manner, the dire consequences when science or technology falls in the hands of the bad people or when good science is applied for a wrong purpose by unsuspecting people who have good intentions. Analyzing such situations can help students to evaluate the social and philosophical implications of scientific discoveries and technological development. Students without the physics prerequisite but have taken PHYS 1001 or equivalent may seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in the course.
- PHYS 1006Astronomy for Beginners3 Credit(s)Exclusion(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x Physics OR HKDSE 1x Physics, a passing grade in AL/AS Physics, PHYS 1001, PHYS 1002, PHYS 4054 (prior to 2015-16)DescriptionFor students with no physics background. Introduction to our Universe; observation in astronomy; origin of modern astronomy. Newton's law of motions; gravity; light, atoms and telescope. The Sun; stellar formation and evolution; white dwarfs, neutron stars and black holes. The Milky way Galaxy; Normal galaxies, active galaxies and supermassive black holes. Foundation of modern cosmology; dark matter, dark energy and the fate of the Universe; the beginning of time.
- PHYS 1111General Physics I3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x OR HKDSE 1x PhysicsExclusion(s)Level 3 or above in HKDSE Mathematics Extended Module M1/M2, PHYS 1112, PHYS 1312DescriptionPHYS 1111 and PHYS 1112 target students who have learned the most basic knowledge in physics in high school. Students with more advanced physics background should consider taking PHYS 1312. PHYS 1111 employs an algebra-based approach. Students with knowledge of calculus should take PHYS 1112 instead. Key topics include motions and Newton's laws, work and energy, conservation of energy and momentum, rotation, rigid body, simple harmonic and damped oscillations, forced oscillations, standing waves and sound waves, kinetic theory and the laws of thermodynamics. For students under the 4-year degree only. Students with a passing grade in any MATH courses coded between 1000 and 1600 need to seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in this course.
- PHYS 1112General Physics I with Calculus3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)(Level 3 or above in HKDSE 1/2x OR in HKDSE 1x Physics) AND Level 3 or above in HKDSE Mathematics Extended Module M1/M2Exclusion(s)PHYS 1111, PHYS 1312DescriptionPHYS 1111 and PHYS 1112 target students who have learned the most basic knowledge in physics in high school. Students with more advanced physics background should consider taking PHYS 1312. PHYS 1112 employs a calculus-based approach. Students without knowledge of calculus should take PHYS 1111 instead. Key topics include motions and Newton’s Laws, work and energy, conservation of energy and momentum, rotation, rigid body, simple harmonic and damped oscillations, forced oscillations, standing waves and sound waves, kinetic theory and the laws of thermodynamics. For students under the 4-year degree only. Students without the physics prerequisite but have taken PHYS 1001 or equivalent, and/or without the mathematics prerequisite but have taken MATH 1012/ MATH 1013/ MATH 1020/ MATH 1023 or equivalent may seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in the course.
- PHYS 1113Laboratory for General Physics I1 Credit(s)Corequisite(s)PHYS 1111 OR PHYS 1112 OR PHYS 1312DescriptionA laboratory course to accompany PHYS 1111/PHYS 1112/PHYS 1312. Experiments in mechanics and heat are chosen to illustrate the experimental foundations of physics presented in the lecture courses.
- PHYS 1114General Physics II3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)(PHYS 1111 OR PHYS 1112 OR PHYS 1312) AND (level 3 or above in HKDSE Mathematics Extended Module M1/M2 OR MATH 1012 OR MATH 1013 OR MATH 1020 OR MATH 1023)Exclusion(s)PHYS 1314DescriptionThis course targets students who have learned the most basic knowledge in physics in high school. Students with more advanced physics background should consider taking PHYS 1314. This course employs a calculus‐based approach. Key topics include Coulomb's law, electric field and potential, Gauss' law, capacitance, circuits, magnetic force and field, Ampere's law, electromagnetic induction, AC circuit, Maxwell's equations, electromagnetic waves, wave optics, interference and diffraction.
- PHYS 1115Laboratory for General Physics II1 Credit(s)Corequisite(s)PHYS 1114 OR PHYS 1314DescriptionA laboratory course to accompany PHYS 1114/1314. Experiments in static and current electricity and magnetism, and optics are chosen to illustrate the experimental foundations of physics presented in the lecture courses.
- PHYS 1312Honors General Physics I3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)(Level 5* or above in HKDSE 1/2x Physics OR in HKDSE 1x Physics) AND (Level 5 or above in HKDSE Mathematics Extended Module M1/M2)Exclusion(s)PHYS 1111, PHYS 1112DescriptionThis course is a more in-depth version of PHYS 1112. It is intended to provide a solid foundation to students who wish to take more advanced physics courses in the future. Key topics include motions and Newton’s Laws, work and energy, conservation of energy and momentum, rotation, rigid body, simple harmonic and damped oscillations, forced oscillations, standing waves and sound waves, kinetic theory and the laws of thermodynamics. Students without the prerequisite may seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in the course. For students under the 4-year degree only.
- PHYS 1314Honors General Physics II3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)(Grade A- or above in PHYS 1111 OR PHYS 1112 OR Grade B- or above in PHYS 1312) AND (Level 5 or above in HKDSE Mathematics Extended Module M1/M2 OR MATH 1012 OR MATH 1013 OR MATH 1020 OR MATH 1023)Exclusion(s)PHYS 1114DescriptionThis course is a more in-depth version of PHYS 1114. It is intended to provide a solid foundation to students who wish to take more advanced physics courses in the future. Key topics include Coulomb’s law, electric field and potential, Gauss’ law, capacitance, circuits, magnetic force and field, Ampere’s law, electromagnetic induction, AC circuit, Maxwell’s equations, electromagnetic waves, geometric optics, interference and diffraction. Students without the prerequisite may seek instructor’s approval for enrolling in the course. For students under the 4-year degree only.
- PHYS 2022Modern Physics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1114 OR PHYS 1314DescriptionIntroduction to relativity; introduction to quantum theory: particle-wave duality and Schrodinger equation; atoms, molecules; and statistical physics: Maxwell, Bose and Fermi distributions.
- PHYS 2023Modern Physics Laboratory1 Credit(s)Corequisite(s)PHYS 2022DescriptionLaboratory accompanying PHYS 2022.
- PHYS 2080Physics Seminar1 Credit(s)DescriptionAppropriate seminars and small group tutorials are scheduled to expose students to a variety of issues in science and society, and to enhance students' communication with faculties and among themselves. For Physics students in their second year of study under the four-year degree only. Graded P or F.
- PHYS 2090Directed Studies in Physics I1 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)CGA at 2.70 or aboveDescriptionThis course covers special topics selected by the instructor on the basis of individual student's request. For students in the second year of study under the four-year degree only. Instructor's approval is required for enrollment in the course. May be repeated for credits.
- PHYS 2124Mathematical Methods in Physics I3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)MATH 2023 AND (MATH 2121 OR MATH 2131)Exclusion(s)MATH 2350, MATH 2351, MATH 2352DescriptionThis course will cover most of the mathematical tools required for studying classical mechanics, electromagnetism, quantum mechanics and statistical mechanics. Key topics include complex numbers, vector analysis, Fourier series and transform, ordinary differential equations and series solutions.
- PHYS 3031Mathematical Methods in Physics II3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)MATH 2023 AND MATH 2121 AND (MATH 2352 OR PHYS 2124)DescriptionPhysical applications of analytic and numerical methods are studied in such topics as differential equations, Fourier series, Laplace transforms, matrices and vectors.
- PHYS 3032Classical Mechanics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1111 OR PHYS 1112 OR PHYS 1312DescriptionNewtonian mechanics, including rigid bodies; oscillating systems; gravitation and planetary motion; Lagrange equations; Hamilton's equations; normal modes and small oscillations.
- PHYS 3033Electricity and Magnetism I3 Credit(s)Co-list withPHYS 3053Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1114 OR PHYS 1314Exclusion(s)PHYS 3053DescriptionA physics core course. Electrostatics: electric charge and fields, multipoles, Laplace equation, dielectrics; magnetostatics: currents, magnetic fields and vector potential, magnetic materials; Maxwell's equations.
- PHYS 3034Electricity and Magnetism II3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3033 OR PHYS 3053DescriptionElectrodynamics: applications of Maxwell's equations, propagation in various media, radiation, relativistic electrodynamics, transmission lines and wave guides.
- PHYS 3036Quantum Mechanics I3 Credit(s)Co-list withPHYS 3037Prerequisite(s)PHYS 2022Exclusion(s)PHYS 3037DescriptionBasic properties of Schrodinger equation, bound and scattering states in simple one-dimensional potentials, formulation of quantum mechanics in terms of Hilbert space and Dirac bracket notation, Schrodinger equation in three-dimensions, angular momentum, hydrogen atom wavefunction, systems of identical particles, spin and statistics, multi-electron atoms and the periodic table.
- PHYS 3037Honors Quantum Mechanics I4 Credit(s)Co-list withPHYS 3036Prerequisite(s)Grade B- or above in PHYS 2022Exclusion(s)PHYS 3036DescriptionThis course is a more in-depth version of PHYS 3036 Elementary Quantum Mechanics I. Topics include: classical mechanics, Schrodinger equation and simple examples in one-dimension, formulation of quantum mechanics in terms of Hilbert space and Dirac bracket notation, real and momentum space representations, Heisenberg and Schrodinger pictures, Schrodinger equation in three-dimensions, angular momentum, hydrogen atom wavefunction, systems of identical particles, the periodic table.
- PHYS 3038Optics3 Credit(s)Exclusion(s)ELEC 4610DescriptionRay tracing, matrix optics, wave optics, superposition of waves and interference, coherence, Fresnel and Fraunhofer diffraction, polarisation, Fourier optics, holography, phase and group velocity, material dispersion, propagation of Gaussian beams.
- PHYS 3040Introduction to Materials Science3 Credit(s)DescriptionAn integrated study of the nature and behavior of metals, ceramics and polymers. Topics include crystal structures, phase diagrams, microstructures and microscopy, defects, phases and interfaces in materials systems, phase transformations, deformation, annealing and failure of materials.
- PHYS 3041Introduction to Materials Processing3 Credit(s)Corequisite(s)PHYS 3040DescriptionPhase transitions and phase diagrams, crystal growth, vacuum physics and technology, thin film preparation by physical vapor deposition, sputtering and sol-gel. Chemical processing such as chemical vapor deposition, oxidation, wet and plasma etching. Lithography and patterning techniques.
- PHYS 3053Honors Electricity and Magnetism I4 Credit(s)Co-list withPHYS 3033Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1114 (Grade B- or above) OR PHYS 1314Exclusion(s)PHYS 3033DescriptionThis course is a more in-depth version of PHYS 3033. Key topics include: (i) Electrostatics: electric charge and fields, Coulomb’s law, Gauss’ Law, multipoles, Laplace equation; (ii) Magnetostatics: currents, magnetic fields and vector potential, Biot-Savart Law, Faraday’s law, magnetic materials; (iii) Maxwell’s equations; and (iv) Interaction of electromagnetic fields with matter, polarization and magnetization, bound charges and bound currents, relative permittivity and permeability, ferromagnets.
- PHYS 3071Introduction to Stellar Astrophysics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 2022DescriptionStellar radiation, stellar spectrum, binary stars, interiors of stars, star formation, post-main-sequence stellar evolution, stellar remnants.
- PHYS 3090Directed Studies in Physics II1 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)CGA at 2.70 or aboveDescriptionThis course covers special topics selected by the instructor on the basis of individual student's request. For students in their third year of study under the four-year degree only. The instructor's approval is required for taking this course. May be repeated for credits.
- PHYS 3142Computational Methods in Physics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)(COMP 1021 OR COMP 1029P) AND (MATH 2352 OR PHYS 2124)Exclusion(s)MATH 3311 (prior to 2015-16), MATH 3312DescriptionThis course provides an introduction to basic numerical and symbolic computation. Topics include methods of interpolation and extrapolation, approximation methods of root finding, numerical integration and solving ordinary differential equations, symbolic algebra and calculus. Students need to write computer codes in laboratory sessions and write lab reports to describe their results.
- PHYS 3152Methods of Experimental Physics I3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1114 OR PHYS 1314DescriptionThis course will cover the techniques of experimental physics in the area of electronics. Students will complete experiments involving ac circuits and input/output impedance, diodes and transistors, operational amplifiers, frequency analysis and digital electronics.
- PHYS 3153Methods of Experimental Physics II3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1114 OR PHYS 1314DescriptionThis course will cover the techniques of experimental physics in the area of optics. Students will complete experiments involving basic optical systems, interferometry, waveguides and optical fibers, optical spectroscopy, semiconductor laser diodes, microwave reflection, scattering and diffraction.
- PHYS 4050Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 2022DescriptionLaws of thermodynamics, entropy, thermodynamic relations, free energy; elementary statistical mechanics: Maxwell-Boltzmann, Bose-Einstein and Fermi-Dirac statistics; elementary transport theory; applications to physical systems.
- PHYS 4051Quantum Mechanics II3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3031/MATH 4052, AND PHYS 3036/PHYS 3037DescriptionThis course is mainly on approximation methods in quantum mechanics. Topics include stationary state perturbation theory, variational principle, WKB method, time-dependent perturbation theory, emission and absorption of radiation, adiabatic approximation and geometric phase, scattering theory.
- PHYS 4052Introductory Solid State Physics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3036 OR PHYS 3037DescriptionAn introduction to modern solid state physics, including lattice structure, lattice vibrations, thermal properties, electron theory of metals and semiconductors, magnetic properties, and superconductivity.
- PHYS 4053Lasers and Optical Electronics3 Credit(s)DescriptionPropagation of Gaussian beams, optical cavity and cavity modes, blackbody radiation and stimulated emission, laser principles and rate equations, examples of solid state, liquid, gas and semiconductor lasers, laser Q-switching and mode-locking, detection of optical radiation.
- PHYS 4055Particle Physics and the Universe3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3036 OR PHYS 3037Mode of Delivery[BLD] Blended learningDescriptionIn this course, a systematic introduction to particle physics will be provided, with the topics mainly covering: the tool of Feynman diagrams, the Standard Model in particle physics (the zoo of fundamental particles, electroweak unified theory, and Higgs mechanism), particle physics at colliders (particularly at the Large Hadron Collider), and the interplay between particle physics and cosmology. It aims at enabling students to catch up the progress in particle physics in a timely way, and appreciate the beauty of fundamental rules in nature.
- PHYS 4058Information Physics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3031 OR PHYS 4050DescriptionProbability theory, entropy in information theory, relative entropy and mutual information, Second Law of thermodynamics, instantaneous code and block code, data compression: Huffman code, portfolio management. Introduction to Mathematical Finance: Options and Binomial Tree.
- PHYS 4059Physics of Management Science3 Credit(s)Exclusion(s)IEDA 3010, ISOM 3710DescriptionThis course will introduce the concepts and techniques of optimization and modeling in the management of systems and business applications with many variables and constraints. We will discuss linear programming, network flow models, project management, nonlinear programming, queuing analysis, computer solutions, and the statistical physics of optimization in complex systems.
- PHYS 4060Computational Physics3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)MATH 3312 OR PHYS 3142Corequisite(s)PHYS 3031DescriptionThis course introduces the use of computer to solve problems and to simulate physical phenomena. It covers the numerical solution of integration, ordinary differential equations, linear and non-linear equations, Fourier transforms, stochastic processes, Monte Carlo methods, and partial differential equations. Visualization tools will be used to interpret results of the calculations.
- PHYS 4071Big Bang Cosmology and Inflation3 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 2022 AND (PHYS 2124 OR MATH 2351 OR MATH 2352)Exclusion(s)PHYS 4054 (prior to 2015-16)DescriptionIn this course, a systematic introduction to modern cosmology will be provided, with the topics including: Robertson-Walker metric and Friedmann equation, spacetime evolution of the Universe, thermal history of the Universe, Big-Bang nucleosynthesis, cosmic microwave background, dark matter and dark energy, inflation. It aims at enabling students to catch up with the progress in cosmology in a timely way, and appreciate the beauty of the science on the Universe.
- PHYS 4080Physics Seminar and Tutorial II1 Credit(s)DescriptionAppropriate seminars and small group tutorials are scheduled to expose students to a variety of issues in science and society, and to enhance students' communication with faculties and among themselves. For Physics students in their fourth year of study under the four-year degree only. Graded P or F.
- PHYS 4090Directed Studies in Physics III1 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)CGA at 2.70 or aboveDescriptionThis course covers special topics selected by the instructor on the basis of individual student's request. For students in their fourth year of study only. The instructor's approval is required for taking this course. May be repeated for credits.
- PHYS 4151Experimental Physics: An Experiential Approach2 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 1113 AND PHYS 1115DescriptionThis course encourages self-initiation and practicing experiential learning through hands-on experience. Students are expected to develop a study and fabrication plan at the start of the course. Under the supervision of the course instructor, students will design, build or fabricate the needed parts and assemble the parts to produce functional prototypes or units to demonstrate the proposed physical laws in the areas related to physics, e.g. mechanics, electronics, waves (optics or sound), electromagnetism, or model physics. By the end of the course, students are required to write a final report for the project and perform an oral presentation. The project may be extended for a second term for extra credits subject to satisfactory performance and project report. Students may also repeat the course for credits if different topics are taken. For PHYS students with instructor's approval only.
- PHYS 4191Capstone Project4 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3152 AND PHYS 3153Exclusion(s)PHYS 4291DescriptionUnder the supervision of a faculty member, students will perform a capstone project based on a selection of advanced modern physics experiments. The students are expected to perform an independent literature search on the historical background, significance and impact of the experiments. Upon completion of the projects, students are required to submit a project report that complies with contemporary scientific standards and perform an oral presentation. For PHYS students under the four-year degree only.
- PHYS 4291Capstone Research6 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3152 AND PHYS 3153Exclusion(s)PHYS 4191DescriptionUnder the supervision of a faculty member, students will complete an independent capstone research project. The course is extended over two regular terms. By the end of the course, students need to summarize their results in the form of a short thesis and perform oral presentation. For PHYS students under the four-year degree only. Enrollment in the course requires approval by course instructors and supervisors. May be graded PP.
- PHYS 4498Independent Study Project4 Credit(s)DescriptionUndergraduate research conducted under the supervision of a faculty member. A written report is required and one of the following activities is expected: identify a non-textbook problem and suggest approaches to its solution, solve a non-textbook problem, or acquire a specific research skill. Course duration is one-year. The instructor's approval is required for taking this course.
- PHYS 4811Contemporary Applications of Physics: Machine Learning in Physics1 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 2022 AND (PHYS 3142 OR MATH 3312) AND MATH 2023DescriptionStudents in this course will apply the basic concepts of physics to the subject of machine learning. Topics include algorithms of supervised learning, unsupervised learning, and reinforcement learning, together with their applications in physics.
- PHYS 4812Contemporary Applications of Physics: Quantum Information Technology1 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3036 OR PHYS 3037 OR CHEM 3420DescriptionStudents in this course will apply the basic concepts of quantum mechanics to the topic of quantum information technology. The course will briefly introduce the foundations of quantum information science and discuss recent developments in realizing useful quantum devices for quantum communication, quantum computing and quantum simulation.
- PHYS 4813Contemporary Applications of Physics: Atmospheric Physics - Making Sense of Weather and Climate1 Credit(s)Prerequisite(s)PHYS 3032Corequisite(s)PHYS 4050DescriptionAtmospheric physics is a fascinating application of physics that has been part of our daily life since the last century. An accurate daily weather forecast in the modern era relies not only on our intellectual understanding of the atmosphere, but also on the real-time monitoring and numerical modelling of atmospheric motions. Both of them are fruitful applications of atmospheric physics. In recent decades, there has been growing concern over human impacts on global climate. The wide-ranging claims of human-induced climate change have to be supported by scientific theories and evidence. Atmosphere physics plays a central role in such debates as the atmosphere is a core component of the climate system. This course offers both conceptual and quantitative discussions of the fundamental physical processes that shape our weather and climate.