For Fall 2018 Physics course offerings refer to the Course Schedule. Below is more information on the content of all physics courses, some of which may not be offered every year. Links are provided for syllabi or course websites for recently offered courses. Course outlines are given for most courses and are a general description of the material covered in the course and how the course is organized. For a complete course description refer to the Course Catalog.
Note Regarding Summer 2018 Courses:
This summer we will be offering PHYS 101 & 102 and PHYS 125 & 126 that may be of interest to Rice students and others who find themselves in Houston over the Summer. For¬†Summer 2018 Physics course offerings refer to the Course Schedule. Registration information can be found here. General descriptions and syllabi can be found listed under each course below.
For AP credit only. May receive credit for only one of PHYS 102, PHYS 112, PHYS 126, AP Physics-B, and AP Physics-C (E&M).
This course explores our scientific understanding of sound and music by studying the properties of sound and its production by a variety of musical instruments. Additional topics include an analysis of musical scales, the physiology of hearing, and the technology of sound reproduction. For non-science and non-engineering majors.
Lab exercises in electronics, noise reduction, statistics and particle counting.
Introduction to definition and basic concepts of biological physics: proteins and nucleic acids; diffusion and random walks and their application to biological systems; biological motors and membranes; folding of biomolecules; gene regulation; and modern techniques and their applications to biomolecules.
A broad survey of history and current state of nuclear and particle physics. The emphasis is on experimental results and how they led to our current undertaking of the strong and electroweak interactions.Some recent advances are discussed in detail.
Research projects conducted under supervision of departmentally approved faculty. Open to juniors and seniors majoring in physics and astronomy. May be repeated for credit. PHYS 491/493 must be taken concurrently with PHYS 492/494 when used in partial fulfillment of B.S.degree requirements.
Amateur radio for middle-school science teaching. Fundamentals of electromagnetic waves and propagation, the ionosphere and space weather. Basic electronics, antenna design and safety. Provides information necessary to gain the technical level of ham radio license.
Graduate level course on non-relativistic quantum mechanics. Topics include early quantum theory, one-dimensional systems, matrix formulation, quantum dynamics, symmetries and conservation laws, bound states, scattering, spin, and identical particles, perturbation theory.
Physics of structures and devices at the nanometer scale. After are view of solid state physics, topics include nanostructured materials, nanoelectronics, and nanomagnetism. Emphasis on relevance of nanophysics to current and future technologies.
Study of crystals by x-ray, electron and neutron diffraction.Includes basic diffraction theory as well as methods for characterizing the structure, composition and stresses in crystalline materials. Required for undergraduate materials science and engineering majors. Cross-list: MSCI 535.
Continuation of PHYS 537.
Radiation processes and their applications to astrophysical phenomena and space science. The course treats radiative transfer, radiation from moving charges, relativistic covariance and kinematics, bremsstrahlung, synchrotron radiation, Compton scattering, some plasma effects, and radiative transitions in atoms and molecules.
This is an introductory course for physical sciences graduate students who have not taken college-level biology courses. We will examine biological systems such as DNA, proteins and membranes, first by giving a thorough description of their biological functions and then by analyzing their underlying physical principles.
Fundamental concepts of crystalline solids, including crystal structure, band theory of electrons, and lattice vibration theory.Cross-list: ELEC 563.
An introduction to surface- and low-dimensional physics covering experimental surface physics and ultra-high vacuum technology, crystal structure, chemical analysis, epitaxy, nanoscale electronic and magnetic structures and devices, elementary excitations, optical properties and nanoscale sensitive magnetic and non-magnetic spectroscopies.
Introductory course for graduate students. Topics include the concepts of classical and quantum phase transitions, mean field theory, renormalization group and quantum phase transitions in magnetic, fermionic, and bosonic systems.
This is an introductory course at the graduate level. Topics to be discussed include: atomic structure, principles of lasers, fundamental interactions of atoms with electro-magnetic radiation, including coherent effects, laser spectroscopy, quantum optics, and laser cooling and trapping of atoms, and Bose-Einstein condensation.
Lecture/seminars which treat topics of departmental interest.
Modern simulation techniques for classical atomistic systems. Monte Carlo and molecular dynamic techniques, with extensions to various ensembles. Applications to simulations of large molecules. Advanced techniques for simulation of complex systems, including constraint satisfaction, cluster movies, biased sampling and random energy models.Cross-list: BIOE 610.
The mechanical properties of membranes influence several biological processes including endocytosis, fusion, signalling and cellular differentiation. This course will cover the theoretical foundations of membrane mechanics, examine experimental methods for measuring membrane material properties, including nanomechanical and optical techniques, and emphasize the importance of membrane mechanics in bioengineering applications. Cross-list: BIOS 643.
Formal structure of many-body theory as used in condensed matter physics.
Thesis research under the supervision of department faculty.