Honours Programme

BSc Honours Physics Programme

Prerequisite

BSc (or equivalent qualification) with a minimum of 60% in Physics at third-year level and with permission by the Head of Department (HOD).
More information can be found in the Yearbook.

Course structure

All students will have to complete the core modules PHY 701 – PHY 706.

The HOD, in consultation with the students, determines which and how many elective modules are available. These can change from year to year, depending on expertise available at the time and interest from students.

Please note that Physics honours students do not register for these individual courses but only for the collected course code FSK 700. Courses from other disciplines may also be substituted for some physics courses, but permission must first be obtained from the HOD.

Postgraduate students from other disciplines may, after permission from the HOD, also register for the courses PHY 701 to PHY 714.

Research project

Students will have to identify a suitable supervisor and agree upon a research project.
Information about the various research groups, their respective group leaders and possible projects can be found at this link.

Students can do either a theoretical or an experimental project, with which students should start in the second semester. After completion of the project, a full research report needs to be written. Students should also present their research in the form of a public seminar, which will be evaluated together with their report.

Core courses:

Code

Name

Lectures

Credits

PHY 701

Mathematical Methods

30

15

PHY 702

Classical Mechanics

30

15

PHY 703

Quantum Mechanics

30

15

PHY 704

Statistical Physics

30

15

PHY 705

Electrodynamics

30

15

PHY 706

Project & Seminar

30

15

Elective courses:

Code

Name

Lectures

Credits

PHY 707

Advanced Quantum Mechanics

30

15

PHY 708

Many-body Physics

30

15

PHY 709

Electrodynamics II

30

15

PHY 710

Numerical Physics

30

15

PHY 711

Solid-state Physics

30

15

PHY 712

Quantum Optics

20

10

PHY 713

Electronic Materials

30

15

PHY 714

Analytical Physics

30

15

PHY 715

Nuclear Solid-state Physics

20

10

PHY 716

Group Theory

20

10

PHY 718

Experimental Physics

20

15

 

PHY 701 Mathematical Methods

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Analytical functions and singularities. Advanced contour integrals. Series solutions of differential equations – ordinary and Frobenius series. Sturm-Liouville theory. Bessel, Legendre, Laguerre, Hermite, Jacobi, Chebyshev and other systems of orthogonal functions. Integral transforms. Delta and Green functions.
Lecturer: Prof S Rakitianski
 

PHY 702 Classical Mechanics

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Constraints, generalized co-ordinates, D'Alembert's principle and Lagrange's equations. Advanced variational calculus. Generalized momenta & conservation laws. Coupled oscillations, normal modes and generalized principal axis transformations. Legendre transformation and Hamilton's and Routh's laws of motion. Canonical transformations: via a variational principle and a generating function, symplectic formalism, Poisson brackets as canonical invariants, Poisson bracket form of the equations of motion, infinitesimal and continuous transformation, constants of motion and generators of transformations that keep H-invariant. Hamilton Jacobi theory.
Lecturer: Prof R Duvenhage
 

PHY 703 Quantum Mechanics

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Wave packets and the motion of free particles. Wave and Schrodinger equations. Linear harmonic oscillator. Partially constant potentials. WKB-approximation. Principles of wave mechanics. Central forces and angular momentum. Hydrogen atom. Scattering.
Lecturer: Prof S Rakitianski
 

PHY 704 Statistical Physics

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Micro-canonical, canonical and grant ensembles; Bose and Fermi systems.
Lecturer: Prof R Duvenhage
 

PHY 705 Electrodynamics

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Poisson's equation; Green-functions; Maxwell's equations.
Lecturer: Dr C Zander
 

PHY 706 Project & Seminar

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A theoretical or an experimental project can be done. The project must be approved by the Head. The project must be summarised in the form of an open seminar.
Lecturer: Prof C Theron
 

PHY 707 Advanced Quantum Mechanics

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Linear vector spaces in quantum mechanics. Quantum dynamics. Rotation and other symmetry operators. Rotation group. Angular momentum coupling. Spherical tensors and the Wigner-Eckart theorem. Bound-state perturbation theroy. Time-dependent perturbation theory.
Lecturer: Prof S Rakitianski
 

PHY 711 Solid-state Physics

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Electronic band structure, vibration properties of solids, electronic properties of defects, electric transport, optical properties, quantum confinement.
Lecturer: Prof C Theron
 

PHY 713 Electronic Materials

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Structure, electrical and optical properties of semiconductors, semiconductor metal contacts, Ohmic and Schottky contacts, influence of impurities and defects on properties of the contacts, quantum-well semiconductor structures.
Lecturer: Prof W Meyer
 

PHY 714 Analytical Physics

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Review of surface analytical techniques, surface structure determinations, surface topography techniques, theroy of contrast in electron microscopy, electron microscopic surface and interface techniques, scanning tunnelling microscopy, electrical and electro-optical characterisation of semiconductors, determination of defects and impurities in semiconductors, propagation of laser rays, photoluminescence.
Lecturers: Prof J B Malherbe
 

PHY 716 Group Theory

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Introduction to group theory needed in Physics. 32 crystallografic point groups, selected groups, full rotation groups, applications such as classification of spectral terms, selection rules, Clebs-Gordon coefficients.
Lecturer:
 

PHY 718 Experimental Physics

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Five different experiments. These experiments will be determined by the HOD.
Lecturer: Prof C Theron
 

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Last edited by Claudia ZanderEdit