Some supplement materials for Singapore-GCE A’Level H2 Physics – Part 1: Classical Mechanics

This post will be constantly updated.

This post is especially designed for those who are very interested in Physics and not satisfied with their current H2 syllabus designed by Singapore Examination and Assessment Board (SEAB). Upon reviewing with the both H2 Physics syllabus and the IB HL syllabus, I have collected the following links as supplement materials for the school curriculum in Singapore. I hope that some of the links can encourage you to explore more about the field and even take up H3 in Physics or undergraduate major in Physics.

You can access the syllabus of Singapore – GCE A’Level H2 Physics via the following link –

https://www.seab.gov.sg/content/syllabus/alevel/2016Syllabus/9646_2016.pdf

I have also attached the SEAB H3 Physics (Essentials of Modern Physics) syllabus in case you are interested –

https://www.seab.gov.sg/content/syllabus/alevel/2016Syllabus/9811_2016.pdf

If you have some other exciting materials you want to share, feel free to contact me so that I can add in more contents.


Part One: Classical Mechanics

  1. Do you know that there are in fact different kinds of mass – when we are talking about inertia due to mass or the gravitational force due to mass, we are actually talking about two different mass. In fact, there are in total four types of mass. You may wish to take a look at the following link –
    http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/8610/whats-the-difference-between-the-five-masses-inertial-mass-gravitational-mass
    And
    http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Mass
  2. There are two types of friction – static and dynamic (some textbooks will point out that limiting friction is the third type); you may want to learn more about the differences between them and how to calculate them.
    Do you know that the origin of friction is still unresolved today? Physicists are still trying to explain it using different models.
    Here is one newly proposed explanation (proposed in 2012) –
    http://machinedesign.com/archive/new-scientific-explanation-friction
  3. School curriculum introduces the law of conservation of momentum and the different types of collision. Perhaps you also know that for a perfectly elastic collision, the relative speed of approach is equal to the relative speed of separation. Perhaps you want to ask how about the relative speed of approach and relative speed of separation when the collision is not perfectly elastic? You will need the concept of Newton’s Law of Restitution. I have attached the Wiki link below –
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coefficient_of_restitution
    A very good example of the question that can be asked –

    (i) A uniform spherical ball of mass M and radius R is released from rest with its centre a distance H + R above horizontal ground. The coefficient of restitution between the ball and the ground is e. Show that, after bouncing, the centre of the ball reaches a height R + He2 above the ground.
    (ii) A second uniform spherical ball, of mass m and radius r, is now released from rest together with the first ball (whose centre is again a distance H + R above the ground when it is released). The two balls are initially one on top of the other, with the second ball (of mass m) above the first. The two balls separate slightly during their fall, with their centres remaining in the same vertical line, so that they collide immediately after the first ball has bounced on the ground. The coefficient of restitution between the balls is also e. The centre of the second ball attains a height h above the ground.
    Given that R = 0.2, r = 0.05, H = 1.8, h = 4.5 and e = 2, determine the value of M/m.
    (Source: Sixth Term Examination Paper 2014 Paper 1 Question 10)

    Take note that the law of conservation of linear momentum still holds regardless of the type of reaction. (You can find the hints of the above example on the STEP website, or you may contact me if you need detailed solution. )

  4. School curriculum only encompasses linear momentum. For angular momentum and its relevant properties, this is a good summary –http://web.physics.ucsb.edu/~dfolsom/CS32/rotational_dynamics.pdf
  5. Centripetal force VS Centrifugal force-
    http://www.diffen.com/difference/Centrifugal_Force_vs_Centripetal_Force

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