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Classical mechanics is a physical theory describing the motion of macroscopic objects, from projectiles to parts of machinery and astronomical objects, such as spacecraft, planets, stars, and galaxies. The "classical" in "classical mechanics" does not refer to classical antiquity, as it might in, say, classical architecture. On the contrary, the development of classical mechanics involved substantial change in the methods and philosophy of physics. Instead, the qualifier distinguishes classical mechanics from physics developed after the revolutions of the early 20th century, which revealed limitations of classical mechanics.The earliest formulation of classical mechanics is often referred to as Newtonian mechanics. It consists of the physical concepts based on the 17th century foundational works of Sir Isaac Newton, and the mathematical methods invented by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, Leonhard Euler, and others describe the motion of bodies under the influence of forces. Later, methods based on energy were developed by Euler, Joseph-Louis Lagrange, William Rowan Hamilton and others, leading to analytical mechanics including Lagrangian mechanics and Hamiltonian mechanics. These advances, made predominantly in the 18th and 19th centuries, extend substantially beyond earlier works; they are, with some modification, used in all areas of modern physics. For objects governed by classical mechanics, if the present state is known with absolute precision, it is possible to predict how it will move in the future (determinism), and how it has moved in the past (reversibility); in practice absolute precision is not possible and chaos theory shows that the long term predictions of classical mechanics are not reliable. Classical mechanics provides accurate results when studying large objects that are not extremely massive and speeds not approaching the speed of light. When the objects being examined have about the size of an atom diameter, it becomes necessary to introduce the other major sub-field of mechanics: quantum mechanics. To describe velocities that are not small compared to the speed of light, special relativity is needed. In cases where objects become extremely massive, general relativity becomes applicable. However, a number of modern sources do include relativistic mechanics in classical physics, which in their view represents classical mechanics in its most developed and accurate form. Source: Wikipedia (en)

Works about classical mechanics 1

Subject - wd:Q11397

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