A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The aim of the course is to provide the necessary bases to understand the main physical phenomena of general interest, with particular focus on subjects linked to the agricultural degree programs.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course the student will have:
- basic knowledge necessary to understand and interpret main physical phenomena;
- capacity to design and calculate problems related to physical issues in the agricultural and environmental domain.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
Second semester
- Teaching method:
The preferred teaching method is the one that provides face-to-face lessons.
The methods and criteria for participating in face-to-face lessons, which require a reservation with a special app, will be published in time on the Ariel pages of the course, as well as notices relating to any update related to the evolution of the legislation imposed by Covid- 19.
But, following the Emergency Phase, depending on the number and individual situations of students participating in the course, it could be delivered remotely.
In that case:
- the lessons will be held on the MS-Teams platform and can be followed both in synchrony on the basis of the second semester timetable and asynchronously because they will be recorded and left available to students on the same platform and on Ariel platform.
- Program and reference material:
The program and reference material will not change.
- Methods for verifying learning and evaluation criteria:
The exam will take place as reported in the section "Exam procedures", where the regulations allow, in person, otherwise uing the Zoom platform.
Course syllabus
. Fundamental physical quantities and units of measurement.
. Significant figures in numerical calculations.
. Scalars and vectors.
. Elements of elementary trigonometry.
. The meaning of derivative and integral.
1. Static:
. Conditions of equilibrium for the material point and for solids, torque.
. Levers.
2. Kinematics:
. Position and law of motion,
. velocity and acceleration.
. Uniform and uniformly accelerated motion.
. Vector form of the laws of motion.
. Relationship between rotational and linear motion.
. Angular velocity.
. Periodic motions (circular, harmonic).
3. Dynamics:
. Strength and mass.
. Principles of dynamics.
. Weight and gravitational force. The friction.
. Work and kinetic energy.
. Conservation of mechanical energy.
. Mechanical power.
. Center of mass and equilibrium.
. Molecular interaction forces and properties of fluids.
. Pressure and density.
. Fundamental laws of fluid statics. Surface tension.
. Wettability and phytoprotective treatments. Insects walking on water.
. Adhesion, cohesion and capillarity.
. Volume flow and continuity equation.
. Bernoulli's theorem.
. Viscosity and real fluids.
. Diffusion, osmosis, reverse osmosis.
. Fluid transport in plants.
. Heat, energy, temperature.
. Specific heat and heating of the bodies.
. State changes.
. Latent heat. Moisture, evaporation.
. Drying of agricultural products.
. Heat transmission.
. Internal temperature and energy of a body.
. Work of a fluid under pressure.
. Heat-work equivalence.
. Scales of energy content in bodies.
. 1st law of thermodynamics.
. Thermodynamic efficiency.
. The heat engine.
. Carnot cycle, II principle of thermodynamics, entropy.
. Third principle of thermodynamics.
. Electric charge.
. Coulomb's law.
. Work and electrical potential.
. Dielectrics and conductors.
. Electric current.
. Energy and electric power.
. Resistance and Ohm's laws.
. Nature of the magnetism of matter.
. Electromagnetic induction.
. Alternate current.generality on maxwell equations. . . Transformer.
. Electromagnetic radiation.
. Wavelength and electromagnetic spectrum.
. Nature of light.
. Chlorophyll and photosynthesis.
. Elements of geometric optics, reflection, refraction, diffraction, dispersion.
. Thermal radiation. Greenhouse effect and global warming.
. Notes on ELF, RF electromagnetic waves.
. Elements of radioactivity and environmental radioactivity: impact and applications in agriculture.
Radon pollution.
Prerequisites for admission
Basic algebra; trigonometry; logarithms; functions and their properties; derivative and definite integral (their geometric interpretation and physical meaning)-
Teaching methods
The teaching includes lectures with exercises. The lessons will be carried out with the help of slides.
The teaching slides will be made available on the Ariel website relating to the course itself.
Exercises are proposed at the end of each topic treated so that students can better understand the subject matter and practice in view of the final exam.
Attendance of lectures and exercises is strongly recommended.
Teaching Resources
The teaching does not refer to a specific textbook.
Recommended university level texts include, among others:
- Giancoli, "Fisica", or "Fisica con Fisica Moderna"
- Halliday, Resnick, Walker, "Fondamenti di Fisica";
- Jewett, Serway - "Principi di Fisica".
These books are available in university libraries, and are new and used in the library.
The course slides will be made available on Ariel site of the teaching itself, but do not replace the study on one of the reference texts.
There are no differences between "attending" and "non attending" students.
Assessment methods and Criteria
Type of exam:
. the exam includes a written test, with exercises and possibly simple theoretical questions, and an oral interview on the course content.
A score is assigned to each exercise / question.
The score of the written test is published on the Ariel website using the matriculation number as the identifying element in order to respect the privacy.
The sufficiency of the written test allows access to the oral exam.
At the end of the session, a meeting is set for the discussion of the proposed exam topic, as a moment of comparison, study and understanding of any mistakes made.
. There are two partial tests (ongoing), one about halfway through the course, the other at the end; the passing of which allows direct access to the oral test.
The partial tests will be carried out only in the session of June and July.
During the written tests it is possible to consult the textbook and notes.
The use of mobile phones or media to communicate is absolutely forbidden.
FIS/07 - APPLIED PHYSICS - University credits: 6
Practicals: 24 hours
Lessons: 36 hours
Educational website(s)
on demand via e-mail
At LASA - Segrate or at Physics Department