College of Engineering
University of Nevada, Reno
Department of Mechanical Engineering/312
College of Engineering
ME 242: Dynamics
MWF 12-1, WRB2030
Dr. Eric Wang
Office Hours: MW 2-3,TR 1-2, & by appointment
Dynamics: Analysis and Design of Systems in Motion, Tongue and Sheppard,
: Excel and Mathcad
: Grades, handouts, & podcasts will all be available at
In Statics (ME 241 / CEE 241) you dealt with a very special case, which rarely exists in reality:
when the acceleration of a body/system is zero. You calculated all kinds of things (forces,
moments, etc.), but you never actually dealt with the motion of anything. Why? Because that
requires you to deal with
equations. Yes, I’m saying that you’re going to be using
what you’ve learned in calculus (Math 182 and 283).
If you are not comfortable with both
calculus and vectors, I strongly urge you to think twice about taking this course.
This course is all about systems in motion, meaning we’ll be covering the motion (kinematics),
forces (kinetics), and energy of both particles and rigid bodies. You will be amazed at the end of
the course how you can not only derive the differential equations a system of particles and/or
rigid bodies, but also solve them (using either calculus or computers).
Read section 1.2 on page 3
of the text and you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about.
I have an unusual outlook on
to teach. Don't expect to just come to class and take notes from
a lecture all the time. I will be doing a lot of lecturing, but we will also be using other teaching
methods, all of which involve your in-class participation. Don't expect the traditional exams
either; my exams will require more thinking and less number crunching and regurgitation of facts.
Just getting the right answer is not enough in this class. You also will have to demonstrate you
understand the underlying principles. I guarantee this won't be your traditional engineering
Course Goals, Objectives, and Outcomes:
The overall goal of this course is for you to learn how derive and solve the equations of motion
(i.e. the differential equations) that describe motion of a system of particles and/or rigid bodies.
To do this you will use Newton’s laws and the principles of work-energy and impulse-momentum
to solve a variety of problems involving both the kinematics and kinetics of a system of particles
and/or rigid bodies.
By the end of this course you will be able to:
Recite Newton’s three laws
Solve kinematics problems of both particles and rigid bodies in 3D motion
Solve kinetics problems using force-acceleration, work-energy, and impulse-momentum