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Course details

This course is designed to test the student's ability to apply the laws of physics to applications in Geomatics. Basic concepts in language and measurement will be dealt with in detail. Concepts in optics, and optical instruments such as telescopes, theodolites and lasers will be covered. A review of vectors, kinematics, kinetics, and work and energy will form a basis for second term work. The lab program stresses measurement, data analysis, experimental investigation of physical laws and technical report writing. Mathematical treatment requires only algebra and trigonometry.


  • No prerequisites are required for this course.



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Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Approach both conceptual and numerical problem solving in a logical, organized and repeatable manner.
  • Comprehend and use the language of basic physics as it applies to technical writing in the areas of geomatics.
  • Apply the theory of limitations in measurement to the taking, recording and analysis of data.
  • Demonstrate, within a laboratory environment, the ability to take, record and analyze data using a computer.
  • Apply the theory of thermal expansion, stress-strain relationships in materials and pressure-density relationships to calibration of instruments.
  • Comprehend and set up appropriate co-ordinate systems used in physics, mathematics and geomatics in conjunction with vector quantities such as displacement.
  • Comprehend the basic nature of light from the point of view of physical and geometrical optics.
  • Apply physical optics to the understanding of laser operation and use in the field of geomatics.
  • Apply basic concepts of geometrical optics to the understanding and use of reflective and refractive medium such as mirrors, prisms and thin lenses used in geomatics.
  • Apply basic principles of image formation to the solution of problems involving mirrors, prisms, single lens and lens combinations such as telescopies, theodolites and levels.
  • Comprehend the limitations of optical instruments with respect to aberrations and resolving power.
  • Comprehend and use camera terminology as it applies to photogrammetry.
  • Apply the theory of kinematics to the solution of problems involving linear and rotational displacement, velocity and acceleration.
  • Apply the theory of dynamics to the solution of problems involving free body diagrams.
  • Comprehend Newton's Universal Law of gravitation and apply the law to the solution of problems involving true vertical in the earth's gravitational field.
  • Comprehend the basic theory of work and energy and apply this theory to the solution of problems involving work, energy and their transformations.

Effective as of Fall 2003

Related Programs

Physics for Geomatics 1 (PHYS 1151) is offered as a part of the following programs:

School of Construction and the Environment

  1. Geomatics Engineering Technology
    Diploma Full-time


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