© 2018

Classical Electrodynamics

A Modern Perspective

  • Offers a well-balanced mixture of mathematically rigorous exposition and concrete applications

  • Provides exhaustive explanations for effortless reading

  • Highlights what distinguishes electrodynamics from the other fundamental interactions

  • Includes a chapter devoted to uncovering the fate of massless charges

  • Chapter-end problems enhance the students knowledge on the subject

  • Ideal for those who want to know why classical electrodynamics is ultimately an inconsistent theory

  • Plenty of step-by-step exercises supplied for each topic


Part of the UNITEXT for Physics book series (UNITEXTPH)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xix
  2. Theoretical Foundations

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 3-26
    3. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 85-122
    4. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 123-136
  3. Applications

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 137-137
    2. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 139-181
    3. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 183-218
    4. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 219-240
    5. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 241-286
    6. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 287-311
    7. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 313-329
    8. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 331-369
    9. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 371-386
    10. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 387-423
    11. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 425-458
  4. Selected Topics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 459-459
    2. Kurt Lechner
      Pages 461-506

About this book


This book addresses the theoretical foundations and the main physical consequences of electromagnetic interaction, generally considered to be one of the four fundamental interactions in nature, in a mathematically rigorous yet straightforward way. The major focus is on the unifying features shared by classical electrodynamics and all other fundamental relativistic classical field theories. The book presents a balanced blend of derivations of phenomenological predictions from first principles on the one hand, and concrete applications on the other. Further, it highlights the internal inconsistencies of classical electrodynamics, and addresses and resolves often-ignored critical issues, such as the dynamics of massless charged particles, the infinite energy of the electromagnetic field, and the limits of the Green’s function method. Presenting a rich, multilayered, and critical exposition on the electromagnetic paradigm underlying the whole Universe, the book offers a valuable resource for researchers and graduate students in theoretical physics alike.


Classical Electrodynamics textbook Variational methods in field theory Theory of radiation Electromagnetic self-interaction Magnetic monopoles Fundamental interactions Mathematical foundations of the electrodynamics Electromagnetic and gravitational radiation Developments of theoretical high energy physics Massive electromagnetic vector potentials

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physics and Astronomy Galileo GalileiUniversity of PaduaPaduaItaly

About the authors

Kurt Lechner was born on 15 May 1962, in Brixen, South Tyrol, where he attended the German-speaking J.Ph. Fallmerayer Scientific High School. In 1981 he enrolled in the Master’s course in Physics at the University of Padua, graduating in 1986 with a thesis on supergravity theory, during the period of its first “revolution”. In 1987 he left Padua for Trieste, having won a four-year fellowship for a PhD course in Theoretical Particle Physics at the International School for Advanced Studies. In Trieste, in 1989 he gained the degree of Magister Philosophiae with a thesis on superstring theory, and in 1991 he earned his Doctor Philosophiae in physics with a dissertation on the dynamics of anyons. In 1990, already during his PhD years, the University of Padua offered him a permanent position as an academic researcher in theoretical physics, which he held until 2004, when he became associate professor for Theoretical Physics, Mathematical Methods, and Models in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. Since 2006 he has been visiting professor at the Scuola Galileiana di Studi Superiori of the University of Padua. His preferred research subjects include superstring theory, brane physics, quantum anomalies, duality, and advanced classical electrodynamics. He is the author of more than 50 peer-reviewed publications in international journals.

Bibliographic information

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