This course explores the principles of physics applied to living systems. Topics include diffusion, hydrodynamics and the low Reynolds-number world, importance of entropy and free energy, entropic forces, molecular machines, membranes, and nerve impulses. Written and oral scientific communication is emphasized. This course is appropriate for junior or senior undergraduates in the sciences, particularly physics and biology. No specialized knowledge of biology or physics is expected, but a facility with algebraic manipulations and a working knowledge of calculus is needed.
Prerequisites: Math 180; Physics 111 or 121; BIOL 212; a 300-level course in Biology or Physics; or permission of the instructor.