Mastering Mechanics for JEE Main and Advanced

Many of you would have started with mechanics by now (class 11 people I mean). New nightmare right? (:p) But trust me, this is an area which is hated by many by the time it starts and is loved by the time your course is about to get over. However, JEE has got a reputation for asking some really mind-boggling questions from Mechanics. But don’t worry, I am here to guide you through a step by step analysis of Mechanics.

1. Kinematics

Be clear with Vectors and Basic Math, and you are done. Practice a lot at this stage because you would have an early practice of solving equations fast.

2. Newton’s Laws of Motion

It might be seeming very tough to you, but don’t worry, by the end of your course you would be really comfortable with it. Practice a lot of questions. I can’t emphasize it more. Be thorough with concepts like friction, strings, and pulleys, Normal force, Circular Motion, etc. Practice till you are perfect.

3. Work Power Energy and Gravitation

Practice conservation of Energy a lot. It is very important in Physics. Gravitation is linked to this. Again, look out for Energy conservation and Kepler’s law when solving Gravitation questions. Work-Energy Theorem is another important concept. Make yourself comfortable with the topic.

4. Centre of Mass and Momentum

One of the toughest chapters after Rotation. Tough nut to crack. Step one could be trying to remember all concepts and equations. It helps a lot. Be thorough with vectors. Momentum conservation relies a lot on it. Collisions has some interesting problems. Be thorough with the main formulae. 

Conservation of Momentum and Energy are central here. Remember positions of COM of various objects. It will be very helpful in future. Remember some basic cases in collisions(small object, heavy object, same masses, etc.) Spring questions are common. Be aware of springs in parallel/series, and basic equations.

5. Rotation

It is a real tough nut, and JEE asks some really awesome questions from this section. This is tough and has got a good weightage. You must give a good amount of time to it. It begins with Moment of Inertia. Learn the MI of various standards objects, and be thorough with the derivations. 

It will help you in case some questions based on calculating MI comes in JEE. Then there is a discussion of angular velocity, rotational Kinematics, etc. Pretty easy if thorough with basic trigonometry and Kinematics. Then comes torque, angular momentum, etc. This seems tough, but it will come naturally to you with time if you are clear with NLM. 

Remember there are only few equation, T=I(alpha), and L=Iw. Try to remember these using a correlation with NLM. Conservation of Angular momentum is very important. Lots of questions are asked from this topic. Be clear with the axis of rotation and the point about which you are trying to conserve it. Massive problem solving will help.

6. Simple Harmonic Motion

Another basic and important topic. Remember the derivation and equations of SHM. Remember the Time Period formulae. It will save a lot of time on the final day. Questions involving finding the Time Period of any mechanical system are common. Be thorough with them.

7. Fluid Dynamics and Elasticity

Not very important but few easy questions come for sure. You don’t want to miss them. Continuity equation, variation of pressure with depth, and Bernoulli equation are important. Try to do some questions of Surface Tension too(JEE has asked some really tough questions from this topics). 

Elasticity has a graph of Stress vs Strain. Remember it well. These chapters have a bunch of long equations. Try to remember them. There might be a few questions at least in JEE(Main) where you would need to evaluate the expression.

Preparation Strategy

So, this was it. Coming to the preparation strategy, first of all listen to your coaching lecture/online lecture and do homework, and discuss in class if you are in a coaching. This will help you clear Mechanics.

Coming to books (and hence the self-study guys too) HCV is the god-book for Mechanics. Read every line (irrespective of whether you are in a coaching or not), understand everything and solve each question. Solutions are available somewhere on the Internet I guess (don’t know if they are copyrighted or something, so beware). 

Discuss with teachers. If you sincerely solve all questions of Mechanics then no one can stop you from being a Master of Mechanics. I also recommend reading NCERT. It gives a wonderful insight into the subject and will prepare you for JEE(Main) and Boards too. If you need more objective practice, go for DC Pandey Problems book. 

Deb Mukherjee’s book is really good for conceptual questions. And then comes the GOD- I.E. Irodov. This will prepare you for Olympiads, and for facing any question in JEE(Advanced). Solve this only if you have time and are done with the above stuff. Better do it during Holidays. But trust me, Irodov will give you an upper edge.

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