Technical Physics


  2. A. Course Title: Technical Physics
    B. Course Number: PH 113 - 10067
    C. Semester: Spring 2019
    D. Days/Time: M T Th 12:30:00 PM - 2:10:00 PM
    E. Credit Hours: 3
    F. Instructor: Keranen, Joel
    G. Office: Heidel Hall (HH) 232
    H. Email Address:
    I. Office Phone: (575) 492-2820
    J. Office Hours: Monday: 3:00:00 PM-5:30:00 PM (MST);
    Tuesday: 9:15:00 AM-11:45:00 AM (MST);
    Wednesday: 9:15:00 AM-11:45:00 AM (MST);
    Thursday: 9:15:00 AM-11:45:00 AM (MST);
    Other office hours by appointment. I answer email and Canvas messages within 24 hours on weekdays.
    K. Time Zone: Mountain Time
    L. Prerequisite(s): MA113C
    M. Corequisite(s): PH113L
    N. Class Location: HH127

    This course covers the principles of mechanics, heat, and electricity as applied to automotive technology. This course is designed for students in the ASEP (GM), ASSET (FM), and Automotive Technology (AT) training programs and does not count as a lab science course. This is a three credit hour course.


    This course is designed for automotive students. It is designed to strengthen the scientific critical thinking skills of automotive technicians. Course is not designed to transfer. Fulfills requirements of a terminal degree.



    1) Technical Physics for Automotive Technicians, Joel A. Keranen: NMJC Document Center, 2015
    2) Automotive Excellence Academic Applications, Darrell L. Parks, et. al.: Glencoe McGraw Hill, 2007 ISBN: 978-0078744167
    3) PH113 Laboratory Manual.

    Calculator: A scientific calculator is required.
    Ruler: For making tables in lab experiments.


    Erasable pen or pencil for filling in lab tables!


    You can buy your books online at the NMJC Bookstore.


    Students attending New Mexico Junior College will be evaluated according to the following grading scale:

                                             90 - 100%      =       A
                                             80 -  89%      =       B
                                             70 -  79%      =       C
                                             60 -  69%      =       D
                                              0 -  59%      =       F

    Grading Weights

    Attendance 4%
    Homework, Quizzes, & Professionalism 20% (Homework = 8%; Quizzes = 8%; and Professionalism = 4%)
    Laboratory 20%

    3 Hour Exams @12% ea = 36%
    Final Exam 20%
    Total Possible 100%
    * On test days the students will be allowed to use class notes on the exam!

    Classroom Policies:

    Attendance: A grade is awarded for attendance in this class. Roll will be taken through a sign in sheet; if you fail to sign in you are considered absent. You will be given a 1 for attendance each day. If you are tardy (15 min. late) or leave early the grade will drop to a ˝ and if you do not show up you will receive a grade of 0 for that day.  (IF YOU ARE LATE FOR A Legitimate REASON, YOU NEED TO SHOW THE INSTRUCTOR A DOCUMENTED EXCUSE!) School sponsored activities, illness, and emergencies will not count against this if proper notification from Professor/Coach/Doctor/Parent/Etc. is given. All unexcused absences will cost you points. Students who have zero (unexcused) absences will be allowed to drop their lowest exam score and replace it with their highest exam score!

    Assessment of written homework assignments will consist the grading assigned problems.
    Glencoe problems will be required for text sections (or unit) as assigned.

    Quizzes: Most quizzes will be announced, however you should always be prepared for a pop quiz. Take home quizzes and group quizzes may be given.


    Professionalism:  All students in this classroom are adults and will act as such. Good professionalism is important to practice as a technician.  A professionalism grade, of up to 5 points, will be assigned each day.  Each minor disruption will cost 1 point for the professionalism grade.  Any major disruptions will earn a “0” for the day’s professionalism grade. 

    Lab Policies: Laboratory attendance is required. You should bring a straight edge and a scientific calculator to lab. A lab report is due at the beginning of the following week's lab. The following shows the required format of a report:

    Title: Example: Measurement of the Latent Heat Of Fusion for water.

    Introduction: State briefly what the goal of the experiment is. Use future tense. Examples: The purpose of this experiment is to measure the acceleration due to gravity. We will measure the length of a table.

    Procedure: Explain the steps you took in order to perform the experiment. In this part of the lab, use diagrams to show equipment used. Use past tense here and for the remainder of the lab. Example: A setup consisting of an engine block on a stand was used to measure engine displacement. Figure 1 shows the apparatus. Etc......

    Data: In this part of the lab, show the data you obtained from the experiment. This is the place for tabulated data. Place data tables here.

    Analysis: State your result. State how you obtained your result. The result is obtained either by the use of a formula or by graphing. Show all graphs and calculations here.

    Error Analysis: Calculate the error of your result. This is performed either by use of a formula or graph. The graphical method would appear on a graph(s) of the preceding section.

    Conclusion: State briefly what was done in the lab and the result obtained. Example: A curved track and video camera was used to measure the acceleration due to gravity. We found the value of g to be 9.78 +/- 0.30 m/s^2. The accepted value is 9.80 m/s^2, giving experimental agreement.

    Each lab is worth 10 points. The lab report is worth 5 out of the ten points. Properly filled out data sheets are worth 5 points. The data sheets should be placed at the back of the report. The report should be typed on a computer. Two reports will be required in the course.


    Exams: All exams (except the Final) will be given in the testing center in the Student Center. Tests will be given over a 3 day period (including weekends). The dates will be announced in class. Make-up exams will be given only for excused absences with notice.
    * On test days the students will be allowed to use class notes on the exam!

    * Provide testing center staff with: 1) Government issued picture ID. 2) Course Name and Number. 3) Professor's Name. 4) Exam Number.


    Final Exam:  The final exam will be given in the classroom.  It will be a cumulative examination that will test all areas of the course material.  The final examination will be given on Wed., May 8 at 2-3:45 pm in Heidel Hall room 127.  
    * You will be allowed to use class notes on the Final Exam.



    New Mexico Junior College’s institutional student learning outcomes represent the knowledge and abilities developed by students attending New Mexico Junior College. Upon completion students should achieve the following learning outcomes along with specific curriculum outcomes for respective areas of study:


    New Mexico Junior College's broad range of science courses provides students with an opportunity to achieve their academic goals by fostering higher order thinking skills, basic academic success skills, discipline-specific knowledge and skills, and scientific and academic values.

    The course content of Technical Physics (PH113) supports NMJC’s mission which is “promoting success through learning” by encouraging students to accomplish the following:

    1. Describe the process of scientific inquiry.
    2. Solve problems scientifically.
    3. Communicate scientific information.
    4. Apply quantitative analysis to scientific problems.
    5. Apply scientific thinking to real world problems.


    PH113 Technical Physics Competencies/Objectives

    Upon completion of PH113, students should be able to:

    • Convert between metric and customary units.
    • Convert units within the metric and customary systems.
    • Solve kinematics problems with distance, speed, velocity, acceleration.
    • Find the stopping distance of an automobile under certain conditions.
    • Demonstrate the difference between a vector and a scalar.
    • Find the cornering acceleration.
    • Describe the process of torque transmission via the transmission system.
    • Explain centripetal and centrifugal forces.
    • Demonstrate and apply Newton’s laws of motion.
    • Determine the rotational force of a vibrating component.
    • Apply the relation between torque and force.
    • Find the force of friction of a physical situation involving automobiles.
    • Find the coefficient of friction.
    • Demonstrate the difference between static friction and kinetic friction.
    • Determine the maximum safe speed in a turn.
    • Determine the force of friction given the coefficient of friction.
    • Demonstate the importance of balance in rotating automotive systems.
    • Demonstrate rotational inertia of a rolling object.
    • Apply angular kinematical relations to find angular displacement, angular velocity, and angular acceleration.
    • Find the centripetal force of a rotating object.
    • Calculate the work done and the power of a physical process.
    • Find the brake horsepower for a dynamometer Prony brake setup.
    • Calculate the efficiency of an engine.
    • Demonstrate simple machines.
    • Demonstrate the different classes of simple machines.
    • Find the IMA and AMA of a simple machine.
    • Find the efficiency of a machine.
    • Explain and apply the concepts of potential and kinetic energies.
    • Apply the law of energy conservation.
    • Calculate the momentum and impulse of automotive systems.
    • Demonstrate stress and strain.
    • Find the proper bolt size and grade based on applied torque.
    • Find the stress and strain applying the relations of stress and strain.
    • Discuss the three ways of heat transfer.
    • Explain the importance of insulation in the automobile.
    • Find the amount of heat flow of a system.
    • Find the specific heat capacity of a system.
    • Calculate the expansion or contraction of an object subject to a temperature change.
    • Explain how a radiator works.
    • Demonstrate the basic properties of waves.
    • Demonstrate how sound works.
    • Apply the sound relationship.
    • Demonstrate intensity, pitch, frequency, speed of sound, and sound speed in various media.
    • Describe the characteristics of light waves.
    • Find the frequency and period of a wave.
    • Demonstrate the Doppler effect.
    • Find the index of refraction.


    If you are having problems you are encouraged to come see me during my office hours, and there are tutors available, free of charge, in the Library. Contact them at 575.492.2614 for the free tutoring. You can get additional help for free online with Brainfuse in Canvas menu bar on the left.  See the handout for more details. Also feel free to call me for help or see me for other methods of assistance. It is very important for you to seek help if you are having trouble. 

    1) Cheating will not be tolerated.  When taking tests, leave your cell phone in your car or at home.
    2) All students in this classroom are adults and will act as such. Disruptions in the class will not be tolerated. First Offense: student will be given a verbal warning. Second Offense: student will be asked to leave the room and lose attendance point for that day. Third Offense: a conference with the Dean will be necessary before the student may return to class.
    3) Cell phones and pagers will be turned off while you are in the classroom.


    PROFESSIONAL COMMUNICATION:  Please use appropriate, professional language, grammar and structure in your emails, homework, lab reports, and any other coursework.  I will do the same.  Do not send an email that looks and reads as though it were composed as a text message.




    hi mister can you extend the due date for the accel lab for me plsigot behind bci dont get this stuf thx


    Dear Professor Keranen,

    Would you please allow me until Friday to complete my laboratory report on acceleration?  I am not understanding some of the concepts for this experiment.  Are you available at noon tomorrow so I can get help with it?


    Student who plans to make an A




    NMJC Communication Standard:

    ü  No text language (For example do not use i, BTW, LOL, IDK…)

    ü  Correct spelling and proper capitalization

    ü  Complete sentences (Start a sentence with a capital letter and end it with a period.)

    ü  Logical organization



    Rounding Policy of Grades:

    Grades will be rounded as follows:  The tenths place of 5 or greater will round up to the next percent, and tenths place of 4 or less will round down.  For example, if a student gets 79.5%, the grade will round up to 80% = B.  If a student got 79.4%, the grade would be a C.  





    Students will be held responsible for the information on these pages.

    Academic Honesty
    Each student is expected to maintain the highest standards of honesty and integrity in online academic and professional matters. The College reserves the right to take disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, against any student who is found guilty of academic dishonesty or otherwise fails to meet these standards. Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, dishonesty in quizzes, tests, or assignments; claiming credit for work not done or done by others; and nondisclosure or misrepresentation in filling out applications or other College records. Cheating or gaining illegal information for any type of graded work is considered dishonest and will be dealt with accordingly.

    Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Information
    Any student requiring special accommodations should contact the Special Needs Student Services Coordinator at (575) 492-2576 or by e-mail at

    Attendance Policy
    Attendance is required at every session of each course for which the student is enrolled. When unavoidable circumstances make attendance impossible, students must provide a satisfactory explanation of their absences to their professors. College-sponsored activities are considered excused absences and the appropriate sponsor of those students who will be absent from class will notify professors. Students having absences due to college-sponsored activities will need to make arrangements with the affected classes / professor to take care of required work; however, arrangements for make-ups should be made within a reasonable time frame, usually within one week of the absence. Regarding make-up work, absences due to late registration are considered the same as regular absences.

    Cell Phones/Pagers
    All cell phones and pagers must be turned off when the student is participating in any lecture, laboratory, or other learning activity.

    Classroom Conduct
    The professor is responsible for maintaining a class environment best suited for effective learning. By registering for this class, the student is assumed to have entered into an agreement with New Mexico Junior College and the professor to attend the class regularly and to behave in an appropriate manner at all times. Disruptive behavior may result in the student being removed from the class.

    Food and Drink Policy
    Food items and soft drinks may not be consumed in NMJC classrooms. Students are also discouraged from bringing food and drink items into the classroom even though these items remain in sealed packaging. Bottled water is permissible.

    No Children in the Classroom
    In order to adhere to instructional procedures as well as maintain the safety of children, NMJC’s policy of no children in the classrooms (lecture, lab, etc.) will be followed.

    Offering the work of another as one’s own, without proper acknowledgment, is plagiarism; therefore, any student who fails to give credit for quotations or essentially identical expression of material taken from books, encyclopedias, magazines and other reference works, or from the themes, reports, or other writings of a fellow student, is guilty of plagiarism. Plagiarism violates the academic honesty policy and is considered cheating.

    Smoking/Use of Tobacco
    New Mexico Junior College is cognizant of the health hazards associated with smoking / use of tobacco for the smoker, as well as the non-smoker. In an effort to provide a healthy environment for students, employees, and others who may frequent the campus, NMJC prohibits smoking / use of tobacco inside any campus building or facility.

    Tutoring Assistance
    Free tutoring services are available to all NMJC students through Brainfuse and the Academic Success Center located at the Pannell Library on the 1st floor.

    Withdrawal Policy
    Regular, punctual attendance is required for all classes at NMJC. Although the professor has the right to drop any student who has missed the equivalent of 2 weeks of instruction (based on a 16 week semester) whether it’s a face to face, online, or a hybrid course, it is not guaranteed that the professor will drop the student. If the student chooses to stop attending a class, he/she should withdraw from the class by accessing your student account in the T-Bird Web Portal at, or submitting the required paperwork to the Registrar’s Office by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 18, 2019. All students are encouraged to discuss their class status with the professor prior to withdrawing from the class.

  15. COURSE OUTLINE This outline for Technical Physics is a tentative outline, subject to change at the discretion of the instructor.








    Units 1 & 2: Density and Kinematics

    Engine Displacement

    Units 1 & 2  

    Xerox pp. 55-6, p 176 # 1-3, p. 313 #1-15 and 17. 



    Unit 3: Newton's Laws of Motion, Friction, and Torque

    Acceleration and Deceleration of an Auto

    Unit 3  

    p. 65 #2, p. 116 #3-6, p. 122 #2-5, p 197-8 # 1-8, p. 249 #1-3, p. 250 #1-4, p. 252 #1-3, p. 266 #1, 3, 6


    Exam 1 on Units 1, 2, & 3






    Unit 4: Rotational Motion, Work, and Power

    Coefficient of Friction

    Unit 4  

    p. 215-16 #1-5, p. 259 #1-2 Bottom, p. 262 #1, 2, 4


    Institutional Assessment


    Institutional Assessment:  Communication:    Lab Report on Forces and Acceleration

    Institutional Assessment


    Institutional Assessment: Critical Thinking Activity on Torque and Horsepower



    Unit 5:  Machines

    Power and Torque with a Dynamometer

    Unit 5  

    p. 117-8 #1-4, p. 199-200 #1, 3, 4, & 5, p. 211 #1-3, p. 245-6 #3-6, p. 247-8 #4-7, p. 301 Xerox #1-4.


    Exam 2 on Units 4 and 5.






    Unit 6: Momentum and Energy

    Advantage and Machines

    Unit 6  

    p. 128 #1,2, p. 148 #1-5



    Unit 7: Properties of Materials, Heat Transfer, and Thermodynamics

    Stress and strain of samples

    Unit 7  

    p. 209-10 #1-3, p. 217 #1-3, p. 374 Xerox #1-5., p. 213 #1-3, p. 221-2 #3-6, p. 223-4 #1-4, p. 233-4 #1-5.


    Exam 3 on Units 6 and 7






    Unit 8: Sound  and Light.

    Linear Expansion of Materials

    Unit 8  

    p. 159-60 #5-7, p. 161-2 #1-7, p. 172 #5-6, p. 173 #1-5, p. 175 #1-5, p. 279-80 Xerox #1-10

    Spring Break

    Spring Break is the week of March 25 - March 29.

    Enjoy Spring Break!





    Wed., May 8 at 2:00-3:45 pm in HH127