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Errata for

An Introduction to Mechanics
by Kleppner and Kolenkow
compiled by Andrew Goetz

I make no claims to completeness or correctness. If you have any comments or corrections please email me.
Page 13, line 11: Change the first j to i.
Page 78, line -14: Change Eq. (2) to Eq. (3) (twice) and change Eq. (3) to Eq. (4).
Page 83, line 7: Change the period after down to a comma.
Page 102, line 9: In the denominator of the integrand, change R2 to R2 .
Page 105, Problem 2.17: In part (b), we should assume that tan > , not tan < . In part (c),
we should assume that tan < 1/, otherwise there is no maximum acceleration. Going along with
this, in the solution for = /4, we need to assume that < 1.
Page 106, Problem 2.20: In the answer, delete the coefficient 2 from the term M2 M3 in the
denominator.
Page 107, Problem 2.30: In the diagram, change ra to rA .
Page 126, line 5: Change R0 to R.
Page 126, line 10: Change re and rm to re and rm .
Page 126, line -12: Change re , rm , and Rem to re , rm , and Rem .
Page 126, last displayed equation: Change R to Rem (twice.)
Page 129, line 1: Change length of the spring to displacement of the spring.
Page 137, line 5: Delete one of the two periods after rocket.
Page 137, line -7: The expression on this line is missing the term mv (which goes to zero in the
limit as t 0, so maybe K&K purposely left it out.) The full expression should be M v + (m)u +
mv.
Page 149, Problem 3.17: The answer clue is completely screwed up. First of all, K&K have
previously defined weight as the true gravitational force (see pages 84-85), so it doesnt make sense
for the units of W to be kilograms. The units of W should be newtons. This suggests changing
W = 10 kg to W = 10 N. Even with this change, I believe the answer clue is still wrong. With
the values given the garbage can could be supported at ground level but no higher, i.e. the solution
should be hmax = 0. Also, with the given value of v0 , there are no values of W and dm/dt that give
the solution hmax 17 m. So something needs to be changed. If I have done the problem correctly, I
suggest the following clue: If v0 = 20 m/s, W = 5 N, dm/dt = 0.5 kg/s, then hmax = 15.3 m.

Chapter 4: K&K are inconsistent in the notation they use in the limits of the path integral defining
Rb
work. Their original limits are ra and rb , but many times they will just write a and b; a F dr instead
Rr
of rab F dr. To change all instances of the former notation to the latter, change the limits in the
following places:
Page 160, lines 812
Page 160, line -3
Page 163, line 14
Page 166, lines 68
Page 167, line -8
Page 168, line 6
Page 169, line -1
Page 173, line 4
Page 182, lines -7 and -6
Also on page 182, line -8, change as the particle moves from a to b to as the particle moves from ra
to rb .
Page 157, line 6: Change re to Re .
Page 175, Example 4.14: In the second diagram, the label for the angle on the left is missing an .
It reads + instead of + .
Page 192, line 11: Change sketch a to sketch b.
Page 193, line 3: Change v to v1 .
Page 200, Problem 4.28: In the reaction equation, I think the 2.8 MeV should be +2.8 MeV,
since it is energy released by the reaction. This would accord with the reaction equation in Problem
4.9 in which +5 eV are released.
Page 200, Problem 4.29: Change v to v0 in the first line of part (b) and in the diagram.
Page 205, line 12: Change the first dy to dx.
Page 219, line -4: There is a fraction line missing in the first term of the expression on the right.
1

Page 228, Problem 5.2: The answer is incorrect. It should be vf = (v02 + 2A/m + 3B/5m) 2 .
Page 228, Problem 5.3b: Change the equation for the force from F = Ar to F = Ar.
Page 252, graphic: This isnt really an error, but the axes shown in this graphic are left-handed,
which is very unusual for an American textbook.
Page 252, line 10: Change
k to j.
Page 261, line 6: The second R is missing a dot over it.
Page 264, lines 78: I dont understand the middle two lines of this calculation at all. In particular
I think the appearance of the vectors j so soon is incorrect. I believe the correct calculation would
run as follows:
P
K = 21
mj vj2
P
= 12
mj |r0j + V|2
P
P
P
= 21
mj |r0j |2 + mj r 0j V + 21
mj |V|2
= 12 I0 2 + 12 M V 2 .

Page 266, line 10: Change s to z .


Page 268, line -8: For consistency, the torque being integrated should be 0 .
Page 269, line -14: The letter n in length seems to be in bold for no reason whatsoever.
Page 276, line -3: The term for the kinetic energy, 21 l2 2 , should have an m in it:

1
2 2
2 ml .

Page 382, line 13: Add a factor of into the second term of the second equation, so that it reads

0 = r2 + 2rr .
Page 383, line -11: The reference should be to Eqs. (9.17a and b), not Eqs. (9.16a and b).
Page 392, equation 9.22: The first term should be (1 2 )x2 , not (1 2 )x.
Page 394, line 3: The displayed equation should be
cos a =

1
.


Page 396, line -11: The second equation on this line is missing a negative sign. The line should be
A=

C
(E)

or

E=

C
.
A

Page 403, line -4: Equation (2) is missing a factor of  in its second term. The equation should be
(1 2 )x2 2r0 x + y 2 = r02 .
Page 425, line 6: The reference should be to Eq. (10.24), not Eq. (10.23).
Page 426, graphic: For consistency of notation the label on the vertical axis should be hE()i and
not E().
Page 427, line 8: is given in units of 1 doesnt make any sense to me. I believe the units
should be s1 .
Page 436, line 3: Change  to <.
Page 440, Problem 10.12a: In the third line, the reference should be to Eq. (10.8), not Eq. (10.25).