Ph 136b is primarily based on the text Applications of Classical Physics by Roger Blandford and Kip Thorne. It grew over some 30 years out of their notes for this course. The concise 1,511-page, 3.5kg book was published in August 2017 by Princeton University Press. For those challenged by the 3.5kg of the physical book, it is available for purchase on kindle and is also loaded on all of the Caltech library's Kindle readers, which may be checked out for one week at a time. However, if you also purchase the 1,279-page, 3.0kg text Gravitation by Misner, Thorne and Wheeler it balances ACP nicely. You can then develop both biceps, while having at your fingertips everything you need to do research in astrophysics/relativity/cosmology.

As a supplementary text (for the fluid dynamics part only), I highly recommend Physical Fluid Dynamics by D.J. Tritton. This gives both simpler expositions of the essentials, and more physical examples than are in Blandford and Thorne. It also has lots of very nice photographs of real fluid flows to help develop intuition (David Tritton was an eminent experimental fluid dynamicist).

In past years we have used pdf copies of preliminary drafts of the text. However the final version differs in many places from those (and some of the homework problems also differ), so I do not advise using those older materials.

We might post additional class notes and other materials here.