principle of least action

(redirected from Least action)
Also found in: Dictionary.

principle of least action

[′prin·sə·pəl əv ‚lēst ′ak·shən]
(mechanics)
The principle that, for a system whose total mechanical energy is conserved, the trajectory of the system in configuration space is that path which makes the value of the action stationary relative to nearby paths between the same configurations and for which the energy has the same constant value. Also known as least-action principle.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
We not only have the quantum theory; we also know that the energy conservation principle can be derived from the principle of least action but not the reverse" ("A Call for Action," Science News 139 [1], May 11, 1991).
The least action principle involves the integration of the Lagrangian densities of the fields.
It aims to explain ideas rather than achieve technical competence, and to show how Least Action leads into the whole of physics.
These elements are prevented from moving along their least action paths by the presence of obstructive constraints within the system.
"The report also revealed that the governments viewed as taking the least action in tackling slavery include North Korea, Eritrea, Equatorial Guinea and Hong Kong." Ahhh, they left out Iran between North Korea and Eritrea.
The governments taking the least action were North Korea, Iran, Eritrea, Equatorial Guinea and Hong Kong, the report said. On the other hand, the governments taking the strongest actions against such forms of slavery were the Netherlands, the United States, Britain, Sweden and Australia.
Being a fan of the trilogy, Mockingjay was our least favorite, as it had the least action in the series and there were a lot of extraneous details we could've lived without.
Brizard presents students, academics, and researchers with the second edition of his comprehensive introduction to Langrangian mechanics, the history of the Langrangian method, FermatEs Principle of Least Time, and the mathematical principles of several mathematical predecessors of HamiltonEs Principle of Least Action and the Euler-Lagrange equations of motion.
When p = q = 2 and F(t, [x.sub.1], [x.sub.2]) = [F.sub.1](t, [x.sub.1]), it has been proved that problem (1.1) has at least one solution by the least action principle and the minimax methods (see [1-8]).
This is indeed true, although the principle is better known under its more common name 'principle of least action'.
Recently derivation of CTG equations was made based on the principle of least action [3].