February 16, 2007 Issue

Physics To Go 19 - String wave/ex-nucleus

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Physics in Your World

String Vibrations image
photo credit: Andrew Davidhazy, Rochester Institute of Technology

String Vibrations

In the photos above (hi-res version), the tension in the vibrating string is maintained by a weight at the bottom, and the top end of the string is vibrated. To find out more about how these photographs were created, visit String Vibrations, by Andrew Davidhazy.

Security note:
Once you have clicked on the "simulation" link below, be sure to read the Java Security Advisory before running the simulation: To do that, click the "Read now" button on the yellow band near the top of the PhET page.

To learn about string vibrations, see the PhET simulation Waves on a String, from the University of Colorado. Also, you can visit Standing Waves, especially "Standing Waves 1 - On a String, Both Ends Fixed."

(This feature was updated on May 6, 2013.)

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Physics at Home

Descartes’ Diver

If you'd like to do an interesting buoyancy activity, visit the Exploratorium's Descartes' Diver and build a Cartesian diver.  For a simulation on floating and sinking, visit the SEED program's Buoyancy Explorer. To learn more about floating and sinking, see the Nova sites Buoyancy Basics and Buoyancy Brainteasers.


From Physics Research

Strange Nuclei image
image credit: Danysz and Pniewski, Philosophical Magazine 44 348 (1953); image source

Strange Nuclei

This colorized image (hi-res version) shows a double nuclear disintegration that was initiated by the capture of a cosmic ray particle called a hyperon, which left the faint track coming in from above.

The tracks (see the original black and white image) were made in a photographic emulsion. The longest of these tracks is less than .1mm.

To learn more, visit Strange Nuclei by Particle Physics UK.

(This feature was updated on July 7, 2013.)

Worth a Look

Sci-Philately: A Selective History of Science on Stamps

If you'd like to see physics on postage stamps, check out Sci-Philately:  A Selective History of Science on Stamps, especially Modern Physics I-IV. The Physics section covers in antiquity through the 19th century.

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