Stroboscopic photography used to determine acceleration due to gravity for free-falling object. View larger

Physics Demonstrations in Mechanics, Part 3

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Part 3 Covers: Graphical Analysis of Motion, Vector Addition, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors, Newton’s 1st Law, and Frame of Reference.

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  • 30 minutes

    Physics Demonstrations in Mechanics is a four-part video series presenting a full range of demonstrations in linear motion, two-dimensional motion, Newton’s laws of motion, momentum, work & energy, and gravitation. Similar in format to Demonstrations in Mechanics Parts I & II, this more recent series (Parts III through VI) significantly broadens and enhances the collection of mechanics demonstrations. The program’s strength lies in the use of specialized apparatus, high-speed photography, and 3D computer animation.

    Program Format

    Individual demonstrations are 3 to 4 minutes in length and can be quickly accessed using the program's on-screen indexing system. The indexing system allows the teacher to select a particular demonstration and show it at the appropriate time during a unit on mechanics. The accompanying teacher’s guide gives additional data, information, and suggestions on using the demonstrations to promote further classroom discussion.

    Demonstration Selection and Filming Techniques

    The selection of demonstrations includes those which are difficult to perform in the classroom and those which require apparatus which is not accessible to many physics teachers. Detailed observation for many of the demonstrations is accomplished through use of the following photographic techniques: Stroboscopic photography, slow motion/stop action photography, full screen and over screen graphics, and close-ups of experimental apparatus.

    Contents of Part 3:

    Graphical Analysis of Motion:
    Car Accelerating on Highway (Computer Animation)
    Vector Addition: Object Travelling on Moving Surface
    Velocity and Acceleration Vectors: Direction of v and a during Acceleration and Deceleration
    Newton’s 1st Law: Rest Inertia of Bursting Water Balloon; Shattering Flask; and Concrete Block Receiving Sharp Blow (High Speed Film)
    Newton’s 1st Law: Motion Inertia of Steel Wedge Splitting Board; Ketchup Cart (High Speed Film)
    Frame of Reference: A Galactic Observer/Relative Motion (Computer Animation)
    Frame of Reference: Inertial and Non-inertial Reference Frames.