Category Archives: Physics demos

Physics demonstrations: Geiger counter

Update: Fixed a couple of incorrect statements regarding cosmic rays and the radiation of uranium.  Thanks to encephalartos for the corrections! In recent months, I’ve been diving wholeheartedly into learning how to build and design electronics.  My ultimate goal is … Continue reading

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Physics demonstrations: The Phantom Lightbulb

Some of the most spectacular physics demonstrations rely on surprisingly simple science.  Throughout history, for instance, very simple optics has been used to great effect to terrify and amaze audiences (see, for instance, Robertson’s Phantasmagoria).  I recently came across such … Continue reading

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My appearance on WCNC television!

Today I appeared on NBC Charlotte on “Larry’s Look” to promote our upcoming UNC Charlotte Science and Tech Expo and show off some science demos!  You can check out the video at this link.  Don’t ask me what I thought of … Continue reading

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1842: Jean-Daniel Colladon guides light with water

Big technological advances often start with very humble beginnings.  If you’re reading this post on the internet right now, it is almost certain that the information has come to you at some point in the journey in the form of … Continue reading

Posted in History of science, Optics, Physics demos | 4 Comments

Physics demonstrations: Chladni patterns

A good demonstration of a physical phenomenon should be both insightful and exciting.  Sometimes, a demonstration succeeds at both so well that it is practically awe-inspiring.  Such is the case, for me, with the demonstration of Chladni patterns, exotic and … Continue reading

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Physics demonstrations: cloaking device?

I’ve spent a lot of time on this blog talking about the optics of invisibility, both hypothetical and actual.  Though a number of forms of invisibility have been considered in both science and fiction for over a hundred years, the … Continue reading

Posted in Invisibility, Optics, Physics demos | 7 Comments

Another video of the Kaye effect

I finally managed to get some video editing software to work, and I have put together a more polished video of the Kaye effect, including some slow-motion shots of the streams! (If the embed doesn’t work right now, try the … Continue reading

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Physics demonstrations: A short discussion of the Kaye effect

I’ve been gearing up for the second year of the UNC Charlotte Science and Technology Expo, which will be happening on campus on Sunday, April 21st.  I’ve been preparing a number of weird and unusual demos for the expo, and … Continue reading

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Physics demonstrations: invisibility on the cheap!

I spend a lot of time talking about invisibility on this blog, and it really has become a fascinating and vibrant area of optics, with lots of remarkable results.  However, most of those results are theoretical, and the experimental results … Continue reading

Posted in Invisibility, Optics, Physics demos | 4 Comments

Physics demonstrations: vortex cannon!

As I’ve said before, some of the best scientific demonstrations are things that can be put together with simple everyday components and exhibit surprising, even counter-intuitive, phenomena. One of my all-time favorite demonstrations is of this form!  All one needs … Continue reading

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