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While we have lots of cool and interesting demonstrations in our department, there are a few that we enjoy in particular. Our top 5 favourite demonstrations are:

 

1.

 

A great representation of what happens when craters are formed on things like the moon, except on a much smaller scale. Different coloured sands fill a beaker and a ball bearing collides and sends material up and outwards.

See it here.

 

 2.

 

Who doesn't love liquid nitrogen? Or explosions? Well in this experiment, the two are combined to destroy an unlucky garbage can, when the vapour from the liquid nitrogen causes a pop bottle to explode.

See it here.

 

3.

 

This experiment demonstrates one of the most basic laws of physics, that regardless of mass, any two objects will hit the ground at the same time when dropped from the same height. However, this only happens when the two objects are dropped in a vacuum in order to eliminate air resistance. So despite this being common knowledge, most people have never seen this. Now you can see it, when we drop a feather and a ball inside two tubes with a vacuum inside.

See it here

 

4.

 
 

As vibrations from a speaker are passed through the plates, the sand forms into interesting patterns according to the resonance patterns in 2 dimensions. Plus, at about 2:00 min into the video, you can kind of see a face!

See it here

 

5.

 

A spectrometer shows the emission lines in the atomic spectrum of an electrified gas in this experiment. A good example of the fact the atoms can only have discreet energies.

See it here