Apps, Applets & Spreadsheets

Physics Apps, Applet Websites, Spreadsheets

Physics Apps

There an incredible number of apps that come up when you search for 'Physics, Apps' in iTunes. Some of the useful ones found so far are:

Name Maker Cost $US Description
Simple Physics Andrew Garrison $0.99 Lets you design complex structures for everything from tree houses to ferris wheels and then simulates your design. The cost of the design is also determined.
Vernier Video Physics Vernier $2.99 Video analysis software
PhysicsWorld Institute of Physics Free Monthly journal. Source of AIP Newsletter items
Messenger NASA Free Provides information that Messenger, NASA's Mission to Mercury, sends back every day
Exoplanet Astronomer: Hanno Rein Free Visual database of recently discovered exoplanets. Updated as discoveries are made. Includes animations.
Kepler NASA Free Kepler telescope detects exoplanets. The app shows how as well as background info. Includes an interactive 3D visualisation of the galaxy.
SparkVue Pasco Free Real time measurement of position, vel and accel'n as well as connection to Pasco sensors.
Star Walk Vito Technology $2.99 Labels all the stars and constellations and satellites that you point your iPhone at.
Solar Walk Vito Technology $2.99 Interactive model of the Solar System and the Milky Way
Khan Academy Physics 1, 2, ... Khan Academy Free Set of instructional videos
New Horizons NASA Free NASA voyage to Pluto and the Kuiper Belt. Up to date information and images.
Coaster Physics Ziconic $0.99 Design and ride your own roller coaster, gives speed, acceleration and g-forces as you ride along.
Phyzios Studio Phyzios Free Draw objects of any material and watch them interact according to the laws of physics.
Wind Tunnel Lite Algorizk Free Wind Tunnel simulator, runs best on iPad, iPhone 3GS and 4 and iPod touch 3rd gen. See also Wind Tunnel Pro.

Oscilloscope apps

  • Oscilloscope for iOS is a digital Oscilloscope & Signal Generator app. Designed to plot audio signals, monitor equipment, analyze events, and test circuits, it is also an excellent learning tool. Its GUI includes many standard oscilloscope controls, such as: triggering, time and voltage per division, signal measurement cursors, and more. For iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. US$10.
  • MC Oscilloscope is a digital multichannel oscilloscope and full scale level meter for your iPad or iPhone. It displays signals from the internal microphone as well as the 3.5 mm audio jack. In combination with an external multichannel USB-audio-interface it is capable of displaying even up to 8 channels simultaneously. US$5.
  • Soundbeam turns an iPhone or iPod touch (compatible with iPad) into an oscilloscope. Soundbeam is an audio analyzer that processes the input of your microphone in real time, displaying it like a classic oscilloscope. You can also use the built-in mic. US$1.00
  • A soundcard oscilloscope. The PC based Soundcard Oscilloscope receives its data from the Soundcard with 44.1kHz and 16 Bit resolution. The data source can be selected in the Windows mixer (Microphone, Line-In or Wave). The frequency range depends on the sound card, but 20-20000Hz should be possible with all modern cards. The low frequency end is limited by the AC coupling of the line-in signal. Be aware, that most microphone inputs are only mono. The oscilloscope contains in addition a signal generator for 2 channels for Sine, Square, Triangular and Sawtooth wave forms in the frequency range from 0 to 20kHz. These signals are available at the speaker output of the sound card. These can be fed back to the oscilloscope in order to generate Lissajous figures in the x-y mode. Free, but support is requested.
  • Winscope. Free, comes as a zip file, instructions at this website.
  • Zelscope is a Windows software that converts your PC into a dual-trace storage oscilloscope and spectrum analyser. It uses your computer's sound card as analog-to-digital converter, presenting a real-time waveform or spectrum of the signal - which can be music, speech, or output from an electronic circuit. Zelscope features the interface of a traditional oscilloscope, with conventional gain, offset, timebase, and trigger controls. As a real-time spectrum analyzer, Zelscope can display the amplitude and phase components of the spectrum. Free 14 day trial, US$10.
  • Visual Analyser is a real time software, transforming a PC in a set of measurement instruments; no new hardware necessary, you can use the Sound Card of your PC. Free.
  • Picoscope. An extensive range of PC based oscilloscopes that use an interface between the circuit and the PC. The cheapest model sells for about AU$184 from RS Components.

Phone apps

Applet Websites

The website of the New Zealand Institute of Physics has a webpage listing 19 sites of applets. For each site they include the author, the link, a rating, how many applets are available and whether they can be downloaded.


At the 2014 Physics Teachers' Conference, Matthew McGovern from Mill Park Secondary College gave a workshop titled 'Kids can create computer models for Physics!'. These are the worksheets from his workshop as well as sample spreadsheets.