Vicphysics Teachers' Network Inc.
Dear *|FNAME|*,
The Nobel Prize of Physics was announced last week.  It was for 'groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of complex systems'.  Much of the commentary and the Nobel Foundation resources focus on climate change with one surprising and little known fact.

The Call for Presenters for next year's Conference closes on 28th October.

Also under 'Physics from the Web' there is an article on the implications of the Quantum Information revolution for the curriculum of Physics, Maths and Computer Science at secondary and tertiary levels.  It is worth a read.


There are also 12 schools seeking physics teachers.

The next meeting of the Vicphysics Teachers' Network will be on Wednesday, 13th October at 5:30pm. If you wish to participate, please contact Vicphysics.

Previous editions of this newsletter are available here.


Dr Barbara McKinnon (Pres), Sandor Kazi (Vice-Pres), Dan O'Keeffe OAM (Sec) and Deepa Jain (Treas)

Table of Contents
       1.  Nobel Prize in Physics - Resources and articles
       2. Eunice Foote: Climate Science pioneer
       3. Physics Competitions - Entries Due
       4. Perimeter Institute: Voting for Best home made Demo is still open
       5. Vicphysics matters
  • Subscriptions
  • Tutor Listing Service
       6. Seeking a Physics teacher? Seeking a new position?
       7 . Events for Teachers        8. Physics News from the Web 
  • Radiotherapy innovation: Optimise the physics, but don't ignore the biology
  • Green jobs for physics graduates: Opportunities to help build a sustainable future.
  • Preparing students to be leaders of the quantum information revolution
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This year's Nobel Prize was awarded to Syukuro Manabe, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi for 'groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of complex systems'.  The area is complex but it had ramifications across many areas including climate modelling,
The Nobel Foundation publishes two background pieces:
  • Popular Information, a comprehensive, but accessible description of their work, with a detailed overview of climate change.
  • Advanced Information, for a more complex treatment, although the coverage of climate science in Section 2 is more detailed, with information about Arrhenius and Tyndall.
Other articles of interest are:
The little known fact in the Advanced Information article is that the response of carbon dioxide to sunlight was first discovered and its likely impact on climate commented on by Eunice Foote in America in 1856.   See separate article below.
 
2.  Eunice Foote: Climate Science Pioneer
Eunice Foote was the first person to investigate the warming effect of sunlight on different gasses, and based on her results suggested that changing the proportion of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would change its temperature.
Her experiment was very simple and elegant.  A glass bottle was filled with a gas with a thermometer in the rubber stopper. Bottles with different gasses were placed beside each other in the sun and the temperature recorded.  Within in a matter of minutes the temperature reading for the bottle with CO2 was much greater than for the one with air.  Similar results were found when comparing bottles of dry air and moist air.
Her article 'Circumstances affecting the heat of the sun's rays' was published in 1856.  This article has her experimental results.
Another short piece on 'Another source of electrical excitation' focussing on atmospheric electrical phenomena indicates that she was well read in science with references to Gay-Lussac, Becquerel, Biot and Humboldt.
Finally, she was born Eunice Newton, and yes, she was a distant relative of Isaac Newton.
 
3. Physics Competitions - Entries Due Soon
Finding time to promote enrichment activities and then encouraging students to get involved has been difficult during lockdown.  Nevertheless, entries in the competitions are starting to come in.  The remaining closing date is:
  • Poster Competition for Year 11 Physics Investigation - Due by the 2nd Friday of Term 4.  For details click here.
 
4. Perimeter Institute: Vote for Best home made Demo - Reminder to vote!
a) Kitchen Wars!
The Perimeter Institute set up a friendly competition for teachers in their network.  They were invited to share an innovative home made demo that teaches science in a fun, hands-on way.
You can still vote for your favourite.  There are 8 demos to choose from.
5. Vicphysics matters
  • Subscriptions: The free introductory offer has lapsed. To now access the Teachers resources section of the website a paid subscription is required. Details are at the bottom of the home page.
  • Tutor Listing Service: The website has a Tutor Listing Service.  There are now two tutors listed.  If you tutor and wish to add your name to the list, please check the website.
6.Seeking a Physics teacher? Seeking a new position?
The Vicphysics Teachers' Network has a Job Ads page to assist schools in finding a physics teacher.
There are twelve (12) schools seeking a physics teacher:
  • Woodmans Hill Secondary College (closes 24th October)
  • Rochester Secondary College (closes 24th October)
  • Weeroona College Bendigo (closes 21st October)
  • Highvale Secondary College (closes 20th October)
  • Brighton Secondary College (closes 20th October)
  • Upper Yarra Secondary College (closes 19th October)
  • Viewbank College (closes 19th October)
  • Dromana Secondary College 9closes 18th October)
  • William Ruthven Secondary College (closes 17th October)
  • Cheltenham Secondary College (closes 12th October)
  • Baimbridge College (closes 10th October)
  • Mildura Senior College (closes 10th October)
The webpage is updated every weekend.  The webpage also has a link on how schools can register a position and lodge a payment for this service.
 
7. Events for Teachers
a) The Physics Teachers’ Conference: Call for Presenters.
The Physics Teachers’ Conference in 2022 jointly organised by STAV and Vicphysics, will take place on Friday 18 February 2022 and, following on from the success of this year's Conference, it will be a virtual conference.  There will be synchronous (live) and asynchronous (pre-recorded) sessions.

Teachers are invited to offer a workshop in either format. The live workshops are 45 minutes and the pre-recorded workshops are 20 minutes. Both the principal presenter and any co-presenter will receive complimentary conference registration.

To register a workshop, please click here.  The closing date is Thursday, 28th October.
 
If you have any questions, please email the  STAV Administration Officer
8.   Physics News from the Web
Items selected from the bulletin of the Institute of Physics (UK).
Each item below includes the introductory paragraphs and a web link to the rest of the article.
a) Radiotherapy innovation: optimize the physics, but don’t ignore the biology
The development of new radiotherapy technologies has enabled the introduction of advanced treatment techniques into routine clinical practice. It’s now possible to reduce target margins to zero and escalate prescriptions to more lethal doses.
b) Green jobs for physics graduates: opportunities to help build a sustainable future
Articles based on interviews with physicists who are doing their bit to build a greener, more sustainable future. Three people in each of three area are interviewed: Policy and behavioural change, Decarbonisng energy sources and Finance and economics.
c) Preparing students to be leaders of the quantum information revolution
As the crowning technological inventions of the first quantum revolution—transistors, lasers, and computers—continue to enrich our lives, newfound excitement surrounds the use of quantum phenomena to create a second quantum revolution. Quantum computers will compute faster than existing classical ones and enable computations that were not previously possible. Quantum sensors will detect one-part-in-a-million variations in Earth’s gravitational field or tiny magnetic fields emanating from the human brain. Quantum communication technologies will send information securely over long distances, protected by fundamental laws of nature.
The article refers to a White House working group that has developed Key Concepts for Future Quantum Information Science Learners.
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