1. Video of Girls in Physics Breakfast Presentation
The presentation at the Breakfast by Dr Ceri Brenner, the AIP's Women in Physics lecturer for 2018 was recorded.
The video can be accessed from here and here. Other information is available on our website .
Dr Brenner's topic is Pressing FIRE on the most powerful laser in the world. Dr Ceri Brenner is a physicist at UK Research and Innovation. She spoke about how such power can be produced and how it can be used in fusion and astrophysics research as well as medical and industrial applications.
The Physics exam for the Northern Hemisphere uses the same curriculum. So the exam that was held on Thursday, 31st May will be useful for students preparing for their physics exam in November. The paper can be downloaded here. Papers for other subjects can be downloaded from here.
Detailed solutions have been prepared with a suggested marking scheme as well as extra questions based on the stem of some of the questions. The solutions are on our website along with those of earlier physics papers.
3. Events for Students and the General Public
a) Tuesday, 28th August: Tying electrons into knots, 6:30pm, Monash University, Clayton Campus.
The August lecture in this series will be on Tying electrons into knots and will be given by Professor Michael Fuhrer from the school of Physics and Astronomy at Monash University. Check here for a personal profile of Prof Fuhrer.
A demonstration, practical activity or laboratory tour will precede each lecture, beginning at 6.30pm, with the lecture starting at 7pm.
The venue is Lecture Theatre S3, 16 Rainforest Walk, which is on the West side of the Clayton campus. (see map). Parking is available free after 5pm in N1 (check the map).
These lectures are appropriate for teachers or VCE students. Information about the series is available here .
The next lectures in the series are:
b) Tuesday, 4th September, Medical Radiations Open Night, 6:00pm - 8:00pm, Moorabbin Hospital
- Tuesday, 25th September - Black holes and merging neutron stars: frontiers in gravitational-wave astronomy - Dr Eric Thrane
- Tuesday, 30th October - Neutron Stars - Prof Alexander Heger
- Tuesday, 27th November - TBA - Assoc Prof Meera Parish
This Open night is for students interested in careers in the Medical Radiations professions of Medical Imaging, Radiation Therapy and Nuclear Medicine. Staff will conduct tours of these departments and provide career and professional information. This is a great opportunity to see the latest in high-tech modern medicine. Parents and teachers are most welcome.
Time: 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Venue: Clinic 1B, Moorabbin Hospital, 823 - 865 Centre Rd, Bentleigh East
To book: Email here by 29th August to assist with tour co-ordination.
c) Sunday, 9th September: Open Day at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, 10am - 2pm, Parkville
This Open day is for students interested in careers in the Medical Radiations professions of Medical Imaging, Radiation Therapy and Nuclear Medicine. Staff will conduct tours of these departments and provide career and professional information. University course providers will also be in attendance. This is a great opportunity to see the latest in high-tech modern medicine. Parents and teachers are most welcome.
Time: 10:00am to 2:00pm
Venue: Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre within the VCCC building at 305 Grattan St Melbourne
d) Friday, 14th September: It Takes a Spark!, Spark EDU Conference, Melbourne Girls' College
This conference is designed by students and teachers for students and teachers.
The intent of the 'It Takes a Spark' conference is to bring together Girls and their Teachers to connect with inspiring female industry role models, share their current school based activities and projects using an authentic sharing and experiential model, create networks of teachers and student teams, and solve social justice design challenges.
The participation of the students is as important as teachers as the intent is to ignite, empower and nurture both students and teachers to be leaders of STEAM and Entrepreneurship within their schools.
Teachers will have both formal and informal opportunities to speak to other teachers who have enacted programs and activities in their schools and get their questions answered. The workshops and social justice design challenges are all hands-on so students and teachers will experience first-hand what it is like to be part of great STEAM and entrepreneurial learning. This will spark new ideas about curriculum and pedagogy.
The event is for:
Cost: Teacher: $235 (early bird $195 by 24th August), Student : $33 , Includes lunch.
- those who are already (or aspire to be) technology leaders in their school,
- those who have little experience and those who have a lot,
- Curriculum Coordinators– who wish to discuss how to create trans-disciplinary units that are powerfully engaging,
- Principals and Deputy Principals – to witness what is possible by embedding the Technologies Curriculum in their school.
Check here for the details of program, speakers and the workshops for teachers and for students.
e) Saturday, 15th September: What's Next: Prof Kip Thorne on Gravitational waves, etc, 7:30pm, Palais Theatre, St Kilda
Let's talk Gavitational Waves, Black Holes, Wormholes, Dark Matter and Time Travel.
See American Nobel Prize-winning theoretical physicist Prof Kip Thorne, Astrophysicist Prof Alan Duffy and co-host of the Infinite Monkey Cage, British comedian Robin Ince. Professor Kip Thorne will lead a panel discussion, delving into how scientific advances will change how we live our lives and how the world we live in will change forever.
Ticket prices range from $97 to $178. To book, click here.
4. Events for Teachers
a) It Takes a Spark!, Spark EDU Conference, 14th September, Melbourne Girls' College
See item 3d above
b) Lab Techs Workshop, Tuesday 18th September, Camberwell Grammar School
The all day program includes:
Cost: $60. Lunch is provided. A copy of the LTAV's Physics Reference Manual is available at a discounted price of $20.
- Learning new skills: i) Using and repairing multimeters, ii) Setting up a CRO for demonstrations, iii) Using a Ruhmkorff coil for high voltage demonstrations. (do two of the three, each runs for 30 mins)
- The Van de Graaff Generator: Their care and feeding with Harvey Edwards from Principles and Practice.The frustration and hate of maintaining a VDG is fairly universal among Labies. Either you can seek help from a professional councellor or join in this workshop that will give you all the hints on how to service and maintain them with a minimum of hair pulling and swearing. 1 hour)
- Good data in a digital world with Doug Bail from Ciderhouse. Hints, tips, tricks and techniques that help you, teachers and students make the most of the digital data acquisition available to schools. The workshop will include some experiments, chat through tips, maintenance, calibration and analyse some data to help you support the use of this equipment. The session will use PASCO gear but is intended for support of all equipment and particular notes will be made of options available from other suppliers. (1 hour)
- Safe handling of ionising radiation and storage of radioactive sources (45 mins)
- Laboratory management hints and lab tour (45 mins)
- What is that old equipment in the back cupboard and is it of any use? (30 mins)
More details here To book: go to Trybooking . Bookings close on Monday, 10th September.
5. Physics from the Web
Items selected from the bulletins of the Institute of Physics (UK).
Each item below includes the introductory paragraphs and a web link to the rest of the article.
a) Time examined and Time experienced
How we perceive and experience time is fundamental to our lives but we don’t fully understand what is a complex phenomenon. Sidney Perkowitz looks at how scientists and philosophers alike are seeking to grasp this mysterious and ever-present concept
“Time is nature’s way to keep everything from happening all at once.”
Though the meaning behind this quote could be taken literally, it reads like a joke. Thought to be originally written by the science-fiction author Ray Cummings in 1919, the phrase was used by American theoretical physicist John Wheeler in his chapter of the 1990 book Complexity, Entropy and the Physics of Information.
But Wheeler, who had a way with words, also knew how to be serious about time, and in 1986 he wrote, “Of all obstacles to a thoroughly penetrating account of existence, none looms up more dismayingly than ‘time’…To uncover the deep and hidden connection between time and existence…is a task for the future.”
The shift in tone from treating time as a joke to something deeper is a sign that we do not understand it, though, like fish in the sea, we are immersed in it. Even while expressing our ignorance about time, Wheeler himself had no choice but to self-referentially allude to one of its mysterious aspects – the future. And though he could not explain time, he reminded us that it has human as well as physical meaning when he wrote in that same chapter from 1990: “Heaven did not hand down the word ‘time’. Man invented it…or as Einstein put it, ‘Time and space are modes by which we think, and not conditions in which we live.’ ”
b) How to build a super-magnet
Super-strong magnets are a relatively recent phenomenon. Before the 19th century, the only magnets available were naturally occurring rocks made from a mineral called magnetite. This began to change after 1819, when the Danish scientist Hans Christian Ørsted discovered that electric currents in metallic wires create magnetic fields, but the real leap in magnet strength did not come until nearly a century later, with the discovery of superconductivity. Superconductors conduct electricity with perfect efficiency, which is a huge advantage for making strong magnets: today’s most powerful commercially available superconducting magnets can produce a stable field of up to 23 T, which is more than 2000 times stronger than the magnet on your fridge.
In December 2017 improvements in low-temperature-superconductor (LTS) magnet technology, together with advances in high-temperature superconducting (HTS) materials, produced another change in magnet development. The successful demonstration of a 32 T all-superconducting magnet by the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (NHMFL) in Florida, US, was a significant milestone in the field. The new super-magnet is expected to become available to users in 2019, and its high, stable field will help scientists break new ground in studies of nuclear magnetic resonance, electron magnetic resonance, molecular solids and quantum oscillation studies of complex metals, among other areas. In the longer term, the wider availability of such strong magnetic fields is also expected to enhance our understanding of superconductors and nanomaterials, leading to new nano-devices and applications.
c) The riddle of ultra high energy cosmic rays
Ultrahigh-energy cosmic rays are the most energetic and rarest of particles in the universe – and also one of the most enigmatic. Benjamin Skuse reveals how cosmic-ray mysteries are continuing to test our understanding of high-energy physics
Far, far away, something – somewhere – is creating particles with crazy amounts of energy. Whatever they are or wherever they’re from, these particles can be anything between 1018 eV and 1020 eV. Given that the top particle energy at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider is about 1013 eV, some of these particles are a million times more energetic than anything we can fashion at the most powerful particle accelerator on the planet. Quite simply, they’re the most energetic particles ever seen in nature.
d) Review of Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story: Actor and inventor
Immigrant, actor, producer, inventor, war-time fundraiser, feminist and a woman vastly ahead of her time – that’s Hedy Lamarr. A certified Hollywood movie star often dubbed “the most beautiful woman in the world”, and a bona fide ingenious engineer with a patent under her glitzy belt, Lamarr was a constant contradiction. To anyone discovering her today, it would seem as though Lamarr was misjudged, dismissed and valued only for her beauty. Lamarr’s inspiring and unconventional life – a heady (if you will excuse the pun) mix of sex, science, fame and misfortune – is perfectly brought together in the biographical documentary film Bombshell: the Hedy Lamarr Story.