Tagged: electron

Mysterious power generation - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Apr 30, 2012

One consequence of being a physicist is that you can't go anywhere without seeing physics calculations that need doing. I've just been to our library hunting down books on the medical technique of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), which was an interesting exercise in itself, since one textbook I found also has a chapter on homeopathy. Hmm. So how much do … Read More

Quantum Chicken - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Jan 25, 2012

Our neighbours have a dog - one of those small, yappy, pointless pooches with an excessive bark-to-weight ratio. It runs about their garden, keeping our cat out and gets very loud when I venture over to the compost bin. The neighbours' garden is fortunately well-fenced, meaning the creature thankfully can't invade our side.So, imagine my surprise, when I discover yesterday … Read More

Potential energy and climbing upwards - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Jan 23, 2012

At the end of last week, seeing a good(ish) weather forecast, we had a short break away in Wellington, taking the train both directions. Despite the lovely weather (Wellington isn't ALWAYS blowing a gale) we didn't get to see the volcanoes en-route, in either direction - they were shrouded in cloud as is often the case. The train journey from … Read More

Electricity Show - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Nov 10, 2011

I'm guessing many of you readers saw the 'Sunday' programme last Sunday. (Would be silly if were on another day of the week). Carlos Van Camp, the guy with the lightning show, was pretty impressive.What was refreshing was how the whole piece was presented without mangling the science, which is something that media are adept at doing. Whenever … Read More

Thermal expansion again - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Nov 09, 2011

Our new house (new to us - it's twelve years old) can make some ferocious noises sometimes. It has some huge steel beams supporting the roof - these being held up as far as I can tell partly by steel supports and partly by concrete walls. I've been trying to work out just what is supporting what in the house … Read More

Trouble of enormous magnitude - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Sep 01, 2011

We have a problem brewing in the lab.  Recently, we (by which I mean a PhD student or two and a researcher) moved into a new lab. As part of our research we are recording electrophysiological signals (electricity produced by living cells). These are pretty small, often in the microvolt region (a millionth of a volt) - we'd consider a … Read More

Natural units - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Aug 01, 2011

Physics is all about describing physical quantities. Whether it's length, velocity, force, electric current or heat flux, it takes physics to describe what it is and what it does. Central to this is our system of units. The three really common base units (in the S.I. system) are the metre (unit of length), the second (unit of time) … Read More