What is Physics lab: Definition and 135 Discussions

Physics (from Ancient Greek: φυσική (ἐπιστήμη), romanized: physikḗ (epistḗmē), lit. 'knowledge of nature', from φύσις phýsis 'nature') is the natural science that studies matter, its motion and behavior through space and time, and the related entities of energy and force. Physics is one of the most fundamental scientific disciplines, and its main goal is to understand how the universe behaves.Physics is one of the oldest academic disciplines and, through its inclusion of astronomy, perhaps the oldest. Over much of the past two millennia, physics, chemistry, biology, and certain branches of mathematics were a part of natural philosophy, but during the Scientific Revolution in the 17th century these natural sciences emerged as unique research endeavors in their own right. Physics intersects with many interdisciplinary areas of research, such as biophysics and quantum chemistry, and the boundaries of physics are not rigidly defined. New ideas in physics often explain the fundamental mechanisms studied by other sciences and suggest new avenues of research in academic disciplines such as mathematics and philosophy.
Advances in physics often enable advances in new technologies. For example, advances in the understanding of electromagnetism, solid-state physics, and nuclear physics led directly to the development of new products that have dramatically transformed modern-day society, such as television, computers, domestic appliances, and nuclear weapons; advances in thermodynamics led to the development of industrialization; and advances in mechanics inspired the development of calculus.

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  1. BiGyElLoWhAt

    Data analysis by guessing, checking and fixing

    Hi, I'm trying to come up with a section of an optics based physics lab designed for 2nd year Calc-based college students. Calc 2 is a co-req. There are 2 labs that are intimately linked together. The first effectively revolves around taking ##d_i(d_o)## data from a lens, source and screen...
  2. hagopbul

    Physics I have interviews as a physics lab assistant and lab apprenticeship

    Hello All : in the near future i will have few interviews as lab assistance and lab apprenticeship , mainly physics labs , do anyone have a source on lab devices to review before the interviews ? maybe i won't be able to find all my old books or internet links Best Regards Hagop Bulbulian
  3. tixi

    Labwork Statistics help: Average of averages

    I have done the experiment, and have a lot of data. For each data point (we have five), we did ten repetitions, for which we need to do video analysis. The analysis works frame by frame and gives a velocity between each frame. So, to get the value of one repetition, we already need to calculate...
  4. O

    Millikan Experiment Based Marble Mass Homework

    I arranged the masses in ascending order: 11.0 g 11.1 g 20.6 g 21.4 g 21.5 g 25.7 g 25.8 g 25.9 g 31.6 g 31.9 g I found the average mass of the marbles: 22.65 g I found the difference in masses of the marbles: 0.1 g 9.5 g 0.8 g 0.1 g 4.2 g 0.1 g 0.1 g 5.7 g 0.3 g I found the average of the...
  5. DanchoSuper

    Physics lab report calculating resultant forces -- help please

    i have attached my attempt above i have sent it to my teacher and he said i should fix the mistakes and resend it
  6. T

    What are the Best Take-Home Physics Lab Kits for Non-Scientists?

    Any recommendations for a take-home physics lab kit? It's for a intro algebra-based physics course for non-scientists/non-engineers. There seem to be a few companies out there selling these kits, and I'm looking for feedback. They don't need to be super-fancy, but they need to be better than...
  7. S

    I Writing about a simple physics lab

    One of my novel's leads is a physics student. In the following lab: what would students learn about waves? What kind of measurement results would they get (not specific numbers, but, for instance, proportions of node lengths to rope lengths)?
  8. V

    Calculate the margin of error in this physics lab

    Bounce 1, Trial 1-4: ha (height after bounce) (0.74+0.67+0.69+0.73)/4=0,7075 this is my mean value. Standard Deviation, s: 0.033040379335998 (calculated the value using an online standard deviation calculator) Sample size N: 4 sx̄ = s/√N = 0.033040379335998/√4≈ 0.0165 At a 95% confidence...
  9. B

    Physics Lab Propagation of Error Issue

    Homework Statement: Physics Lab Propagation of Error Issue Homework Equations: ∂f/∂b=∂/∂b (tan^(-1)⁡(a/4b))= 1/(1+(a/4b)^2 )×(-a)/(4b^2 )=1/(1+((5.922 cm)/(4×1.766 cm))^2 )×(-5.922 cm)/(4×(1.766 cm)^2 ) Hello, I'm trying to find the uncertainty in a function from the lab manual for the...
  10. Oleksander

    Other How to enroll in physics lab while getting MS CS?

    Hi everyone! I'm 30 y.o. Software Engineer from Ukraine. I have BS degree in Economics. For the lack of theoretical knowledge I decided to get a technical degree. My primary interests are Math and Computer Science. But I'd like to try more hands-on fields of natural sciences and engineering...
  11. Thomaz

    How to self study physics lab?

    To self study the theoretical part of general physics is as "easy" as going through a textbook, but how could a person self study the experimental part of general physics at home? Any ideas? (Should be easier than to self study chemistry lab hahaha)
  12. Gamma

    Is Lack of Proper Safety Policies Putting Physics Lab Students at Risk?

    Hi educators, This may sound dumb, but my physics lecture room is our lab as well and we spend long hours in class. We spend approximately 4 hours for lecture and other activities and 2 hours for labs. Currently, I have a strict rule that only drink is allowed during lecture and other...
  13. E

    B Help with Physics lab idea (creative)

    Hiya! In school we have tha task to create our own phy lab. I am going to investigate the width of a hair using wave diffraction (a laser maybe?). Does anyone have any creative ideas on how to develop the lab to make it more uniqe and interesting. E.g measuring from different distances. Or...
  14. P

    Other Should I become the Physics lab coordinator for my university?

    Background: Physics and Math major, turning Sophomore from next semester. I worked for a professor during the summer (for free) in high energy Physics trying to plot the signals from a function generator to a computer using a microcontroller. He was really impressed with my work (basically, he...
  15. D

    Momentum of W Bosons After Collision in Particle Physics Lab

    Homework Statement In a particle physics lab, an electron e− and a positron e+ collide, annihilate, and produce a W+ boson and a W− boson. Just before the collision, the electron and positron have a total energy of E = 100 GeV each, with velocities pointing along the +x-axis and -x-axis...
  16. F

    Request for Advice on a Physics Lab

    Hello I'm trying to come up with a solid Lab to use for my chapter on Waves and Optics. I am considering having it center on refraction. Here is the problem: All labs I create for my class must avoid being a set of instructions for the student to perform. The must always be set up as a...
  17. C

    Kinematics physics lab help sources of error

    1. The problem statement of my lab I have this physics lab where I have to find the maximum velocity and maximum acceleration of a high school student sprinting/running using carbon tape and a spark timer. Which I already did. Now I'm having trouble developing my sources of error section. I hope...
  18. N

    Can Virtual Labs Effectively Enhance College Physics Learning?

    Is there any software, free or commercial, which students can use to perform physics lab experiments online? I'm looking for a software for college physics, say, from Linear motion, motion under gravity, Newton's laws, Energy, momentum, Rotational dynamics, to Heat and Thermodynamics. CD or...
  19. S

    Understanding Fluid Flow in Physics Lab: Poiseuille Equation

    Hi everyone, I have to answer some question about a physics lab..here are the questions A tank is empty by a pipe and we measure the height (y-y0) of fluid in the tank as a function of time. We obtain this graph ( I join the graph) We can find the relaxation time with the relation : with...
  20. John A

    Physics Lab -- Don't Understand Procedure....

    I have a physics lab and the main question is: 'How does the radius of the loops of a solenoid affect the magnetic field produced by the coil?' For my hypothesis, I wrote: "The larger the radius of a solenoid is,the weaker the magnetic field will be." I searched online and found out I was...
  21. Tollendal

    A Hungarian Physics Lab Uncovers Possible 5th Force of Nature

    Has a Hungarian physics lab found a fifth force of nature? Attila Krasznahorkay at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences’s Institute for Nuclear Research in Debrecen, Hungary, and his colleagues say they spotted an anomaly in radioactive decay that could be the signature of a previously unknown...
  22. NinjaChachi

    Physics Lab Help - Moment of inertia and acceleration

    Homework Statement In our physics lab we were to set up a system looking like this: where the mass was released and the velocity/acceleration and of the ring was calculated using MotionLab software. Our goal was to find the predicted total moment of inertia by just calculating the moment of...
  23. L

    Physics Lab Permability of free space

    Homework Statement An ideal solenoid is expected to generate a dipole field that falls off quickly as you move away from the solenoid. The magnetic field at distance r along the axis of the solenoid is given by B = (Mo/ 2pie) (M/r^3) In this equation the parameter M is called the dipole moment...
  24. L

    Physics lab formula question - help please

    Homework Statement An ideal solenoid is expected to generate a dipole field that falls off quickly as you move away from the solenoid. The magnetic field at distance r along the axis of the solenoid is given by B = (Mo/ 2pie) (M/r^3) In this equation the parameter M is called the dipole moment...
  25. 3

    Find Altitude & Angles for Physics Rocket Lab HW

    Homework Statement I have the time and distance measurements. We shot it straight up, how can I find the altitude and angles? Times: (6.58 sec, 23 m), (6.90 sec, .6 m) (6.20 sec, 10 m). The time represents how long it takes for the rocket to shoot up and fall, the distance is the measurement...
  26. S

    What are some sources of error in this physics lab?

    The lab called on us to use a vacuum tube to determine an electron's charge to mass ratio. Here is a link to the lab: http://www.clemson.edu/ces/phoenix/labs/cupol/eoverm/index.html. What are some sources of error in this lab? I already know that human error and error in measurement can skew...
  27. Greg3Dot

    Physics Lab / Equation manipulation

    1. T^2 = (4 pi^2 m)/k * d^2 + (4 pi^2 I)/k y = m * x + c Information (4 pi^2 m)/k = m (gradient) (4 pi^2 I)/k = c (the y intercept ) A graph of T^2 vs d^2 was plotted. (^2) means squared Find constants k and I How is this done since the m in the...
  28. Q

    How to find initial velocity without being given time

    Homework Statement a projectile is launched at an angle of 26.5 above the horizontal at a height of 1.11m. the range is 2.331m. find the initial velocity and time given that acceleration due to gravity is 9.8m/s^2. The Attempt at a Solution first, I split the velocity into its components...
  29. S

    Landed a job as a physics lab tech, need advice.

    Hi everyone, I graduated in May of 2014 with a BS in Astrophysics and just landed a job with a major university as a physics lab assistant. As part of the position I will give a 15-20 minute lecture to undergrad students regarding what they are doing in the lab that day. I have no experience...
  30. Logan Rudd

    Upper division physics lab -- Project ideas

    As an experimentalist, I am very excited to be taking my first upper division physics lab next semester! The course covers basic electronics (filters, diodes, transistors, op-amps, analog & digital circuits, D/A conversion, and LabView Programming, etc.) and measurement techniques with an...
  31. W

    An experiment question: Rotational Motion

    Homework Statement I am doing the rotational motion experiment with a rotary disk that has three spindle sizes. A string goes around the spindle and is connected to a hanger. I calculated my ratio as a percentage of total final KE to decrease in potential energy and it comes out to be around...
  32. U

    Impact of Jet Experiment: Error & Effects

    Homework Statement What would be the effect of calculated value if: a. Jockey weight is in error by 1 g? b. Distance from vane center to pivot point is in error by 1 mm? c. diameter of nozzle 0.1mm different from actual nozzle diameter. Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution as the error...
  33. A

    Understanding the Hall Effect: True Statements and Experimental Tips

    In this experiment you will use the Hall Effect to measure the strength of magnetic fields. Which of the following are true statements about the Hall Effect? (Select all that apply.) The Hall probe that we will use in this lab is made of a semiconductor. (check- i know this is one) The value...
  34. A

    Determining Horizontal Sweep for RC Circuit Time Constant - Physics Lab

    Consider a series RC circuit with an R = 3.0 Ω and a capacitance of 12 µF being charged to a voltage of 5.0 V. (Note, you will not include units in your answers.) If you wished the charging of this capacitor to have a vertical displacement of 4.0 DIV from 0 charge to fully charged, what value...
  35. B

    How to find the muzzle velocity of a launcher?

    I'm currently working a lab that requires me to find the muzzle velocity (initial velocity) of my launcher. The only information I have is the launch angle, horizontal distance, maximum height and time. Is there a specific equation that I have to use? Should I be using trig equations with...
  36. S

    Physics Lab - greatest common factor between all these numbers

    Physics Lab -- greatest common factor between all these numbers Homework Statement Hey, how can I find the greatest common factor between all these numbers? Please reply as soon as possible, it is an assignment due tomorrow. 27.69 3.15 0.59 4.71 18.08 22.84 31.08 19.11 21.91 9.7 38.78 42.82...
  37. M

    Physics Lab - Electrical Circuits with Resistors and Capacitors

    Homework Statement Hello, I am having trouble with a physics lab report I'm working on. I'm going to try and be as clear as possible. Basically, I'm using different values of R and C in determining tau, the time scale in a circuit's behavior. I used a circuit with a resistor and capacitor and...
  38. T

    Calculating Steel Density from Experimental Data in Excel: Troubleshooting Tips

    So I received a lab today for physics. The first part of the lab I finished in about 20 minutes,had no trouble with it, but I don't understand what I'm doing wrong in the second part. I have to find the density of steel in excel, using experimental data that we found in class a few weeks ago...
  39. A

    Finding Specific Heat of Metal in Physics Lab | Struggling with Calculations

    In this lab I am supposed to find specific heat of metal, and then recalculate the specific heat using a final temp. 1 degree Celsius above and below measured value. I am really struggling with finding this specific heat of the metal. The lab is this: mass of water: 200 g. Initial temp of...
  40. L

    Modern Physics Lab: Hydrogen Wavelengths & Energy Levels

    This question is based on a modern physics lab I'm working on, and it's conceptually killing me. 1. Homework Statement For hydrogen, compare your measured wavelengths to the predicted wavelengths for hydrogen. Assuming the lower level is the same for all the lines you observed in the...
  41. A

    Physics Lab, Transient response of LCR circuit, lorentzian curve

    I wasn't exactly paying much attention during our lab, partially because it was right in the middle of midterms and I wanted to solely focus on those. Now it is coming back to bite me as I am not entirely sure how to complete my lab report, or the theory behind the lab really. If you would like...
  42. A

    How can I calculate velocity and time in a physics lab on energy?

    Physics lab on energy need help! Homework Statement Need to find velocity and time when I know all lengths/heights. Need to look at picture to fully understand my problem. Homework Equations Projectile motion equations... And velocity equations.. The Attempt at a Solution On picture
  43. H

    Physics Lab: Calculating Tension with T=m(g-a)

    I'm doing a physics lab right now and to find tension we use the equation T=m(g-a) where m is the suspended mass and t is tension. I'm not sure if g should be negative or positive. I'm guessing negative but I am not to sure.
  44. M

    Should I do work in an experimental physics lab or summer internship?

    Hey PF, quick question for you guys. I got offers (on the same day!) to work with a professor at my college (1.5 hours away from home), paid, to do some experimental work. I also was offered an internship at the Naval Undersea warfare center in Newport, RI (~40 minutes from home). I will be...
  45. B

    Why Is Measuring Jupiter's Mass Using Its Four Largest Moons More Accurate?

    Homework Statement I've attached the lab sheets for the lab I am currently working on, and I am wondering if someone could help me with it. Homework Equations The Attempt at a Solution I am having difficulty with part two, steps 5-8. I have the slope from my excel graph 0.6458...
  46. P

    Physics Lab Question - High School

    In my introductory physics class in high school we did a lab on specific heat. We heated metals and placed them into cool water and observed the temperature change to find the specific heat of the metal. One of the questions on the lab puzzled me. - Why was the cool water purposely...
  47. T

    Physics Lab: what happens if we ignore gravity?

    So I did this lab: http://www.physics.ryerson.ca/sites/default/files/u11/exp/exppcs125/SHM.pdf Essentially, we have a mass that was attached to a vertical spring with as little friction as possible. We let the mass reach equilibrium and then we applied a force on the mass. The mass oscillated...
  48. H

    Physics lab practical (Centripetal Force)

    physics lab practical! (Centripetal Force) Homework Statement I need help to come up with a lab to figure out the centripetal Force of a cork as it rolls down the ramp. Homework Equations Fc=(mv^2)/rThe Attempt at a Solution i know that Fc= (mv^2)/r ,but i don't know if the velocity in the...