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Homework Help: Help! Need SCIECE PROJECT IDEAS!

  1. Oct 28, 2004 #1
    Hi everyone:
    I really want to enter the new-york Intel ISEF fair with a project related to phyical science or math. I'm open to any ideas, but keep these rules in mind:

    - The project must be original research on a specific topic
    -It needs to be feasable on a small budget,although I can use the HIgh School lab if necessary

    I want to do something fresh, novel, intresting, and proffesional. :smile:

    Last edited: Oct 28, 2004
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 28, 2004 #2
    Make a volcano. For an extra little touch (you wanted it to be professional), add a little red food coloring to the vinegar/baking soda mixture. It'll WOW them! :-) jk...good luck with the sci fair though!
  4. Oct 28, 2004 #3


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    You could use Gravity Simulator (www.gravitysimulator.com) to do an experiment in celestial mechanics. If you have a laptop computer, your display could be the actual simulation displayed for the viewers. This will satisfy both the physical science and math part of your experiment. Gravity Simulator is a program I wrote. I recently used it to re-create an experiment about Sedna, an object almost as large as Pluto with a weird orbit.

    I read an interesting article on how Sedna got its weird orbit. Astronomers Alessandro Morbidelli and Harold F. Levison have suggested that it was once orbiting a brown dwarf that passed close to the Sun, and the Sun captured it. They set up an experiment where a 0.05 solar mass brown dwarf passes 200 AU from the Sun with an initial velocity of 1 km/s at infinity, and shows that the Sun captures approximately 44 % of everything orbiting the brown dwarf in the plane of the encounter.

    I recreated their experiment in Gravity Simulator. And they're correct... The Sun captured 8 of 20 test particles, with 2 of them in Sedna-like orbits in my recreation.

    Another student used Gravity Simulator to prove that our solar system has never been visited by another star system, by showing what would happen to the orbits of the planets if another star were to pass close to, or through the solar system.
    There's a few more ideas here:
  5. Oct 30, 2004 #4
    THanks a lot tony!
    I'll be looking into aplications and the relation to the n-body problem, one of the last great problems of classical physics, right?
    Cyrad2 - Your idea would be good for elmentary schoollers, but this is is a proffesional fair. When I went last year, very few projects even had displays (just posterboards and research papers), and those with displays did not do better then those without them.
  6. Oct 30, 2004 #5
    Calculate Planck's Constant. That is always fun!

    Remember PHYSICS IS PHUN!

    I did for my first year lab project and got it pretty accurate. 6.629etc e-34
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