Thursday, November 10, 2011

Exam Review! YAYAYAY :)

Problem 13! Hooray!


Monday, September 19, 2011

Baking soda, bicarbonate of soda, nahcolite, sodium bicarbonate, sodium same thing

Welcome to another year of my fantastically amazing blog posts...

Today I will blow you away with beautiful explanations of both physical and chemical properties of baking soda.


OK, so, baking soda, bicarbonate of soda, nahcolite, sodium bicarbonate, sodium hydrogencarbonate... blah blah blah blah blah. It's all the same thing.
I knew that this substance reacts with a couple things, but once I read the long names I knew I had to try.
And, with these intriguing names comes quite a bit of intriguing information. Today, I'll just zone in on just the physical and chemical properties of baking soda.

Physical Properties: ...a characteristic that can be observed or measured without changing the identity of the substance 

Color- Easiest physical property to find, of course. All I had to do was look at it. Its a very interesting, blend of colors that not many people know of: white. Just plain and simple white. Baking soda doesn't have any variety of color anywhere, just white. 

It is the same color as this beautiful horse in the fields!

Taste- HORRIBLE. Taste, like color, is obviously a physical property because it doesn't change the identity of the substance, but it does require actually putting the substance into your mouth. I tasted it, and before I ran to the mouth wash and sink, I got to enjoy a nasty, powdery, salty taste in my mouth. Truly delicious. 
I made this face after tasting it.

Texture- Definitely a physical property; all I had to do was touch it, nothing else was changed. The way baking soda feels is very powdery with a couple chunks in it, but mainly just a powdery substances. If you hold it in your hand and blow into it, it will just blow away like dust. Very light and once again, powdery. 
Mmmmm, powdery.
Odor- Odor is given off by the substance, so therefore in order to see this property I don't have to change the substance, and therefore it is another physical property. There is no odor to baking soda. Using a wafting motion (SAFETY FIRST!) I didn't smell a thing. Then I got my nose really close that it left a nice white mark on the tip of it, but still I didn't smell a thing. Therefore, there is no odor (that is detectable by my nose). 
Take a look at this beautiful nose, simply beautiful.

Solubility- Most believe there are only chemical and physical properties, and they can not be shared, but when it comes to water and baking soda it is different. Solubility is a physical property because it keeps its identity, and just changes to a homogeneous mixture. With baking soda, it is soluble, it starts off kind of thick, but then it dissolves and creates a homogeneous solution with the water. 
Just mix 'em up, and WHABAM! It's soluble.

Chemical Properties: ...a substances ability to undergo changes that transform it into different substances, changes the identity 

Reaction with vinegar- This is the classic reaction that everyone thinks of when they think of vinegar. People think of when they were little and how they would make volcanoes using it. But, they never really knew what was going on down inside of the core of their little toy volcano. When the vinegar and baking soda combine, a chemical reaction occurs. We can see that it is a chemical reaction because of the fizzling, bubbling, and expansion occurring. The new gas that is also produce shows that it was most definitely a chemical change. 

Mmmmm, delicious

Reaction with hot sauce- I have the worlds hottest hot sauce that just sits in a cabinet at my house, so I thought, might as well give it a try. I knew that this had quite high acidity because it stings my mouth until I start to cry, and it worked! I put the hot sauce into the baking soda and it immediately started fizz and bubble like the vinegar. It didn't foam up huge like the vinegar, but it made the hot sauce expand a little and turn into a hot sauce/baking soda bubbly foam. Again, the bubbles creating a new gas immediately gives away that a chemical reaction was occurring. 

Look closely at the little bubbles.

Reaction with fire- I am a boy, so therefore I LOVE FIRE. And I REALLY wanted this baking soda to explode or something or at least flame a little, but I was let down. I kept trying and trying to get the baking soda to blow up or something, but nothing ever happened... It was quite a sad moment. But, the more important part here is realizing that flammability is a CHEMICAL property, and not a physical property. Flammability is chemical because it is irreversible, it is producing a new substances, whether it is ash or gas, and it can not be changed into what ever substance it was previously.

Reaction with water- When I checked for solubility, I let the mixture dissolve all the way down to nothing over time. But, at the beginning, if looked at very closely, bubbles are produced. There are little bubbles (if you can see them in the picture), and this hints a chemical change. Now, the important part to this chemical property though is understanding why it is a chemical property. Most believe that it is just dissolving, but when these bubbles are released, a new gas is being produced, and when a new gas is produced, the chemical ID is changing. Therefore, it is chemical. Baking soda is one of the few substances that can have a shared physical and chemical change so it is important to understand the two differences. 

Reaction with deli pepper juice- I found some lovely and delicious deli peppers in my refrigerator and decided to give it a try. They were sitting in their juice for a while and I thought that due to the acidity of this juice we could see a cool reaction. And a cool reaction was what I got. I poured a pepper along with its juice into the baking soda and it made a big bubbly reaction. Also, it turned a little green which was cool. The bubbles created some sort of new gas, which I don't know exactly, Ill just make a new element called Pj (Pepper Juice) so it created CO2PJ! (SEE OH TWO PEE JAY). Catchy? But in all seriousness, because of this color change combined with the bubbles creating a new gas it was obvious that a new chemical property was found. 
Nasty, but interesting...

Ladies and Gentleman, that concludes this magnificent blog post. Although pouring things together may seem simple to most, this experiment actually taught me quite a bit. At first I sat down baffled on what to do and what to try, but as I read through the chapter about these chemical properties I started to hatch ideas. I started to relate different substances and their chemical properties which then lead me to see that they would react with baking soda. It amazed me how much I could do with such simple ingredients. Little things were able to teach me a lot about chemistry and chemical and physical properties. It was a fun thing to do, and I can't wait to do larger scale tests that require real acids, elements, compounds, etc. (maybe even fire)!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Get Connected, For Free! With DC Connections!

          A DC Circuit, otherwise known as a Direct Current Circuit, can be either in series or parallel, or in super FUN combinations, COMPLEX!!! It is driven by a Direct Current. All of the electrons in this current flow through the circuit in one constant direction. The path of these electrons is changed depending on the type of circuit, series or parallel. There is also voltage from the batteries, and using this voltage combined with the resistors you can find the current. The current also requires a conductor, which is the wire, and a resistor, the light bulb.

          In a series circuit, all of the electrons flow through the resistors. As you can see in the diagram, the electrons are all in one path and do not split onto any other paths. The current through the series circuit is the same at all points along the wire. There is the voltage provided by the batteries, and, if the light bulbs resistances were not equal, then the voltage across each would vary. But since the resistors are the same, the voltage is the same. And as the resistance increases when more bulbs are added, the current decreases. More importantly,  since the current runs through the resistors, if one resistor is removed the whole circuit goes out. 

Parallel Circuit
          In a parallel circuit, each resistor provides a new path for the electrons to flow through. In the diagram, the electrons meet at the parallel circuit, and then split into two paths. The voltage across each resistor in a parallel circuit is equal to the voltage total. Again, in this case, the resistors are equal so the current through each resistor does not vary, but the total current is the sum of the currents through each resistor. If the resistance did vary in each light bulb, then you would just use the same process to find each current and add them to find the total current. When there is more resistance, the current decreases because the resistance total still increases. But, a very important difference from series in this circuit is that even though one bulb is removed, the circuit still works.

Complex Circuit

          In a complex circuit, it is a combination of series and parallel circuits. The first bulb is in series so it’s current is equal to the total current. The current through the parallel circuit is the same as the total as well, but it is split into both legs. This is demonstrated by the magnitude of the light beams. The voltage in the series resistor is found using the current and the resistance. After finding the voltage across the series resistor , you can just subtract that from the total voltage to find the voltage across the parallel resistors. The total resistance is found by splitting each leg up: you find the total resistance in the parallel portion, then add it to the total resistance of the series light bulb. If the resistance varies in the parallel portion, then the voltage will vary across each, but still in total it will be equal to the left over voltage. If I were to take out the top lightbulb in the parallel circuit, the circuit would still continue but the bottom bulb would be much lighter, and vise versa with the other bulb. But, if I were to take out the bulb in series, the whole circuit would turn off because it breaks the circuit. So, even though it is a ‘complex’ circuit, if broken up it’s pretty easy to just take the two previous concepts and combine them.

Well, that's it for the blog guys. It's been a great year in physics and I will miss this class. Thanks Mrs. Gende for all of the fun projects and fun concepts, you helped me learn alot!

So long blog...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Amusement Park Prezi!!!

Team 4 Sports Illustrated Log Ride:

          After hours, days, and weeks of work, our project is finally done, and it is a success. The boat runs down the whole track nicely, and all of our physics worked out nicely. I feel like we succeeded in this project very greatly. We were able to make a pile of pipes into such a great ride, with flowing water, and a ton of physics involved. I feel like I got a lot out of this project physics wise and it was a ton of fun to do! See the Prezi to understand our project a little more in depth, if you really want in depth: check out our team page!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Pool of Physics

A Pool of Physics
 Contrived Photo Demonstrating Waves and Energy
                This contrived photo demonstrates the concept of waves. I call this photo “A Pool of Physics”. Using an eyedropper, I dropped a single drip of water into a pool of water creating waves. The physics behind this photo has to do with energy and waves. The energy from the water drop is transferred into the pool of water creating the shockwave. As the drop comes down to the pool of waters surface, it has potential gravitational energy and kinetic energy. As it hits the water, this energy is transferred to create a shock wave. The wave originates where the drop of water makes contact, and then moves away towards the outer edges of the pool of water. By dropping the water and getting both its impact and the waves it creates in the same image helps demonstrate two physics concepts that could be quite confusing, but this example clearly physically explains these concepts. All in all, photography, in this case, has greatly helped clarify a concept by relating it to reality.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Electromagnetic Spectwhat???

     Ok, now, the ELECTROMAGNETIC SPECTRUM is quite a "mouth-full" to say. And, quite a "brain-full" to learn (I'm so funny!). Ok, but. When you hear this long tongue twister, you are thinking WHAT THE HECK? But now, after looking at it in detail, it just is a name for a group of waves, more specifically, it is a name given to different types of radiation. Radiation is energy that travels and spreads out as it goes. So, the energy in these waves is not concentrated in a little specific spot, the energy "shares the love" to places around it. But very importantly, these waves travel through a vacuum. A medium does not have to be supplied for these waves, just keep that in mind. So, before I dive deep into the wonders of X-rays and radio waves, ill tell you the waves in the electro magnetic spectrum, in order from lowest energy to highest energy. They are: Radio waves, Microwaves, Infrared, Visible light, Ultraviolet, X-rays, and Gamma rays. Otherwise those words in the picture above ^.

Poor guy... :(
     When you break a bone, or shoot a nail through your skull... you go to the doctor to get an X-ray. They swipe this machine over your body and bam! a picture of your bones comes up. We neglect to think about the true science behind this, but do not fear, for I am about to explain this phenomenon to you. X-rays can be used in many ways. They are mostly used for your bones. By putting an X-ray sensitive film on one side of your body and shooting the rays through you, the bones absorb the rays and the shadows are left on the film. You would think that it is almost just a transparent picture of your body, but there is some real science behind it. Also, X-ray's can be used to discover knowledge in space. To study the inside of the sun, we use an X-ray detector and therefore it lets us map this enormously hot thing and we are able to dive into the crazy aspects of space objects. Using X-rays in the doctors office and out in the middle of the universe detecting black holes and the energy of the sun (no big deal, it is just black holes, you know, that thing that will absolutely DISSOLVE YOU INTO SPACE!!!) are just the regular ways that these waves are used in our lives, but, there is some crazy science behind these waves. X -ray's have a frequency of 5000000000000000 Hertz, or 5x10^15 Hertz, and a wavelength of .03 to 3 nanometers (3x10^-11 meters to 3x10^-9 meters), so small, that they are not bigger than a SINGLE ATOM!!! This sets them as second to last on the Electromagnetic energy scale. So, it is pretty crazy to think that such a small thing has such a large application in human life. X-rays are really interesting in the Electromagnetic spectrum. To think that a wavelength is smaller than an atom truly blows my mind. We cannot see these things or feel them, but they are produced by machines on earth, and naturally in space. It is quite a phenomenon and it has a lot of meaning on the earth. But now, to move onto something that might intrigue us teenagers a little bit more. RADIO WAVES!

    We always listen to music and we are always tuning our radio, but what are we actually tuning? Again, we continue to use this crazy thing but never understand it. Well, we are adjusting the frequency and then the waves are converted into our speakers and our music is played! But, a radio is a very simple part of radio waves, radio waves are also found in the solar system. Astronomical objects that have a changing magnetic field produce radio waves. Scientists have found records of radio emissions in the solar system, so like x-rays, this is produced both by man and naturally in nature. Since radios are produced both by man and by man different things in the solar system, there are many different wave  lengths and frequencies. There is the LONG WAVE which is about 1 to 2 kilometers in wavelength. There is the MEDIUM WAVE which is about 100 meters in wavelength. There is also VHF which is very high frequency which has wavelengths around 2 meters. And, there is UHF frequency which has wavelengths less than a meter! But, the crazy thing is that in space, these waves can get enormously long. So with this wide range of wavelengths and frequencies, it allows us humans to use radio waves in many different ways. It really is interesting how many ways these waves can be used.

Well... That's it for the ELECTROMAGNETIC SPECTRUM!!! Hope you enjoyed the SUPER IN DEPTH AMAZING analysis of those two waves. That's it that's all folks!


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Energy, "The Big Bucks"

          I woke up at five in the morning. Chugged me a RedBull, and prepared. Put on my shirt, jacket, pants, head cover, gloves, and all. I was all camo’d up and ready to roll. And as I walked out, I grabbed my new, Mathews Z7 Xtreme bow. Got the arrows all ready, grabbed my pack, and headed out. It was about a twenty-minute drive to the stand, my dad let me off a couple hundred yards away. I walked to the stand with my bow, climbed up into the tree, and waited for deer to show up. And as I was sitting there for hours on end in the dark, I began to fall asleep into a dream… about PHYSICS. In this dream, I was sitting in my stand waiting, but it was daytime now. A big huge buck of a lifetime, with 10 big long points, stepped out. I drew my bow back and then the dream froze. I knew that if I pulled this back and let go the arrow would fly and hit the deer, but I wondered how it works. Then, a certain person came to me in my dream; it was Mrs. Gende, the physics wizard. She explained to me this thing called ENERGY, and the CONSERVATION OF ENERGY. It was really interesting to learn about this “CONSERVATION OF ENERGY”. It helped me understand the true mechanics behind my bow.
          Now that I have woken up from this fantasy world of hunting, I understand what the conservation of energy is. One could think that it is quite confusing to find certain variables in an energy statement. But, once you learn that in conservation of energy that the initial and final energies are equal, it is quite easy. So, in this situation, if friction is negligible and my height is zero, we have both a initial and final energy chart. The initial is the bow at full draw (pulled all the way back), and the arrow in motion. There’s a lot to this concept so here’s a little thing to help you out.


Sunday, January 16, 2011

UCM Reflection!

In this unit we learned about UNIFORM CIRCULAR MOTION, or UCM. I learned about UCM in many different ways. We started out with easy stuff like the circumference and period, and then moved to a little more complicated things. We learned about the frequency, the tangential to the circle, the centripetal acceleration, the centripetal force requirement, and centripetal force. Ok, so, starting with the basics. UCM is the motion of an object with a constant (uniform) speed. For UCM to be possible, the object must be moving in: 1- A perfect circle where the radius does NOT change, and 2- with constant speed. Now for the parts of UCM. The circumference of the circle is the distance around the circle and the period is the time of one rotation in seconds. So if the circumference is 2πr and the period is T, you can conclude that v=2 πr/T. But, that is just the velocity. I also learned about the frequency which is f=1/T. The frequency is the number of revolutions per unit of time, and the unit is Hz. Now back to the velocity, even though in UCM the speed is constant, the direction changes. So the magnitude of the velocity remains the same but not the direction. And, the direction of a circle can be very confusing, so the way to find the direction is by finding the tangential to the circle. Now for another part of UCM, there is the centripetal acceleration. Centripetal means towards the center, so if the velocity is tangential to the circle, then the acceleration must be perpendicular in order for it to be towards the center. The centripetal acceleration is ac=v2/r. And last of all, we can find the centripetal force. There are many different centripetal force requirements; it can be tension, gravity, friction, and others depending on what the situation is. This requirement keeps the object moving in a circle. But, whatever different force the requirement is, you still use Fc=mv2/r. As you can see, in the equation, everything is related. The velocity equation is used to find the acceleration, and then the centripetal force equation is the acceleration equation with mass added to it. So everything I learned in this unit is all related to the end result of the centripetal acceleration.
            What I have found difficult about this unit is mostly the conceptual problems. I can do everything that is with numbers, but on the conceptual problems I can get kind of lost. I just feel like I have trouble understanding the science behind all of these parts of UCM, but when but into the context of a problem, I understand them perfectly. It’s hard to explain but I tried to give an idea.
            My problem skills have definitely been enhanced during this unit. I put a lot of effort into trying to understand more about circles. I have never really been good with circles but since we did labs and because of the demonstrations on the PowerPoint’s, I understand it much better. I never knew that you could relate the sizes of circles to time which then gives you velocity. I felt that distance in a circle, the time around a circle, and velocity would NEVER relate. But now with the equation v=2 πr/T, I now get it. I kept trying and trying the problems, and after all of that effort, I now understand all of the relations in UCM. I’m very good at solving for equations that require substitution such as substituting all of the equations into the net force equations on the vertical circle problems. If Ft=Fg, and Ft=Fc, but there was also a missing variable, I was able to find cancellations and eventually cancel out the missing components until I found the correct answer. And, like I said earlier, my weakness was in the conceptual parts. I was just kind of lost in those places. But now after the test, I understand what I did wrong and I’m working on fixing it. I now get why the speed is constant and the velocity isn’t. IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW!!!
This Unit was really interesting and different than anything I’ve ever learned about circles. I hope to learn more about it and I hope I can use it to help me in other units!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Who You Gonna Call? Mythbusters! BUM BUM BUM BUM

In this lab, we decided to make physics extra extra fun... By using Mythbusters, my group had to bust two myths. It was a challenge, but in the end, victory was ours. We busted those bad boys. Now watch and learn.

Myth 1: An object always moves in the direction of the net force exerted on it.

First Reaction: This isn't required to write this but it is interesting. At first, when you look at the myth you think "uhh duhhh..." because your mind immediately thinks of a force applied. But, once you start analyzing this experiment and taking all of the other forces into the equation your mindset changes.

Prediction: If an object always moves in the direction of the net force exerted on it, then, by hitting the ball in the air it will prove it wrong because the net force is negative and the ball continues to move in a positive direction.

Procedure: Now, this was not the most complicated thing ever. All I had to do was hit the baseball up in the air. While I hit, Matt recorded, and then we analyzed the recording in order to see if our prediction was correct.


Equations for when I hit the ball:

Equations for after I hit the ball:

Outcome: Now, the myth states that an object always moves in the direction of the net force exerted on it. But.... it doesn't. Let's take a look. The ball is moving up and away from me after I hit it. If you were to pause the video after the ball leaves my bat you would see that air resistance and gravity are both in a negative direction. So, if the myth is true, my ball would be moving right back at me to hit me in the head. But, thank goodness, it did not hit me in the head. The ball continued up, positive, and away from me, positive. So, by comparing the FBD's to the video it is clearly shown that even though the net force is negative, the ball is moving in a positive direction. BUSTED!

Myth 2: An object always changes its motion if there is a force exerted on it by other objects.

First Reaction: Your first reaction when you see this myth is puzzling. You are trying to think of a way to bust it, but you are over thinking it. All you have to do is think simple. Most people would think about pushing a wall or something like that, but all you have to think about is simply a tennis ball being hit by a string. Just something small. Now let's see what we did.

Prediction: If an object always changes its motion if there is a force exerted on it by other objects, then, by having me run into Blaine, we will prove it wrong because my motion continues in the same direction.

Procedure: Again, quite an easy procedure. All I do is run into Blaine while Matt records the video. Then we analyze our video and decide if it is busted.


Equations as I hit Blaine:

Outcome: Ok, so, this myth states that an object always changes its motion if there is a force exerted on it by other objects. In our lab, I was the object in motion, and Blaine was the other object exerting a force on me. I was running at him, and then as I made contact the force applied from him was exerted on me. But even though he was applying a force on me, I continued in the same direction. So our lab straight up proves this lab busted. Another object exerted a force on me and my motion continued in the same direction. Myth number 2.... YOUR BUSTED!

Conclusion: We busted both of these myths. We know that they are definitely not true in every situation because in our experiments, they were wrong. But, if we did not bust the myth, it wouldn't necessarily mean that the myth is true. To prove something true, there must be no possible wrong scenarios, and with only one test you could not prove it 100% true.
Like I said earlier, everyone, even I, had first impressions of these myths. In myth 1, you're going to assume of course that if the net force is positive the object moves in a positive direction and if it is negative then a negative direction. It just sounds right if you don't sit down and think about all of the factors, you must know what is going on with the object at all time and that the net force is not always the same. The net force in an objects motion may change, and the motion may change. So, you cannot just eyeball this myth and assume that it is true. As for the second myth, I believe that the only reason why this myth could be misunderstood is just because of the way we live today. We will compare this myth to car wrecks or running into walls (hopefully nobody has run into a wall lately). For this myth you have to think of a scenario where it is big object versus little object or strong object versus weak object because sometimes, this myth can be correct, but it is not always, because we BUSTED it. Busting both of these myths was really fun. I enjoyed proving these easily misunderstood concepts wrong. It helped me understand why people seem to misunderstand it, and now I have enough knowledge to explain to people why this myth is untrue.

Well... that is it for this episode of Mythbusters. So next time there are some physics myths... WHO YOU GONNA CALL? MYTHBUSTERS!!!!