Course details

Physics

Year level

10–VCE

Duration

1–4 hours

Level

Advanced

Max students

20

Course details

Physics

INDUSTRY FOCUS AREA: All
VICTORIAN CURRICULUM LINKS: VCE Physics, Specialist Maths
TECHNOLOGY USED: Waves on a wire kit, lasers, optics kits, gravity carts and tracks, iPads and associated software

Introduction
What is light? This question has baffled physicists and scientists for hundreds of years. In the 19th century light was described as a wave travelling through a medium. Thomas Young’s famous double slit experiment provided strong confirmation of the wave model of light. In 1905 Einstein proposed that light consisted of small quanta of energy, later named photons. These two seemingly incompatible models are still used to describe the various characteristics of light and is often referred to as wave/particle duality.

Program Summary
In this program, students will investigate one of the following: What is Light? Students will investigate the properties of waves on a string. They will take measurements and create standing waves in a wire, modifying the arrangement to produce various harmonic oscillations. Students will then re-create Young’s experiment and determine the width of a single hair by measuring the separation of lines in an interference pattern. Kinematics Students will investigate the motion of a cart along an inclined track to gain an understanding of Newtons Laws and the relationship between parameters such as displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

Taking part in this program, students will collaboratively:

  • Conduct experiments and collect data
  • Analyse and graph real world data
  • Create models to describe observed phenomena
  • Reflect on learning

 

Career Links:
Engineers: Civil, construction, electrical, mechanical
Scientists: Chemists, physicists, biologists, sports scientists, environmental scientists, medical scientists