ie-Physics

Science instruction for independent study without a well equipped school science laboratory.  Read more about ie-Science.

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Introduction

Today most scientists work in teams.  But there have always been scientists who, for a variety of reasons, worked alone.  Likewise there are many reasons why learning science as part of a team is superior to learning alone.  But occasionally the advantages of working with others is not possible or practical.  The following is a guide to assist anyone who wants to learn physics despite the handicap of isolation.

To learn physics alone will occasionally involve some risks, although probably less than learning other sciences in isolation.  The student (and parents of minors) must decide if the benefits justify the risks of working alone.  If at any point either now or in the future you are unwilling to accept the risks, DO NOT PROCEED with the experiment.

The content is presented in linear progression with vocabulary, ideas, skills, and understanding built from one experiment to the next.  However this format allows anyone to selectively use parts fitting their interests or need.  If selected content seems confusing, it might help to review any previously skipped content.  Each experiment attempts to embed relevant vocabulary, ideas, and history.  It is intended that any reasonably bright and capable person interested in the topic, competent in the English language, and having available a computer (and sometimes a printer) should be able to successfully perform each experiment with easily collectable materials.  But if any difficulty is encountered, please send a description of the difficulty to the author via the link at the foot of every page.

internet-based experimental Physics
Table of Contents

(corrections, expansions, and revisions continue)
    forward
Motion
Experiment I-1: Real change?
    Why Learn Science
    Writing Formal Reports
    Summary & Practice of Fundamental Skills
Experiment I-2: Free Fall
    Graphs: Reading the Lines
Experiment I-3: Acceleration Due to Gravity
    Significant Figures: Imperfect Measurements
    Summary & Practice of Kinematics
Experiment I-4: Newton's Laws
    Summary & Practice of Dynamics
    Another useful math tool: Vector Analysis
    force analysis: components, parallel...
    more analysis: projectile, circular, harmonic
Astronomy and the Scientific Process
Experiment II-1: Sky Observations
Experiment II-2: First Explanations
Experiment II-3: Measuring the Earth's Size
Experiment II-4: Distance to the Moon
Experiment II-5: Remote Measurement of Piton
Experiment II-6: Determine Earth's Orbit
Experiment II-7: Plot Mar's Orbit
Experiment II-8: Comet's Orbit Using Gravity
    Summary & Practice: Astronomy
Experiment II-9: Analysis of Star Chemicals
Experiment II-10: Clues from the Past
Experiment II-11: Einstein's Gravity
Experiment II-12: Dark Energy
Experiment II-13: Intelligence Elsewhere?
Experiment II-14: Protecting Earth
Experiment II-15: Cosmic Rays
Mechanics
Experiment III-1: Mass is Conserved!
Experiment III-2: Motion (momenta) is Conserved
    Summary & Practice for Momenta
Experiment III-3: Vectors of Momenta
Experiment III-4: More Conservation: Energy
Experiment III-5: Potential Energy Needed
    Summary & Practice: Work, Power, Energy
Experiment III-6: Temperature
Experiment III-7: Calorimetry: Measuring Heat Energy
    Summary & Practice: Thermal Energy
Experiment III-8: Behavior of Gases
    Summary: Heat Engines & Entropy
Experiment III-9: Waves: Speed of Sound
Experiment III-10: Water Waves: 2-D
    Summary & Practice: Waves
Experiment III-11: Wave Applications
Experiment III-12: Gravity Waves?
Experiment III-13: Matter at Extreme Conditions
Experiment III-14: Dark Matter
continued next column
Light and Electromagnetism
Experiment IV-1: Virtual Image
Experiment IV-2: Refraction
Experiment IV-3: Curved Mirrors & Lenses
Experiment IV-4: Color
    Summary & Practice: Light
Experiment IV-5: Energy Waves & Polarity
Experiment IV-6: Electric Charge
Experiment IV-7: Coulomb
Experiment IV-8: It's the Volts
Experiment IV-9: Current
Experiment IV-10: Magnetic Fields
Experiment IV-11: Induction
Experiment IV-12: Broadcasting
Experiment IV-13: Paradox of Special Relativity
Experiment IV-14: General Relativity & Frame Dragging
Atomic Physics
Experiment V-1: Ancient Foundations: Alchemy
Experiment V-2: Revolution: Art to Science
Experiment V-3: Challenge of Ratios
Experiment V-4: Electrical Connections
Experiment V-5: Repetitious Patterns
Experiment V-6: Weighing a Spark
Experiment V-7: Electrons from Bright Light
Experiment V-8: X-rays, Radioactivity & Atomic Structure
Experiment V-9: Spectra Patterns and Bohr's guess
Experiment V-10: The Prince and Morphed Reality
To Chemistry Experiments Menu
Nuclear Physics & Elementary Particles
To Radiation Experiments Menu
Experiment VI-1: Reverse of X-Rays?
Experiment VI-2: Radiation Source
Experiment VI-3: What is Radiation?
Experiment VI-4: Element Transformations
Experiment VI-5: Artificial Decay
Experiment VI-6: Elementary Particles
Experiment VI-7: Binding Energy
Experiment VI-8: Missing Energy
Experiment VI-9: Standard Model
Splash of Engineering (newly developing section)
Experiment VII-1: Modeling Beach Erosion
Experiment VII-2: Understanding Boat Wakes
Experiment VII-3: Transport of Beach Material
Experiment VII-4: Optimizing Boat Design

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menu created 15 January 2003
counter added 29 January 2007
latest revision 6 February 2008
by D Trapp
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