Richard Gnall

Physics 110 – Introductory Physics

Physics 110 is a one semester survey course covering a wide range of topics including measurements and unit systems, laws of motion, momentum and energy conservation, properties of matter, temperature and heat, and electricity and magnetism.

esa – Cassini-Huygens
European Space Agency Cassini-Huygens website.
Cassini-Huygens Mission to Saturn & Titan
California Institute of Technology / Jet Propulsion Laboratory Cassini-Huygens website.
NASA Cassini Mission
National Aeronautics and Space Administration Cassini-Huygens website.
NASA's Mars Exploration Program
National Aeronautics and Space Administration website for Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity, and the Global Surveyor satellite.
Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems / Nano Technology 
Cornell Nanoguitar
A playable guitar built by Cornell graduate student Keith Aubin with strings "150 by 200 nanometers in cross-section and ranging from 6 to 12 micrometers in length. The nanoguitar is played by hitting the strings with a focused laser beam."
Sandia National Laboratories Micromachines
"Imagine machines so small they are imperceptible to the human eye. Imagine working machines with gears no bigger than a grain of pollen. Welcome to the microdomain, in which Sandia National Laboratories is a leader in the development of micromachines or MEMS (MicroElectroMechanical Systems)."
Sandia National Laboratories Micromachines Image Gallery
Images of Bugs on Devices, Dynamometers, Gears & Transmissions, Indexing Motors, Linear Racks, Microengines, Mirrors, Optical Encoders/Shutters, Steam Engines, and Torsional Ratcheting Actuators.
Sandia National Laboratories Micromachines Movie Gallery
Movies of Bugs on Devices, Motors, Dynamic SEMS, Gear Chains, Mirrors, Linear Racks, Gears & Transmissions, Steam Engines and Optical Encoders/Shutters.
How to Grab an Atom
Using Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) to move atoms one by one.
The Legend of the Leaning Tower
A description and historical analysis of Galileo's experiments on the mass-independence of the acceleration due to gravity. Discusses astronaut David Scott's August 2, 1971 duplication of Galileo's famous experiment by dropping a feather and a hammer on the surface of the moon.
Apollo 15 Hammer-Feather Drop Movie (.mov 8.3 MB)
Audio-video of Apollo 15 astronaut David Scott performing Galileo's experiment on the Moon. From the Apollo 15 Hammer-Feather Drop Page.
Cornell Tsunami Simulation
Cornell University computer simulation of the Dec. 26, 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.
A larger 640X480 43MB QuickTime version can be accessed directly and saved to disk via this link. ("This will take several minutes to load even on a fast Internet connection.")
HyperPhysics tutorial on various aspects of friction. Of particular interest is the page on Friction Assumptions.
Momentum & Energy 
Physics Demonstration Videos
Conservation Laws videos in RealMedia (.rm) and mpg formats.
The Physics Classroom
Impulse-Momentum Theorem
Conservation of Momentum
Energy Concepts Primer
"Information about basic energy physics in a conceptually deep but mathematically simple way."
Energy and Momentum
Discussion of conservation of momentum and kinetic energy. Compares elastic to inelastic collisions and introduces the coefficient of restitution – e. Five examples are worked out.
The Nose Crusher
Videos (.wmv) of a swinging pendulum to demonstrate the conservation of energy.
High Speed Imaging at NCSSM
Take your time to fully explore all the pages in this website. The images are truly amazing. Direct links to just a small sample are given below.

Milk drop gif animation. From splash animation page.
Milk splash on a coin. From Class of 2000 portfolio.

Water drop gif animation. From the HSI at NCSSM home page.
High speed water splash videos (RealMedia).

Goooz ball collision gif animation. From 2004-2005 class trimester projects.
Goooz ball collision QuickTime movie clip. From Collision Studies - Photo Gallery.
Goooz ball collision collage. From Collision Studies - Photo Gallery.

Tennis ball colliding with a racquet. Part of a slide show of past projects.
Tennis ball forehand. From HiViz impact gallery.
Football punt. Part of a slide show of past projects.

Racquetball collision at 60 mph gif animation. From HiViz.
Racquetball collsion at 60 m/s image. From HiViz Capturing Images page.
Racquetball colliding with a wall (3 frames, .pdf 40KB). From Exhibition of High Speed Photography.
Racquet collision collage (12 frames). From the Producing Animations page of HiViz.
Racquet collision collage at .00025s intervals (24 frames). From NCSSM Racquetball collisions page.

Basketball and tennis ball combined collision collage. From Class of 2000 portfolio.

Links to many high speed photography galleries.
High Speed Photographs of Water Drop Splashes
From Andrew Davidhazy, professor of Imaging and Photographic Technology at the Rochester Institute of Technology. In addition to his collection of water drop splashes, additional picture collections can be found on his photographs page. Of particular interest are exhibits 3 and 7 of his High Speed, Schlieren and Photoinstrumentation Photographs.
Water Balloon Movies (QuickTime .mov)
2000 frame-per-second movies of falling water balloons, breaking bottles, and exploding firecracker filled fruit.
Movie 1 (1.2MB).
Movie 2 (1.1MB).
Movie 3 (1.3MB).
BitPress also has high speed movies of firing guns.
Popping Balloon Video (.mpg 6.51MB)
From Stanford University, High Speed Video Using a Dense Camera Array.
Stopping Time: The Photographs of Harold Edgerton
"A bullet seen the instant it explodes through an apple . . . a milk-drop splash transformed into a perfect coronet . . . a golf swing shown in a procession of exposures taken milliseconds apart some of the world's most famous photographs were taken by Harold Edgerton, the late MIT scientist who invented the electronic flash."
Exploring the Art and Science of Stopping Time — A CD-ROM Based on the Life and Work of Harold E. Edgerton
CD-ROM containing images and videos, a biography of Edgerton's life, and a virtual reproduction of "Strobe Alley", his laboratory at MIT, where users can reproduce many of his famous experiments.
Which Definition of Element is Correct?
Examples of incorrect definitions of the word "element" and teaching suggestions on the proper order of introducing the related topics of atoms, elements and isotopes.
What is an element?
Comparative discussion of modern and obsolete definitions of the word "element".
Gases, Liquids, and Solids
Animation comparing molecular motion in gases, liquids and solids.
Mechanical Properties of Metals
Techniques for testing the strength, ductility, reduction of area, hardness, and impact resistance of metals. From the "Key to Metals Knowledge Base", which contains a large number of articles about various metals and alloys.
Tensile Testing of Plastics
Photos of an extensometer used to test the tensile strength of various materials.
Hooke's Law
Java applet demonstrating Hooke's Law and the elastic limit.
Surface Tension and Capillary Action 
Soap and Surface Tension Video 1
3.5MB .mpeg movie showing how a small amount of soap reduces the surface tension of water and causes various floating objects to sink.
Soap and Surface Tension Video 2
1.1MB QuickTime movie showing how a small amount of soap reduces the surface tension of water and causes a surface layer of sulfur powder to sink.
(Sub) Surface Tension Demo
Image of a wire ring pushing up from below on the surface of a beaker of water. Shows that surface tension works in both directions - it can prevent objects which are denser than water from sinking and objects which are lighter than water from rising/breaking through the surface.
Capillary Action Demo
Four glass tubes of different diameter are connected at the base. Image shows how capillary action causes water to rise to varying heights.
Surface Tension
Explanation of surface tension from InfoPlease - The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia.
Surface Tension 2
Explanation of surface tension from HyperPhysics.
Capillary Action
Explanation of capillary action from InfoPlease - The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia.
Capillary Action 2
Explanation of capillary action from HyperPhysics.
Floating Coins
"Aluminum coins can be 'floated' on water. They are actually supported by surface tension. The coins will move together to form crystal patterns."
Water Strider 
Water Strider Pictures
Water strider pictures from the website of David L. Su, graduate student in mathematics at the MIT Fluid Dynamics Laboratory. Water sprinkled with Thymol Blue dye shows the dipolar vortexes created by the water strider in order to propel it forward.
What is Static Electricity?
Begins by explaining what an atom is and the difference between neutrons, protons and electrons. Gives the Triboelectric Series, which orders various materials by their tendency to give up electrons when in contact with other materials.
Theater of Electricity Van de Graaff Generator
Boston's Museum of Science Thomson Theater of Electricity houses the world's largest Van de Graaff Generator, capable of creating a 5 million volt discharge.
Robert Jemison Van de Graaff
Biography of Van de Graaff and explanation of how Van de Graaff generators work.
Back Yard Van de Graaff Generator Demonstration Video
Some guy running a Van de Graff generator out of his garage for his kid's birthday party. A hair raising event.
Electric Fields
Explanation of electric fields and electric and magnetic constants.
Simple Motor
How to make a simple motor out of copper wire, a magnet and a battery.
Clinical MRI Images
Angiography, head & neck, spine and extremity images from The Basics of MRI, a website by Joseph P. Hornak, professor of Chemistry and Imaging Science at the Rochester Institute of Technology.
How MRI Works
A discussion of the physics and technology of Magnetic Resonance Imaging. From How Stuff Works.