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Accidental Discoveries
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This segment from Swift: Eyes through Time traces the history military officers and engineers discovering a strange phenomenon in the sky that astronomers now know are gamma-ray bursts.

Subject:
Astronomy
Chemistry
Physics
Material Type:
Lecture
Provider:
PBS LearningMedia
Provider Set:
Teachers' Domain
Author:
NASA
PA Space Grant
WPSU
Date Added:
11/30/2007
The Adventure of Physics - Vol. III: Light, Charges, and Brains
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CC BY-NC-SA
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This book is written for anybody who is curious about nature and motion. Curiosity about how people, animals, things, images and empty space move leads to many adven- tures. This volume presents the best of them in the domains of relativity and cosmology. In the study of motion – physics – special and general relativity form two important building blocks.

Special relativity is the exploration of the energy speed limit c. General relativity is the exploration of the force limit c4/4G. The text shows that in both domains, all equations follow from these two limit values. This simple, intuitive and unusual way of learning relativity should reward the curiosity of every reader – whether student or professional.

The present volume is the second of a six-volume overview of physics that arose from a threefold aim that I have pursued since 1990: to present motion in a way that is simple, up to date and captivating.

In order to be simple, the text focuses on concepts, while keeping mathematics to the necessary minimum. Understanding the concepts of physics is given precedence over using formulae in calculations. The whole text is within the reach of an undergraduate.

In order to be up to date, the text is enriched by the many gems – both theoretical and empirical – that are scattered throughout the scientific literature.

In order to be captivating, the text tries to startle the reader as much as possible. Read- ing a book on general physics should be like going to a magic show. We watch, we are astonished, we do not believe our eyes, we think, and finally we understand the trick. When we look at nature, we often have the same experience. Indeed, every page presents at least one surprise or provocation for the reader to think about. Numerous interesting challenges are proposed.

The motto of the text, die Menschen stärken, die Sachen klären, a famous statement by Hartmut von Hentig on pedagogy, translates as: ‘To fortify people, to clarify things.’ Clar- ifying things – and adhering only to the truth – requires courage, as changing the habits of thought produces fear, often hidden by anger. But by overcoming our fears we grow in strength. And we experience intense and beautiful emotions. All great adventures in life allow this, and exploring motion is one of them. Enjoy it!

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Textbook
Provider:
Motion Mountain
Author:
Christoph Schiller
Date Added:
02/20/2015
Anti-Gravity Mirror
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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In this demonstration, amaze learners by performing simple tricks using mirrors. These tricks take advantage of how a mirror can reflect your right side so it appears to be your left side. To make the effect more dramatic, cover the mirror with a cloth, climb onto the table, straddle the mirror, and then drop the cloth as you appear to "take off." This resource contains information about how this trick was applied during the making of the movie "Star Wars."

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Author:
California Department of Education
National Science Foundation
NEC Foundation of America
The Exploratorium
Date Added:
12/01/2012
Basic Physics Second Edition (Student Edition)
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CC BY-NC-SA
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4.0 stars

CK-12 Basic Physics - Second Edition updates CK-12 Basic Physics and is intended to be used as one small part of a multifaceted strategy to teach physics conceptually and mathematically.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Textbook
Provider:
CK-12 Foundation
Provider Set:
CK-12 FlexBook
Author:
Dann, James
Date Added:
03/20/2010
Beer's Law Lab
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
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The PhET project at the University of Colorado creates "fun, interactive, research-based simulations of physical phenomena." This particular one deals with Beer's Law. "The thicker the glass, the darker the brew, the less the light that passes through." Make colorful concentrated and dilute solutions and explore how much light they absorb and transmit using a virtual spectrophotometer! The simulation is also paired with a teachers' guide and related resources from PhET. The simulation is also available in multiple languages.

Subject:
Chemistry
Material Type:
Simulation
Provider:
University of Colorado Boulder
Provider Set:
PhET Interactive Simulations
Author:
Chris Malley
Emily B. Moore
Julia Chamberlain
Kathy Perkins
Kelly Lancaster
Date Added:
05/14/2012
The Beginnings of the Telescope
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Educational Use
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This animated essay from the NOVA Web site examines the design of Galileo's refracting telescope and Sir Isaac Newton's reflecting telescope.

Subject:
Engineering
Chemistry
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
PBS LearningMedia
Provider Set:
PBS Learning Media: Multimedia Resources for the Classroom and Professional Development
Author:
National Science Foundation
WGBH Educational Foundation
Date Added:
02/20/2004
Bending Light
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
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Explore bending of light between two media with different indices of refraction. See how changing from air to water to glass changes the bending angle. Play with prisms of different shapes and make rainbows.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Simulation
Provider:
University of Colorado Boulder
Provider Set:
PhET Interactive Simulations
Author:
Emily Moore
Kathy Perkins
Noah Podolefsky
Sam Reid
Trish Loeblein
University of Colorado at Boulder
Date Added:
05/09/2011
Benham's Disk
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CC BY-NC-SA
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In this optics activity, learners discover that when they rotate a special black and white pattern called a Benham's Disk, it produces the illusion of colored rings. Learners experiment with the speed of rotation and direction of rotation to observe varying patterns. Use this activity to explain to learners how our eyes detect color and how different color receptors in the eye respond at different rates.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Author:
California Department of Education
Don Rathjen
National Science Foundation
NEC Foundation of America
The Exploratorium
Date Added:
10/31/2012
Biology
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
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Biology is designed for multi-semester biology courses for science majors. It is grounded on an evolutionary basis and includes exciting features that highlight careers in the biological sciences and everyday applications of the concepts at hand. To meet the needs of today’s instructors and students, some content has been strategically condensed while maintaining the overall scope and coverage of traditional texts for this course. Instructors can customize the book, adapting it to the approach that works best in their classroom. Biology also includes an innovative art program that incorporates critical thinking and clicker questions to help students understand—and apply—key concepts.

Subject:
Life Science
Biology
Material Type:
Full Course
Provider:
Rice University
Provider Set:
OpenStax College
Date Added:
08/22/2012
Biology, Animal Structure and Function, Sensory Systems, Vision
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC
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By the end of this section, you will be able to:Explain how electromagnetic waves differs from sound wavesTrace the path of light through the eye to the point of the optic nerveExplain tonic activity as it is manifested in photoreceptors in the retina

Subject:
Applied Science
Life Science
Biology
Material Type:
Module
Provider:
Rice University
Provider Set:
OpenStax College
Date Added:
07/10/2017
Blackbody Spectrum
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
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How does the blackbody spectrum of the sun compare to visible light? Learn about the blackbody spectrum of the sun, a light bulb, an oven, and the earth. Adjust the temperature to see the wavelength and intensity of the spectrum change. View the color of the peak of the spectral curve.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Simulation
Provider:
University of Colorado Boulder
Provider Set:
PhET Interactive Simulations
Author:
Kathy Perkins
Michael Dubson
Wendy Adams
Date Added:
11/15/2007
Blacker Than Black
Read the Fine Print
Educational Use
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In this video adapted from NASA, two members of a NASA research team working to produce carbon nanotubes share some background behind this new technology, show examples of how it will be useful, and explain the various tests being performed to ensure readiness for spaceflight.

Subject:
Engineering
Education
Chemistry
Physics
Material Type:
Lesson
Provider:
PBS LearningMedia
Provider Set:
PBS Learning Media Common Core Collection
Author:
NASA
WGBH Educational Foundation
WNET
Date Added:
10/28/2011
Blue Sky
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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This activity provides instructions for using a flashlight and aquarium (or other container of water) to explain why the sky is blue and sunsets are red. When the white light from the sun shines through the earth's atmosphere, it collides with gas molecules with the blue light scattering more than the other colors, leaving a dominant yellow-orange hue to the transmitted light. The scattered light makes the sky blue; the transmitted light makes the sunset reddish orange. The section entitled What's Going On? explains this phenomena.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
11/06/2010
Bronx Cheer Bulb
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In this activity, learners observe what happens when they give a light source like a neon glow lamp a "Bronx Cheer." The lights appear to wiggle back and forth and flicker when learners blow air through their lips. However, learners will discover that the only thing vibrating is themselves. Use this activity to explore different forms of light as well as visual perception.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
06/13/2006
CD Spectroscope
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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Turn an old CD into a spectroscope to analyze light—you may be surprised by what you see. Try pointing your CD spectroscope at the fluorescent light in your room, sunlit clouds in the sky, even your friend’s colored shirt to reveal the wavelengths of light that mix together to create the color you see!

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
04/04/2019
Characteristics of Light: Light travels in a straight line
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CC BY-NC-SA
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This activity examines the characteristics of light. Students demonstrate that light travels straight and does not bend around an object.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Simulation
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Susanne Lee
Date Added:
08/16/2012