Funsize Fundamentals2020-03-16T12:48:00-06:00

FUNSIZE FUNDAMENTALS

Nope, we just can’t stop talking about all things physics! So get all Einstein with us and dive deep into more topics than your mind can hold (although we’re almost certain reaching brain capacity isn’t a thing).

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Researchers at IBM moved around iron atoms on a copper surface to spell out the Kanji characters for the word atom. Image courtesy of IBM.
Using STM to take pictures of atoms
You’re lining up your phone to take a picture of your dog. Light comes down from the sun, bounces off the dog, and into your camera lens, allowing you to take the photo. Your eyes work similarly, taking in all the light particles, known as photons, that are scattering off of objects in the world. Most things “see” by detecting these bouncing photons, which is why both you and your phone have a hard time seeing anything at all when the lights are off.

Scanning Tunneling Microscopy

11/10
Researchers at IBM moved around iron atoms on a copper surface to spell out the Kanji characters for the word atom. Image courtesy of IBM.
Researchers at IBM moved around iron atoms on a copper surface to spell out the Kanji characters for the word atom. Image courtesy of IBM.
Using STM to take pictures of atoms

You’re lining up your phone to take a picture of your dog. Light comes down from the sun, bounces off the dog, and into your camera lens, allowing you to take the photo. Your eyes work similarly, taking in all the light particles, known as photons, that are scattering off of objects in the world. Most things “see” by detecting these bouncing photons, which is why both you and your phone have a hard time seeing anything at all when the lights are off.

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This photon walks into a crystal . . .

12/19
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The photoelectric effect
by Xiaoshan Xu, Jocelyn Bosley

When light strikes a material, electrons may be ejected from the material. This is called the photoelectric effect, and it’s the basis for many different technologies that convert light energy into electrical energy to generate current. In addition, the photoelectric effect is useful to scientists studying novel materials.

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What is Surface Tension?

03/13
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From bubbles and droplets to cleaning our dishes, surface tension is an important force in our daily lives. But what is it really?

Surface tension is a somewhat peculiar force. Its effects are all around us, but since it tends to act at the scale of millimeters or smaller, we don’t always notice it. It’s critical, however, for many creatures smaller than us, from water-walking insects to star-nosed moles that sniff out food underwater. So what is surface tension and where does it come from?

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