Light-Part 4 — June 10, 2017

Light-Part 4

For a basic introduction to this series of posts go to light part 1.

 

The Spectrum

 

The spectrum is the range of colours that are within white light. There are many different spectrums for different species, e.g. there are certain birds (such as the peregrine falcon) that can see ultraviolet light, whereas we humans cannot see UV or infrared light. This is all to do with the way we see light; in our eyes, different parts pick up different colours, and humans haven’t adapted to have those parts that see UV or infrared, we simply don’t need to. But birds, especially birds of prey have UV vision because it helps them to pick out their prey a lot easier. As Newton discovered, one of the easiest ways to show all the colours in the visible spectrum is to use a prism. He did this by shining a light at a glass prism: the light was separated by the triangle so that all the colours are separated. To prove this, there have been several experiments where there are two prisms and a light, and you can clearly see the separation and reformation of the colours in the light. Humans can only see what we call the visible spectrum, but there are many more colours out there that are undetectable to the human eye. There are only certain things that reflect ultraviolet light, and often can only be seen under UV.

Light-Part 4 — June 6, 2017

Light-Part 4

For a basic intro to this series, go to part 1.

How Does Light Travel?

At 300,000,000 metres per second of course! But there is more to it than that, for example, how does it bounce off things, and how does it come to be so fast, but venture no further fellow scientists!, for I have the answers! Wait a minute, google’s buffering so I haven’t got the answers yet but, um yeah. Anyway, when it is emitted from, well, wherever it is emitted from, it has so much energy that it just shoots out at the speed it does. If you can’t process that then think of it as a 5-year-old after having cookies, they have lots of energy, momentum and just go crazy before being absorbed by the wonders of Tom and Jerry. Except instead of the 5-year-old, think of tiny, nearly massless photons, and instead of the telly, think of our own eyes, and voila! You have the way light travels! But if you want the real science behind it, then read on! When hydrogen and helium and oxygen and nitrogen and carbon and all the other stuff in the sun react, they make really powerful reactions that send photons flying nearly as fast as virgin media broadband! Get your free membership today and be part of what we are claiming to be the fastest broadband in the UK and in the process for some reason comparing ourselves with Usain Bolt playing football in a garden! I mean come on virgin! But let’s get back on track ( get it? Usain is a runner, not a footballer so he should get back on the track!). The reactions are so powerful that they allow nearly massless particles to travel thousands of light years! The fact that they are nearly massless also explains why they don’t obliterate us when they hit our eyes, I mean imagine the 5 years running into you at that speed! Now that is what you call a timeout! Especially of they have lots of mass (if they fat). When photons do hit our eyes, they are processed by one of the parts of our eye and transmitted to the brain as signals which are why we see certain colours and whatever nonsense goes on, I mean physics and chemistry, please! But there is another reason that is not to do with the nature of our eyes – as you may know, light is white and can be split into every colour on the visible spectrum using Newton’s prism. And also, certain objects are certain colours, so absorb all light apart from the colour they are, so we only see the reflected light.

Light-Part 3 —

Light-Part 3

For a basic intro to this series of posts go to part 1.

MASS

Mass has a very different effect on light than it does to us, partly because photons have an immeasurably small amount of mass, and they are the fastest thing in the universe, but that is not to say that mass doesn’t affect light at all. As we know, black holes affect light by slowing it down and bending it, and black holes have lots of mass. But it isn’t just black holes that can affect light, thanks to the Schwarzschild radius, anything can affect light if you compress it enough (theoretically). But let’s not just repeat ourselves shall we? Well, why does mass create gravity? It is because all mass emits something called gravitons, tiny particles that are the physical form of gravity. The more mass an object has, the more gravitational pull it has. An example is, if you were to shrink the earth to the size of a tennis ball (NOT it’s Schwarzschild radius) the moon would actually stay in the same place moving at the same speed as last time. But if you were to move the moon close it would speed towards the tennis-ball-sized-earth and once it reached the surface the Earth the speed needed to escape the earth’s atmosphere would be close to light speed(not light speed or it would be a black hole).  

But why does it affect light, surely the principle of gravity involves the mass times the gravitational pull? So if the mass is so tiny, then surely the gravitational pull will have to be huge!? And yes, it does have to be, which is why only black holes and some other stuff with millions of billions of quintillions of kilogrammes of mass can affect the way light moves. Think of as if you had 1 pizza and 10000000 people, they would all get very small bits. You would have to have 10000000 pizzas for them to all get a pizza (sorry, it’s the best I could come up with). And even then, it doesn’t affect it too much. But if you were to look at a black hole, it would look really weird, with a big black bit in the middle, and everything else squished up close to it around it. This is because of the way the light is bent.

Light-Part 2 —

Light-Part 2

For a basic intro to this series of posts, go to part one of this.

Black holes

When someone says black holes they usually think of stars collapsing and a giant hole that is sucking the life out everything within a light year radius of it for all eternity, which is one way to think of it, but theoretically any mass can become a black hole if you compress it enough.The Schwarzschild radius (the size a certain mass needs to be to become a black hole) for the earth is 9mm.

But which is more dangerous,  a big one or a small one?

Well, surprisingly the smaller one would kill you faster, because of this thing called Hawking radiation, discovered by Stephen Hawking and the fact that if you were affected by the black hole, you would closer to the centre of mass than in the big black hole, but back to hawking radiation Ironically, the smaller the black hole is the more radiation it emits. This is because it emits more than it takes in, because of the interaction between antiparticles and particles that we won’t go into the hole, it emits masses of radiation, like in the hadron collider, but bigger, stronger and much, much more dangerous.

Because we were too lazy to research about it. I’ve been using a lot of “because” recently…

But anyway, yes a small black hole will kill you faster than a big one but the bigger one would do more destructive damage and they would both kill you In fractions of a second so it doesn’t really “matter”  Get it? Because we are talking about mass…

Me and my hilarious jokes.

I still remember the time I tortured Mr.James at the aquarium with puns. Also, how do stars throw parties?

They Planet…

Back to science…

Ok, I can’t help it…

Do you know why photons don’t get people to carry their luggage?

Because they’re always travelling “light”.

The way black holes got their name is because they suck in all light so it is completely black.

But that is not completely true, It is true the actual black hole is black, but around it is bright.

Really bright.

The reason for this is…

Tada!!!

Hawking radiation…

The bane of our lives. (I lied but I REALLY wanted to add that somewhere)

As radiation emits energy in the form of photons, or as we know it, light.

This means there is a constant source of light so there never will be no light.  Especially, if it is a small black hole as we talked about in the last section.

Light-Part 1 —

Light-Part 1

Hi everyone, my friend and I (link to his google plus page at the bottom) have been working on a document about light and I thought I should share it with you. It is quite long so I will split into several parts.

What Is Light?

Light travels as a transverse wave made of photons, which means it can travel through a vacuum, unlike sound. Photons are produced in one of two ways; they can be produced by Nuclear Transmission or can be created when antimatter comes into contact with matter (e.g. electrons and positrons). They travel in a straight line, although it can be reflected and bent. An exception to this rule is black holes: they have such a powerful gravitational pull that even things with as little mass as photons are bent by it. This also breaks the rule for the fact that light travels at the same speed (300,000,000 metres per second), and it does this in the same way as it abuses the principle of light travelling in a straight line.

Link to his google+ page

The States Of matter Part 2- More Features Of The Three States Of Matter — February 6, 2017

The States Of matter Part 2- More Features Of The Three States Of Matter

If you have not seen the first part of states of matter then please do, as it will inform you on the basics of the states of matter. In this post, I will be covering some more features and properties of the states of matter. These properties are, things like; does it flow, can you compress it and what formation are its molecules in (see the previous post for this particular question)? I have provided a link to a helpful image below to answer these questions.

solidliquidgas

Thank you for viewing this post, I hope you found it interesting and learned, if you did, then please leave a comment on what you learned, and if you have any suggestions then do the same. Bye!

Plasma — February 2, 2017

Plasma

Plasma. AKA the 4th state of matter. Plasma is a strange thing that is much rarer on our planet than the other three common states of matter (see my previous post for more information on the topic of the other three states of matter).To put it very simply, a plasma is an ionized gas, a gas into which sufficient energy is provided to free electrons from atoms or molecules and to allow both ions and electrons, to coexist. The funny thing about that is, that as far as we know, plasma is the most common state of matter in the universe.

Plasma is most often seen in a plasma ball on earth, where the ball is filled with a mixture of noble gasses with an electrode (an electrical conductor used to make contact with a part of the circuit, in this case, the glass globe, ball, or sphere, that is not metal) in the centre. Plasma is transmitted to the outer casing where electricity is supplied. Humans are electrical conductors so when we touch the glass there is more electricity on that spot, so the plasma is drawn to it, which is why when you touch the plasma ball, there are purple rods of plasma drawn to your hand.

If you read this, then I am going to do a riddle/puzzle based on plasma, so be sure to check that out! I hope you learned from this, and if you did, then please leave a comment on what you learned, or what you think I should do next! Bye!

Air and Water Resistance — January 31, 2017

Air and Water Resistance

Air and Water resistance are both forces that work in similar ways; they both slow down moving objects using the same principal. When a moving object is traveling through the air, it is his hitting air molecules all the time, which means that the object is being slowed down. Think of it like this; You are the object that is traveling and you are running through on obstacle course and every time you hit an obstacle you slow down or stop. It is exactly the same thing in real life but with air molecules instead of obstacles. The same goes for water resistance as well. In water, there are a lot more molecules so the object is being slowed down much more frequently than when it is traveling through the air. When a moving object accelerates, the air/water resistance increases. This is because when the object is moving quicker, it is hitting the molecules at a faster rate, which is how air and water resistance are measured, so it increases.

There is no such thing as solid resistance (in case you were wondering) because instead of slowing a moving object down, it would most likely stop it (depending on the object and the solid. E.g. a tennis ball would be stopped by an iron wall, whilst it would not be stopped by a paper wall). This is because the solids molecules are much more tightly packed and would slow down the object at a much faster rate, due to the same principle that air and water resistance use.

Thank you for reading this post, as always, I hope you learned from me and if you have any suggestions/improvements, I would appreciate it if you left a comment. Bye!

The States of Matter Part 1-What are the States of Matter? — January 29, 2017

The States of Matter Part 1-What are the States of Matter?

There are three main states of matter in our universe and they are solid, liquid and gas. Everything exists in these three states. A state can change depending on the temperature of the substance, but it will never be another state, other than the three mentioned (apart from plasma, which will be explained another time). All the states are different. They have different properties, uses, and functions, but no matter what the state, the substance will always be the same. Take water, for example, in its gas state it is water vapor/steam, in its liquid state it is water and in its solid state it is ice, but in all the states it is still a form of water. Let’s take a look at why they change.

The change between the solid and liquid states is called melting and it occurs at different temperatures depending on the substance. For water (H2O), the melting point is 0ºC, but for *Iron (Fe), it is 1538º C, because the bonds of Iron are far stronger than that of ice. The reason they change state is because when the molecules are heated, they gain thermal energy (they get faster because of the heat) and eventually go fast enough to break free of the bonds of the state and turn into a new one (This is because the molecules form new arrangements).This is why Iron has a much higher melting point than water; because the bonds are far harder to break than that of water. This change only occurs in melting and boiling/evaporating (the change from liquid to gas). The opposite also occurs; the substance can get colder and form bonds. Depending on the state they are turning into, the pattern of the molecules will change as shown below:734px-states_of_matter_en-svg

As a solid, the molecules of the substance are very close together and arranged in a regular pattern. This makes most solids strong and sturdy as the molecules are tightly bonded and harder to split than liquid and gas states. In a liquid state, the molecules of the substance are still tightly packed, but in a more random pattern where the bonds are weaker than that of a solid. As we can see, the different states have different patterns and arrangements of the molecules. In the gas state, the molecules are randomly arranged and far apart from each other. They whizz around very fast and often collide into each other. In the gas state, the molecules are not bonded.*

Thank you for reading, as always, I hope you learned from this post. If you have any suggestions for improvements then I would gladly appreciate it if you left a comment. I will aim to do part 2 for states of matter and possibly a post about plasma in a couple of weeks, but for now, bye!

*other properties of the states will be explained in other posts, but for now, I am trying to keep this post to a reasonable length.

Forces — January 27, 2017

Forces

No, don’t worry. I know what you’re thinking, but no. This is not turning into a star wars fan page. We are still in science, just on a new topic; forces. We might not notice it, but forces are always acting on us. From gravity to upthrust, friction to air resistance, we are always the subject of forces. But what is a force? A force is something that affects the direction or speed of an object. Whilst different forces have different ways of doing this, it’s something they all have in common. Another thing forces often do is change the shape of an object. The forces that are capable of such a thing are mainly contact forces, which will be explained in the next section. However, not all forces are capable of this.

There are often two main categories used to define a force; contact and non-contact forces (or rebels and dark side if you’re a star wars fan). If it is not clear enough already, a contact force is a force that involves contact with another object, and a non-contact force is something that does not. Push and pull are both contact forces as well as friction, upthrust and air and water resistance*. But there are only three non-contact forces and they are gravity/weight, magnetism, and static electricity.

Another force that is not noticeable and has no effect on us is the resultant force. It is the effect on the object that all the forces have added together and is calculated by subtracting the lesser force (in N) from the greater force. E.g. if a weightlifter is lifting a weight of 750N and is pulling upwards at a force of 755N then the bar will go upwards because that force is greater than the downward force exerted by the weight. In this case, the resultant force is 5 N going upwards.

Thank you for reading this article, I hope you learned from it, and if you have anything that you would like to add/suggest please leave a comment and I will take it into consideration.

*which I will be doing more on in the future

P.S. May the force be with you!