questions concerning measurements, experiments, and activities that demonstrate physics and are safe to do at home, require at most one tool or ingredient not readily available, and can be interpreted or analyzed on one sheet of paper with accessible math.

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6
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2answers
1k views

How to calculate air velocity in a fan?

How to calculate air velocity in a fan and what data should I know ? So if I have a fan motor, fan blade and a battery, what data should I get from these items ? I think I will need to know the ...
-4
votes
0answers
39 views

Compute Speed of an Object when moving on a circular arc?

Consider the following figure: An iPhon is moving on a circular arc from point A to point B. The radius of the orbit is f. Consider the case that a men stands and holding his arm horizontal to the ...
1
vote
1answer
170 views

Does the termination point(level) influence water flow from a pipe

I get water to my home from a nearby Tank A at a certain height above ground level. I have a 1" pipe through which I get this water to my home.. I leave this water into my well by connecting a 1" tube ...
0
votes
0answers
11 views

how can I compute the temperature of a metal (iron / steel) rod when a current is applied?

I would like to compute something like $T(j,l,R)$ where $T$ is the temperature of the rod, $j$ the current, $l$ the lenght of the rod and $R$ the radius of the rod. there is any difference if the rod ...
2
votes
1answer
30 views

Filming light in slo mo

So I was thinking of a cool video I could make when I thought of filming a video of me turning on a light. I thought that if you film yourself turning on a light and slo mo that video enough times ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

1 Tesla electromagnet?

Is it possible to create a powerful electromagnet at home? With use of a ferromagnet it seems so... Using the following formula: $B(Tesla)= k\mu_0nI$. I understand some ferromagnet's like iron could ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

Is it viable or possible to make your own transistor?

Just wondering if it is possible/viable to construct your own transistor, not small like todays, but the same scale as the one created at Bell Labs.
3
votes
1answer
216 views

What is the simplest way to perform a Cavendish experiment?

The Cavendish experiment is cool, but seems complicated to experimentally perform. What is a simple way to recreate the experiment?
1
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1answer
395 views

How can one explain the Kelvin Water drop experiment without assuming the container to already possess a positive charge?

Kelvin Water Dropper experiment refers to the electrostatic generator invented by Lord Kelvin, which uses falling water to generate a voltage by electrostatic induction occurring between ...
0
votes
1answer
189 views

How to prove R value for insulation?

I ran some tests on different types of insulation. I heated water, and placed it into an insulated box. The temperature was recorded every minute, for the water, as well as the air. The insulation ...
2
votes
3answers
609 views

Can you punch a hole in an A4 sheet of paper with your hand?

The heading says it all, but let me explain it a little further. Suppose you hang a sheet of paper (A4 size) from one end leaving the other end free. Now practically it seems impossible to punch a ...
0
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2answers
87 views

Charging a capacitor using a capacitor?

I recently did an experiment using a fully charged capacitor (assumed) and charged a separate capacitor through fixed resistor. We measured the potential difference of the capacitor being charged. We ...
9
votes
2answers
179 views

Self Stirring Boiling Liquid

A couple of weeks ago, a friend and I were brewing a new batch of beer. We boil our wort in a turkey fryer. Pretty standard setup for beginners. Anyway, our wort was getting pretty close to boiling ...
2
votes
1answer
26 views

Common CCDs and photons

Is it possible to capture single (refracted?) photons with a CCD in a typical digital camera? Are these more likely due to coatings, etc? I have minimal knowledge of physics, but am curious.
2
votes
1answer
300 views

How does the speed of a DC motor depend on the size of the coil?

I have to build a simple electric motor by attaching a magnet to a battery, extending the terminals of the battery (with stiff wires so they could act as supports), and placing a coil of wire on top ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

Homemade particle accelerator

Watching a documentary, I heard Michio Kaku telling that when he was young, he built a home-made particle accelerator. What I would like to know is if I, myself can do so? And how?
-1
votes
1answer
564 views

How much pressure is needed to break an egg if applied from top and bottom?

Everybody knows that you can't break an egg with our fingers when pushing from top and bottom. I assume if we could squeeze hard enough the egg would break?
1
vote
1answer
33 views

Why covering our nose with a cloth or nose mask reduces stale smell?

Whenever there is a stale smell in air, we tend to use a cloth(maybe a handkerchief) instantly to get away with it. Why does a cloth or a mask reduce the intensity of a stale smell? Are the "smell" ...
2
votes
3answers
10k views

About an upside down cup of water against atmosphere pressure

There is an experiment we learned from high school that demonstrated how atmosphere pressure worked. Fill a cup of water and put a cardboard on top of it, then turn it upside-down, the water will not ...
0
votes
1answer
96 views

How can I estimate the cooking time of a roast?

I never remember what worked before, or to write it down someplace. In any case the size and starting temperature will vary. The instructions I learned from refuse to give a time at all, and the ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

Potential energy from opposing magnets repelling each other with a gap of 1 mm

I have two powerful rare earth magnets, that are separated by a distance of 1 mm. I applied energy to bring them closer to each other, hence increasing the potential energy. Now, when one of the ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

Atmospheric pressure experiment using a cup with a fluid to hold a glass plate

When I was in high school, my teacher did an experiment to show the power of atmospheric pressure. Experiment: Prepare a glass bottle, fill with water, put a glass plate on the bottle, make sure ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

Patterns in laminar flow of tap water

This is a simple experiment that anyone can do at home. Open your tap so that the water maintains a laminar flow, and the cross section of flow is considerably thin. Place your finger 3-4 cm below the ...
0
votes
0answers
52 views

Making a bright beam of artificial white light

For educational purposes, is there a way to make a narrow bright beam of white light without much equipment and without using the sun as the source? The collimated beam should be about 2 mm wide for ...
1
vote
2answers
65 views

What happens when both of Polarizing filter in LCD screen are Horizontal

What would be the result if we replace the vertical polarizing filter in LCD device (screen) with a horizontal filter, what could we see exactly? Would we see the same if we use only one horizontal ...
0
votes
2answers
31 views

How to measure the range of a horizontal projectile?

For an experiment, I'm launching a projectile horizontally to determine the relationship between height and range. Pretty basic stuff. But I'm having trouble coming up with an effective way to measure ...
1
vote
5answers
698 views

Why does the bathroom become hot after a bath?

I have noticed many times that whenever I enter into the bathroom just after someone else bathed the temperature inside it would be high. Is it that the body heat comes out when we pour a lot of ...
3
votes
4answers
135 views

How can I measure the speed of a figure skater's spin?

My daughter is a figure skater and needs to measure how fast she is spinning before she loses her position. This is a science project for 7th grade. I have looked for devices to possibly measure her ...
5
votes
5answers
6k views

Is coherent light required for interference in Young's double slit experiment?

In this Veritasium video, a home experiment is presented which appears to produce a very good double-slit interference pattern with normal sunlight. The experiment is an empty cardboard box with a ...
5
votes
2answers
211 views

Is it really possible to “discover” the speed of light with a microwave oven?

I've seen a number of sites/videos online that describe a method for measuring the speed of light, using a microwave oven and a chocolate bar. For example, this video on youtube. The basic idea is to ...
14
votes
2answers
5k views

Home experiments to measure the RPM of a pedestal fan without special equipment?

Is it possible to determine to an approximate degree, the revolutions per minute of a fan, for example a pedesal fan pictured below, without using some electronic/mechanical measuring device? One ...
9
votes
2answers
7k views

Does tea stay hotter with the milk in it?

A little thought experiment, similar to this one: Imagine you are making a cup of tea when the door bell rings. You've poured the boiling water into a cup with a teabag in it. As you're just about to ...
2
votes
1answer
55 views

How to build a MOKE (magneto-optic Kerr effect) magnetometer at home?

I'd like to build a magnetometer at home. The type does not matter actually that much but it should be doable at home. The MOKE (magneto-optic Kerr effect) magnetometer at least appears to use ...
2
votes
2answers
393 views

Momentum (apparently) not conserved in one of my class' experiments

I am a TA for an introductory mechanics course. We performed an experiment yesterday examining two-dimensional collisions. One of the things we hoped to show in the course of this experiment is that ...
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0answers
29 views

Any suggestion of laser pointer for everyday life study of fluorescence?

I want to buy a laser pointer to study fluorescence in my kitchen. Any suggestion? What kind of laser pointer? What stuff for demonstration?
36
votes
10answers
5k views

Classic home experiments for an 8-year-old child

My 8-year-old daughter's school report says that she's good at understanding the basic science she's doing, but she's having trouble seeing how experimental results lead to conclusions. Specifically, ...
6
votes
1answer
806 views

Test whether a glass prevents you from getting your Vitamin D portion?

I work in an office with glass, which I believe filters the UV radiation of the sunlight. Is it possible to test if exposure to the light coming through the glass will supply Vitamin D for me as a ...
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Why do you not get burned when you move your finger (quickly) over a candle flame?

When we move a finger quickly over/through a candle flame, why doesn't it get burned? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fire
6
votes
4answers
5k views

How do you build a nuclear reactor in your garage?

When I came across this link earlier today, I was astounded. Nuclear reactors are immensely complex devices that took scientists years to develop, and are usually housed in huge facilities. The link ...
6
votes
7answers
11k views

Why does hot oil explode when pouring water on it?

I am puzzled to know, What is the reason of hot oil make sound and explode when we pouring water on it?
412
votes
21answers
156k views

Cooling a cup of coffee with help of a spoon

During the breakfast with my colleagues, a question popped into my head: What is the fastest method to cool a cup of coffee, if your only available instrument is a spoon? A qualitative answer would ...
44
votes
4answers
65k views

Why do grapes in a microwave oven produce plasma?

Some of you may know this experience (Grape + Microwave oven = Plasma video link): take a grape that you almost split in two parts, letting just a tiny piece of skin making a link between each ...
11
votes
2answers
431 views

Sun spectroscopy - Home experiment

We let the sun light run through a 5x3x3cm triangular glass prism and we examined the formed 'rainbow' in search of Fraunhofer lines. However, even though we looked close enough (even with a ...
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0answers
69 views

A Proposed Improvement to the Diet Coke and Mentos Experiment

I am sure most of you are aware of the Diet Coke and Mentos craze - put a few mentos in a bottle of diet coke and whoosh! Equally, I am sure most of you are aware that this occurs because the gas is ...
1
vote
3answers
8k views

Why does cold water weigh more than hot water in a fixed volume?

Take a bucket of hot water and the other bucket of cold water. Why does the bucket full of cold water weigh more than bucket full of hot water?
1
vote
1answer
180 views

Can a thrown egg chip (or break) a car windshield?

Is it possible to throw an egg with such speed that a car windshield will chip (just like with stone chips?) I have searched around for existing research in the area and have found that the impact ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Static electricity experiment

My teacher always asks me to do the experiments on static electricity in winter. I don't know why? What will happen if I conduct the experiment in monsoon?
0
votes
0answers
15 views

My electrophorus doesn't work

I have failed in generating charge using electrophorus. The charging material was a balloon rubbed with hair until it became very full of static, as well as a small piece of Styrofoam rubbed with the ...
-1
votes
1answer
49 views

How can one know for one's self how big the earth is?

I want to know how big the earth is. I have heard of double sun set experiments, but it appears that you need to know you latitude, which I do not. I want to do this without using any outside ...
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vote
1answer
56 views

Are there any tests of quantum field theory one can do using everyday objects?

One of the reasons I love physics is because many of the theories I can test using everyday objects around me. For example I can predict how long it would take for me to drop the ball of a roof using ...