Campus News

View Year

Physics Phreak Out: Pheats of Science Demonstrated

(Posted April 1, 2013)

Juniata College students in the Society of Physics Students will entertain Huntingdon residents by demonstrating scientific principles at Physics Phun Night at 7 p.m., Thursday, April 4, in Alumni Hall in the Brumbaugh Academic Center.

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- The Juniata College students in the Society of Physics Students will get a chance to get outside the classroom and the laboratory and entertain Huntingdon residents by demonstrating scientific principles at Physics Phun Night at 7 p.m., Thursday, April 4, in Alumni Hall in the Brumbaugh Academic Center on the Juniata campus.

The event is free and open to the public.

Sponsorship of Physics Phun Night, sponsored by the Society of Physics Students, combines entertainment and education for fellow Juniata students and community members. The event is just one of the activities recognized in naming Juniata's chapter of SPS for 13 straight years.

One popular demonstration during Physics Phun Night, at least among the student body, is showing how the distribution of force over a wide area can lessen the effects of the force. Emil Nagengast, professor of politics, has agreed to illustrate this principle by balancing a cement block on his chest while lying on a bed of nails and allowing Matt Beaky, assistant professor of physics. to smash the block with a sledgehammer.

Other demonstrations will include:

Exploding Methane Bubbles: Will McGrew, a senior from Beavercreek, Ohio will ignite bubbles filled with methane in a spectacular display.

Liquid Nitrogen: Dave Lamberson, a senior from Alexandria, Pa. and Jon Snyder, a senior from Woodward, Pa., will use liquid nitrogen to instantly freeze a number of substances.

Dancing Oobleck: Snyder also will demonstrate this. Oobleck is a substance that acts as a liquid when poured but has the properties of a solid when force is applied to it. Oobleck is named after a gooey green substance in a Dr. Seuss story.

Vortex Cannon: Mary Beth Petrie, a sophomore from Harrisburg, Pa., will use scientific principles to shoot table tennis balls out of a tube.

Lycopodium Powder: Tim Berguson, a senior from Mansfield, Pa., will demonstrate this effect. When the powder is dispersed in a cloud the substance bursts into an impressive fireball.

The Bernoulli Effect & Fun with Toilet Paper: Teresa Turmanian, a freshman from Gaithersburg, Md., will demonstrate pressure and flow.

In all, the students will demonstrate more than a dozen concepts in an entertaining and informative presentation.

The student leaders for Juniata's SPS chapter are as follows: Chris Arnold, president and a senior from Altoona, Pa.; Theresa Ginley, a senior from Gaithersburg, Md., and David Milligan, a senior from Eighty Four, Pa., co-vice presidents; Stephanie Frith, a senior from Sanatoga, Pa. and William McGrew, a senior from Beavercreek, Ohio, co-secretaries; and Timothy Berguson, a senior from Mansfield, Pa., is treasurer.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.