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nathanstack15 last won the day on December 17 2016

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About nathanstack15

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  1. That is so cool. I can't begin to imagine all of the complex computer science involved in creating something like that.
  2. I never knew that cruise ships have thrusters. I can how important they are considering how of an impulse they need to deliver in order to keep the boat going in the right direction!
  3. Recently, astronomers discovered a solar system much like ours that could potentially support life. Seven earth-sized planets orbiting nearby star Trappist-1 were found this past week. The solar system is 40 light years away from the Earth. At least three of the seven planets are the right temperature to sustain life. They're rocky and could have oceans. Their orbital periods range from 1 to nearly 13 Earth days. All of the planets are located within a distance from Trappist-1 that is 1/5 the distance from Mercury to our sun. However, Trappist-1 is a relatively cool star, making the temperatures on these 7 planets not too hot despite their close proximity to their sun. This discovery indicates an increased possibility of extraterrestrial life, which is pretty cool. We are still millions of years away from ever being able to travel to this planet, but nevertheless its discovery is exciting.
  4. Last week, I went bowling for the first time in a long time. I noticed that there is a lot of physics in the sport. When rolling the ball, the bowler applies a force to the ball causing it to accelerate and travel with a relatively constant velocity down the lane. The reason that the ball does not decelerate very much at all is because a substance with a very very low coefficient of friction is applied to the surface of the lane, making the force of friction on the ball small, but nonzero. If the force of friction were zero, the ball would not rotate at all. Bowlers also commonly apply a torque to the ball when throwing it down the lane. This causes the ball to gain rotational kinetic energy. The friction of the ball on the lane also causes the ball to move outside-in.
  5. Last week, we began the archery unit in gym class. One thing that was especially interesting was when Mr Carrick brought in his compound bow. The compound bow, unlike the longbow and recurve bows, utilizes a system of cams and cables, which is a basically a Pully system, redistributing the tension in the string of the bow. This allows the archer to hold the bow at full drawn length with less force than the maximum draw force. This is especially useful for hunters, where bows may need to be held at full draw length for long periods of time. Mr Carrick would shoot alongside us, where most of us were using recurve bows. His arrows would be released from the bow at a higher initial velocity and would penetrate the target further than our arrows would, demonstrating the superiority of the compound bow. By applying a compounded force on the arrow, the arrow experiences a greater impulse, causes it to accelerate more rapidly, giving it a greater initial velocity upon its release. A greater velocity indicates a greater kinetic energy. When the arrow hit the target, the target had to do a significant amount of work by applying a normal force to the arrow, causing a deceleration of the arrow.
  6. This past week, a group called the Saakumu dance troop featuring Bernard Woma came to IHS. Their performance featured multiple instruments that are atypical in the United States. For example, they brought with them an African gourd drum, which looked a lot like a curved marimba. However, a marimba's resonators are hollow pipes, whereas this gourd drum's resonators were gourds, the vegetable. This instrument is played by striking wooden bars with mallets. The work done by hitting the wooden bars with the mallet adds energy to the system at one of its natural frequencies. Tones are caused by vibrating columns of air contained within the gourd. The gourd is a closed end resonator, much like the pipes of a pipe organ, or a bottle. Another thing that I noticed is that the smaller the gourd beneath the wooden bar and the smaller the wooden bar, the higher the frequency of the sound produced. This makes sense, when considering the fundamental frequency of a closed end resonator. There is one node and one antinode for the whole length of the resonator, meaning that the length of the resonator contains 1/4 of a wavelenth. Frequency is v / lamba, and lamba in this case equals 4L. Therefore, when L decreases, the frequency increases.
  7. Why'd you go rock climping
  8. I wonder how they could still throw the spear straight. It seems much easier to hunt with "guns and cool stuff"
  9. I wonder who gave you the idea to write a blog about archery...
  10. I hope that you get well soon! I never knew that MRI machines produce a magnetic field.
  11. As a saxophone player, I have always wondered how exactly sound waves work and why some notes sound good together while others don't. For example, when notes that are a half step apart are played simultaneously, "wobbles" are produced. If two sound waves interfere when they have frequencies that are not identical but very close, there is a resulting modulation in amplitude. When the waves interfere constructively, we say that there is a beat. The number of beats per second is known as the beat frequency, which is simply the absolute value of the difference in the frequencies of the two pitches. From a music theory standpoint, intervals can be referred to as consonances or dissonances. Consonances occur when tones of different frequencies are played simultaneously and sound pleasing together. Dissonances occur when tones of different frequencies are played simultaneously and sound displeasing together. According to a lecture by Professor Steven Errede from the University of Illinois, the Greek scholar Pythagoras studied consonance and dissonance using a device known as a monochord, a one stringed instrument with a movable bridge, which divides, "the string of length L into two segments, x and L–x. Thus, the two string segments can have any desired ratio, R = x/(L–x). When the monochord is played, both string segments vibrate simultaneously. Since the two segments of the string have a common tension, T, and the mass per unit length, mu = M/L is the same on both sides of the string, then the speed of propagation of waves on each of the two segments of the string is the same..." Basically, the ratio of the lengths of the two string segments is also the ratio of the two frequencies. Consonance occurs when the lengths of the string segments are in unique integer ratios. To learn more about the physics of consonances and dissonances, read his lecture here:
  12. Recently in AP Chemistry, we talked about modern materials, like transistors, and how exactly they work. Transistors are a type of semiconductor. Semiconductors correspond with the metalloids on the periodic table. In Physics C, we typically refer to objects as either conducting or non-conducting, and have learned how to deal with electric fields, electric potential, electric potential energy, and capacitance for either of the two objects. The physics becomes more involved when considering semiconductors. Semiconductors have conductivities that are intermediate between conductors and insulators. The conductivity of a nonconductor can be increased by increasing its temperature because increasing the temperature increases the average kinetic energy of the nonconductor's electrons, making them able to be freed and flow to produce electrical current. One can also increase the conductivity of a semiconductor by chemical doping, which involves the presence of small amounts of other atoms. The following video explains how transistors work, and refers to n-type and p-type doping.
  13. I recently saw this picture on one of my friend's Snapchat stories. How is this water bottle able to balance on its side? The bottle is positioned so that its net torque is equal to zero. On the left side of the bottle, the force of gravity due to all of the infinitesimally small pieces of its mass on one side of the system's center of mass multiplied by the distance that their weight vectors are from the center of mass (AKA the counter clockwise torque) has some definite magnitude. On the right side of the bottle, the forces of gravity due to all of the tiny pieces of mass multiplied by their distances from the center of mass equals a net clockwise torque on the bottle. The counter clockwise torque and clockwise torques applied to the bottle are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction, causing the bottle to remain in rotational equilibrium. The calculus behind this situation is quite complicated, as you can probably tell.
  14. You didn't spell sledding right
  15. I always thought that bullet proof glass was made of a special type of glass that could absorb the kinetic energy of a bullet without shattering. That's very interesting, that bullet proof glass is really a combination of both glass and plastic.