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Year 12 Physics Trip

Melanie Blomfield —

In April our Year 12 Physics class went to the University of Canterbury to learn about Rutherford’s experiment and radiation for our Year 12 Physics topic “Atomic and Nuclear Physics.”

Students performed a dramatization of Rutherford’s experiment, Fabian, Chelsea and Hamida were the radioactive sources while Felix, Gilberto and Jesin were the gold foil and Omar was the scientist, Geiger, counting the radioactivity. There is a photo of Students investigating the history of the atom. Students also tried on lead vests which are used to protect people from radioactivity.

Researching the history of the atom.

In the middle of the day, we tested out physics equipment. Sophie Watson proved her braveness by lying on a bed of nails and then allowing Paula to stand on her! Ivo tested the strength of his stomach and the law of conservation of rotational Torque with a gyroscope on a spinning chair.

Paula stands on Sophie Waston on a bed of nails.
Spinning top on Spinning chair, Ivo finds out what happens next.

We also saw cool infra-red cameras and geology models used in Antarctica. In the afternoon we went to the radioactive labs where we held rods of Uranium and used Geiger counters to discover that carrots could stop some types of radiation. One of the most popular activities was playing with liquid Nitrogen. It was a great day of learning and experiencing the University of Canterbury.