## Scholarship Physics

It’s that time of year when school students become seriously focused on exams. This year has been messy for student learning, and has affected some students more than others, but the NCEA external assessments and the Scholarship exams are going ahead pretty-much as normal. I’ve taken some interest in the Scholarship Physics exams over the […]

## When you are your own opposite

I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only interact very weakly with anything.  Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. […]

## Alice the camel

As we drove on a family outing at the weekend, we sung “Alice the camel”.   For those who don’t know it, it goes like this (to the tune of “Dem Bones”): “Alice the camel had five humps; Alice the camel had five humps; Alice the camel had five humps; so go, Alice go! Alice the […]

## Weighing magnetic properties

It's a New Year and there are lots of things to do at work before the students get back in any numbers. There are still summer students and research students here, and in the last couple of days I've been working with a summer student on getting a new piece of equipment running for our […]

## Lenz’s law – at 3 tesla

When I was at school, and introduced to magnetic fields in a quantitative sense (that is, with a strength attached to it), I remember being told that the S.I. unit of magnetic flux density (B-field) is the tesla, and that 1 tesla is an extremely high B-field indeed. Ha! Not any more. Last Friday night […]

## First a cricket fan, second a physicist

I've spent most of today thinking Google's image-of-the-day is a wicket, but have just realized it is in honour of Alessandro Volta.

## Conduction in semiconductors – the tennis ball model

Not so long ago, a tennis ball appeared in our garden. It's a rather distinctive red one. It doesn't belong to us. It was lying close by to the (low) fence between us and our neighbour, so I just chucked it back.  Next morning, it was there again. I threw it back. And, more or […]

## Telepathy breakthrough – great science, not science fiction

The 'Science' news hitting the media at the weekend was Guilio Ruffini and Alvaro Pascual-Leone's demonstration of 'telepathy'. There's been a lot of media coverage on this – for example the neat little interview of Ruffini on the BBC's 'Today' programme. Their article on this can be read here. It's not a long one, and, […]