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Broad Topics > Applications > STEM - physical world

A Question of Scale

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Use your skill and knowledge to place various scientific lengths in order of size. Can you judge the length of objects with sizes ranging from 1 Angstrom to 1 million km with no wrong attempts?

Reaction Timer

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

This problem offers you two ways to test reactions - use them to investigate your ideas about speeds of reaction.

Temperature

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Water freezes at 0°Celsius (32°Fahrenheit) and boils at 100°C (212°Fahrenheit). Is there a temperature at which Celsius and Fahrenheit readings are the same?

Far Horizon

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

An observer is on top of a lighthouse. How far from the foot of the lighthouse is the horizon that the observer can see?

Troublesome Triangles

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

Many natural systems appear to be in equilibrium until suddenly a critical point is reached, setting up a mudslide or an avalanche or an earthquake. In this project, students will use a simple. . . .

Pinhole Camera

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Make your own pinhole camera for safe observation of the sun, and find out how it works.

Observing the Sun and the Moon

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

How does the time of dawn and dusk vary? What about the Moon, how does that change from night to night? Is the Sun always the same? Gather data to help you explore these questions.

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

Making a scale model of the solar system

Helicopters

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

Design and test a paper helicopter. What is the best design?

Electric Kettle

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Explore the relationship between resistance and temperature

Avalanche!

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

Investigate how avalanches occur and how they can be controlled

Big and Small Numbers in Chemistry

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Get some practice using big and small numbers in chemistry.

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Examine these estimates. Do they sound about right?

Alternative Record Book

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

In which Olympic event does a human travel fastest? Decide which events to include in your Alternative Record Book.

Speed-time Problems at the Olympics

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to race against Usain Bolt?

Big and Small Numbers in the Physical World

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Work with numbers big and small to estimate and calculate various quantities in physical contexts.

Stemnrich - the Physical World

Stage: 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

PhysNRICH is the area of the StemNRICH site devoted to the mathematics underlying the study of physics

Construct the Solar System

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

Make an accurate diagram of the solar system and explore the concept of a grand conjunction.

How Do You React?

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

To investigate the relationship between the distance the ruler drops and the time taken, we need to do some mathematical modelling...

Guessing the Graph

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Can you suggest a curve to fit some experimental data? Can you work out where the data might have come from?

Perfect Eclipse

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Use trigonometry to determine whether solar eclipses on earth can be perfect.

Molecular Sequencer

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

Investigate the molecular masses in this sequence of molecules and deduce which molecule has been analysed in the mass spectrometer.

Heavy Hydrocarbons

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

Explore the distribution of molecular masses for various hydrocarbons

Constantly Changing

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Many physical constants are only known to a certain accuracy. Explore the numerical error bounds in the mass of water and its constituents.

Carbon Footprints

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Is it really greener to go on the bus, or to buy local?

Approximately Certain

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

Estimate these curious quantities sufficiently accurately that you can rank them in order of size

Big and Small Numbers in Physics

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Work out the numerical values for these physical quantities.

Physnrich

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

PhysNRICH is the area of the StemNRICH site devoted to the mathematics underlying the study of physics

Chemnrich

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

chemNRICH is the area of the stemNRICH site devoted to the mathematics underlying the study of chemistry, designed to help develop the mathematics required to get the most from your study. . . .

Global Warming

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

How much energy has gone into warming the planet?

Investigating the Dilution Series

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Which dilutions can you make using only 10ml pipettes?

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Which units would you choose best to fit these situations?

Bigger or Smaller?

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

When you change the units, do the numbers get bigger or smaller?

Playground Snapshot

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

The image in this problem is part of a piece of equipment found in the playground of a school. How would you describe it to someone over the phone?