[time-nuts] Anybody have suggestions for time related science fair projects?

Van Horn, David david.vanhorn at backcountryaccess.com
Mon May 14 16:42:30 EDT 2018

Ah. The falling water goes up illusion.

-----Original Message-----
From: time-nuts <time-nuts-bounces at febo.com> On Behalf Of ed breya
Sent: Monday, May 14, 2018 2:01 PM
To: time-nuts at febo.com
Subject: Re: [time-nuts] Anybody have suggestions for time related science fair projects?

I don't know what sort of scientific level this contest is geared for, but would guess that for middle-school level, extreme numbers-oriented analysis of esoteric, time-nutty things may not dazzle, but bore the participants, judges, and audience.

It may be best to relate to more hands-on, everyday experience and observations of "normal" people. I like the suggestions about GPS and stroboscopic and lasery stuff, where one can maybe appreciate how modern everyday things work (like GPS, or how it's possible to talk to or send a picture to anyone in the world on your cell phone, and how these could not happen without precise time), or something visual and physical.

Some of the props should be "ordinary" things, like the a cell phone or GPS receiver, for example. Lasers are always good as long as there's a direct visual component to the observation. Strobe type stuff is particularly easy, because it's doable with mechanical and acoustical props, and signal measurement times are in reach of common lab equipment like generators, scopes, and counters, and of course there's a big visual experience component.

Small power visible lasers are common nowadays, so easy to use. Strobe lights are fairly common too, but maybe not so much as the other items. 
You can build (or buy) quite a nice strobe light nowadays using high-powered LEDs - the kind used for replacing incandescent and other illumination. This is quite easy and much safer than dealing with flash tubes, and is much more versatile. In fact, maybe this could even be a science fair project. The time element is in the stroboscopic effects and ability to slow or freeze apparent motion - almost everyone has observed this and can relate.

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