AAPT.org - American Association of Physics Teachers

2009 High School Physics Photo Contest

Winner's Showcase

 

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Second Place - Contrived

Title: Poolside Phenomenon
Student: Samantha Nicole Gold
School: Plainview-Old Bethpage John F. Kennedy High School, Plainview, New York
Teacher: Jordan Pekor

In this photo, my friend dunked her head under the water, her hair down in front of her face. When I counted to three, she flung her head back up, causing her hair to release the water whereby it followed the curved path established by her hair. The reason this ?phenomenon? occurred, was due to centripetal force. The movement started by the jerking back of her head caused the water to move from its state of inertia. When the water breaks off her hair, there is no surface tension and the water travels in a path tangent to the circle her hair is traveling in.

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