AAPT_WM14program_final - page 41

January 4–7, 2014
Sunday, January 5
12–1 p.m.
Salon 4
First Timers’
Learn more about
and the Winter Meeting
Meet new friends and greet
your old friends!
tor to compare two related properties of the recombination process.
In the first experiment, we use an isolated defect to measure effective
diffusion lengths, i.e. the average distance traveled by a charge carrier
before recombining. In the second experiment, we measure effective
lifetimes, i.e. the average time it takes for a charge carrier to recom-
bine. We use these measurements to connect the temporal and spatial
distribution of electron-hole pair recombination. These complemen-
tary properties can be used to further our understanding of charge
carrier behavior in solar cell materials as a function of temperature
and illumination.
3-3:10 p.m. Conquering Quantum Physics One
Photon at a Time
Contributed – Jamie L. Garrett, Southern Polytechnic State University,
Powder Springs, GA 30127;
PhysicsQuest is a story-based activity book for middle school students
created by the American Physical Society that introduces them to
physics concepts through hands-on activities. Free kits are provided
to teachers or parents who register on the PhysicsCentral website,
as a way to engage middle school students at an age in which many
students become disinterested in science. As the Society of Physics
Students PhysicsQuest intern, I developed easy-to-do, inexpensive
extension activities to complement the activities provided in the latest
kit. The topic this year is Quantum Mechanics. Students will explore
the photoelectric effect, spectroscopy, absorption spectra, and angular
momentum and rotation. This talk will highlight several of the activi-
ties created.
3:10-3:20 p.m. Modeling Mass-Radius
Relationships of Planets Using Differential Equations
Contributed – Kevin D. Thielen,* Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, FL
Alexander K. Zielinski, Stephen P. Weppner, Eckerd College
Models of mass-radius relationships for planets have been recently
developed by making assumptions about the relationship between
pressure and density in order to avoid having to work with more com-
plex equations of state. In our model we construct a Non-linear Ho-
mogeneous Ordinary Differential Equation, whose parameters can be
readily obtained experimentally, and solve it numerically by making
an observation about the relationship of density and compressibility
as a function of pressure. We then compare our numerical results to
models such as the Preliminary Earth Reference Model (PREM) and
models of pressure density relationships of materials from low pres-
sures up to pressures within the region of the Thomas Fermi Dirac
theoretical EOS where electron degeneracy pressure becomes a factor.
*Sponsored by Anne Cox
3:20-3:30 p.m. Evidence for Dark Matter in the
Galactic Rotation Curve
Contributed – Melvin Jason Ezell, Campbell University, P.O. Box 308,
Buies Creek, NC 27506;
Jacob K. Bartlett, Campbell University
The mass of the dark matter halo, or “missing mass” interior to the
Sun’s orbit was calculated by creating a galactic rotation curve for the
Milky Way galaxy. This rotation curve was created by measuring the
orbital velocity of interstellar hydrogen at different distances from the
galactic core. A 4.6-meter radio telescope was used to collect data on
the radio waves emitted by hydrogen at various galactic longitudes.
Since hydrogen emits radio waves at a baseline frequency of
1.42 GHz, the Doppler shifted wavelengths observed provided a
means to calculate the orbital velocity of the galaxy’s matter. This
rotation curve was then compared to the amount of visible mass in
the galaxy and the missing mass was calculated. This research was
converted to a laboratory exercise for undergraduate physics students
at Campbell University which included a pre-assessment of content-
specific knowledge and a post-assessment of learning outcomes.
3:30-3:40 p.m. Incorporating Data Visualization
Contributed – Kevin Sanders, High Point University, High Point, NC
ZENODO is a research hosting website made for all disciplines. It is
built on the idea of all research shared, no matter the subject, no mat-
ter the status of the researcher. ZENODO was developed alongside
and on top of INVENIO, a digital library software suite, produced by
the Digital Library Technology group at CERN. This talk will cover
some of the technologies that came into play, as well as my role of
beginning to incorporate data visualization into the website during
my time spent at CERN through the University of Michigan REU.
3:40-3:50 p.m. A New Approach to Optics for Life
Science Majors
Contributed – Shauna Novobilsky, Mercyhurst University, Erie, PA
Dyan Jones, Mercyhurst University
Interactive learning strategies are frequently used in the teaching of
introductory physics topics. Here we describe the development of a
course for undergraduate students who are not majoring in the field
of physics. By adapting the learning materials from a Studio Optics
course and Optics for Biophysics course, we hope to create a course
designed to bring interactive learning to the topic of optics. Adapt-
ing the course to fit our curriculum will require a reduction in the
amount of mathematics in the course, but the majority of the course
requirements from the courses mentioned above will remain. This will
create an environment that integrates lectures, lab, and simple prob-
lem solving as well as a focus on a long-term project for the course.
The hope is to create a course that is advantageous to non-physics
majors who still have an interest in optics.
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