Top Ten Unforgettable Applications of Physics in Daily Life
1. Moving Car and Newton’s First Law
In a moving car everything is moving at the same speed and has no outside forces acting on any of the items inside the car. According to Newton’s first law an object in motion will stay in motion unless acted on by an outside force and an object at rest will stay at rest unless acted on by an outside force. Since there are no outside forces on the objects you are able to handle them inside the moving car because they are all moving the same speed as the car.
2. Car Breaks and Newton’s third law
When a car wants to stop the driver applies the breaks, I always thought that it just applied friction. Which it does but according to Newton’s third law that states every action has an equal and opposite reaction. The breaks apply friction and also accelerate the car in the opposite direction than it is moving. This adds to a net force in the opposite direction and makes the car slow down.
3. The Electromagnetic Induction of Credit Cards
The credit cards have a strip of magnets in them that when swiped through the credit card machine that has loops of wires in it. Once the magnet passes through the wires it induces a voltage in the wire which in turn creates a current that creates a specific signal identifying the credit card and all the information associating with it.
4. Newton’s third law and walking
When we walk we think nothing of it, but it is so interesting. According to Newton’s third law that every action has an equal and opposite reaction, when we walk we push back on the ground which pushes us back with the equal and opposite force making us able to move forward. This is what the physics of walking is.
That flash of light known as lightning is the positive charges accumulating on clouds. These opposite charges are attracted to each other and when enough energy is built up the two connect through the air. This results in the flash of light that we call lightning. It is very similar to the flash on a camera except on a larger scale.
6. Hovercraft and frictionless surfaces
Newton’s first law states that an object at rest will remain at rest unless acted on by an outside force or that an object in motion will say in motion unless acted on by an outside force. Everything on our planet is affected by an outside force of air particles and other sources of friction, but if something negates that friction like a hovercraft then it will move continually. Early in the school year we rode on a mini hovercraft and saw this in action, the hovercraft would not stop unless someone was able to apply an outside force.
7. Cushions and padding reduces the force
Cushions and padding increase the amount of time it takes to hit the ground and by doing so decrease the force that the person or object receives on impact. This is why air bags are big and fluffy, and why gymnastics floors are padded, so that the force will be decreased on the falling unit.
8. Generating electricity changes mechanical energy to electrical energy
To generate energy we use electromagnetic induction which when a magnet passes through or over a group of wires induces a voltage in the wire and thus creates a current. Every power generating station in the world uses the same system, the only difference it what they use as fuel be it coal, water, or nuclear. These fuels generate steam from heated water or in some other way makes something spin magnets over wires which generate electricity for our society.
9. Distance of the power lines
Power lines all over the country have to be farther apart than the wingspan of the largest bird in the area because if the bird lands on one wire nothing happens since it is not a complete circuit. If a bird were to touch to power lines at once then it would have completed a circuit with a voltage and a current would flow through the bird most likely killing it.
Machines make the work that is done easier, but they never change the amount of force needed in the process. A machine like a ramp changes where the force needs to be applied. So instead of lifting a box 4 feet to the platform you only need to move the box up a foot at a time, but it will require more distance than just lifting the box straight up.