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PHSI282 Experimental Physics I

Paper Description

This course focuses on experimental skills and techniques in physics. The overall goal of the course is to provide a foundation in laboratory methods, including experimental design, modern measurement techniques, and data analysis. Students perform experiments that explore key principles in physics relating to both natural phenomena and modern technology. Topics include electricity and magnetism, optics and lasers, thermal processes, and atomic physics.

The course consists of 8 lectures and 11 laboratory sessions. For each experiment, students complete a pre-lab homework assignment, and then work on their lab note book during the lab session. For three of the experiments, students are required to write a full written report, in addition to the lab note book.

Assessment:
PHSI282 is internally assessed as described in the document linked below.

Important information about assessment for PHSI282

Course Coordinator:
Dr Mikkel Andersen

After completing this paper students will be able to:
  1. Design an experiment to test a hypothesis or to measure physical quantities
  2. Use a range of modern techniques and apparatus for making physical measurements
  3. Use Matlab for basic data analysis
  4. Record experimental work carefully and accurately in a lab notebook
  5. Understand the importance of errors in measurement and be able to estimate and combine these errors
Topic
Introducton to Matlab
Error analysis and uncertainties; Propagation of uncertainties; Curve fitting; Statistical analysis of random uncertainties
Basic measurement techniques

Experiments: mechanical equivalent of heat; Adiabatic gas processes; Coulomb’s law; Force on a current-carrying conductor; Properties of a helium-neon laser; Speed of light and single-photon interference; Polarization of light; Franck-Hertz experiment


Textbook: An Introduction to Error Analysis: The Study of Uncertainties in Physical Measurements, J.R.Taylor.1997


Formal University Information

The following information is from the University’s corporate web site.

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Details

Students will perform experiments that explore key principles in physics relating to both natural phenomena and modern technology. Provides a foundation in laboratory methods, including experimental design, modern measurement techniques, and data analysis.

This paper focuses on experimental skills and techniques in physics. Topics include electricity and magnetism, optics and lasers, thermal processes and atomic physics.

Paper title Experimental Physics I
Paper code PHSI282
Subject Physics
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,038.45
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $4,492.80

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Prerequisite
One of PHSI 131, PHSI 132, PHSI 191, PHSI 110 and (MATH 160 or MATH 170)
Schedule C
Science
Contact
mikkel.andersen@otago.ac.nz
Teaching staff
Course Co-ordinator: mikkel.andersen@otago.ac.nz
Associate Professor Niels Kjaergaard
Textbooks
Taylor, J. R. (1997). An Introduction to Error Analysis: The Study of Uncertainties in Physical Measurements.
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
After completing this paper students will be able to:
  1. Design an experiment to test a hypothesis or to measure physical quantities
  2. Use a range of modern techniques and apparatus for making physical measurements
  3. Use Matlab for basic data analysis
  4. Record experimental work carefully and accurately in a lab notebook
  5. Understand the importance of errors in measurement and be able to estimate and combine these errors

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Timetable

Second Semester

Location
Dunedin
Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system
Blackboard

Lecture

Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend
L1 Thursday 10:00-10:50 28-31, 33
Friday 10:00-10:50 28-31, 33

Practical

Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
P1 Tuesday 14:00-17:50 29-34, 36-41
P2 Wednesday 14:00-17:50 29-34, 36-41
P3 Thursday 14:00-17:50 29-34, 36-41