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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Inspiring the next generation of scientists

Photo by Provided

The educational web series Real Physics Live was created with the intent to get a younger generation of students interested in physics.

The Texas A&M Department of Physics and Astronomy has launched a new project aimed at introducing viewers to the world of physics.
The project, a video series called Real Physics Live, was organized by physics professor Tatiana Erukhimova and currently has 16 videos uploaded. Topics covered on the channel include Tesla coils, Lenz’s Law, Fresnel Lenses and wave pendulums. The channel also has several practical demonstrations, including freezing objects with liquid nitrogen, showing how a square-wheeled tricycle can work and setting methane bubbles on fire.
Leo Alcorn, physics graduate student, said the process for the videos begins with a script for the demonstrations and what concept the video will be explaining.
“Students write and perform the demonstrations and explanations of our experiments, and we assist in editing and promoting the videos,” Alcorn said. “The scripts are each written by a graduate student that has worked with the demo, and the students, Dr. Erukhimova and Martin [the channels filmmaker and editor] all collaboratively work together to make sure the scripts and videos are understandable and fun.”
The videos are made to be fun to watch while providing a concise and informative explanation for physics principles, according to the projects website.
“Viewers can expect to see a little snippet of physics presented in a light, fun, accessible way,” physics graduate student Jonathan Perry said. “Without using the scary math our videos show the phenomena, describe the idea and hopefully make people laugh while doing so.”
The project, in association with the annual Physics and Engineering Festival held each spring, is part of a department initiative to engage A&M physics undergraduate and graduate students in inspiring young students to pursue science.
Sasha Zhdanova, physics graduate student and occasional star of the videos, said her role in the channel is to help plan and participate in the videos.
“I’ve written several of the video scripts and acted in several videos,” Zhdanova said. “While the director for each video is the same, the cast and author of each video changes depending on people’s schedules and interests. I like electromagnetism, so I wrote about the electromagnetic bike.”
Alongside other initiatives such as Science Circus, the Science of Cooking, Game Day Physics and physics shows put on for local schools, those involved with Real Physics Live said they are hoping to spark interest in physics for younger generations.
Alcorn said inspiring children to pursue science is her passion.
“Middle school, from sixth to eighth grade, is when many children who were previously interested in science start to lose interest, I experienced this myself in middle school,” Alcorn said. “But at this age, we still love silly humor and learning how the world works. This project also uses easily accessible media such as YouTube and Twitter so interested students can easily look up videos and are not limited to the resources their schools may have available.”
The projects has 16 videos so far and uploaded new ones on a regular basis. The videos are available on both the projects website and YouTube channel.

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