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Physics Projects

Physics Projects

Fundamental Experiments in Quantum Physics
Drs. Meyer and Gasparyan

Abstract: We will again focus on experiments that investigate the quantum nature of matter. We plan to study the wave-particle duality of light, investigate the photoelectric effect, and determine the lifetime of short-lived muons in cosmic rays. We will also make quantitative measurements of such fundamental constants as the speed of light, the electron charge using the Millikan oil drop experiment, and Planck's constant h. We will also introduce a new experiment involving Faraday Rotation, which is an effect demonstrating the relationship between light and electromagnetism by showing that the plane of polarized light rotates in a magnetic field. And we will repeat such important experiments demonstrating Nuclear Magnetic Resonance to study properties of materials, the classic Rutherford experiment, which measures the size of the atomic nucleus, and the Bragg scattering experiment to determine the structure of crystals using our own x-ray machine. Many of these experiments have resulted in the awarding of a Nobel Prize, when they were originally performed.