metal

Showing 23 posts tagged metal

Discovered by German physicist Helen Sperl in 1891, popularized in 1950 by Danish engineer Werner Ostberg, and demonstrated here by Grand Illusions' Hendrik Ball, this is a Tippe TopWatch as it spins “at a high angular velocity,” turning itself upside down to spin on its stem. But wait, there’s more

The interesting thing is that when the Tippe Top inverts, it also changes the direction of the rotation! In other words, at some point during the inversion, the top stops spinning around the axis through the stem and then starts to rotate the other way. At the same time, the center of mass is lifted, and the top is thus a quite interesting problem concerning conservation of energy and angular momentum.

There’s more physics and toy videos in the archives, including another from Grand Illusions: the Spiraculum.

This is something that we’d like to see and hear in person: The Singing, Ringing Tree was designed by architects Mike Tonkin and Anna Liu in 2006. It sits on a hill in Lancashire, England, and as the winds blow, the discordant steel pipes “play” the wind. From Wikipedia

Some of the pipes are primarily structural and aesthetic elements, while others have been cut across their width enabling the sound. The harmonic and singing qualities of the tree were produced by tuning the pipes according to their length by adding holes to the underside of each.

There’s more wind and more sound in the archives, including the similar Aeolus, an Acoustic Wind Pavilion, some a whale song-filled diving encounter, and the Sesame Street classic How a Saxophone is Made

Thanks, @benjohnbarnes.

Above, watch molten gold transform into gold leaf as it is beaten into thinner and thinner pieces while cold. This clip is from PBS’ six-part miniseries The Ring of Truth: An Inquiry Into How We Know What We Know - Atoms (1987). 

"It was the craftsmen who mastered the remarkable properties that go with specific materials. They were the first to journey towards the atom. The goldsmiths slowly refined their craft to take advantage of what gold alone could do…”

MIT astrophysicist and Institute Professor Philip Morrison narrated the series, which he co-wrote with his wife, noted art and science educator Phylis Morrison. Philip Morrison also narrated and wrote the script for Charles and Ray Eames’ Powers of Ten, a must-watch video for all ages.

via Emily Lakdawalla.