Awesome Physics

GTA IV Frictionless Cars 2

GTA IV Frictionless Cars 2

The great thing about PC games is all the fun hacks that can be applied to them. Here, we yet again learn what happens when you dial the friction down to -9 on all of the car tires in GTA IV. Like all things, it’s better with Yakety Sax.

The Floating Screwdriver

The Floating Screwdriver

Thanks to the wonders of physics, this guy is able to make a screwdriver float in mid-air with the help of compressed air, and a little phenomenon known as the Coandă effect, which allows an object to remain aloft in a diagonal stream of air.

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Spinning a Top in a Vacuum

Spinning a Top in a Vacuum

This brief, but eye-opening science experiment illustrates the way that even stagnant air creates resistance against objects. It’s incredible how much longer the top spins when the air is removed from its chamber. (Thanks Vers!)

The Jelly Baby Wave Machine

The Jelly Baby Wave Machine

To promote the UK’s National STEM Centre, science teacher Alom Shaha shows how to build a device which demonstrates the principles of wave physics using some duct tape, kebab sticks and Jelly Babies. The Doctor would be so proud.

10 Amazing Fire Tricks

10 Amazing Fire Tricks

Physics and illusion tinkerer Brusspup compiled this assortment of tricks, hacks, experiments and generally fun things you can do with fire. Proceed with great caution if you decide to try any of these yourself.

Flying Snickers Pass

Flying Snickers Pass

Two fighter pilots demonstrate one of the benefits of the extreme environment inside their F/A-18F Super Hornet jet, as they take advantage of a zero-G moment to gracefully pass a candy bar from the front to the rear of the cockpit.

World’s Simplest Electric Train 2

World’s Simplest Electric Train 2

After an earlier demonstration using copper wire, magnets and a battery to create a model railroad, YouTuber AmazingScience shows how to not only make a longer track, but to get the train to ride on the outside of the coil.

Domino Chain Reaction

Domino Chain Reaction

University of Toronto professor Stephen Morris shows how a domino has the potential energy to knock down a domino bigger than itself. String 13 dominoes together, and a 5mm-tall domino can ultimately topple a giant 100lb. slab.

Ball Balancing Machine

Ball Balancing Machine

A demonstration of a mechanized platform which can perfectly balance a ball in its center no matter how hard its human master attempts to defeat it. Its motion control system can also make the ball follow precise paths on demand.

Raindrops on Sand Slow-Mo

Raindrops on Sand Slow-Mo

Students from the University of Minnesota captured raindrops hitting sand at various velocities using a high-speed camera. Apparently the craters left behind by the drops are similar to those made by asteroid impacts.

Is Earth Actually Flat?

Is Earth Actually Flat?

Michael Stevens explores the antiquated and crackpot theories that the Earth isn’t round, and demonstrates the science of what would happen to us if our planet were really flat. On the other hand, we still believe time is a flat circle.

World’s Simplest Electric Train

World’s Simplest Electric Train

While some model railroads can be incredibly complicated, this one is constructed from nothing more than a copper wire, tiny magnets and a dry cell battery. We wonder how big a track you could make using this method.

Feather vs. Bowling Ball Drop

Feather vs. Bowling Ball Drop

In this fascinating clip from BBC Two series Human Universe, they demonstrate how a bowling ball and feather fall at exactly the same speed when air has been almost completely removed from a giant vacuum chamber.

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Antimatter Explained

Antimatter Explained

Need the Cliffs’ Notes for the physics lesson where they explained the difference between matter and antimatter? Minute Physics does their best to sum up this perplexing science at their usual rapid-fire pace.

Hot Ice

Hot Ice

While the “hot ice” shown in this video isn’t really ice, it’s still a trippy chemical reaction created when a liquified form of sodium acetate trihydrate comes in contact with the solid form of itself, creating ice-like crystals.

Invisible Glass Trick

Invisible Glass Trick

A neat trick that makes clear objects dipped into liquid appear to have vanished. The secret – using glycerol or another clear, viscous liquid with the same refractive index as the outer glassware. Yeah, science!

Self-Untangling Wire

Self-Untangling Wire

Nitinol is an alloy made from nickel and titanium that can regain its original shape when heated. In this clip from science geek MIST8K, he shows off the material’s amazing properties. Also, we just added the word “scrumpled” to our dictionary.

Levitation

Levitation

Illusion hitmaker Brusspup shows off a magnetic device which can actually make objects hover. We’ve seen a smaller version before, but his use of large objects, and concealing the magnet makes the effect much more impressive.

Misconceptions About the Universe

Misconceptions About the Universe

To infinity and beyond! Veritasium’s Derek Muller looks at the nature of our ever-expanding universe, how space itself moves faster than the speed of light, and how the universe is dramatically larger in light years than its age.

The Simplest Motor

The Simplest Motor

Did you know you can create a 10,000 RPM motor with a battery, a drywall screw, a strand of wire and a magnet? In this video we see this scientific concept of homopolar motors at work.

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What Does Sound Look Like?

What Does Sound Look Like?

NPR talks about Schlieren Flow Visualization, a photographic technique that allows us to see changes in air density, making it possible to view the presence and flow of heat, fluids and sound.

Cheating at Jenga

Cheating at Jenga

Unless you want to lose, you never want to try and remove a single block at the bottom of a stack of Jenga blocks. But this guy exploited the laws of physics to help him pluck out the bar without toppling the whole tower.

Jack White: High Ball Stepper

Jack White: High Ball Stepper

The music video for first track from Jack White’s upcoming solo album Lazaretto – an instrumental that combines blues and intense electric riffs, set against the backdrop of non-newtonian fluids and sand vibrating to the track’s frequencies.

Light Speed x Minecraft

Light Speed x Minecraft

YouTuber spumwack uses the simple graphics and programmable physics of Minecraft to better explain some of the complicated concepts of light speed. Like any good physics video he takes time to make us feel incredibly insignificant too.

Anti-Gravity Wheel

Anti-Gravity Wheel

Derek Muller from Veritasium show off how you can easily lift a 42 pound weight at the end of a metal rod, thanks to the wonders of gyroscopic precession. If only everything we ever had to lift was spinning at 2500 RPM. More here.

When Water Flows Uphill

When Water Flows Uphill

A fascinating look at the Leidenfrost effect, in which heated water droplets move towards each other and coalesce, as well as scenarios in which water droplets can actually climb uphill, or even be self-propelled along a pre-arranged path.

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