Category: A-Level Physics

Space Revision

If you wish to do a bit of revision or learning on KS3, 4 or 5 space. Then try some of the resources here, you can have a PPT or PDF.

Feel free to use for school use, but all images are copyright so no profit or derivatives which you sell!

 

Animated Science Space Revision (PDF)

Animated Science Space Revision (PPTX)

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2017/space-revision

Turbo Chargers – Amazing

Turbo gives petrol cars a boost as diesel faces backlash – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-34731463

 

Turbo gives petrol cars a boost as diesel faces backlash

Graphic of Kia Proceed car

Looking at Kia’s new Proceed T-GDi GT-Line, with its sporty looks and handling, you might expect a big, thirsty engine under the bonnet.

Instead, it has a frugal three-cylinder 1.0 litre petrol engine that can still deliver 0-62mph (0-100km/h) in 10.7 seconds, nearly 60 miles to the gallon, and CO2 emissions of 115g/km.

A few years ago, this kind of performance would’ve been considered outstanding.

Thanks to turbo tech, these traditionally-fuelled internal combustion engines are now offering better fuel economy and lower emissions, without comparable loss of performance.

And in light of the recent Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal – and tighter emissions regulations worldwide – company car fleet directors are taking note.

VW logo on rusty Beetle

“Diesel has emerged as the dominant fuel type for company cars, as a result of great fuel efficiency, performance and low cost of ownership under the government’s CO2 emissions based tax regime,” says Gerry Keaney, chief executive of the British Vehicle Rentals and Leasing Association, whose members own or fleet manage more than three million cars in the UK.

“But the diesel proportion of new registrations has been falling gradually for some time, as modern petrol powered cars have become better at delivering similar benefits, and we expect this trend to gather pace.”

In the UK, even company car buyers now see downsized petrol engines, many emitting around 100g/km CO2, as a viable, efficient alternative to diesel.

Old-fashioned car

This is not just down to “anti-diesel sentiment”, says Al Bedwell, director, global powertrains at LMC Automotive. “It has more to do with petrol getting better and staging a fight-back, especially in small cars in Western Europe.”

Manufacturers such as Ford, Opel/Vauxhall, Hyundai and Volkswagen are all offering similarly downsized petrol engines these days, many emitting around 100g/km of CO2.

In Europe, diesel’s share of the market is set to drop from 53.3% of the market in 2014 to 51.5% in 2015, says Mr Bedwell, then continue sliding to 35% by 2020.

Power boost

Turbo chargers are traditionally associated with diesel engines, which needed a boost to give them more oomph. They weren’t “much fun to drive” without them, says Guillaume Devauchelle, head of innovation and science at automotive technology company, Valeo.

And the relative cost of adding turbo to an expensive diesel engine was lower, he explains.

Light vehicles market graphicImage copyrightGetty Images

But turbos are now increasingly infiltrating petrol engines because they deliver dramatic emissions reductions and improvements in fuel economy, without sacrificing performance, says Craig Balis, chief technology officer of Honeywell Transportation Systems, the world’s largest turbo maker.

A two-litre turbo-charged four cylinder petrol engine can match the output of a three-litre naturally aspirated V6 petrol engine, he says, so “the technology we have is really a no-compromise solution”.

Turbos work by using the engine’s exhaust gas to drive a turbine, which in turn drives a compressor, which compresses air. This air is then forced into the combustion chamber where it mixes with fuel to create additional power.

This means the engine won’t have to burn so much fuel to deliver the same output.

Video grab of smaller v, larger engine

“Our turbos for passenger vehicles have turbines that spin at 200,000-300,000 revolutions per minute (rpm), generating temperatures of up to 1,000 degrees Celsius, so the metal is literally glowing red,” Mr Balis says.

By comparison petrol engines operate at just 6,000-7,000 rpm and diesel at 5,000-6,000rpm.

To cope with such extreme speed, pressure and heat, turbos need to be incredibly robust, so Honeywell is using ball bearings and other technologies that have been developed for military aircraft by the company’s aerospace division.

The turbos are also coupled with intercoolers that cool the airflow and increases its density as it is supplied to the engine, and with oil cooling systems that prevent overheating.

Instant power

Turbos are often combined with direct or indirect fuel injectors and variable valve lift or timing systems to make the process even more efficient.

Electrified superchargers, which compress air for just a few hundred milliseconds to add brief low-end torque until the turbo charger kicks in, will also hit the market in the next few months.

Over the next five years, we’ll go from about a third to around half the cars sold having turbo chargers, and the growth will continue. We call this the ‘golden age of turbo’

Terrence Hahn, Honeywell TS

E-chargers, or e-turbos, will transform the driving experience, believes Mr Devauchelle, as they eliminate what’s called turbo lag – that slight delay in power boost you experience after pressing the accelerator.

“The turbo increases the engine’s maximum power. The e-charger gets you there even quicker,” he explains.

As such, e-turbos may rival established twin-turbo technology, where a small turbo takes care of the early stages of acceleration before the second turbo takes over.

The e-turbos’ batteries can be recharged in different ways, for instance by capturing energy during braking, explains Mr Hahn.

With enough electric power, e-chargers could take over more and more of the work done by the turbo.

Tesla electric car

Eventually carmakers will redesign vehicle architecture, moving from standard 12-volt batteries to higher voltage systems.

Forty-eight volt architecture is emerging in luxury cars with many electric components, but e-chargers can also run on 12-volt batteries if they are only required to deliver brief boosts, explains Mr Devauchelle.

‘Golden age of turbo’

“Petrol power is moving from naturally aspirated engines to turbo charged engines at a faster rate than ever before,” says Terrence Hahn, president and chief executive of Honeywell Transportation Systems.

“Over the next five years, we’ll go from about a third to around half the cars sold having turbo chargers, and the growth will continue,” he predicts.

“We call this ‘the golden age of turbo’.”

But there is no silver bullet as carmakers continue to grapple with ever-stricter emissions regulation, coupled with huge penalties for non-compliance.

Any number of combinations of e-chargers, turbo chargers, multi-stage boosting, fuel injection, variable valve systems, and combustion-electric hybrid technologies are being explored.

“During 30 years in the industry, I have never before seen so much diversity,” says Mr Devauchelle.

“Nobody can afford the penalties.”

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2015/turbo-chargers-amazing

What is Newton’s second law of motion?

What is Newton’s second law of motion?

http://gu.com/p/3zpeb

This is a really good post to help you find out!

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2014/what-is-newtons-second-law-of-motion

Can flywheel technology drive out the battery from car hybrids? | Corrinne Burns

Can flywheel technology drive out the battery from car hybrids? | Corrinne Burns

http://gu.com/p/3m6ng

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2014/can-flywheel-technology-drive-out-the-battery-from-car-hybrids-corrinne-burns

Black hole to ‘eat biggest meal’

Black hole to ‘eat biggest meal’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-25678737

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2014/black-hole-to-eat-biggest-meal

What is the second law of thermodynamics?

What is the second law of thermodynamics?

http://gu.com/p/3kt6q  from The Observer

Thermodynamics is the study of heat and energy. At its heart are laws that describe how energy moves around within a system, whether an atom, a hurricane or a black hole. The first law describes how energy cannot be created or destroyed, merely transformed from one kind to another. The second law, however, is probably better known and even more profound because it describes the limits of what the universe can do. This law is about inefficiency, degeneration and decay. It tells us all we do is inherently wasteful and that there are irreversible processes in the universe. It gives us an arrow for time and tells us that our universe has a inescapably bleak, desolate fate.

Despite these somewhat deflating ideas, the ideas of thermodynamics were formulated in a time of great technological optimism – the Industrial Revolution. In the mid-19th century, physicists and engineers were building steam engines to mechanise work and transport and were trying to work out how to make them more powerful and efficient.

Many scientists and engineers – including Rudolf Clausius, James Joule and Lord Kelvin – contributed to the development of thermodynamics, but the father of the discipline was the French physicist Sadi Carnot. In 1824 he published Reflections on the Motive Power of Fire, which laid down the basic principles, gleaned from observations of how energy moved around engines and how wasted heat and useful work were related.

The second law can be expressed in several ways, the simplest being that heat will naturally flow from a hotter to a colder body. At its heart is a property of thermodynamic systems called entropy – in the equations above it is represented by “S” – in loose terms, a measure of the amount of disorder within a system. This can be represented in many ways, for example in the arrangement of the molecules – water molecules in an ice cube are more ordered than the same molecules after they have been heated into a gas. Whereas the water molecules were in a well-defined lattice in the ice cube, they float unpredictably in the gas. The entropy of the ice cube is, therefore, lower than that of the gas. Similarly, the entropy of a plate is higher when it is in pieces on the floor compared with when it is in one piece in the sink.

A more formal definition for entropy as heat moves around a system is given in the first of the equations. The infinitesimal change in entropy of a system (dS) is calculated by measuring how much heat has entered a closed system (δQ) divided by the common temperature (T) at the point where the heat transfer took place.

The second equation is a way to express the second law of thermodynamics in terms of entropy. The formula says that the entropy of an isolated natural system will always tend to stay the same or increase – in other words, the energy in the universe is gradually moving towards disorder. Our original statement of the second law emerges from this equation: heat cannot spontaneously flow from a cold object (low entropy) to a hot object (high entropy) in a closed system because it would violate the equation. (Refrigerators seemingly break this rule since they can freeze things to much lower temperatures than the air around them. But they don’t violate the second law because they are not isolated systems, requiring a continual input of electrical energy to pump heat out of their interior. The fridge heats up the room around it and, if unplugged, would naturally return to thermal equilibrium with the room.)

This formula also imposes a direction on to time; whereas every other physical law we know of would work the same whether time was going forwards or backwards, this is not true for the second law of thermodynamics. However long you leave it, a boiling pan of water is unlikely to ever become a block of ice. A smashed plate could never reassemble itself, as this would reduce the entropy of the system in defiance of the second law of thermodynamics. Some processes, Carnot observed, are irreversible.

Carnot examined steam engines, which work by burning fuel to heat up a cylinder containing steam, which expands and pushes on a piston to then do something useful. The portion of the fuel’s energy that is extracted and made to do something useful is called work, while the remainder is the wasted (and disordered) energy we call heat. Carnot showed that you could predict the theoretical maximum efficiency of a steam engine by measuring the difference in temperatures of the steam inside the cylinder and that of the air around it, known in thermodynamic terms as the hot and cold reservoirs of a system respectively.

Heat engines work because heat naturally flows from hot to cold places. If there was no cold reservoir towards which it could move there would be no heat flow and the engine would not work. Because the cold reservoir is always above absolute zero, no heat engine can be 100% efficient.

The best-designed engines, therefore, heat up steam (or other gas) to the highest possible temperature then release the exhaust at the lowest possible temperature. The most modern steam engines can get to around 60% efficiency and diesel engines in cars can get to around 50% efficient. Petrol-based internal combustion engines are much more wasteful of their fuel’s energy.

The inefficiencies are built into any system using energy and can be described thermodynamically. This wasted energy means that the overall disorder of the universe – its entropy – will increase over time but at some point reach a maximum. At this moment in some unimaginably distant future, the energy in the universe will be evenly distributed and so, for all macroscopic purposes, will be useless. Cosmologists call this the “heat death” of the universe, an inevitable consequence of the unstoppable march of entropy.

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2013/what-is-the-second-law-of-thermodynamics

UK China nuclear deal ‘Orwellian’

UK China nuclear deal ‘Orwellian’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-25156551

Security fears over ‘Orwellian’ Chinese nuclear deal

By Rob BroombyBritish Affairs Correspondent, BBC World Service

George Osborne with Chinese nuclear workers in Taishan

It was hailed by UK Chancellor George Osborne as a “new dawn” – but serious questions remain about the security implications of Britain’s nuclear energy deal with China.

The UK government has refused to say whether China’s planned investment in the British nuclear industry was approved by the National Security Council – the body that assess the risks from foreign investment in critical national infrastructure projects.

Chancellor George Osborne announced during his trip to China in October that Chinese state owned companies CGN and CNNC would be allowed to take a 40% stake in the company planning to build the Hinkley C nuclear power station in Somerset.

In the future Chinese firms could become “majority owners of a British nuclear power plant subject to British safety rules and policed by the British,” said Mr Osborne.

Tim Yeo, chairman of Parliament’s energy and climate change committee, said Britain should “warmly welcome investment from China in the nuclear industry” but said he did not know whether the National Security Council had formally discussed or approved the investment.

“It would be a great pity if on some security reason this was thrown back into jeopardy.” he told BBC Radio 4’s The World Tonight.

But other members of Mr Yeo’s committee are worried.

Conservative MP Dr Phillip Lee said it was “perverse” and “Orwellian” to allow Chinese state owned firms a role in critical infrastructure projects like nuclear power at a time when questions over Chinese cyber-attacks on the west had not been resolved.

He said future conflicts would not be about the “physical possession of nations” but would involve “control of information, control of infrastructure, water electricity and communication.”

Military links

The Chinese could not take away a nuclear power station in the event of tension between the two countries but they could “virtually switch it off” if they wanted to, he claimed.

It would also bind Britain’s hands in respect of China diplomatically, when it comes to speaking out on human rights.

On the website of the China National Nuclear Corporation – one of the companies connected to the Hinkley project – the company boasts openly of its military links.

“China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) is the large state-owned enterprise under the direct management of the central government. Historically, CNNC successfully developed the atomic bomb, hydrogen bomb and nuclear submarines and built the first nuclear plant in the main land of China. CNNC is the main body of the national nuclear technology industry, the core of the national strategic nuclear deterrence”.

The company website says it “shoulders the dual historical responsibility for building the national defence force, increasing the value of state assets and developing the society.”

Hinkley Point CHinkley Point C is set to take 10 years to become fully operational. It will be made up of two nuclear reactors and will be built next to Hinkley Point A and B.


Just days after George Osborne made his nuclear announcement Chinese state-run TV was showing-off its nuclear armed submarines for the first time in 42 years accompanied by rousing music.

Official Chinese news agency Xinhua called the subs an “assassin’s mace that would make adversaries tremble”.

Labour MP Dr Alan Whitehead, also a member of the energy and climate change committee called the Chinese nuclear company CNNC an “arm of the state”.

“There doesn’t appear to be a clear distinction between the role of the Chinese National Nuclear Corporation in developing civil nuclear and developing and forwarding military nuclear,” he told the World Tonight.

“Big corporations particularly national corporations in China are not companies in the way that we would see them in the UK.”

He said the Chinese military – the People’s Liberation Army – would be involved in some of the decisions made by the firm.

He has called on the UK government to state publicly how the investment in critical national infrastructure was approved and by whom.

Corruption case

Nuclear expert Mark Hibbs, of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said the decision to invest in the British nuclear project would have been a “strategic decision” that would have been approved by China’s State Council – the nation’s ruling executive.

The UK Cabinet Office said in a statement that “the process for dealing with such issues falls under the aegis of the National Security Council”.

It said the government had “put in place an approach which enables it to assess the risks associated with foreign investment and develop strategies to manage them.

Cost of generating electricity, Nuclear £92.50 from 2023, onshore wind £100, offshore wind £155, tidal and wave £305, biomass £105, solar £125, electricity (gas/coal generated) £55.05, all other prices from 2014.

The National Security Council “brings together the economic and security arms of the government and is the forum that ultimately balances the risks and opportunities of inward investment decisions,” added the Cabinet Office statement.

But despite repeated requests the Cabinet Office has refused to say whether Chinese investment in Hinkley or the possible full majority ownership of nuclear reactors in the future has been formally discussed, assessed or approved by the National Security Council.

Critics fear Britain may be sleepwalking into nuclear relationship with China it will regret especially if in years to come China wants to introduce its own nuclear technology to the UK.

“The Chinese domestic nuclear programme certainly leaves much to be desired” says Dr Paul Dorfman of the University College London Energy Institute.

‘Safe power’

He is worried by the lack of transparency in the Chinese nuclear industry and cites the arrest and dismissal by the Chinese Government in August 2009 of the President of CNNC in a £260m corruption case involving allegations of “bid-rigging in nuclear power construction”.

Chinese investment in key energy infrastructure is “deeply problematic,” he said and industry experts were worried about “China’s weak regulatory structures”.

The UK Cabinet Office says Chinese firms have a “track-record in delivering safe nuclear power over the past thirty years. And that in the long-term it will deliver lower and more stable energy prices.”

“Any company involved in the UK nuclear power industry does so in accordance with the most stringent regulations in the world. On this basis, we welcome companies which can demonstrate the capability to contribute to safe nuclear power generation in the UK.”

The economics of the Hinkley C project have also been slammed. Peter Atherton of the respected city firm Liberum Capital said they were “flabbergasted” by the deal.

At £8bn per reactor, Hinkley Point is “the most expensive power station in the world (excluding hydro schemes) on a per megawatt basis,” said Mr Atherton.

He said the French and Chinese state owned firms would earn between £65bn and £80bn in dividends from British consumers over the project’s lifetime.

“The UK government was taking a massive bet that fossil fuel prices will be extremely high in the future. If that bet proves wrong then this contract will look economically insane when HPC (Hinkley Point C) commissions” added Mr Atherton.

Tim Yeo said the budget was so high “because they have factored in a much bigger contingency in to this project”.

But he added: “I do believe it is in Britain’s interests to have part of its electricity generated by nuclear power.

“It is a secure, safe, clean, low- carbon source of electricity.”

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2013/uk-china-nuclear-deal-orwellian

New Scientist News: Beer brewing could help make better bricks

Beer brewing could help make better bricks

THERE’S more to brewing than beer. A by-product of the process could be about to give an upgrade to a workhorse building material – red clay bricks. By blending in the grains left over from making beer, the bricks can be more environmentally friendly and better insulators.

Bricks are often impregnated with polystyrene as a way to enhance their heat-trapping abilities. This is appealing, because the bricks remain strong, and they can be built into energy-efficient buildings, says Eduardo Ferraz of the Polytechnic Institute of Tomar in Portugal. However, EU restrictions on carbon emissions have made it expensive to incorporate polystyrene and other synthetic materials into bricks.

Ferraz and his colleagues have now shown that brewery grains can be mixed into clay bricks to enhance their ability to trap heat, without compromising strength.

Spent grain for the process should be easily available, because commercial breweries produce huge quantities of it as a pulpy mixture that is usually used in animal feed or ends up in landfill.

With a clay paste containing 5 per cent spent grains, the team was able to create bricks just as strong as the conventional type, while reducing the amount of heat they lost by 28 per cent (Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering, doi.org/p6k). The reason for this, the team says, is that the grains make the bricks more porous, and so they trap more air, which increases heat retention.

One thing could stand in the way of using this process, though: the smell. Bill Daidone of the Acme Brick Company, one of the largest brick manufacturers in the US, says his lab abandoned experiments because the stench of the moist grains was overpowering. “We opened up the bucket and it was terrible,” he says. This problem vanishes once the bricks are fired, though, says Ferraz.

Bricks that provide insulation without sacrificing strength could be a big boost to the brick industry, says John Sanders, a researcher at the National Brick Research Center at Clemson University in South Carolina.

“With the current concern for energy codes, I think the industry is open to change,” Sanders says.

This article appeared in print under the headline “Brewing benefits? Alcohol, hangovers and better bricks”

http://google.com/producer/s/CBIw2Kfm0gM

Permanent link to this article: https://animatedscience.co.uk/2013/new-scientist-news-beer-brewing-could-help-make-better-bricks

Load more