Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Fooling Around With High Speed Video
One of the tools that is used for research in the Physics and Astronomy department is a high speed video camera. Just in the process of learning how to use this camera, I took the following videos of a seltzer tablet being dropped into a beaker of water. In the first one, the camera is focused on the water in the beaker. Since the index of refraction of water is 1.33, this means that objects in the water will be slightly out of focus, so when the tablet falls in it get a bit blurry. However, it is still interesting to watch the splash in the water itself and how an air bubble "bounces" from the bottom of the beaker about half way through the video.

In the second take, I focused on an object inside the water so that the tablet would be in focus after it fell in. You can see that it is clearer now. It is interesting to note that the fizzing of the gas being liberated from the tablet doesn't start instantaneously, but seems to be delayed slightly even to the point that the large wave motion of the top of the water has died away by the time it really fizzes strongly.