News release: Paperclip Physics

Media and Promotion Office (2002) News release: Paperclip Physics. Other. University of Central Lancashire, Preston.

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Abstract

Why does a cat always fall on its feet? How does an aircraft fly? What happens during an eclipse? Could
you explain these and other scientific principles easily to a non-scientist using only household items?
That is the problem posed to students entering the national Paperclip Physics Competition at the
University of Central Lancashire on 6 March.
Tin cans, bits of plywood, eggs - anything readily available around the average house can be used to
demonstrate the principles or concepts of the tests posed by the Institute of Physics. The most impmtant
point is that the presentations must be understandable by people without a science background.
To ensure that the presentations are at the correct level for students of the 16-17 age group' David
Roberts, Head of Physics at Stoney hurst College is one of the judges, while Dr Ian Ferguson, a retired
Physicist from BNFL will monitor scientific accuracy. RockFM DJ Mmtin Greenwood will be the lay
person on hand who has to understand the presentations.
This is the 41
h year that the Institute of Physics has held the competition in Preston and if the success of
previous years is anything to go by, finalists will go on to the National Final in London where they will
compete with winners from all England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland.
Dr Peter Bates, of the University's Department of Physics Astronomy and Mathematics said: "We try to
get a broad range of schools from across the spectrum that represents the notthwest. This year the
schools entering are Amold School, Blackpool, Kirbie Kendal School, from Kendal, Lancaster Girls'
Grammar School, St Wilfred's CafE School Blackburn and for the first time this year Blackbum College
and Hollins High School, Accrington are taking part."
The Paperclip Physics Competition will begin at 2pm in StPeter's Art Centre at the University of
Central Lancashire on Wednesday 6 March, 2002.
NR019md
23 February, 2002
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