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Quiz about General Physics
Quiz about General Physics

General Physics Quiz for Experts | Sci / Tech


I'm a science and math teacher. Let's see how well you've paid attention in science class.

A multiple-choice quiz by Eelsdude. Estimated time: 5 mins.
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Author
Eelsdude
Time
5 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
233,074
Updated
Nov 01 22
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Tough
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
7923
Last 3 plays: Guest 47 (5/10), Guest 112 (7/10), Guest 207 (8/10).
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Question 1 of 10
1. Which physicist became more famous for his cat than for his equation? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. What was Albert Einstein's first Nobel prize all about? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. In which ancient culture was the hypothesis that all matter exists out of particles first formulated?
Hint


Question 4 of 10
4. The great scientist Isaac Newton assumed light was a bundle which consisted of light particles (photons), while the Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens assumed light consisted of waves. Which one was correct? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. Which Italian became famous for the experiment he conducted with a mercury tube to measure the atmospheric pressure? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. The following statement is actually one of Kepler's laws. Which one is it?

"The line joining a planet to the Sun sweeps out equal areas in equal intervals of time."

Hint


Question 7 of 10
7. Most materials take up more space when they melt. Ice is an exception that takes up less space when it melts.


Question 8 of 10
8. The basic principle for generating electric current was the work of which scientist? Hint


Question 9 of 10
9. Electromagnetism proved a powerful tool for engineers all over the world. Thomas Edison, for instance, made a lot of inventions, but his most successful was probably the common light bulb. Do you know which material the wire in a light bulb is usually made of? Hint


Question 10 of 10
10. The Michelson-Morley experiment was an experiment intended to determine which of these? Hint



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quiz
Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. Which physicist became more famous for his cat than for his equation?

Answer: Erwin Schrodinger

Schrödinger's cat was a hypothetical experiment. In the experiment, a cat is in a small, sealed box with a poisonous substance. This substance is sealed away from the cat, but will be released when a certain radioactive element disintegrates.

Suppose you leave the box where it is. At any moment, you cannot tell whether the cat is dead or alive, since if the element has disintegrated, the cat will be dead and if it didn't the cat will still be alive. Since there is no way to know whether the element disintegrated, he argued, the cat will be in a state between dead and alive until you open the box and thus take a measurement.

This experiment was proposed to counter critics, such as Einstein, and help them understand what quantum theory was all about. Quantum theory states that properties of a particle are not known until you measure them (thus the life or death of the cat). Therefore, quantum mechanics is a statistical theory in nature. Einstein however, was convinced that a deterministic God did not play dice and hence the universe could not be statistical, so he did not agree with quantum mechanics as a final theory. Schrödinger on his part, countered with this experiment.

Unfortunately for Schrödinger, his experiment is quantum physics on a wrong level. Quantum physics only works at a submicroscopic level as a theory and hence should be only used for that. The cat for sure is either dead or alive and its fate does not depend on a measurement (as the spin of an electron seems to do). The macroscopic world is thus thought to be deterministic and the submicroscopic world indeterministic or statistical.
2. What was Albert Einstein's first Nobel prize all about?

Answer: The photo-electric effect

It was for one of the first breakthroughs in quantum mechanics that Einstein generally got accepted as a genius. In his paper, published in 1905, he describes the effects of a light bundle on metals. It is one of the cornerstones of Quantum Physics. He was one of the first persons to make use of the quantization of energy, which was thought to be continuous until then. The Nobel Prize was awarded in 1921.

Ironically, he fought the theory which he contributed to until his death.
3. In which ancient culture was the hypothesis that all matter exists out of particles first formulated?

Answer: The ancient Greek culture

Democritos (the Greek philosopher who thought first of it) was seldom believed in his time. Lucretius, a great Roman writer refers to him, but it was not until Dalton (around 1800 AD) that his idea was generally accepted. Until then, all philosophers and scientists assumed matter was continuous, but the theory of gasses (as nowadays still accepted) required otherwise.
4. The great scientist Isaac Newton assumed light was a bundle which consisted of light particles (photons), while the Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens assumed light consisted of waves. Which one was correct?

Answer: Both were partially correct

They both are, to a degree. Nowadays, we assume light has particle properties and wave properties and light more or less chooses how to act. This phenomenon is called the duality of light.

Louis de Broglie became famous because he extended the idea to matter. This theory also still holds.
5. Which Italian became famous for the experiment he conducted with a mercury tube to measure the atmospheric pressure?

Answer: Torricelli

It's called Torricelli's experiment (how original) and is quite famous. He measured the atmospheric pressure by making an equilibrium between a column of mercury and the atmospheric pressure. Since he knew a formula to calculate the pressure in the column of mercury, he also knew which pressure held the tube in equilibrium and thus derived the atmospheric pressure.
6. The following statement is actually one of Kepler's laws. Which one is it? "The line joining a planet to the Sun sweeps out equal areas in equal intervals of time."

Answer: 2nd law

This is Kepler's second law. A consequence of this law is that during wintertime (in the northern hemisphere) the earth is actually closer to the sun than during summer time. He did not understand the full meaning of it, though. To explain revolution around the sun, he invented a mechanism in which the Sun emits a continuous beam of particles. This particle beam rotates with the sun and pulls the planets with it (a bit like a rope connected to an object does). We had to wait until Newton, who discovered the universal law of gravity, to explain it.

There are two more laws Kepler described.
7. Most materials take up more space when they melt. Ice is an exception that takes up less space when it melts.

Answer: True

Most other substances will take a larger volume when they melt (as required by the particle model).
8. The basic principle for generating electric current was the work of which scientist?

Answer: Faraday

Faraday was the one who showed how an electric current could be generated. Maxwell unified the laws of electromagnetism, while Gauss showed there exist no magnetic monopoles (as a result of the fact that a magnetic flux on each closed surface is zero). Rutherford is known for the atomic model named after him.
9. Electromagnetism proved a powerful tool for engineers all over the world. Thomas Edison, for instance, made a lot of inventions, but his most successful was probably the common light bulb. Do you know which material the wire in a light bulb is usually made of?

Answer: Tungsten

Tungsten is favored for its high melting temperature (about 3700 °C). Since a light bulb heats to high temperatures, it makes an ideal wire.
10. The Michelson-Morley experiment was an experiment intended to determine which of these?

Answer: the existence of an aether in outer space in which light waves could propagate

Michelson and Morley became famous for the 'most failed experiment' in history. According to their theory, there should exist an aether in outer space so light waves could propagate the way sound waves do. In reality, electromagnetic waves in general and light waves in particular do not need a medium to propagate through, thus explaining why electromagnetic waves from outer space actually can reach us.
Source: Author Eelsdude

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