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Labs start the week of September 11, and are held in 3254 Chamberlin. You are not required to keep a lab notebook - but for each lab you need to fill out and hand in at the end of each lab a question sheet made available to you on this page.

The labs will in most cases closely follow the Physics 208 Lab Manual, with the questions sheet as a supplement. In a few of the labs, including the first one, the question sheet is self-contained.

More information regarding the lab and lab procedures are available in the printed Physics 208 Lab Manual (available at the book store), and at the Physics 208 Lab web server.

Week of Lab Description Question sheet DataStudio
Sep 3 None First week of classes    
Sep 10 LC-1

Diffraction and interference: You will use diffraction and interference to directly demonstrate the wave nature of light.

Lab 1
Sep 17 LC-2 Mirrors and Lenses: Here you investigate image formation, primarily with lenses. Using refraction, lenses bend light rays to reconstruct an image at a different location from the object, and a different size. Lab 2
Sep 24 E-1 Electrostatics: This lab first investigates types of charges and the forces between them by experimenting with everyday objects. Then you use an electroscope to understand how electrons move in conductors, and how other nearby charged objects influences this charge motion.

Lab 1

Oct 1 None Exam week. Possible make-up of missed labs    
Oct 8 EC-2 Electric fields: Here you experimentally map the relation between electric fields and electric potential using a sheet of graphite paper. This leads to an intuitive understanding of many electrostatic configurations. Lab 4
Oct 15 EC-3 Resistor and capacitor circuits : In this lab you explore resistor and capacitor circuits, and use computer to record voltage signals from a propagating pulse in an RC model of a cell membrane. Lab 5
Oct 22 E-4 Magnetic fields and forces : In this lab you investigate the force on a moving charged particle (a current) by a constant magnetic field. You use this to make a measurement of the charge-to-mass ration (e/m) of an individual electron. Lab 6
Oct 29 None Exam week. Possible make-up of missed labs    
Nov 5 EC-5 Magnetic induction: Here you investigate Lenz' law and the Faraday effect. Both of these arise from the generation of an electromotive force (or equivalently, an electrostatic potential) by a time-varying magnetic flux. Lab 7
Nov 12 L-6 Polarization: In this lab you investigate polarization of visible light, both linear and circular. The polarization indicates the direction of the electric and magnetic fields in the electromagnetic wave. Different polarizations can be absorbed differently in some materials, making polarized light a useful probe. Lab 8
Nov. 19 None Thanksgiving recess week    
Nov. 26 None Exam week. Possible make-up of missed labs    
Dec 3 L-5 Atomic spectroscopy and the Balmer series: You will use a spectrometer to measure the wavelengths ( hence energies) of photons emitted when hydrogen and mercury atoms make transitions between their quantized energy levels. Lab 9  
Dec 10 MPC-1 Radiation and its interaction with matter: In this lab, you measure the emission of radiation from radioactive nuclei, and the absorption of that radiation by matter. Since these are random events, you also learn the basics of statistical analyses of these types of data. Lab 10 Lab10Settings




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