Similar to Adventures with Hannah, Adventures with Quinn took place because Ed Morarity introduced me to an awesome high school student named Quinn who wanted to build something neat.
I had been studying for finals and needed a break one Saturday – so I went over to the “Saturday Thing” @ The Edgerton Center to see what was going on.
Quinn (without my help) had made a magnet-based rail gun and the end-goal of the project was to set up a physics experiment using the rail gun, some marbles and an empty box of GoldFish crackers to derive the exit velocity of the rail gun. The main idea was that we could shoot the marble into a suspended empty box and measure the vertical displacement of the box. Then using the relationships for potential energy and kinetic energy, we could find the potential energy of the empty box plus marble and use it to find the kinetic energy of the marble and then the velocity of the marble.
Here are some pictures from this endeavor. If you’re reading this Quinn, it was great to meet you and I had a blast setting this up!
We even got some video footage of the whole thing in action.