Glenbrook South Year-End Projects
Project Information Sheet
Your project involves conducting research on the special theory of
relativity. You will determine variables that depend upon velocity
and how these variables are noticeably affected by speeds near that
By the end of this project, you
should be able to:
- apply the scientific method to a problem and draw logical
conclusions from systematically collected and analyzed data.
- use the Special Theory of Relativity to explain with words,
equations, and diagrams which variables are dependent upon speeds
that approach the speed of light and qualitatively and
quantitatively describe how dependent variables are varied at
- using appropriate terminology describe and explain the
operation and purpose of experiments that utilize the special
theory of relativity.
- explain with both words and experimentally derived equations
the motion of particles that approach the speed of light and be
able to apply these principles to the energy and momentum of those
- use data provided from Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory
to study several dependent variables and how they are dependent
upon velocity (distances traveled by muons with different
velocities and no velocities...what's the graph?, etc). You will
also need to sort through provided data to determine if it is
capable of systematic analysis.
- describe the fundamental particles and forces and be able to
explain the quark or lepton structure and characteristics of the
particles described in your chosen data.
Your teacher will provide:
- timely guidance and advice to get (and keep) your project
- suggestions for ways to find information (e.g., topics,
keywords, books, videos, laser discs, etc.).
- a World Wide Web (WWW) page full of
links to useful sites providing information on the Special Theory
of Relativity and the Standard Model, links to experts on
Relativity and the Standard Model and Fermilab experiments.
- a listing of basic research
questions about your topic in order to provide initial
guidance on your literature search.
- a school e-mail account and suggestions
for collaboration with other students at GBS (and beyond) and
with scientists who conduct research in your field. equipment
(Macintosh, RelLab, ChamberWorks, Physics Explorer, Sensai
Physics, Interactive Physics, ...etc.), and data links to
- graphical analysis software and other analysis software.
rubric to guide your performance and to access your completed
You are responsible for:
- developing a plan which involves dividing up each phase of the
project into a variety of tasks and designating certain tasks as
the responsibility of certain individuals.
- devoting yourself to your designated task and collaborating
with others regarding the results of your efforts.
- arranging for appointments with your teacher in order to ask
questions, receive advice, discuss difficulties, and discuss
- a thorough and well-documented literature search which
includes technical reading from scientific texts and physics
books, the search of information on CD-ROMs (particularly the
Einstein... CD-ROM), and the use of Internet (WWW) resources ; the
literature search should attend to and exceed
listing of basic research questions.
- a well-defined project proposal based on background reading
which includes (1) a statement of the purpose, (2) a step-by-step
procedure for analyzing the obtained data, and (3) a
clearly-defined plan for interpreting experimental data.
- providing a written request for needed equipment (24 hours in
- a detailed and organized notebook which documents your
experimental results and a computer disk which is used to
systematically save Graphical Analysis and other analysis.
- reviewing your notebook and computer disk with your teacher
during guidance sessions.
- the organization of charts, graphs, posters, computer
printouts, pictures, clip-art, videos, CD-ROM images, WWW
downloads, etc. all included in a multimedia report which includes
credit for used information and which informs your classmates of
what you did, how you did it, and what the results were.
- the production of a single word-processed
report which includes the final form of your purpose,
bibliography, literature survey, experimental procedure,
experimental data, graphs, charts, a discussion of results, and a
discussion of the theory behind the Special Theory of Relativity
and the Standard Model to explain your discovered relationships
Some KEYWORDS to use in a literature
- Relativity Einstein
- Physics AND "The Special Theory of Relativity" The Standard
- Education AND ... Time Dilation
- Relativistic Mass Length Contraction
- Invariaint or Invariance Top Quark
- High Energy Physics CPEP
IMC RESOURCES (placed on reserve)
- General Information
- How the World Works 500 REN
- Experimenting with Science 507.8 GAR
- Foundations of Modern Physics 530 HOL
- How Things Work 530 CRA
- Physics Projects for young... 530 GOO
- Adventures in Physics 530 HIG
- A Source Book in Physics 530 M
- The Story of Physics 530 MOT
- The Project Physics course 530 RUT
- Phenomenal Physics 530 SWA
- The complete Guide to... 797.1 EVA
- Detailed Information about your specific topic:
- How Things Work 530 CRA
- A folder containing articles pertaining to the Special Theory
of Relativity and the Standard Model and Conceptual Physics (a
text by Paul Hewitt).
- Other IMC RESOURCES (not placed on reserve)
- Van Nostrand's Scientific Encyclopedias R503 VAN
- Science and physics encyclopedias and reference materials
- CD-ROMs (particularly the "Creation of the Universe" and "..."
The folder (mentioned above) will be a very useful resource for
technical information. The Internet contains much information about
both the Special Theory of Relativity and the Standard Model. The
encyclopedias, reference materials, and CD-ROMs are also very useful.
The Mechanicl Universe Video and the Conceptual Physics text
(Chapters 15 & 16 should also prove valuable). Quickly determine
what is meant by relativistic speed, time dilation, length
contraction, The Standard Model, quarks, leptons, and Feynman
Diagrams and how it applies to the provided data sets. You will also
want to quickly become familiar with the equations of the Special
Theory of Relativity to determine how the equations match the
Other GBS Resources
The GBS Physics staff invite
you to send electronic mail:
This page last updated on 3/20/98.
Questions and comments can be sent to