Educational Innovations

Electrostatic Interactions

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From Educational Innovations: BUY NOW Electrostatics Kit 

Electrostatic Interactions: a triboelectric effect toy from the 1990s. The styrofoam spheres are given an acquired net negative charge by shaking the PET plastic container, and the foam beads are then attracted to the container wall but repel each other. (The foam balls pick up electrons when they strike the container walls.) A segment of PVC pipe also acquires a negative charge when rubbed with a paper towel, and here the foam spheres jump a centimeter or more when the pipe segment is brought near. In contrast, a segment of acrylic tube can acquire a positive charge, and will instead attract the styrofoam pellets as it is brought near the container. A demonstration of the invisible electric fields that are part of our everyday world. 

Repelling Marbles Puzzle

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From Educational Innovations: BUY NOW Mystery Marbles Puzzle Kit 

Mystery Marbles Puzzle: a physics brain teaser (now available as a kit) what's going on here? Three glass marbles can move but stay separated in this liquid filled tube no matter the orientation- why do they not touch? Swipe for reveal of components. 

See also: Poly-acrylamide Polymer Vanishing Act