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Build 2000

Trent University Hosts Canadian Association of Physicists Lecture: "Physics in the Sandbox"

Trent University is pleased to welcome the University of Toronto's Prof. Stephen Morris, to discuss "Physics in the Sandbox" as the Canadian Association of Physicists lecturer on Wednesday, March 10 from 4 - 5 p.m. in the Chemical Sciences Building room E 101.

All are welcome to this talk, which is designed to enhance the teaching of Physics at all levels.

The behaviour of dry granular matter, like sand, is a continuing source of fascination. How does a heap of sand support itself? The answer is surprising and subtle. Shaken grains self-organize into spectacular lattice patterns and granular gases cool into galaxy-like clusters. Why? Unlike fluids, dry granular materials often stubbornly refuse to mix when shaken or stirred. Instead, they sort themselves by size or shape. These "segregation" effects are common in many industrial processes involving grains from cake mixes to gunpowder, but are only rather poorly understood.

In this talk, Prof. Morris will show many examples of the behaviour of grains, discuss some of the new ideas about them and attempt some live demonstrations of these counterintuitive phenomena.

Posted March 10, 2004

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