Smartphone Physics and Engineering


S martphones in P hysics and

E ngineering E ducation

Dr. Shakur “Doc”

Taylor Sinatra

And the $1 Billion Winner is …

S mart … Very S mart!

• Compelling piece of technology

• Microprocessor and Operating System

• Haptic System (Touchscreen)

• Array of sensors included

• Three-axis accelerometer

• Gyroscope

• Gaussmeter (Magnetometer)

• TRRS Headphone input / output

• Microphones

• Speakers

Monkey See … Monkey Do!


Antisymmetric Tracks … and the winner is?

Symmetry-breaking in Classical Physics

Atwood’s Machine

• Measure gravity by “slowing it down”

• Measured by hanging two slightly different masses and reading the acceleration

Atwood’s Machine

• Smartphone is placed in a plastic bag

• App measures the acceleration

• Data compared to theory

• 99% accurate

Acceleration App

• Today is your lucky day!

• Everybody in the audience gets it FREE!

Centripetal Acceleration Lab

• The phone is placed on a turntable and the app is run

• a = mv 2 /r

20 th Century 21 st Century

Frequency and Oscilloscope

Android Bluetooth Remote for Lego Mindstorm NXT

Quantum Mystery

T HE B ook!

MIT App Inventor

• App Inventor is Free

• Simple pre-coded blocks make it relatively easy to use

Blocks Editor

Future Exploration

• Smartphones have become indispensable

• Ideas for future laboratories

– Oscilloscope and Signalscope App

– Gaussmeter for magnetic fields

– Gyroscope for angular speed

• Smartphones can reduce lab budget significantly

• Students are excited about using smartphones

Android Emulator on the PC

Install App

T hat’s All Folks …