The Applet Collection

These applets enable you to study simple physical systems in a playful way. They are idealizations of realistic scenarios, which follow the proper equations that also govern the real experimental systems.

Here is also a handy calculator (will open in a separate window):


Significant Figures
Try some exercises with significant figures on your own.

Playing around with the parameters
(x0, v0, and a) of the simple kinematic equations for motion in 1D with constant acceleration.

Vector Addition
Practice with the concepts of graphical vector addition and subtraction.

Projectile Simulation
Shoot a cannon after selecting the initial speed and angle of the projectile.


Net Force
See how the components of three forces add up to the net force.

Simple Incline Plane
Box on an incline - one of the basic physics problems solved.

Inclined Plane
Experimentally solve a very complicated inclined plane problem with friction.

Atwood Machine
Two masses, a rope, and a pulley.

Force and Work
Work you have to do against the forces of gravity and/or friction.

Virtual Billiards
Two dimensional collision between two objects of equal mass.

Virtual Air Track
Totally elastic or totally inelastic collisions or anything in between.

Play the (almost) real game. Momentum conservation at work.

Rotational Motion, Statics

Atwood Machine with Rotation
Another look at the problem of two masses and a rope, but this time the pulley gets to rotate.

Statics - Beam
A beam hangs from a wall and is supported by a rope and a hinge. In turn it supports a mass you can move around ...

Stacking Blocks
How far over the edge can you move the books?

Put your very own satellite into orbit.

A game that illustrates the ideal gas law and Archimeded' Principle.


Mass on a Spring
Study the classical oscillator.

The other classical oscillator.

Coupled Oscillators
Transfer energy between two coupled oscillators.

Damped Oscillator
Mass on a spring with friction present.

Thermal Physics

Kinetic Theory
Change the temperature and volume of a gas and watch the number of collisions with the wall.

Phase Transition Temperatures
Change the temperature and watch all elements in the periodic table melt and boil.

Ideal Gas
Explore the equatiuon pV=nRT.

Wave Phenomena

Move two circular wave patterns and watch the patterns.

Reflection, Refraction, and Diffraction
Shows the three main wave phenomena ...

Put 1, 2, or 3 linear polarizers onto an optical bench and let a beam of unpolarized light pass through them.

Two-Slit Interference
Vary the slit separation and the wavelength of the light and then watch the interference pattern.

Generates a single-slit diffraction pattern.

Two-Slit with Diffraction
Combines the effects of interference and diffraction.

Doppler Effect
Visualization of the Doppler effect and Mach cones.

Explore the electromagnetic spectrum.

Vary two frequencies and see the corresponding beat pattern emerge.

Play the piano and see the frequencies.

Visualization of shallow water tsunami wave pile-up


Deflection of Charges
Change the voltage on the deflector plates and see the deflection of the electron beam.

Field Lines
Drag two variable charges and watch the field lines.

Electrostatic Potential
Place charges and watch the resulting electrostatic potential distribution.

Solves all kinds of capacitor network problems.

Same thing for resistors.

Sometimes it's just fun to play with pretty patterns.

Lorentz Force
Observe the deflection of a beam of charged particles in a magnetic field.

Put an electron into orbit around a proton.


Charging a Capacitor
After closing the switch, you can observe the time evolution of the charging of the capacitor.

Resonance Circuit
Impedance for a very basic RLC circuit with an external source of alternating current.

Be Michael Faraday for a while.


Understand how shadows are formed.

Snell's Law
Deflection of a light beam going from one medium to another.

Change the focal length of a lens combination.

Color Mixing: CYM
Mix Colors additively.

Color Mixing: RGB
Mix Colors subtractively.

Quantum Physics

Photo Effect
Study the photo-electric effect with three different materials and variable light.

Electron Configurations
Experience how electrons are added to the atomic shells.

Bohr Atom
Visualize the transitions in the hydrogen atom.

See the three main radiation laws in graphic action.

Nuclear Physics

Radioactive Decay
Watch the nuclei decay away and discover the exponential decay law.

Nuclear Chain Reaction
Put a neutron into a reactor and watch it explode.

Nuclear Isotope Half-lifes
Find out the half-lifes of all known isotopes.

Put the right combination of quarks and antiquarks together and see the resulting hadron.


Scalar Product
Visualize the dot product when moving two vectors around in the plane.

Vector Product
A cross B in 3D.

Find out why we have summers and winters.

Travel to a distant star and solve the twin paradox.

© W. Bauer, 1999