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SWOSU Physics Students Present at Regional Conference

SWOSU Physics StudentsSWOSU Physics Club members at Weatherford recently presented three posters at a regional physics conference held in Nacogdoches (TX). Attending were (front from left): Daniel Gassen, El Reno; Luke Kraft, Hooker; Boubacar Wane (sitting), Weatherford; and faculty Dr. Wayne Trail. Back from left—Brock Mason, Tuttle; Cameron Cinnamon, Garber; faculty Dr. Tony Stein; Emily Trail, Weatherford; Jaxon Taylor, Mustang; and faculty Dr. Terry Goforth.

The Southwestern Oklahoma State University Physics Club at Weatherford recently presented three research posters at the annual regional conference for the Texas Section of the American Physical Society (APS), Texas Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers, and the Texas Section of the Society of Physics Students in Nacogdoches (TX).

Talks and posters were presented from students and faculty from across Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma. Plenary talks included detection of extrasolar planets and space travel, improved techniques for detecting particles in our water, and the physics of shock waves. Other posters and talks covered a wide range of topics in physics and physics teaching.

SWOSU students Jaxon Taylor of Mustang and Boubacar Wane of Weatherford presented “Automating an Astronomical Observatory” in which they showed how to use inexpensive electronics and a personal computer to cause the slot in an observatory to track with the observatory telescope, without requiring constant management by the user. As a result, it makes long observation cycles much less tedious.

Cameron Cinnamon of Garber, Daniel Gassen of El Reno and Taylor presented “The Dobsonian Telescope: A Reclamation Project” in which they removed the optics from very old, broken telescopes and repurposed them into convenient Dobsonian telescopes, which are very simple, lightweight and hand-operated.

Wane, Taylor and Luke Kraft of Hooker presented “Building and Using Lehman Seismometers,” in which they have built several seismometers and are monitoring earthquakes in Oklahoma.  A long-term goal of the project is to be able to collaborate with regional schools and set up several seismometers that can be used to triangulate the positions of Earthquake epicenters.

Faculty who attended and contributed to the work were Physics Club Sponsor Wayne Trail and physics faculty Tony Stein and Terry Goforth.