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IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water

This article has been downloaded from IOPscience. Please scroll down to see the full text article. 2013 Eur. J. Phys. 34 S35 (http://iopscience.iop.org/0143-0807/34/4/S35) View the table of contents for this issue, or go to the journal homepage for more

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including the full text. laser beam reﬂection from the water surface is used to calculate the recession depth of the water surface above a strong permanent magnet. The competition was organized by the Estonian Ministry of Education and Research via the Estonian Information Technology Foundation with active participation by the leading Estonian universities the University of Tartu and Tallinn University of Technology. Last summer 80 countries with 378 contestants participated in the 43rd IPhO. S Ainsaar 3 2 ˜ and R Lohmus 1 2 3 CENS. Phys. The ten-day event contained theoretical and experimental rounds. Introduction The International Physics Olympiad (IPhO) is the largest and most prestigious competition in solving physics problems for general school students [1–5]. (Some ﬁgures may appear in colour only in the online journal) 1. and the Estonian Physical Society.1088/0143-0807/34/4/S35 IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water J Kalda 1 . It was started in 1967 in Warsaw with ﬁve participating countries. Tallinn.IOP PUBLISHING Eur.org/EJP/34/S35 Abstract An overview of the 43rd International Physics Olympiad (held in Tallinn and Tartu. correspondingly. Tartu. J Kikas 2 . 34 (2013) S35–S48 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICS doi:10. Institute of Cybernetics. University of Tartu.ee Received 14 January 2013.1.00 c 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd Printed in the UK & the USA S35 . M Heidelberg 3 . It has now grown extensively. this result is used to determine the magnetic permeability of the water. in ﬁnal form 20 March 2013 Published 28 May 2013 Online at stacks. Estonia E-mail: kalda@ioc. In this experiment. Estonia Institute of Physics. it is still open to innovations from modern technologies. University of Tartu.iop. Estonia) is given. Traditions and innovations While the IPhO has strong traditions and ﬁrmly established regulations [6]. solution. Tallinn University of Technology. Tartu. Estonia Department of Physics. 0143-0807/13/040035+14$33. Four novelties introduced in Estonia should be mentioned. Experimental problem no 1 is discussed in detail. this includes short summaries of the problems and competition results. 1. J. and additional theoretical analysis. where the students had 5+5 hours for solving three theoretical and two experimental problems. held in Estonia (Tallinn/Tartu).

For this task an Academic Committee was formed well in advance. Further. the city of Tartu was declared for one day the World Capital of Physics. rather than reading. The target is that half of the contestants should be able to get at least half of the marks [6]. for example. as well as designing and manufacturing the experimental setups took about two years. and the National University of Singapore. there was a ‘career day’ during which the students had an opportunity to visit the information booths of some of the leading universities in the world. requirements (ii) and (iii) are contradictory: problems with many sub-questions are easier to grade. selecting and reﬁning the problems. Hopefully. the World Capital of Physics will become a traditional part of the IPhO. together with the main ideas for solving them. There will be no ‘Physics Cup’ preceding the 44th IPhO. (ii) the problems should be relatively easy to grade. we succeeded at least to some extent in achieving our targets. 8]. This event comprised many open-air activities all over the city and culminated with a lecture by the Nobel Prize winner Sir Harold Kroto. A limited . the International Board. Also. consisting of the leaders of the delegations. a certain compromise is unavoidable. The participants also included the absolute winner and eight gold medallists of the 43rd IPhO (though. there are additional requirements: (i) the problems should contain both simple questions (so that all the participants would get at least some marks) and difﬁcult questions (so that only the best student would get a nearly perfect score.S36 J Kalda et al For the ﬁrst time the event took place in two cities: while the students competed in the old university city of Tartu. the winners were presented their awards at the IPhO 43rd Closing Ceremony. Problems According to the statutes of the competition. and the markers worked in Tallinn. Typically. The overall process of discussing. Finally. but hopefully the event will return. it is the responsibility of the organizing country to prepare the problems. According to the response we got from the contestants and their supervisors. the competition was preceded by an international online competition ‘Physics Cup IPhO2012’ [7. devising such problems was the primary target before the Academic Committee. Oxford University (who also represented Cambridge University).1. Also. so that a fair grading of all the papers can be achieved within a few days. so that the contestants can spend more time on solving the problems. it is impossible to measure the role of the ‘Physics Cup’ in their preparation). a teleconference for each delegation was organized. 2. Below is a brief summary of the problems. Meanwhile. As the third novel feature. (iii) the problem texts should not be too long. The competition was aimed to motivate students studying physics on a regular basis and received very positive feedback from its 268 participants from 46 countries. in order to promote international collaboration in the physical sciences. This was made possible by extensive use of IC technologies for communicating electronically the texts of problems and the students solutions between the cities. Design of the problems: the targets The majority of the team leaders of IPhO prefer problems which emphasize creativity and physically rich content over mathematical skills and solving speed [9]. So. very creative and open-ended problems do not satisfy the requirement of (ii). 2. Those readers who want to try the problems without suggestions of how to solve them can download the full text of the problems from the webpage of the 43rd IPhO [10]. the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

hence the air speed in the wing’s frame is maximal. The students were also asked to estimate the critical speed using the following data: relative humidity of the air r = 90%. in the case of high relative humidity. speciﬁc heat of air at constant pressure c p = 1. and to calculate the minimal throwing speed. While an optimal solution had only a few steps. The contestants needed to understand that the droplets will appear because of adiabatic cooling. i.e.ee.31 kPa at the temperature Ta = 293 K and psb = 2. The contestants needed to notice that the endpoints of the straws are essentially magnetic monopoles. a stream of water droplets is generated behind the wings.2. (e-mail: viire@ut. A sketch of streamlines around an aircraft’s wing. a brute force approach was deemed to fail. Please send your inquiry to the Gifted and Talented Development Centre. The students were asked to sketch the magnetic ﬁeld lines in an axial cross-section of a straw.00 × 103 J(kg K )−1 . The second part studied an intriguing phenomenon: during the take-off of aircrafts. calculate the axial tension force. Using a sketch of streamlines in the aircraft’s frame of reference (see ﬁgure 1). The ﬁrst part studied how to optimally throw a ball to the topmost point of a spherical building of a given radius: the students needed to sketch the shape of the optimal trajectory. While the tension force can be easily calculated via the change of the magnetic ﬁeld energy by a small virtual lengthening of the cylinder. the students were asked to determine the spot where the droplets appear ﬁrst. and that the strongest cooling happens in a place where the pressure is minimal. pressure of saturated water vapour. each of which had three questions with increasing difﬁculty.46 kPa at Tb = 294 K (additionally.IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water S37 Figure 1. the main challenge was how to ﬁnd the interaction force between two straws. The third part dealt with the magnetic ﬁeld created by ‘magnetic straws’—by superconducting cylindrical tubes of length l and diameter r l carrying an axial magnetic ﬂux which exits the ‘straws’ through its open ends. they were allowed to take measurements with a ruler from the streamline sketch). . psa = 2. number of experimental setups are also still available. subject: IPhO 2012 setup). This calculation tested the mathematical insight of the students. where the streamline distance is the smallest. and derive the interaction force between two magnetic monopoles via matching electric and magnetic quantities. and determine the force between two antiparallel straws which are at a distance l from each other. Theory problem no 1: focus on sketches The aim of the ﬁrst problem was to demonstrate that graphs and sketches are important tools for physicists which can help them grasp the physical essence of the process. University of Tartu. It had three independent parts. 2.

the diameter of the droplets was assumed to be much larger than the pipe’s diameter. 2. Water (of given surface tension and density) was assumed to be electrically conducting. Also. There is a grounded water reservoir from which water ﬂows through a T-pipe. Theory problem no 3: protostar formation The third problem was devoted to a gravitational collapse of a sparse and cold initially homogeneous spherical cloud of gas.3. and the voltage by which they become unstable due to the Rayleigh charge instability (the students were told that the instability will appear for negative gauge pressures inside the droplet. This problem was relatively simple. they needed to understand what is the effect of the cylindrical electrodes on the electrostatic potential ﬁeld near the charged droplets. see ﬁgure 2. Theory problem no 2: Kelvin water dropper The second problem proposed an idealized model of the Kelvin water dropper. Further. a device which generates voltage via a water ﬂow in a T-shaped pipe.4. Finally. and for the pressure caused by an electric ﬁeld. In order to obtain the Rayleigh charge instability criterion. from the endpoints of the T-pipe. They were also asked to ﬁnd how the electrode voltage evolves in time. An idealized model of a Kelvin water dropper. the bowls are electrically cross-connected to screening cylindrical electrodes surrounding the pipes. and by which voltage the droplets will no longer be able to land in the bowl. this instability criterion is derived in [11]).S38 J Kalda et al Figure 2. they needed to realize that a charged droplet will not land in the bowl if the required increase of its electrostatic potential energy is larger than the energy supplied by the decrease of its gravitational energy (this turned out to be the most difﬁcult task of problem no 2). the students needed to derive and apply the formulas for the capillary pressure under a spherical liquid–air interface. water droplets fall into bowls. The problem made a somewhat controversial assumption that the initial gravitational energy of the gas is much larger by modulus than its initial heat . 2. The students were asked to determine the size of the droplets when they separate from the nozzles due to the free fall acceleration.

and the task was to determine its C–V -dependence. almost all the current ˙ . which recorded voltage V . This was a more tricky task: the students needed to notice that if both the charging and discharging cycles of the capacitor are used. the capacitor discharges through the nonlinear resistance). The contestants were asked to determine the heat energy radiated by the gas during that stage. Here. The students were asked to determine the time duration of the collapse using Kepler’s laws. In particular. the initial stage of the collapse was assumed to be isothermal (at the thermal equilibrium with the environment). In the second part. the current I (V ) through the nonlinear element is the same for both cycles and hence can be eliminated from the system of two equations. the capacitor’s goes to the capacitance. It should be stressed that for real astrophysical gas clouds. and the kinetic energy can be neglected. They needed to ﬁgure out that falling along a straight line can be considered as moving along a degenerate elliptical orbit. hence C = I0 /V ˙ current can be found as CV . cannot be found in the interstellar environment. It was designed to test the ability of the students to handle correctly the ﬁrst law of thermodynamics when several effects need to be taken into account. current I . Experimental problem no 2: nonlinear black box The second experimental problem dealt with an electrical black box that had two nonlinear elements: an unknown nonlinear resistance (tunnel diode was used). forgetting that most of it goes to the kinetic energy of the free fall of the gas: what is radiated is the energy performed on the compression of the gas. connected in parallel to a supercapacitor of unknown capacitance. the capacitance was assumed to be constant. a very common mistake (which was made even by the very best contestants) was that the radiated heat was equated to the loss of the gravitational energy. 2. the time derivatives V ratio V/I . gas clouds are always close to the hydrodynamical equilibrium. they needed to estimate the ﬁnal radius and temperature of the gas cloud when hydrodynamical equilibrium is reached. the former approach can be actually the valid one: in the absence of separate massive attraction centres. where R is the gas constant and G is the gravity constant. or I = CV ˙ for the discharging found as I = I0 − CV cycle (the black box is disconnected from the current source. and to draw the I –V -curve of the nonlinear resistance. the students needed to study the second stage of the collapse when the gas is opaque and therefore thermally isolated from the environment. and the design multimetre. The controversy lies in the fact that such a gas cloud is out of the hydrodynamical equilibrium and hence.IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water S39 μ energy: G m RT0 . T0 is the temperature of the gas. Further. connected in series with the nonlinear resistance. so that the current through the nonlinear element can be either ˙ for the charging cycle of the capacitor. as a ‘Gedankenexperiment’. . Finally. and a custom˙. and m is its molar mass. the contraction rate is controlled by cooling. The black box also had a switch which enabled a small inductor (of a negligible active resistance). pdV . Then. However. U ˙ . The contestants could use a constant current source (I0 = 6 mA). this can be easily done as soon as it is understood that the collapse becomes adiabatic.5. r0 is the cloud’s r0 initial radius. Once we know the capacitance. This was a relatively simple task: for small voltage of the capacitance. The model suggested in this task corresponds to a gas cloud falling onto a separate massive attraction centre. the assumption of constant capacitance was abandoned. In the ﬁrst part of the problem. such a model serves as a tool to demonstrate several phenomena and concepts which really do work in the dynamics of interstellar gas. The students were asked to determine the capacitance.

for a complete list of components. Still. Upper left insert: water dish (5) with a permanent magnet (7). using sensitive techniques. where it was proposed to the students that they measure the inﬂuence of a strong permanent magnet on water surface and calculate from the measurements the magnetic permeability of water. to obtain again the I –V -curve. due to the reﬂected laser beam. and the curves obtained in the ﬁrst part. Then. negative differential resistance ( d dI Further. the base of which was fastened to the stand. the students were asked to enable the inductor. Finally. The contestants needed to notice that the differences between the two graphs are localized into the V < 0) was measured. negative resistance will cause an instability—oscillations of increasing amplitude. it is thought that the observable effects are limited to magnetic materials (ferromagnetics) only. . a digital calliper (3). they needed to understand that if positive resistance leads to damped oscillations in LC-circuit. 3. 3. The setup of the ﬁrst experiment. together with the laser pointer (4). The experimental setup The setup comprised of a stand ((1). lower left insert: bright dot on the screen (6). The laser was ﬁxed to the calliper. diamagnetic materials. Such an approach was taken as the base of the experiment. upper right insert: digital screen of the calliper (3). Experiment no 1: the magnetic permeability of water Though the magnetic ﬁeld affects all materials and substances. in particular. without the inductance. The dish was ﬁxed to the base of the stand by the magnet’s pull. see section 3. the numbers in braces correspond to the numbers in ﬁgure 3). and explain the difference between the new curve. it is possible to also observe such effects for non-magnetic.1. what is recorded in the experiment is the time-average of the oscillating current. region where.S40 J Kalda et al Figure 3.1. a dish with water (5) and a cylindrical axially magnetized permanent magnet (7). a laser pointer (4).

an otherwise too dim laser beam spot becomes sufﬁciently bright. A cup of water (15) and a syringe (16) were available for the water level adjustment (the contestants were informed that adding 13 ml of water would raise the level by 1 mm). Indeed. the ‘screen’) was to be ﬁxed to the vertical plate with small magnetic tablets (14).61 T. and it also needed to intersect with the black line (12) on the support plate. However. by reducing the curvature of the water surface by using larger magnets and increasing the distance between the magnet and the water surface. where λ is the wavelength of the laser and L is the length of the √ laser beam. all the rays which start from the given point at the water surface. the spot on the screen will be elongated vertically. Once the recession of the surface at the centre of the magnet was known. There are two ways to reduce this effect: ﬁrst. and its diameter can be estimated as δ + 1. It was also necessary to decrease the diameter of the laser beam: a wide beam hits the surface in the region where it is signiﬁcantly curved.8 m s−2 . The vertical axis of the magnet needed to intersect with the laser beam. With smaller wavelength. together with the magnetic ﬂux density B. density of water ρw = 1000 kg m−3 . it was possible to obtain the magnetic permeability from the condition that a liquid surface takes an equipotential shape. the recession h(x ) of the water surface could be found as an integral of the slope. If the laser was shifted parallel to the water surface. The contestants were asked to check (and adjust. if needed) the alignment of the centre of the magnet in two perpendicular directions. and on such a screen. The second way is to reduce the diameter of the laser beam. Finally. The students were asked to keep the depth of the water above the magnet reasonably close to 1 mm (if shallower. free-fall acceleration g = 9. this was solved by using white paper sheets as the screen material. the only way to reduce the beam diameter is by optimizing the diameter δ of the diaphragm attached to the laser. One might think that the diameter of the beam can be reduced by a system of lenses: the ﬁrst lens will focus the beam into a point at the surface. The beam widens due to diffraction. Optimization of the experimental setup The main challenge for the design of the setup was how to achieve as high as possible accuracy.IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water S41 The calliper allowed horizontal displacement of the laser. The precision of the measured tan α can be increased by increasing the distance between the point where the laser hits the surface. regardless of their direction. So.2 λL/δ . because then the vertical position of the spot on the screen would be independent of the water surface slope. a narrower beam can be obtained. to measure the slope tan α of the surface. would be focused onto the same point on the screen. the optimum is achieved for δ = Lδ . The following numerical values were given to the contestants: horizontal distance between the magnet’s centre and the screen L0 = 490 mm. reﬂected from the water surface.2. magnetic ﬂux density at the magnet’s axis. 3. White printer paper is ﬂuorescent. and the screen. this method is not usable. at the height of 1 mm from the ﬂat surface B0 = 0. . and the second lens will focus the beam into a point at the screen. this is why violet lasers with λ = 404 nm were used. and as a result. vacuum permeability μ0 = 4π × 10−7 H m−1 . it covers different slopes. A sheet of graph paper ((2). the water surface would have been so curved that it would have been difﬁcult to take readings from the screen). The idea of the experiment was to use a laser beam. It is difﬁcult to take a precise reading of the position of the centre of such an elongated bright spot. It was possible to keep the on–off button of the laser pressed with the help of a conical tube (13). it was possible to determine tan α as a function of a horizontal coordinate x. There was still a small issue: the sensitivity of the human eye is very low with respect to the violet light.

When a cylindrical magnet is placed below the water surface. such as the edge of a sheet of paper).4.S42 J Kalda et al Figure 4. you are not asked to estimate any uncertainties and you do not need to take into account the effects of the surface tension. decide if the water is diamagnetic (μ < 1) or paramagnetic (μ > 1). it is easy to see that the proﬁle has one minimum and has a relatively ﬂat bottom. those of straight lines. the correct answer is ‘Option D’. 3. Options for the water surface shape. Please note that it may be possible to simplify your calculations if you substitute some combination of terms in the expression from the previous task with a reading from the last graph.3. Draw the graph of the obtained dependence. Part A: qualitative shape of the water surface. determine the angle α0 between the beam and the horizontal area of the water surface. Solution of the experimental problem no 1 Part A. Part C: magnetic permeability. together with an inequality μ > 1 or μ < 1. Write the letter corresponding to the correct option in ﬁgure 4 on the answer sheet. Experimental task as presented to the contestants Throughout this problem. Calculate the values of the water surface slope and ﬁll them into the table on the answer sheet. Calculate the height of the water surface relative to the surface far from the magnet as a function of x and ﬁll it into the table on the answer sheet. Indicate on it the region where the beam hits the water surface directly above the magnet. Draw the graph of the latter dependence. This proﬁle implies that water is pushed away from the magnet. Fill the results into the table in the answer sheet. · 2 L0 + x − x0 where y0 is the height of the laser spot on the screen when the beam is reﬂected from the water surface at the axis of the magnet. Observe what is the shape of the water surface above the magnet. calculate the value of μ − 1 (magnetic susceptibility). We use this effect to calculate the dependence of the depth of the water on the horizontal position above the magnet. and x0 is the respective position of the calliper. Observing reﬂections from the water surface (in particular. Curving of the water surface can be checked with high sensitivity by measuring the reﬂection of the laser beam by the surface. Part B: exact shape of the water surface. according to this observation. Measure the dependence of the height y of the laser spot on the screen on the calliper reading x (cf ﬁgure 3). Write your ﬁnal formula and the numerical result on the answer sheet.e. 3. Using the obtained graph. . the latter becomes curved. i. where μ is the relative magnetic permeability of the water. Using the results of Part B. You should cover all the usable range of calliper displacements. which means μ < 1 (recall that ferromagnets with μ > 1 are pulled). Please note that the slope (tan β ) of the water surface can be expressed as follows: tan β ≈ β ≈ cos2 α0 y − y0 − (x − x0 ) tan α0 .

31. connecting the respective points on the graph in ﬁgure 5.5 58 45. If the water surface were ﬂat.2 Part B. The is given by equation yr = y0 + (x − x0 ) tan α0 . the dependence of x on y would be linear.9 42 40.5 44 40.5 34 37. The spot height y on the screen as a function of the horizontal position x of the calliper.6 46 40.6 32 33.3 50 43.8 78 65. the dashed one corresponds to 1 mm. The height of the spot on the screen y is tabulated in table 1 as a function of the horizontal position x of the calliper.6 90 74. Table 1.IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water S43 Figure 5. the last digit of the tabulated values of y is actually unreliable.2 54 45. The solid curve corresponds to a water depth of about 3 mm above the magnet (using the data from table 1).3 76 63. Using these two extreme data points . Measurement data for the spot height y on the screen. These are the results of a pre-competition test measurement which correspond to the water depth of about 3 mm above the magnet. the red line cos2 α0 ≈ 0.5 ≈ 38◦ . One can also precalculate 1 2 .9−11.2 56 45.3 66 50 15 15.9 40 41. we obtain a line corresponding to a ﬂat water surface.4 80 67 38 42.6 20 19. the surface is essentially unperturbed. x (mm) y (mm) x (mm) y (mm) x (mm) y (mm) 10 11.2 60 44. where x is a horizontal displacement of the of the angle α0 would be given by tan α0 = x pointer.7 25 24.8 48 42 70 56. and y is the respective displacement of the spot height.3 64 46. and the tangent y . Note that due to water surface vibrations.5 30 30.8 68 53.4 62 43. the beam hits the water surface so far from the magnet that there.4 85 70. y − y0 − (x − x0 ) tan α0 (appearing in the formula given) can be read from the previous graph as the distance between the red line and the blue line. the red line. we can also easily calculate the angle α0 = arctan 7490 −10 For faster calculations. rounding these values to integer millimetres was considered a reasonable approximation.2 72 59. For the extreme positions of the pointer.3 36 40.2 52 44.4 74 61.

as mentioned above. The free surface of an incompressible ﬂuid takes an equipotential shape: this is a surface along which the potential energy density is constant. The experimental curves in ﬁgure 6 indicate that the deepest recession and hence. One can improve the result by subtracting from h a linear trend 8 μm · x− 80 mm The position of the magnet can be found by measuring its diameter 2R with the calliper (ﬁnd the positions when the laser beam hits the edges of the magnet and determine the distance between these positions—the result is about 24 mm). this expression equals −1 + ρ gh = 0 and hence. μ − 1 = 2μ0 ρ gh/B2 . by adding to the height in the previous cell the product of (tan βi+1 + tan βi ). J Kalda et al x (mm) z x (mm) z x (mm) z 10 0 44 128 66 −388 15 10 46 53 68 −254 20 27 48 26 70 −154 25 66 50 0 72 −74 30 204 52 −26 74 −40 32 303 54 −72 76 −20 34 473 56 −145 78 −6 36 591 58 −278 80 2 38 597 60 −449 85 −2 40 428 62 −606 90 0 42 239 64 −536 Table 3.9 × 10−6 . While this was not part of the experimental problem. Calculated values for the surface recession depth. Putting in the numbers. we obtain μ − 1 = −7. during the competition. the potential energy density associated with the magnetic interaction is 2B μ0 2μ0 energy density associated with the Earth’s gravity is ρ gh. and using the symmetry: the magnet is placed symmetrically with respect to the surface elevation curve.S44 Table 2. note that we have compensated the cumulative error as described at the end of the previous task and obtained h as the difference between the depth at the magnet’s axis (121 μm) and the half-depth at the right-hand side of the graph (1 μm). one can ask. or some kind of artefact? . Theoretically calculated shape of the water surface. the non-zero result is explained by the measurement uncertainties. Calculated values for the surface slope. so B2 μ 2μ0 the depth of the water surface at the axis of the magnet. z = tan β · 105 . the horizontal displacement xi+1 − xi with the average slope 1 2 Note that the water level height at the end of the table should also be 0 (this corresponds also to an unperturbed region). the sum of those two quantities is constant. we calculate the water height in table 3 cell-by-cell. Thus. Here. h = 120 μm stands for to zero. Part C. for a point at the unperturbed surface. what is the nature of such a phenomenon: is it a natural feature of permanent cylindrical magnets. the strongest magnetic ﬁeld can be found near the edges of the magnet. The water height can be obtained as the integral h = tan β dx.5. At the water surface. the potential 2 −μ (μ−1 − 1 ) ≈ B2 1 . x (mm) −h (μm) x (mm) −h (μm) x (mm) −h (μm) 10 0 44 66 66 23 15 0 46 68 68 17 20 1 48 69 70 12 25 4 50 69 72 10 30 10 52 69 74 9 32 15 54 68 76 8 34 23 56 66 78 8 36 34 58 61 80 8 38 46 60 54 85 8 40 56 62 44 90 8 42 63 64 32 calculations lead to table 2 (with z = tan β · 105 . For our water. 3. lesser precision with two signiﬁcant numbers is sufﬁcient). 10 mm .

the dashed one corresponds to 1 mm. the presence of . the corresponding recession curves are presented in ﬁgure 6 as dotted lines. The magnetic ﬂux density can be calculated analytically. (2) where Br∞ (r. Water surface recession depth as a function of the horizontal coordinate. d ) − Br∞ (r. While skipping the mathematical details. d ) = Br = Br∞ (r. and d and r are the axial and radial distances of the current point from the centre of a ﬂat surface of the magnet. d ) = 2 2 3/2 4π r 0 −π [ (R + r cos ϕ) + d ] The integrals of equations (1) and (3) can be found numerically.IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water S45 Figure 6. π R + r cos ϕ μ0 MR r r dr dϕ. if we assume that the permanent magnet has a homogeneous magnetization M . let us mention that in terms of the solid angle under which the curved surface of the cylinder is seen from the given point. As one can see. the axial ﬁeld Bz is expressed as Bz = μ0 M 4π . The result is Bz (r. The solid curve corresponds to a water depth of about 3 mm above the magnet (using the data from table 1). (3) Br∞ (r. d ) denotes the radial magnetic ﬂux density of a semi-inﬁnite magnet. d + a ). and a perfectly cylindrical shape. The radial ﬁeld Br can be found from Bz by using the fact that magnetic ﬁeld is divergence-free. From here one can obtain a+d R + r cos ϕ μ0 MR π dϕ dz. The dotted lines are theoretical curves calculated under the assumption of a homogeneous magnetization of an ideally cylindrical permanent magnet. (1) 4π [ ( R + r cos ϕ)2 + z2 ]3/2 −π d where a is the magnet’s height.

Results of the 43rd IPhO The absolute winner of the competition was the Hungarian student Attila Szab´ o. who gained 45. The special award for the best theoretical result went also to Attila Szab´ o (28. Our Hall sensor was not usable for direct measurements. All the names of the award winners can be found at the ofﬁcial website of the 43rd IPhO [10].5 and 42.61 T given in the problem text. and 2008. 4. Note that in ﬁgure 7. Note that equation (1) with r = 0 was used to obtain the precise value B0 = 0.4 points from 30). and possibly also by inhomogeneous magnetization of the material of the magnets. Surprisingly. such a scale ‘straightens’ nicely almost all the curves (with a linear scale. the subjective difﬁculty. on some score-rank-curves ‘kinks’ may be noticed near the marker points. the left-hand part of the curves would have been concave). It should be stressed that these curves cannot be used to compare the absolute difﬁculty of the problems of these competitions which are separated by a long time period. alongside with the problems from 1994. the special award for the best experimental result was given to Kai-Chi Huang from Taiwan (18. While there is no objective measure for the quality of being ‘interesting’. leaders discuss with the graders to gain points for those solutions to which. Let us analyse the curves in ﬁgure 7.2 points. The departure between theoretical and experimental curves is explained by rounded edges of the magnets. the problems of the 43rd IPhO fall deﬁnitely into the category of difﬁcult ones. Further. it will be really difﬁcult to explain such a ‘universal’ scaling law theoretically. see ﬁgure 7. both due to its physical size and measuring range. they believe. 92 bronze medals. it was used to measure magnetic ﬂux density at the magnet’s axis at large distances. the (horizontal) rank scale is not linear: in order to reveal the details of the very best contestants (in the range of the top 1–5%). 71 silver medals. were given an undeservedly small amount of points. several countries adopt new and more extensive training cycles. The best students from each country will not give us a completely random set of students nor the absolute best from the world. respectively). a square-root-scale is used. Under the section ‘Statistics’. and 63 honourable mentions were awarded according to the algorithm prescribed by the statutes of the IPhO [6]. This is in particular because the contestants represent an ensemble which is difﬁcult to describe. To begin with. 2000. Difﬁculty level of the problems According to the feedback from the contestants and team leaders.S46 J Kalda et al non-axial maxima of the magnetic ﬂux density is a natural feature of permanent magnets. 45 gold medals.9 points). Overall.1. and the data were extrapolated according to equation (1) to the distance d = 1 mm.4 points from 20). because new countries join the competition. Since the medal boundaries (in points) are . He was followed by Hengyun Zhou and Yijun Jiang from the People’s Republic of China (42. 4. Alexandra Vasilyeva from Russia got the special award from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for the best girl at the 43rd IPhO (30.8 points from the maximum 50. instead. Yet. relative to the average preparation level of the participants of the given era can be characterized by the score-rank-graph. one can also ﬁnd a link to the full table with detailed scores of all the participants (the names of contestants below the honourable mention threshold are removed as conﬁdential information according to the statutes of the IPhO). These are explained by the score shift during the moderation process. the problems were difﬁcult and interesting. During moderation. Because of that. etc.

Organizing Committee members. detailed data were not available. colleagues from the Academic Committee. and the numerous volunteers. the main emphasis is paid to those contestants who are close to (but below) a threshold. Rodr´ ıguez L F and Romero-Rochin V 2010 Eur. Phys. For 2005 and 2007. Phys. for each award category. one of the largest ever organized in Estonia. EU Regional Development Fund Centres of Excellence TK124 and TK114) of the authors are acknowledged for their support. Ort´ ız M E. the host institutions and research projects (Estonian Science Targeted Project SF0140077s08 and SF0180058s07. Each curve has four marker points.IPhO 2012: how magnets curve the water S47 Figure 7. known prior to the moderation. 30 S105–13 [2] Mor´ an-L´ opez J L. to the last award winner). 31 S1–S15 . and the respective curves are constructed using interpolation. graders. J. References [1] Khoi N T. J. Tu P Q and Don D T 2009 Eur.e. which correspond to the medal boundaries (i. Acknowledgments The authors are sincerely grateful to everyone who helped organizing the 43rd IPhO: the Steering Committee members. The Estonian Ministry of Education and Research is acknowledged alongside with all the sponsors for the funding of this international venue. Score-rank-graph of the IPhO-s for the period of 1994–2012. Finally.

ee/ [11] Rayleigh 1882 Phil. J.html) [7] Kalda J 2013 Eur. 79 657–61 ˇ [5] Siber A and Buljan H 2011 Phys.tw/ news/2010-11-20 IPhO . Ser.pdf [10] IPhO 2012 IPhO—Estonia 2012 www. 5 14 184–6 . Srongprapa A. Phys.ntnu.ee/physicscup/ [9] Eisenkraft A and Kotlicki A 2010 An analysis of past IPhO problems http://ipho. J. Pruttivarasin T.tw/statutes. Kittara P.An anlysis of past Olympiad problems Final(Kotlicki). Pratontep S and Trivej P 2012 Eur. 33 S1–S15 [4] Kashcheyevs V 2011 Am.edu. Phys. Rev. 34 S3–14 [8] Kalda J 2012 Competition ‘Physics Cup IPhO2012’ www. Prachyabrued W.ntnu.phy. Phys.edu. J.ipho2012.S48 J Kalda et al [3] Kusamran S.ipho2012. Mag.phy. E 83 067601 [6] IPhO 2008 Statutes of the International Physics Olympiads (http://ipho.

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