Contents

Unit 1: Motion Unit 2: Speeding Up and Slowing Down Unit 3: Work and Energy Unit 4: Static Electricity Unit 5: Current Electricity Unit 6: Mains Electricity Unit 7: Nuclear Physics [This is Unit 2 Physics, Additional Physics. This section comes after Core Physics in an AQA Course (Unit 1)]

P2-1 : Motion
Speed and Velocity The table below shows the distances travelled by a car over a given amount of time:

We can represent this as a graph:

We call this type of graph a distance-time graph as it plots distance travelled against time taken. A slope on a distance-time graph represents speed. The steeper the slope is, the greater the speed. We can use chosen figures to calculate the speed from the graph.

its velocity changes even if its speed stays the same. the greater the distance travelled We can use the gradient of a distance-time graph to calculate the speed of an object. Acceleration is calculated using the following equation: Acceleration is generally measured in metres per second squared (m/s²). . For example. This means that if a moving object changes direction.    the slope of a line on one of these graphs represents acceleration – the steeper the slope the greater the acceleration if a slope has a negative gradient. you can easily calculate the speed is 5m/s. we say it accelerates. Velocity is speed in a given direction. speed is measured in metres per second (m/s). A velocity-time graph plots the velocity of a moving body (y axis) against the time taken (x axis). the object is slowing down. if the graph shows that a body has moved 10 metres in 2 seconds.This formula can be rearranged to show either of the following formulae which we use to work out distance or time: Generally. When the velocity changes. or decelerating. it represents deceleration the area under the line of a velocity-time graph represents distance travelled – the greater the area. If the value of acceleration is negative.

It will make the object accelerate around 10m/s² close to the earth. When the resultant force is zero. The thinking distance is increased when the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. or if moving it will carry on moving at a constant speed. but the barrier exerts a force in the opposite direction of an equal amount on the car if you were to lay a book on a table. the resultant force is the single force that would have the same effect on the object as all the other forces together. Road Travel A vehicle travelling at a steady speed has a resultant force of zero. it means the object will remain stationary if already stationary. it exerts a force vertically down on the table. mass and acceleration are all related in the following equation: resultant force = mass x acceleration The greater the resultant force. the greater the acceleration. The larger the mass of an object.P2-2 : Speeding Up and Slowing Down Equal and Opposite Forces We measure forces in newtons. This means the driving forces are equal and opposite to the friction forces. if object A exerted a force upon object B. the resultant force acting on it is gravity. Resultant force. it means that a stationary object will be accelerated in the direction of the resultant force. the bigger the deceleration needed to bring it to rest in a particular distance – i. Objects always exert equal and opposite forces on each other. the bigger the force needed to give it a particular acceleration. Without acceleration present. N.e. The faster the speed of the vehicle. the bigger the breaking force needed. These are often referred to as action and reaction forces. Force and Acceleration A resultant force always causes acceleration. For example. When the resultant force is not equal to zero. or if the object is moving in the same direction as the resultant force is will dramatically accelerate. Falling in Air When an object falls freely. Examples include:   when a car hits a barrier it exerts a powerful force on the barrier. We call this force of gravity “weight” and the acceleration “the acceleration due to gravity. object B would exert an opposite force of the same power on object A. remembering that negative acceleration is deceleration. The stopping distance of a vehicle is the distance it travels during the driver’s reaction time (thinking distance) plus the distance it travels under the breaking force (breaking distance). the resultant force must be zero. but the table exerts an equal and opposite force on the book Resultant Force Because most objects tend to have multiple forces acting on them.” Therefore the above equation becomes: weight (N) = mass (kg) x acceleration due to gravity (m/s²) . or if the object is moving in the opposite direction to the resulatant force is will decelerate.

Two objects at rest have a momentum of zero. we use: weight (N) = mass (kg) x gravitational field strength (N/kg) When an object falls through a fluid (i. for example air resistance. this would be equal to the weight of the object – this resultant force is now zero. kg m/s and is calculated using the equation here: momentum = mass x velocity If two objects were to collide. the supplied energy is transferred to the object so the work done is equal to the energy transferred.If the object is on the Earth. e. We calculate kinetic energy using the following equation: kinetic energy = ½ (mass x speed²) Momentum Every moving object has momentum. the total momentum after the explosion will be zero. J. Kinetic energy is the energy of movement. the work done is zero. Momentum is measured in kilogram-metres per second. An elastic object will go back into its original shape when it has been stretched or squashed. P2-3 : Work and Energy Energy & Work When a force moves an object. the more kinetic energy it has. the energy transferred is stored as elastic potential energy. When an object starts to move a force must have been applied to it. When work is done moving the object. e. The greater the mass. and the faster the speed. When the object returns to its original shape this energy is released. The faster the object falls. a liquid or a gas. momentum has both size and direction. An example of an explosion is . In an explosion. This force needs a supply of energy from somewhere.g. the two objects may move off together in the same direction. so the object will stop accelerating and begin moving at a steady velocity – called the terminal velocity. from electricity or fuel. In other words.e. two objects will move apart with equal and opposite momentum. The kinetic energy depends on the mass and speed of a moving object. not falling. Both work and energy have the unit joule. air). the total change in momentum before and after collisions is zero. the fluid exerts opposite forces on the falling object reducing its motion. One of these momentums will be positive. After a collision. or the may separate apart. energy is transferred and work is done. When work is done on an elastic object to stretch or squash it. the other negative – and as they share the same value. The work done on an object is calculated using this equation: work done = force x distance moved in the direction of the force Therefore when the distance moved is nothing. The same is for explosions.g. the greater the frictional force. A positive value for the momentum in a calculation means in the opposite direction to the negative value. the total momentum before the collision is equal to the total momentum afterwards (provided no external force acts on them) – this is known as the conservation of momentum. Eventually. As with velocity.

the charge carriers are electrons. The equation below describes this: force = change in momentum ÷ time taken for change N. Look at car safety features. there is a current in it. When a charge flows through a conductor. the material gaining electrons becomes negatively charged.firing a gun: as you fire. When a force acts on a moving object (or an object which is able to move). When the same dry cloth is rubbed on the Perspex rod. This is why insulators cannot conduct electricity – all the electrons are held within atoms. the electrons from the Perspex rod would move onto the dry cloth. A conductor can only hold charge when it is isolated from the ground – otherwise electrons will flow to or from the earth and discharge it. the weaker the force. Electric current is the rate of flow of charge. electrons are rubbed off one material and deposited on the other. As you can see from the diagram. the electrons are transferred from the rod onto the cloth. the bullet moves out with a momentum in one direction. and the gun recoils in the opposite direction with equal movement. it becomes positively charged. If the same cloth is then rubbed against a Perspex rod. the dry cloth is rubbed against the polythene rod – this causes the rod to gain electrons from the dry cloth. e. and because the cloth therefore loses electrons. The reason metals are good conductors of electricity is because they have free conduction electrons that are not confined to one single atom. metal wire. An example would be rubbing a dry cloth on a polythene rod. Because electrons (e¯) are negative. its momentum changes. to investigate how we make use of momentum changes.B. P2-4 : Static Electricity Charge If two insulating materials rub against each other. Which one gains and which one loses electrons depends on the materials used. . Like charges repel and opposite charges attract. in which case the electrons are transferred from the dry cloth onto the polythene rod. In a solid conductor. the bigger the distance between the forces. and the one that loses them becomes positively charged.g. especially air bags and crumple zones.

another way in which we can deal with the dangers of electrostatics is by using antistatic materials. Using Electrostatics In a photocopier. P2-5 : Current Electricity Electrical Circuits Every circuit component has its own symbol. The car will be connected to a negative terminal.The bigger the charge on an isolated object. they pick up a positive charge. the charge “leaks” away leaving behind a pattern of the image. These are some of the main ones. Dangers of Electrostatics Static electricity has its dangers as well as uses. When light hits the image. they are then attracted to plates on the chimney walls with the opposite charge. The filler pipes on road tankers that are used to pump fuel into storage tanks are earthed to prevent them becoming charged – because a spark could cause an explosion of the fuel vapour. An image of the page to be copied is projected onto the charged plate. producing a copy of the original document. Apart from earthing. This makes the paint droplets repel each other. giving it a negative charge so that the positively charged paint droplets are attracted to it. so they spread out to form a fine cloud. If the potential difference becomes high enough. a copying plate is given a charge. Items like cars are usually painted using an electrostatic paint sprayer. The spray nozzle is connected to a positive terminal. The particles stick to these plates. This means that as the paint droplets pass through it. This powder is then transferred onto a piece of paper. the higher the potential difference between the object and the earth. and are then shaken off and collected. . Electrostatic smoke precipitators are used in chimneys to attract dust and smoke particles so that they aren’t released into the open air. Black ink powder is attracted to the charged parts of the plate. The paper is heated so that the powder melts and sticks to it. a spark may jump across the gap between the object and any earthed conductor brought near it [a metal object is earthed by connecting it to the ground]. The particles pass over a charged grid and pick up a charge.

if the temperature increases. V. . This shows us that the current is directly proportional to the potential difference across the resistor. this is because the resistance increases with temperature. The unit is a volt.The symbols shown relate to their descriptions below. Potential difference and current are related by an equation from Ohms law: potential difference = current x resistance Resistance is measured in ohms. The resistance of the filament increases as current increases. If the resistor is kept at a constant temperature. The potential difference. graph is no longer straight. which is always placed in parallel with the component. the resistance stays constant. Ω. graph for a filament lamp curves. or voltage. graph for a wire at a constant temperature. increasing the “power supply” of the circuit A bulb is used as an indicator to show when current passes through An ammeter is used to measure electric current A voltmeter is used to measure voltage A switch enables the current to be switched on or off A fixed resistor limits the current in a circuit A variable resistor allows the current to be varied A diode allows current through one direction only A fuse will melt and break the circuit if the current gets over a certain amount A heater transforms electrical energy into heat Resistance We use current-potential difference graphs to show how the current through a component varies with potential difference across it. or amps (A). is measured using a voltmeter.d. The current is measured with an ammeter – which is always placed in series with the component. The current-p. The graph shows a current-p. A cell is necessary to push electrons around a completed circuit A battery consists of two or more cells joined together. the resistance increases – so the line on the current-p.d. When the resistor remains at a constant temperature. so the current is not directly proportional to the potential difference. the graph will always show a straight line passing through the origin.d. The unit of current is called the ampere. We use these symbols to make circuit diagrams to show how components are connected to make a circuit. and is the opposition to charge flowing through the resistor.

The current through a diode can only flow in one direction – in the reverse direction. The two graphs above show the current-potential difference graphs for a filament lamp (left) and a diode (right). the current varies with resistance between each component . however. the p. As the temperature of a thermistor. the current flowing through each component is the same. the current is the same across the whole circuit in a series circuit. so the potential differences of each component added together is the potential difference of the supply. and is dependent on resistance of each component in a parallel circuit.d. Likewise. Remember that this means:     in a series circuit.d. The current of a component depends on the resistance – the bigger the resistance of a component. different amounts of charge can flow through different components – this means that the current can change between components. the current stops flowing.d.d. The total current running through the whole circuit is equal to the sum of the currents through each separate component. current may continue to flow in the other parts. The resistance on an LDR (light-dependent resistor) decreases as the light falling on it gets brighter. so if there is a break anywhere. the components are connected across the supply so that if there is a break in one part of the circuit. the resistance is so high that the current is zero. varies between components. the components are connected one after the other. the potential difference across each component is the same. Because there is no choice about the route of the charge as it flows around the circuit. the resistance of each component added together is the same as the total resistance. goes up – the resistance goes down. the smaller the charge flowing through it.) of the supply and the total resistance of the circuit: current = potential difference of supply ÷ total resistance The potential difference of the supply is shared between all the components in a series circuit. the p. the larger its share of the total supply potential difference. Series Circuits In a series circuit. Because each component is connected across the supply p. is constant across the whole circuit in a parallel circuit. Because there are “junctions” in the circuit. The bigger the resistance of a component. Parallel Circuits In a parallel circuit. The current depends on the potential difference (p.

g. Inside the three pin plug:    there is a blue wire connected to the neutral pin there is a brown wire connnected to the live pin there is a green-yellow wire found in three-core cables which is connected to the earth pin but a two-core cable does not have the earth wire . the potential difference of that bulb might be 4V whilst the other two have 1V Parallel circuit: the potential difference is the same throughout each component in the circuit because it is equal across the supply. Plugs The live wire from the mains supply alternates between a positive and a negative potential with respect to the neutral wire. 2A and 3A P2-6 : Mains Electricity AC & DC Cells (and batteries) supply a current which only flows in one direction – this is called direct current (or DC). and the pins themselves are made from brass (because it is naturally a good conductor. or if one bulb has a higher resistance than the other two. and the second bulb has a slightly higher resistance than the third bulb – they may have amp readings of 1A. they will all share the same potential difference (e. the current which flows through each component varies: it may be the same (i. The voltage of the mains is 230V. The frequency of the UK mains supply is 50 Hertz (Hz) – this means it alternates direction 50 times a second. e.Series circuit: the current of the bulbs will have the exact same current flowing through them. Most electrical appliances are connected to the mains supply using a cable and a three pin plug. all at 6V) – but if one bulb had a significantly higher resistance than the others. as these are both good insulators. then reverses and passes in the other direction – this is called alternating current (or AC). If they all have the same resistance. The neutral wire remains at zero volts. and will not oxidise or rust). The live wire alternates between +325 V and -325 V. However.e. the current from the mains supply passes in one direction.g. 8 amps. 2A each) if each bulb shares the same resistance. The outer cover of the three pin plug is made from either plastic or rubber. However.

In a resistor. The rating at which the fuse is set to melt should be slightly higher than the average working rating – if it is set to be too high it will not melt soon enough. This means that the majority of electrical appliances have vents to keep them cool. a large current will flow to earth. and obviously if it is too low. it will melt and disconnect the power supply as soon as the appliance is switched on. If a fault develops in an earthed appliance. A fuse is put in the live wire so that if it melts it cuts off the current. An alternative to using a fuse is to put in a circuit breaker. This is an electromagnetic switch that opens and cuts off the supply when the current increases above a certain value. The potential difference of the mains supply is 230 volts. J) = potential difference (volts. Electrical Power An electrical device transforms energy from one form into another and transfers energy from one place to another. s. Electrical appliances must have their power rating shown on them.d. the electrical energy is transformed to heat.d. The amount of energy that’s transformed can be worked out using the below equation: energy (joules. s) Because every circuit component has some resistance. C) = current (amps. appliances with plastic cases do not – they are said to be “double insulated” and are connected to the mains supply using only a neutral wire and a live wire. when a charge flows through a circuit. V) x charge (coulombs. Energy is measured in joules. We can also use current and p. V. time and current is: charge (coulombs. in volts. Current in amps.Appliances with a metal exterior must be earthed. A) x time (seconds. Power can be calculated using this equation: power = energy transformed ÷ time Power is measured in watts (W). to calculate the wattage: power = current x potential difference Power again is measured in watts. There are also fuses fitted to the plugs. C) A coulomb is the amount of electric charge transported in one second through a current of 1 amp. it is more common to measure the current and potential difference of a device. So the equation above can be used to calculate the size of the fuse to use when we work out the current of the circuit. The equation linking charge. A and p. The rate at which it does this is called the power. the components will heat up. melting the fuse and disconnecting the supply. . In an electric circuit. J and time in seconds. including connecting wires.

They found that are the fired the alpha particles at the gold foil. so this was called the plum pudding model of the atom.there is NO change to the atomic mass or mass number because gamma radiation is an electromagnetic wave which has no charge nor mass. Changes in our View on the Atom Not so long ago. The proton stays inside the nucleus and so the atomic number goes up by one and the mass number is unchanged.P2-7 : Nuclear Physics Nuclear Reactions The atom consists of three sub-atomic particles. protons have a relative mass of 1 and a charge of +1 2. the atomic number decreases by 2 and the mass number decreases by 4. most of them passed straight through – this means that most of the atom is just empty space. neutrons have a relative mass of 1 and a charge of zero 3. An alpha particle consists of two protons and two neutrons. The electron is instantly emitted. all atoms of a particular element have the same number of protons. which suggested the nucleus had a positive charge. Note that only neutron numbers and electron numbers differ. like plums in a pudding. It comes from a variety of sources. and a very large positive charge. For example. Three scientists (Rutherford. A minority of the alpha particles were deflected through small angles. The total number of protons and neutrons in an atom is called the mass number. For example. in which case it is an isotope. from rocks and from nuclear power stations. it was believed that atoms consisted of spheres of positive charge with electrons stuck into them. Also. This number of protons in an atoms is called the proton number or atomic number. but obviously could not be done – so they attempted the best they could. . the proton. Atoms of the same element can also have a different number of neutrons. electrons have a negligible mass and a charge of -1 An atom has the same number of protons as electrons – so overall has no charge. It is emitted when a neutron in the nucleus changes to a proton and an electron. It becomes an ion (charged particle) when it gains or loses electrons. which was meant to be an atom thick. a minority of alpha particles were deflected through large angles – which lead us to believe the nucleus had a large mass. including cosmic rays. carbon-14 emits a beta particle when it becomes nitrogen: Background radiation is the radiation present around us all the time. Geiger and Marsden) devised an alpha particle scattering experiment in which they fired alpha particles at an incredibly thin sheet of gold foil. When a nucleus emits gamma radiation . This means that when a nucleus emits an alpha particle. the element radium emits an alpha particle and becomes radon: A beta particle is a high speed electron from the nucleus. neutron and electron. 1.

. There are enormous problems with producing energy from nuclear fusion in reactors. Nuclei approaching each other will repel one another due to their positive charge. the nuclei must be heated to extremely high temperatures to give them enough energy to overcome the repulsion and fuse together.Nuclear Fission The process of an atomic nucleus splitting is called nuclear fission.g. Naturally occurring uranium is mostly uranium-238. The neutrons go on to produce further fissions. so one fission neutron per fission on average goes on to produce further fission. For fission to occur. the reaction cannot take place in a normal container. Because of these enormously-high temperatures. the uranium-235 or plutonium-239 nucleus must absorb a neutron. energy is released – fusion is the process in which energy is released in stars. burning. There are two fissionable isotopes in common use in nuclear reactors: uranium-235 and plutonium-239. This is why most nuclear reactors use enriched uranium that contains around 2% – 3% uranium-235. To overcome this issue. In a nuclear reactor. larger nucleus. but has to be contained by a magnetic field. The energy released in such a nuclear process is significantly more than that of a chemical process. the process of fission is controlled. During this process. The nucleus then splits in to two smaller nuclei and two or three neutrons and energy is released. which is non-fissionable. e. creating a chain reaction. Nuclear Fusion Nuclear fusion is the process of two atomic nuclei joining to form a single.