Examples of physical phenomena

We explain that what are examples of Physical Phenomena? A  physical phenomenon  is an event that occurs  due to physical laws . Everything in the universe, such as matter and energy, is affected by one of these and it always goes from an  initial state to a final state . This means that there is always a change, reality is constantly transformed.

Examples of physical phenomena
Examples of physical phenomena

All physical bodies are composed of matter, and various physical phenomena occur with all physical bodies. Physical phenomena are: mechanical, thermal, sound, optical, electric and magnetic. There are other physical phenomena.

Mechanical physical phenomena include various movements and interactions of bodies. A person can walk, a ball collides with the surface of the Earth and bounces, planets move in orbits around their stars, cars gain speed (accelerate), an elevator rises and falls.

Thermal phenomena are associated with changes in the temperature of bodies and the resulting changes in their physical state. So the bodies are able to heat up and cool. Some at the same time melt (like iron in a factory or candle wax when it burns), others evaporate (water when heated), others pass from a gas to a liquid state or from a liquid to a solid (oxygen with strong cooling can be liquefied, water turns into ice).

Sound phenomena include phenomena associated with the propagation of sound in various environments (where sound propagates faster, in water or air?), the behavior of sound waves when colliding with obstacles (what is echo?) and other phenomena associated with sound.

Optical phenomena are associated with light. The ability to see in animals (including humans) arose due to the fact that there is light in nature. Under the influence of light, plants synthesize organic substances (however, this is not an optical phenomenon!). Such a branch of physics as optics studies how light propagates, is reflected from objects, refracted, passing through various media.

Electric and magnetic phenomena are related to each other, so they are studied together. We are accustomed to electricity and often do not even think about what this phenomenon is connected with. It is associated with the existence of electrically charged particles. The discovery and study of electrical phenomena in the recent past allowed us to use electric lighting, turn electricity into the movement of bodies, invent television and computers. Magnetic phenomena can be observed when permanent magnets interact with each other (the Earth and the compass) or attract iron objects.

Characteristics of a physical phenomea

An event is named as a physical phenomena when it meets any of the following characteristics:

  • Causes a body to  change position or place .
  • Due to it, the temperature in a system changes, whether it increases or decreases.
  • Due to it, the volume of a system changes, whether it is increased or decreased.
  • Because of it, the pressure in a system changes, whether it increases or decreases.
  • It helps two types of matter  to mix or stay apart .
  • When it happens in matter, it remains whole and  its nature remains the same . It just ends up, for example, with a different size, or in a different moving situation. This variation is called physical change.
  • It happens involving a type of energy.
  • It can be reversible, that is, it is possible to reverse the process to obtain the initial conditions. However, in industrial practice only the result is pursued.

Types of physical phenomena

Physical phenomena can be classified into the following two categories:

  • Natural
  • Artificial or induced

Natural physical phenomena

Natural physical phenomena are those that occur due to the constant activity of the universe, and are governed by its true consequences.

For example:

  1. Movement:  It is the change of place or position of a body. It is of different types according to the trajectory that the body marks in the process.
  2. Uniform rectilinear motion:  A body travels from the initial point to the final point with a straight line trajectory, at a constant speed.
  3. Acceleration:  It is the increase or decrease in the speed that a body takes on its way.
  4. Free fall:  It is the movement of a body that has been released from a high point to a low point, which goes in a straight line and accelerates at 9.81m / s 2  due to the action of gravity.
  5. Evaporation:  It is when a liquid substance heats up enough to start turning into vapor. This phenomenon is part of the water cycle and occurs in bodies such as seas, oceans, rivers.
  6. Condensation: This  is when a vapor gets cold enough to start turning into liquid particles. It is the inverse phenomenon of evaporation and is also part of the water cycle; occurs when steam rises into the sky to become clouds.
  7. Freezing:  It is when a liquid substance cools down enough to begin to crystallize and form a solid. It is another stage of the water cycle, in which rain falls on high mountains where temperatures are low.
  8. Sound:  They are waves of different frequencies that travel through the air and are perceived through the ear, allowing us to appreciate the world around us and also the communication between two points at a certain distance.
  9. Doppler effect:  It is the apparent change in frequency of a wave due to the variation in the distance between the source of the wave and the observer. It happens with ambulances or any siren. How they sound depends on how close they are to us and how far away they are.
  10. Light:  Behaving like a visible electromagnetic wave and even as particles called photons, light is the radiation that allows us to perceive the world around us through sight. It affects the entire planet from our central star, the sun.
  11. Heat:  Heat is the transfer of thermal energy from a hot system or medium to a cold one. It is present in the solar system; the star king transmits its heat towards the planets that travel its orbits.
  12. Mixture:  When two or more substances are physically involved and their particles alternate with each other creating a mixed substance, they create a mixture. It has properties of both participating materials, which are not altered in their chemical nature. It is possible, for example, to prepare a mixture of water with salt and later bring it to a boil to get the salt back.
  13. Magnetism:  It is the attraction exerted by magnetite (an iron mineral with the formula Fe 3 O 4 ) on more metals or iron minerals, due to the fact that it has magnetic poles.

Artificial or induced physical phenomena

Artificial or induced physical phenomena are those that occur because an apparatus or human influence has been applied to produce an effect. They are generally more intense than natural ones and are aimed at achieving a purpose.

For example:

  1. Circular motion:  It is the constant displacement of a body whose trajectory marks a circumference.
  2. Centripetal force:  It is the attraction that an object has towards the center of the circumference when it has a circular motion.
  3. Centrifugal force:  It is the repulsion that tries to move the object away by the impulse it carries, while it has a circular motion.
  4. Parabolic movement:  It is the displacement of a body when it has been thrown diagonally, and describes a trajectory in the form of a curve or parabola, due to the action of gravity on it.
  5. Heating:  It is to use a device or a combustion to direct the thermal energy towards a target. It is used for cooking, concentrating the heat in the pan.
  6. Cooling:  It is using a device to absorb the thermal energy of a body and, in this way, lower its temperature. In refrigerators and freezers this phenomenon occurs; a gas such as freon is used, which expands when it receives heat from food. With a compressor this capacity is returned and the process continues in cycles.
  7. Dilation of metals:  When heat is introduced to a solid metal, it will tend to increase in length or volume, since its atoms will be more agitated, with greater kinetic energy. This can be achieved by means of a flame or an electrical resistance close to the metal.
  8. Pressurization:  It is increasing the pressure within a system. This is the case of car or bicycle tires, which are injected with air by means of a compressor and a hose.
  9. Expansion:  When a gas is heated, it tends to have more kinetic energy in its particles. This results in an expansion, that is, they will move further apart. They will cover a larger volume.
  10. Compression:  It is when the volume of a container filled with gas is intentionally reduced, forcing this substance to occupy less volume. This results in more pressure in there.
  11. Lighting:  This phenomenon occurs when an artificial light source is placed in a dark environment. For example, when turning on the electric light bulb in the room at night.
  12. Electric current:  It is the flow of electrons through a conductor, which can be a metal or an aqueous solution with ions.
  13. Electromagnetism:  It is to produce a magnetic field through an electrical conductor. A copper wire wound (wound on itself in the shape of a ring) in which an electric current is introduced from a source, produces a magnetic field in turn.

Examples of physical phenomena

  1. Movement
  2. Uniform line movement
  3. Acceleration
  4. Freefall
  5. Evaporation
  6. Condensation
  7. Freezing
  8. Sound
  9. Doppler effect
  10. Light
  11. Hot
  12. Mix
  13. Magnetism
  14. Circular movement
  15. Centripetal force
  16. Centrifugal force
  17. Parabolic movement
  18. Heating
  19. Cooling
  20. Dilation of metals
  21. Pressurization
  22. Expansion
  23. Compression
  24. illumination
  25. Electric current
  26. Electromagnetism

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