N-link compound pendulum simulation

For our Mechanical Dynamics final project, a friend and I decided to generalize the equations for compound pendulums to write a simulation program that could generate animations for n-link compound pendulums with user specified lengths, masses, angular displacement and velocities. We originally wanted to write a full blown physics engine, but quickly realized that two weeks was not enough time to do something of that scale, haha.

First things first, a demonstration! The following is an simulation of a 5 link compound pendulum:

Read our final report for a more formal/comprehensive explanation of the process!
Download the code!

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Seeing Stars

Sunspots are really cool, look at this:


That black smudge is actually a sunspot! Our professor told us to not look into the lens, because the concentrated sun would literally burn a hole through your eye. By projecting the image from the lens further back, we can safely see the sun without going blind. We tried setting some paper on fire, but the sun was still too low in the sky for that to happen.

And this is the beautiful 12in telescope we used to see the sun through. We’ve seen Venus and Jupiter through this as well! A couple pieces of mirror, and we humans are able to see the heavens. Amazing, that.



The Universe is Super Old

Because I’m an interesting person and Astronomy is interesting, I’m currently taking it as a class! 😀

Try this one for size. Is this the Universe, or your brain? (Hint: What's the title of this post??)

Try this one for size (haha, see what I did there). Is this the Universe, or your brain?

I’ve learned a lot, but will save the rambling for the future. For today, let’s focus on just one topic– the age of the universe.

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