Sunday, October 6, 2019

Avengers: Infinity War
How Newton's Laws Don't Seem to Matter.

Image result for avengers infinity war

When watching Avengers: Infinity War, one can't help but marvel at the technological advancements that have been made in cinema since its beginnings. The movie is visually gorgeous, taking the viewer on a blockbuster whirlwind of visual appeal. Avengers: Infinity War ably juggles a dizzying array of MCU heroes in the fight against their gravest threat yet, and the result is a thrilling, emotionally resonant blockbuster that (mostly) realizes its gargantuan ambitions. However, since this is a Physics in Film class and not a film critique class, we are going to focus on the fact that Newton's Laws of Motion are disregarded in the film in not one, but multiple scenes.

Image result for bruce banner flying into doctor strange's houseIn the first scene that we are going to analyze happens in the beginning of the movie when Bruce Banner goes flying into Dr. Strange's house and crashes into the stairs. If the scene were to be faithful to Newton's first law of motion, then the ground would have been destroyed, thus violating Newton's third law of motion.

Image result for Doctor Strange floating infinity warAnother scene that violates Newton's laws of motion is when Doctor Strange floats up in the air. This is a clear violation of the first law of motion, because Newton's first law of motion states that an object in motion will stay in motion unless a force acts upon it. Doctor Strange starts to float in the air, and then he just stops. It doesn't appear that a force is acting upon him, and yet he just stops.

Lastly, there is a scene where Thor had to get artificial rings around a neutron star so he could get a new axe. Thor started swinging the raccoon so fast that his inertia and energy in his momentum transferred to the rings. This is a problem because the rings presumably weigh a lot, and that raccoon probably weighs less than 20 lbs. Image result for thor and rocket

Sunday, September 22, 2019


Armageddon: What Would Happen in Real Life.

Image result for armageddon 1998Overall, Armageddon is not the best movie in the world. It was directed by Michael Bay, a director notable for directing terrible movies (such as the Transformers movies and Pearl Harbor), and this movie is no exception. Although the movie is lovely to look at, it also as intelligent as the asteroid that serves as the antagonist. The physics are terrible, the dialogue cheesy, and the furious editing abhorrent. The movie was nominated for seven (yes, seven) Golden Raspberry Awards, with Bruce Willis winning for worst actor. However, the purpose of this article is not to discuss just how bad the movie is, but to discuss NASA's plans for when this would actually happen in real life.

Earlier this year, Nasa presented a Hypothetical Asteroid Impact Scenario at the 2019 IAA Planetary Defense Conference in College Park, Maryland. On their website, they make it quite clear that the information presented is purely hypothetical and is not to be considered real in any way, shape, or form. The scenario is outlined in several bullet points on the website, and begins as follows:
  • An asteroid is discovered in March, at magnitude 21.1, and confirmed the following day.
  • Initial calculations indicate the orbit approaches within 0.05 astronomical units of Earth's orbit
  • The orbit is eccentric, extending from a distance between 0.89 au to 2.94 au. Its orbital period is 971 days.
  • The day after the asteroid is discovered, ESA and CLOMON confirm that the most likely impact occurs on April of 2027.
    • Impact is low, due to being so far out.
  • Very little is known about the physical properties. Its magnitude is estimated to be about H=21.7 +/- 0.4. 
  • Asteroid approaches Earth well after a month of discovery, and reaches closest point of 0.13 au on May 13. 
  • Astronomers continue to track asteroid every night, and probability of hitting the Earth rises to almost 1%
Orbit of Asteroid 2019 PDC

The diagram above shows the paths of orbit of the Earth and the asteroid
Position uncertainty of asteroid 2019 PDC on April 29, 2027 (based on observations through April 29, 2019) 
This diagram shows the intersection point of the orbits of the asteroid and the Earth.
Risk corridor of 2019 PDC - image 2Risk corridor of 2019 PDC - image 1\

The article can be found by clicking on this link.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Eraser: What Is Wrong with the rail gun?

Eraser Analysis

Image result for eraser movie poster
       Throughout the movie Eraser (which currently holds a 35% "rotten" rating on review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes), the weapon of choice for the bad guys (and later in the movie, Arnold Schwarzenegger) was a rail gun that the navy was developing. However, when watching the movie and the scenes in which the rail gun is used, it is blatantly obvious that the movie got the physics wrong regarding the usage of the rail gun.
        When analyzing the usage of the rail gun, it is important to take into account the law of conservation of momentum. The law of conservation of momentum states in an external force of gravity or friction the total momentum before the collision is equal to teh total momentum after the collision. In other words, P(I) = P(F), where p is the momentum.
         Rail guns do have a recoil in  real life; however, in the movie, whenever the rail gun is fired off, whether it be by Arnold Schwarzenegger or somebody else, no body is affected by the recoil. Recoil is caused by sending high velocity mass out the end of the barrel of the gun. Throughout the movie, whenever the bullet was fired from the rail gun, it emitted a wave of light, indicating that the bullet fired from the gun was fired at or around the speed of light. When a bullet is fired from a gun at that speed, there is going to be a lot of recoil, and yet, the only person that went flying was the person that was hit by the bullet. If the physics were to actually be correct in the movie, then both the person firing the gun and the the person hit by the bullet would go flying, and would probably be able to fire the gun only once, due to the high speed at which the bullet traveled.


Monday, September 9, 2019

Mission Impossible III

Mission Impossible III: Is it Possible? 

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to analyze three scenes from the movie, Mission Impossible III. To do this, you must read this blog, and interpret whether or not the scenes follow the laws of physics.

Scene 1: The jump between buildings in Shanghai.
Analysis: The question that we are trying to answer here is whether or not Ethan Hunt could have actually made that jump between the two buildings in Shanghai. In order to determine the plausibility of the jump, we need to find out the height of both of the buildings, as well as the distance in between. When watching the scene, they give us everything that we would need to know, such as the height of the first building (226 meters), the height of the second building (165 meters) and the distance in between (47.5 meters). The angle at which he starts is 0 degrees, since the roof on which he is starting on is flat, and thanks to the technology and which we watched the movie, we can see that he completes the swing in about 28 seconds. It is indeterminable whether or not that this swing could be completed in real life, because we are still missing some variables.

Scene 2: The run through Shanghai
Analysis: During the movie, Ethan has to run to a location in Shanghai to rescue his wife. He has to run around a mile (or 1.61 kilometers). Thanks again to the technology with which we watched the movie on, it is found out that he runs this mile in a minute and 12 seconds. Let's compare that to the world record time for the mile, which is 3 minutes and 43 seconds. The movie is really trying to convince us that Ethan Hunt not only is faster than the world record holder for the mile, but is faster than him by a good two-and-a-half minutes. 
Scene 3: The climb up the wall in Rome
Analysis: One scene that takes place in Rome has us see Ethan Hunt run up the wall to get into the Vatican. He shoots something onto the security camera to disable it, so that he can run up the wall to disguise himself. He manages to run up the wall in 6 seconds, and thanks to the internet, we can find out that the wall surrounding the Vatican is 11.9 meters. He would have to be running really fast in order to actually make it up the 11.9 meter wall in 6 seconds.