ESP Biography

TREVOR PETACH, Stanford graduate student in physics

Major: Physics

College/Employer: Stanford

Year of Graduation: G

Picture of Trevor Petach

Brief Biographical Sketch:

When I'm not skiing and mountain biking, you can find me studying renewable energy and semiconductor devices in David Goldhaber-Gordon's lab at Stanford. I grew up in Colorado and was teaching high school there before I started graduate school.

Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

P3148: Make a hologram in Splash! Fall 2013 (Nov. 02 - 03, 2013)
Have you ever wondered how 3D images can be captured on a flat film? In this class you will not only learn something about light and the basic underlying principles of holograms, but you will actually get to create a small hologram of an object of your choice. The only restrictions are: It should be about matchbox sized, not be green and have interesting 3D features.

P2276: The physics of spinning things in Splash! Spring 2012 (Apr. 21 - 22, 2012)
Understanding rotation helps clarify many questions: Why does a bike stay upright? How does the Hubble stay pointed at one star? However, it also leads to many surprises -- including gravity-defying precessing tops and exceedingly hard to move wheels. We will start with the physics of rotation (angular momentum, moment of intertia, and torque). Then, starting with some simple examples to develop intuition, we will delve into (and play with) some more surprising examples: gyroscopes, levitrons, precessing tops, and diablos.

P1835: Pendulums and oscillations in Splash! Fall 2011 (Oct. 29 - 30, 2011)
Oscillations are all around us. Sound is created by vibrating air molecules. Light is created by changing electric and magnetic fields. The seasons, earthquakes, and traffic all involve oscillations. Pendulums are an excellent tool to explore oscillations. We will start by analyzing a regular pendulum. Then, we will investigate two surprising pendulums -- the inverted pendulum and the Foucault pendulum. Along the way, I will introduce the concept of a potential, and you will learn strategies that can be applied to many problems in physics. There will be demonstrations and a short video or two.