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The final round of the first World Physics Olympiad held in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara,

Indonesia: a sample of problems and solutions and student results


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IOP PUBLISHING EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICS
Eur. J. Phys. 34 (2013) S15S34 doi:10.1088/0143-0807/34/4/S15
The nal round of the rst World
Physics Olympiad held in Lombok,
West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia: a
sample of problems and solutions and
student results
H J Kwee
1
, O Gunawan
2
, Y Surya
1
and M Vigh
3
1
Physics Education Department, Surya College of Education, SURE Center Building,
Kab Tangerang, Banten 15810, Indonesia
2
IBM T J Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, New York, NY 10598, USA
3
Department of Physics of Complex Systems, E otv os University, H-1117 Budapest,
P azm any P eter s et any 1/A, Hungary
E-mail: herry.kwee@stkipsurya.ac.id, ogunawa@us.ibm.com, yohanes.surya@stkipsurya.ac.id
and vighmate@gmail.com
Received 1 March 2013, in nal form 10 April 2013
Published 28 May 2013
Online at stacks.iop.org/EJP/34/S15
Abstract
A brief report on the nal round of the rst World Physics Olympiad (WoPhO)
held in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia is presented. The theoretical
and experimental problems are presented and the mark distribution is discussed.
(Some gures may appear in colour only in the online journal)
1. Introduction
The nal round of the rst World Physics Olympiad (WoPhO) was held in Lombok, West
Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia from 28 December 2011 to 3 January 2012 and was organized by
Surya College of Education and the Indonesian Society for the Promotion of Science under
the auspices of Surya Institute.
WoPhO is a secondary school level individual physics competition initiated by one of the
authors, Yohanes Surya. It is a unique competition that lasts for a full year and consists of
three rounds: selection, discussion and nal.
The selection round is meant to provide as many opportunities as possible for students
to participate in an Olympiad-level physics competition. Problems are presented online
and any students who are eligible
4
can participate. For the rst WoPhO selection round,
4
Students who have not started college or become 20 years old by 30 June of the competition year.
0143-0807/13/04001520$33.00 c 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd Printed in the UK & the USA S15
S16 H J Kwee et al
Figure 1. Sketch of the rod with caster-wheels.
345 students from all over the world registered to participate. The discussion round provides
an opportunity for the participants and general public to discuss the problems and solutions
of the selection round and other physics Olympiad-level problems. The nal round, which
is organized similarly to the International and Asian Physics Olympiads (IPhO and APhO)
provides the opportunity for every participant to challenge the APhOand IPhOgold medalists.
Just as in APhO and IPhO, students are given 5 h to solve the three theoretical problems and
another ve for the experimental tasks. For the rst WoPhO nal round, 122 students from
13 countries participated, even though the distribution was not evenly spread. The majority of
students were from the host country, Indonesia.
Another unique characteristic of WoPhO is that the problems for the nal round are
not provided by the host country, but are selected from a competition (or simply called the
WoPhO problem competition). Anyone can participate in this competition, in fact one of
the winners of this rst WoPhO problem competition was a high-school student and another
was a university student. Three theoretical problems were chosen from 31 entrants and two
experimental problems were chosen fromfour entrants. The number of entries for experimental
problems was much lower than for theoretical problems due to the amount of work needed to
prepare a good experiment and its apparatus.
Since all of the nal round problems can be accessed online
5
we present only one
theoretical and one experimental problem, with their solutions.
In section 2, we present one theoretical problem: The motion of a rolling rod and its
solution (see footnote 5).
In section 3, we present one experimental problem: A rotary magnetic drag system for
conductivity measurement and its solution (see footnote 5).
In section 4, we summarize the nal round results (see footnote 5).
This paper was prepared for a European Journal of Physics special issue covering physics
competitions. Other interesting papers on similar topics can be found elsewhere in the issue
[2, 3].
2. Theoretical problem 1: the motion of a rolling rod
2.1. Problem statement
In this problem, the motion of a uniform rod (stick) with length L, with caster-wheels at
both ends, will be investigated on a at surface. The casters at each end of the rod can spin
freely and independently (see gure 1) and have a negligible mass compared to the rod. The
friction between the rod and the caster-wheels is negligible. The diameter of the caster-wheels
is slightly larger than the diameter of the rod, but both diameters are much smaller than the
length of the rod. The gravitational acceleration is g.
(i) The rod is placed on a horizontal at surface and pushed such that each end of the
rod has a different horizontal initial velocity (v
1
and v
2
, pointing in the same direction)
perpendicular to the axis of the rod. The casters roll without slipping on the surface.
5
www.wopho.org/about-detail.php?id=704
First World Physics Olympiad S17
Figure 2. The initial conditions of the rod in section 3.
(a) Calculate the initial velocity v
0
of the center of the rod and the initial angular velocity

0
of the rod using v
1
, v
2
and L. (0.8 points)
(b) Describe the motion of the center of mass of the rod. Determine the parameter(s) of
its orbit. (0.8 points)
(c) What should the minimum value of the coefcient of static friction for the casters
be to not slip on the surface? (0.6 points)
In the following sections the case of the inclined surface will be considered. The angle
between the inclined surface and the horizontal plane is .
(ii) If is innitesimally small, the motion of the rod slightly changes: the motion of the
center of mass is approximately the same as in the previous section, but with a constant
drift velocity v
drift
added to the solution. Use a coordinate system as in gure 2.
(a) Calculate the magnitude and the direction of v
drift
as a function of the small , the
initial velocities of the two ends of the rod (v
1
and v
2
, pointing in the same direction)
and the gravitational acceleration g! (1.9 points)
(b) Sketch the orbit of the center of mass of the rod. (0.5 points)
(iii) If is nite, the details of the motion of the rod change. Place the rod on the inclined
plane along the steepest line of the surface (so the rod is parallel with the inclined edges
of the plane). Consider that the initial velocity v
0
of the center of mass of the rod is
perpendicular to the axis of the rod and the initial angular velocity
0
is perpendicular to
the surface, as shown in gure 2.
(a) Calculate the time evolution of the velocity v(t ) = (v
x
(t ), v
y
(t )) of the center of
mass of the rod in the Cartesian coordinate system shown in gure 2. (0.8 points)
(b) Depending on the magnitude of the v
0
and
0
, the center of the rod can stop for a
moment during its motion. Express the condition(s) for such a behavior using the
parameters v
0
,
0
, g, and L. (0.8 points)
(c) Determine the maximum displacement of the center of the rod in the direction of the
steepest line (y-direction) as a function of v
0
and
0
. (1.2 points)
(iv) Investigate another situation where the rod is placed horizontally on the inclined surface.
Consider that the initial angular velocity
0
of the rod is perpendicular to the surface but
the initial velocity of the center of the rod is zero (see gure 3).
(a) Describe the motion of the center of mass of the rod! Determine the parameter(s) of
its orbit. (1.6 points)
(b) What should the minimum value of the coefcient of static friction be in this case
for the casters not to slip on the surface? (1.0 point)
S18 H J Kwee et al
Figure 3. The initial conditions of the rod in section 4.
Figure 4. Caster-wheels circular movement.
2.2. Solution
(i) (a) The initial velocity and angular velocity of the rod is
v
0
=
v
1
v
2
2
,
0
=
[v
1
v
2
[
L
.
(b) Since the mass and the radius of the caster-wheels are negligibly small, the force of
static friction only has a component parallel to the rod (otherwise the component
of static friction perpendicular to the rod will cause an innitely large angular
acceleration). From this, it follows that the torque acting on the rod is zero, i.e.
the angular velocity of the rod is constant:
(t ) =
0
.
Since all the forces acting on the rod are parallel to its axis, the magnitude of the
velocity of the center of the rod remains constant:
[v(t )[ = v
0
,
and the direction of v(t ) is always perpendicular to the rod. So the orbit of the center
of mass will be a circle (see gure 4). During one period (2/), the center of the
First World Physics Olympiad S19
Figure 5. Caster-wheels on a slightly inclined plane.
rod draws a whole circle, so one can write:
2

0
v
0
= 2R,
where R is the radius of the circle. From this, it follows that the radius of the center
of mass is
R =
v
0

0
=
v
1
v
2
[v
1
v
2
[
L
2
.
(c) The centripetal acceleration of the center of mass is v
2
0
/R, so the equation of motion
of the rod reads
mg = mv
0

0
,
and the minimal coefcient of static friction for the slipless motion is
=
(v
0

0
)
g
=

v
2
1
v
2
2

2gL
.
(ii) (a) Figure 5 shows the forces acting on the rod in the plane of the surface when the angle
between the rod and the steepest line is . Since there is no torque acting on the rod,
the angular velocity remains constant: (t ) =
0
. The equation of motion of the
center of mass in the direction perpendicular to the rod is
m v = mgsin sin .
Taking into account that =
0

0
t (where
0
is the initial angle between the rod
and the steepest line), the equation of motion is analogous to the differential equation
of a harmonic oscillator. So the magnitude of the velocity of the center of the rod as
a function of time is given by
v(t ) = v(0)
gsin

0
cos(
0
t
0
),
and its direction is always perpendicular to the rod. The x- and y-component of the
velocity reads
v
x
(t ) =

v(0)
gsin

0
cos(
0
t
0
)

cos(
0
t
0
), (1)
v
y
(t ) =

v(0)
gsin

0
cos(
0
t
0
)

sin(
0
t
0
). (2)
S20 H J Kwee et al
Figure 6. Sketch of the caster-wheels center of mass position.
Taking the time average of the components (so we can eliminate the circular motion
of the center of the rod):
v
x
(t )) =
gsin

0
cos
2
(
0
t
0
)) =
gsin
2
0
,
v
y
(t )) = 0.
Now it is obvious that the drift velocity is
v
drift
=
gsin
2
0
=
gL sin
2[v
1
v
2
[
,
and its direction is horizontal (i.e. perpendicular to the steepest line).
(b) A sketch of the orbit of the center of mass can be seen in gure 6.
(iii) (a) Equations (1) and (2) are still valid, we only have to t them to the initial conditions:
v(t ) =

v
0

gsin

0
(cos(
0
t ) 1)

cos(
0
t )
sin(
0
t )

.
(b) The velocity of the center of the rod is zero if
cos(
0
t ) = 1
v
0

0
gsin
.
Since 1 cos(
0
t ) 1, the condition of the stopping of the center of the rod reads
v
0

0
gsin
1.
(c) We have to distinguish the following two cases: the center of the rod stops for a
moment during the motion or it does not. In the rst case, the conservation of the
mechanical energy tells us that the maximal displacement along the y direction is
y
max
=
v
2
0
2gsin
.
In the second case

when
v
0

0
gsin
> 1

, the center of the rod has a nite velocity even at


the highest point of its orbit. From expansion of v(t ) one can see, that at the highest
point of the orbit the velocity of the center of the rod is
v
x

t =

0
= v
0

2gsin

,
so the conservation of mechanical energy reads
1
2
mv
2
0
= mgy
max
sin
1
2
mv
2
x
,
First World Physics Olympiad S21
Figure 7. Caster-wheels cycloid movement.
from which one get the result
y
max
=
2(v
0

0
gsin )

2
0
.
(iv) (a) In this situation, using the equations (1) and (2) we can get the velocity of the rods
center as the function of time:
v(t ) =

gsin

0
sin(
0
t )

sin(
0
t )
cos(
0
t )

,
which after some trigonometric manipulations we get:
v(t ) =

gsin
2
0

1
0

cos(2
0
t )
sin(2
0
t )

.
It can be seen that the endpoint of the velocity vector moves along a circle with radius
v

=
gsin
2
0
and center

gsin
2
0
, 0

. So the center of the rod moves as a point at the


perimeter of a rolling circle with velocity v

, which is a cycloid. We can calculate the


radius of this rolling circle, if we recognize that the period of this motion is /
0
:
r

=
1
2

0
v

=
gsin
4
2
0
.
The difference between the lowest and the highest positions of the center of the rod
is y = 2r

(measured along the steepest line). The orbit of the center and the two
endpoints of the rod is shown in gure 7.
(b) The magnitude of the static friction force is maximal if the center of the rod is at the
lowest possible position during the motion. At this point, the centripetal acceleration
of the center of mass is (v

)
2
/r

, so the equation of motion is


mgcos mgsin = m
(v

)
2
r

,
so = 2 tan .
3. Experimental problem 2: A rotary magnetic drag system for conductivity
measurement
3.1. Problem statement
3.1.1. Apparatus (gure 8).
(1) Rotary magnet assembly + two polyfoam spacers
(2) Copper plate (1 pc)
(3) Black box containing unknown metal X (1 pc)
(4) Thin cardboard spacers (5 pcs)
(5) Thick cardboard spacers (2 pcs)
(6) Power supply unit (1 pc)
S22 H J Kwee et al
Figure 8. Left: experimental equipment. Right: the rotating magnet assembly.
(7) Digital multimeter (DMM) generic (2 pcs)
(8) DMM with frequency measurement (1 pc)
(9) Ruler (1 pc).
Important experimental data
Copper plate thickness : t = 0.6 mm
Copper plate conductivity : = 6.0 10
7
( m)
1
Metal X thickness : t
X
= 1.05 mm
Thin cardboard thickness : d
1
= 1.10 mm
Thick cardboard thickness : d
2
= 2.35 mm
Magnet puck location from center of the disc : R = 13 mm
3.1.2. Introduction. Electrical conductivity measurement of a material is important for many
applications, such as the metallurgy and semiconductor industries. Usually one measures
conductivity () (1/resistivity) by a simple resistance measurement that requires making
electrical contacts. This is troublesome and sometimes impossible due to the presence of
insulating layer. Thus a contactless conductivity measurement technique is desired. In this
problem, we will explore a simple and fascinating system to perform contactless conductivity
measurements utilizing the magnetic drag or braking effect that occurs between fast-moving
magnets and a metal sheet.
If a magnet moves with velocity v parallel to the plane of a non-magnetic conducting
material with conductivity and thickness t, it will experience a magnetic braking effect, also
known as the eddy current braking effect, as shown in gure 9. The magnetic braking force
(using a magnetic dipole model and a thin metal sheet approximation) is given as:
F
MB
= t
v
d
m
, (3)
where is the magnetic braking coefcient of the system which depends on the magnetic
moment of the magnet and the magnetic permeability of the metal sheet (in this experiment
the magnetic permeability of metal sheets is taken to be equal to the magnetic permeability
of vacuum), and t are the conductivity and thickness of the metal, v is the velocity of the
moving magnet, d is the distance between the center of the magnet and the metal and m is the
distance power law factor to be determined in this experiment. The negative sign indicates a
force that opposes the velocity and is thus called magnetic braking.
First World Physics Olympiad S23
Figure 9. The magnetic braking effect of a moving magnet near a metal sheet.
In this experiment we mount two strong magnetic pucks on a rotating disc driven by a
motor, as shown below. When the disc rotates and the metal plate is inserted underneath, the
disc will slow due to the magnetic braking effect. This effect can be exploited to measure the
conductivity (or thickness) of a metal sheet.
System information
(1) The motor is driven by a variable voltage power supply with coarse and ne control.
(2) DMM#1 measures the motor voltage V
M
. DMM#2 measures the motor current I
M
as a
voltage across shunt resistor R
S
. R
S
is different for every set-up. You have to read the label
on the resistor.
(3) The Hall sensor serves as rotational frequency sensor. It provides a voltage pulse each
time a magnet passes by. When the disc rotates, the Hall sensor frequency f
H
can be
measured using DMM#3.
(4) To demonstrate the magnetic braking effect, a metal plate is placed at a distance d from
the rotating disc. Note that d is measured from the center of the magnets (see gure 10).
Thick and thin cardboard spacers are provided to vary the distance d.
(5) There are two metals provided: a copper plate (with a known conductivity and thickness
t) and an unknown metal X inside a black box (with a known thickness t
X
). See
section 3.1.1: important experimental data.
Attention
(1) Do not change the wiring/experimental set-up.
(2) The disc can rotate up to f
H
= 200 Hz. In general, useful data can be obtained
approximately <120 Hz. Do not run the motor at maximum frequency (around 200 Hz)
for too long.
(3) To save battery power, do not run the motor unnecessarily. Turn off the power if not in
use.
3.1.3. Experiment and questions. This experiment is divided into four sections.
(1) Introduction: speed sensor and basic operation (1.5 points)
(2) Basic system characterization (2 points)
S24 H J Kwee et al
Figure 10. Connection diagram of the rotary magnet set-up.
(3) Magnetic braking effect characterization (4.5 points)
(4) Conductivity measurement of an unknown metal X (2 points)
(1) Introduction: speed sensor and basic operation (1.5 points). This section will help to
familiarize you with the experimental set-up. First we will try to understand the operation
of the Hall effect sensor that measures the rotation frequency. We will observe the voltage
signal coming from the Hall sensor.
(a) Set DMM#3 to dc voltage mode. Turn the rotating disc (mounted on the motor)
manually so that the magnet passes the Hall sensor.
Sketch the voltage waveform for two full rotations, mark how the voltage
changes with or without magnet near the sensor. Indicate the period of the
waveform. (0.25 points)
(b) Now switch DMM#3 to frequency mode (Hz) to measure the Hall sensor frequency
f
H
. No metal plate underneath. Turn on the motor power supply and increase the
voltage gradually to speed up the rotation. Operate the motor <150 Hz. Observe how
the frequency reading f
H
increases with speed.
Express the disc angular frequency (in rad s
1
) in terms of Hall sensor frequency
f
H
. (0.25 points)
(c) Now insert the copper plate. Note how the rotation slows due to the magnetic braking
effect. How does the magnetic braking effect work? To help answer this question,
consider only interaction between the moving magnet and an elemental ring from
the metal sheet, as shown in gure 11.
Draw all the necessary electromagnet elds involved in this diagram on the answer
sheet. (1.0 point)
(2) Basic system characterization (2 points)
The motor has an internal series resistance R
M
which is not negligible in this experiment.
R
M
is the sum of resistance of the rotor coil inside the motor. Therefore when the motor
First World Physics Olympiad S25
Figure 11. Magnet over an elemental ring.
Figure 12. The equivalent circuit of the motor.
is driven by a voltage source, not all of the power is converted to kinetic or rotational
energy. A fraction of the energy is turned into heat due to R
M
. Thus the real motor can be
modeled as an ideal motor (whose coil has no resistance) plus a series resistance R
M
as
shown in gure 12.
(a) Determine the internal series resistance of the motor R
M
to at least two signicant
gures. Note. The series resistance is very small. Direct resistance measurement
using the ohmmeter mode of the DMMs does not have enough accuracy. Try another
method. You do not have to change the experimental set-up. Please also write down
the value of shunt resistor R
S
(the resistor to measure motor current I
M
) on your
answer sheet. (0.7 points)
Now we will explore how the system behaves at various ranges of rotation speeds with no
metal plate inserted. This is important to pick the operating range for further experiment.
Under normal condition the motor should run smoothly, however around some frequencies
the system vibrates strongly and becomes noisy and we want to avoid this. Do not insert
the copper plate.
(b) Increase the motor voltage gradually such that the frequency rises from 0 to near
200 Hz, record the Hall sensor frequency f
H
and the current I
M
(DMM#2). Plot both
data with respect to voltage V
M
. Mark the range of frequencies where the system
vibrates strongly and become noisy. (0.8 points)
S26 H J Kwee et al
Figure 13. The cross section of the black box containing the unknown metal X.
(c) What might cause this strong vibration/noise at certain frequencies? What anomaly
do you observe in the motor current I
M
versus voltage V
M
plot in this noisy
region? (0.5 points)
(3) Magnetic braking effect characterization (4.5 points)
We now study the characteristics of the magnetic braking effect with the copper plate
provided. With the knowledge from the previous section, we want to operate the system
in the quiet region as much as possible, not in the noisy region.
(a) Derive the expression for power dissipation P
MB
. Due to the magnetic braking force
of the two magnets and the metal plate. Use equation (3) and your answer from
question (1)b. Express P
MB
in terms of the Hall sensor frequency f
H
. (0.5 points)
(b) Perform experiments to verify the relationship of P
MB
and f
H
from your previous
answer. (1.5 points)
(c) Perform experiment to determine the magnetic braking force coefcient (note that
is associated with one magnet) and distance power law factor m. (2.5 points)
Note. to maintain the validity of the distance power law in equation (3) (due to
magnetic dipole approximation) do not place the metal too close. Maintain sufcient
distance, approximately d > 8 mm.
(4) Conductivity measurement of an unknown metal X (2 points)
To obtain conductivity (assuming the thickness is known), the distance between the magnet
and the metal plate d needs to be determined accurately because the magnetic braking
force falls off strongly with distance due to a large power factor m. In actual industrial
applications, it is difcult or even impossible to obtain an accurate distance d without
making contact with the metal (remember this is a contactless method).
However, it is possible to perform the conductivity measurement without knowing
the exact distance between the magnet and the metal plate d. This problem simulates this
situation. We have an unknown metal X inside a black box, as shown in gure 13. The
thickness is known:
t
X
= 1.05 mm.
However, its exact location from the surface (d
0
) is not known. In fact, you do not need
to know it to obtain the conductivity . You may assume that in this part is the same as
part (3)c.
(a) Perform an experiment to determine the conductivity of the metal
X (
X
). (2.0 points)
Note
Please do not open the black box. It will invalidate your answer.
First World Physics Olympiad S27
Figure 14. Voltage waveform.
Figure 15. Magnet over an elemental ring.
3.2. Solution
1. System introduction: speed sensor and basic operation (1.5 points)
1. (a) Turn the rotating disc (mounted on the motor) manually so that the magnet passes
through the Hall sensor. Sketch the voltage waveform for two full rotations, mark
how the voltage changes with or without magnet nearby sensor. Indicate the period
of the waveform. (0.25 points)
Answer: see gure 14.
1. (b) Express the disc angular frequency (in rad s
1
) in terms of Hall sensor frequency
f
H
(0.25 points)

DISC
= 2
f
Hall
2
= f
Hall
The factor of 1/2 multiplying f
Hall
because there are two magnets giving two pulses
per rotation. Thus the disc rotation frequency is half of the Hall sensor frequency.
1. (c) How does the magnetic braking effect work? To help answer this question, consider
only interaction between the moving magnet and an elemental ring from the metal
sheet, as shown below. Draw all the necessary electromagnet elds involved in this
diagram on the answer sheet. (1.0 point)
See gure 15. Consider a segment of the ring P right underneath the magnetic puck
where the magnetic eld is the strongest.
S28 H J Kwee et al
Figure 16. Determination of motor internal series resistance R
M
.
1. The magnet moves, creating an increasing magnetic ux in the ring, thus inducing
an electromotive force (EMF) voltage V
EMF
according to Faradays law.
2. The EMF voltage produces current I in the ring whose direction is determined
by Lenzs law such that the induced magnetic eld (B
ind
) opposes the change of
the magnetic eld from the magnet.
3. This current ow I and the magnetic eld B from the magnet produces a Lorentz
force F
R
on the ring segment under the magnet with the same direction as the
velocity of the magnet.
4. Due to Newtons third law, the Lorentz force F
R
is accompanied by a reaction
force F
MB
acting on the magnet in the opposite direction. This is the magnetic
braking force.
2. Basic system characterization (2.0 points)
2. (a) Determine the internal series resistance of the motor R
M
to at least two signicant
gures. (0.7 points)
The shunt resistance for motor current measurement is R
S
= 1.11. Note that this
value may vary approximately 20%for different set-ups. The motor current is given
as I
M
=V
2
/R
S
, where V
2
is the DMM#2 voltage.
For R
M
measurement the motor should not rotate, so that there is no voltage drop due
to back EMF from the rotor coil due to rotation (V
EMF
= BAN).
V
M
=V
EMF
I
M
R
M
Thus if we apply the voltage across the motor, the entire voltage drop occurs across
the internal series resistance R
M
. This can be achieved by applying very small voltage
(e.g. V < 100 mV) so the motor will not rotate, or by holding the motor.
R
M
is very small (0.8), thus we need to plot V
M
versus I
M
(or V
2
/R
S
) to obtain
R
M
, see gure 16.
First World Physics Olympiad S29
Figure 17. Motor resonance region.
We note that the linearity of the data is good, and yield:
R
M
=
V
M
I
M
=
V
M
V
2
R
S
= 0.855 .
2. (b) Increase the motor voltage gradually from0 to 1.7 V, record the Hall sensor frequency
and the current (DMM#2). Plot both data with respect to voltage. Mark the range of
frequencies where the system vibrates strongly and become noisy. (0.8 points)
Both plots are shown in gure 17.
2. (c) What may cause this strong vibration/noise at certain frequencies? What anomaly
that you observe in the motor current (I) versus voltage (V) plot corresponds to this
noisy region? (0.5 points)
This strong vibration or noise happens because of the resonance effect, which is
around 120180 Hz in this set-up. At resonance there is maximum energy transfer
or efcient mechanical coupling from the motor to the chassis.
This resonance effect is apparent in the bump of the current versus voltage plot
around the resonance frequency, which indicates larger power dissipation (V
M
I
M
)
near the resonance.
S30 H J Kwee et al
Figure 18. Power dissipation.
Note. This resonance effect has some variations between set-ups, nevertheless it
occurs mostly at 100 Hz and above. There is actually also a hysteresis effect
present. But we shall ignore this issue for the moment.
3. Magnetic drag effect characterization (4.5 points)
3. (a) Derive the expression for power dissipation P
MB
due to the magnetic braking force
of the two magnets and the metal plate. Use equation (3) and your answer from
question 1(b). Express P
MB
in terms of the Hall sensor frequency f
H
. (0.5 points)
The power dissipation due to the magnetic braking force of the two magnet pucks is
P
MB
= 2F
MB
v =
2tv
2
d
m
,
where the factor of two is due to two magnetic pucks and the negative sign is due to
the force opposite to the velocity, in other words this is a dissipative force. The radial
velocity of each magnet, using the answer from A.2, is: v = R = f
H
R.
Thus nally:
P
MB
=
2t
2
f
2
H
R
2
d
m
.
We omit the negative sign with the understanding that this is a dissipative force.
Note that the full expression for the magnetic drag or braking force can be obtained
from [1] at the low velocity limit _2/
0
t, which yields:
=
3
2
0
m
2
M
128
and m = 4, where
0
is the magnetic permeability and m
M
is the magnetic moment
of the magnet.
3. (b) Perform experiments to verify the relationship of P
MB
with f
H
from your previous
answer. (1.5 points)
We recognize that the motor slows if the copper plate is inserted underneath, in other
words it takes more power for the systemto rotate at the same frequency, see gure 18.
Thus the power difference for the system to operate at the same frequency is due to
the magnetic braking effect.
First World Physics Olympiad S31
Figure 19. Magnetic power dissipation as a function of frequency.
However, we should recognize that there is also power loss due to the motors internal
series resistance R
M
and this has to be accounted for.
We can write: P
MB
= P = P
/
K
P
K
, where P
/
K
and P
K
are the motor kinetic power
with and without the metal being inserted. This motor kinetic power is net power
delivered to the motor after discounting the Joule loss due to R
M
, and can be calculated
as:
P
K
=V
M
I
M
I
2
M
R
M
.
Therefore the power dissipation P
MB
can be obtained from measurement of V
/
M
, I
/
M
(with metal), and V
M
and I
M
(without metal) while maintaining a xed frequency:
P
MB
=

V
/
M
I
/
M
I
/2
M
R
M

V
M
I
M
I
2
M
R
M

=
1
R
S

(V
/
M
V
/
2
V
M
V
2
)

V
/2
2
V
2
2

R
M
R
S

,
because I
M
=V
2
/R
S
.
Note that the student might perform the experiment with a series of xed voltage
settings and record the current and Hall sensor frequency with and without the
copper plate. However, an astute student will recognize that analysis is easier if the
measurements are performed at xed frequency settings.
This experiment can be performed as follows.
1. Without the metal plate, choose a xed distance d and choose a rotation frequency
f
H
. Record V
M
and I
M
.
2. Insert a metal plate and the system will slow down.
3. Increase the voltage or speed accordingly to match the original frequency.
4. Record V
/
M
and I
/
M
.
5. Repeat steps 2 to 4 at various frequencies outside resonance.
The plot is shown in gure 19. The plot of

P
MB
versus f
H
is linear, indicating that
P
MB
f
H
, consistent with the result in (1)a.
3. (c) Perform the experiment to determine the magnetic braking force coefcient (note
that is associated with one magnet) and distance power law factor m. (2.5 points)
In this experiment, we have to vary the distance d to obtain both and m. This
experiment can be performed as follows.
S32 H J Kwee et al
Table 1. Distance dependence of the magnetic braking power.
d V
M
I
M
P
K
P
MB
(mm) (V) (A) (mW) (W) ln(d) ln(P
MB
) Note
13.00 0.353 0.1009 2.596 No metal
13.00 0.366 0.1153 3.391 0.7949 4.343 7.137 With metal
11.95 0.373 0.1225 3.828 1.2320 4.427 6.699 Metal + 1 thin
10.90 0.380 0.1306 4.351 1.7554 4.519 6.345 Metal + 2 thin
10.65 0.387 0.1324 4.472 1.8763 4.542 6.278 Metal + 1 thick
9.85 0.394 0.1387 4.908 2.3124 4.620 6.069 Metal + 3 thin
9.60 0.401 0.1486 5.635 3.0386 4.646 5.796 Metal + 1 thick + 1 thin
8.80 0.408 0.1568 6.266 3.6700 4.733 5.608 Metal + 4 thin
8.55 0.425 0.1685 7.237 4.6413 4.762 5.373 Metal + 1 thick + 2 thin
8.30 0.431 0.1748 7.789 5.1933 4.791 5.260 Metal + 2 thick
1. Choose a starting distance d with no spacers. Choose an operating frequency,
medium speed frequency 40 Hz is good (not too low and not too high).
2. With no metal inserted, record V
M
and I
M
.
3. Insert the metal plate, increase the voltage to match the original frequency. Record
V
/
M
and I
/
M
.
4. Insert spacers, record the new distance d, repeat step 3.
Note that the distance must be kept above approximately 8 mm, to maintain the
validity of equation (3) due to the magnetic dipole model.
We pick a medium frequency of 60 Hz to allow more data points (if we choose too
high, the power supply may not have enough drive at higher load (when the metal is
very close). Frequency: f
H
= 60 Hz.
Note that P
MB
= P
/
K
P
K
, where P
/
K
and P
K
is the motor kinetic power after and
before the metal is inserted. P
K
is given as:
P
K
=V
M
I
M
I
2
M
R
M
.
To extract and m we use the following linear regression (y = A Bx) analysis:
P
MB
=
2t
2
f
2
H
R
2
d
m
,
ln P
MB
= ln

2t
2
f
2
H
R
2

mln d.
The data can be found in table 1 and the plot is shown in gure 20 (in SI units).
Finally we obtain:
=
e
A
2t
2
f
2
H
R
2
=
e
24.54
2 6 10
7
0.6 10
3

2
0.013
2
60
2
= 5.09 10
17
Nm
3
s,
m = B = 4.0.
Note that in this experiment we obtain the power distance exponent factor m = 4.0
in excellent agreement with the theory [1]. Repeated experiments put the factor near
this predicted value.
4. Conductivity measurement of an unknown metal X (2 points)
4. (a) Perform an experiment to determine the conductivity of the metal X. (2 points)
First World Physics Olympiad S33
Figure 20. Log of magnetic power braking versus log of distance.
Table 2. Magnetic power braking to the power of 1/m versus distance.
d V
M
I
M
P
K
P
MB
(mm) (V) (A) (mW) (W) P
1/m
MB
Note
13.0 0.417 0.1063 2.882 No black box (BB)
13.0 0.400 0.1234 3.885 1.0025 5.6199 With BB
11.9 0.412 0.1297 4.292 1.4096 5.1609 BB + 1 thin
10.8 0.410 0.1360 4.719 1.8370 4.8303 BB + 2 thin
9.7 0.450 0.1505 5.772 2.8900 4.3130 BB + 3 thin
8.6 0.458 0.1649 6.931 4.0490 3.9643 BB + 4 thin
7.5 0.465 0.1937 9.567 6.6849 3.4972 BB + 5 thin
The key idea in this experiment is that we can still extract the coefcient without
knowledge of the absolute d value, i.e. by varying or stepping the apparent distance
d
/
. Both d and d
/
are related as:
d = d
/
d
0
.
This can be done by recasting the P
MB
equation into:
P
1/m
MB
=

2t
2
f
2
H
R
2

1/m
(d
/
d
0
).
The value (and thus
X
) can then be obtained by linear regression of P
1/m
MB
versus
d
/
. We perform a similar measurement as in the previous section, maintaining a xed
rotation frequency ( f
H
= 60 Hz). Since the metal X is at unknown distance d
0
within the black box, we can use an arbitrary reference to record the distance d
/
. A
sample of data can be found in table 2. From linear regression we obtain A = 0.6452
[SI] and B = 382.4 [SI] (see gure 21). Finally with B =

2
X
t
2
f
2
H
R
2

1/m
, we
obtain:

X
=

2B
m
t
2
f
2
H
R
2

1
= 7.3 10
7
(m)
1
.
During WoPhO nal round, we sampled four stations and arrived at the following
range of accepted values:

X
= (0.3 7) 10
7
(m)
1
.
Most of the error is due to inaccuracies caused by the spacer not being at. Note that
the intercept at x-axis gives d
0
, but this is not raised in the problem.
S34 H J Kwee et al
Figure 21. Magnetic power braking to the power of 1/m versus distance.
4. First WoPhO nal round results and discussion
The rst WoPhO nal round awarded 11 gold medals, 12 silver medals, and 11 bronze medals.
Complete results are available online (see footnote 5). Unlike other olympiads, no honorable
mentions were made. The highest overall score was 35.10 from a possible score of 50.0. This
score was achieved by Kexin Yi, the overall winner of the rst WoPhO. He also achieved
the highest score for the theoretical examination, receiving 22.75 points from a possible 30.0.
The highest score for the experimental examination was 13.50 from a possible 20.0, achieved
by Eugen Hruska. The average score for all the medalists was 17.32, with a theoretical score
average of 9.59 and an experimental score average of 7.73.
We have two comments.
1. The rst WoPhO might be considered to be an olympiad with more difcult problems
than previous APhO and IPhO competitions, judging from the scores achieved by the
medalists.
2. Almost all of the medalists in this WoPhO were medalists in previous olympiads
(APhO/IPhO).
References
[1] Reitz et al 1970 J. Appl. Phys. 41 2067
[2] Kalda J 2013 Eur. J. Phys. 34 S314
[3] Kalda J, Kikas J, Heidelberg M, Ainsaar S and Lohmus R 2013 Eur. J. Phys. 34 S3548