2007-2008 Supercomputing Challenge New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge


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Challenge Team Interim Report

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    Team Number: 054

    School Name: Kirtland Central High School

    Area of Science: Physics

    Project Title: Water Star

Final Report

The purpose of our highly professional, scientific project is to explain a part of the phenomenon commonly known as sonoluminescence. Sonoluminescence is the process in which a bubble levitates acoustically and is made to oscillate so violently that at the time of the bubble's inevitable collapse, pulses of light are emitted. It was first observed in an ultrasonic water bath in 1934 at the University of Cologne, as an indirect result of wartime research in marine acoustic radar. Later methods of study found sonoluminescence to produce clouds of bubbles that lacked any order to their size or motion, and would shrink, collapse, and produce light in a fairly chaotic way.

Today, sonoluminescence has caused a stir in the physics community. The mystery of how a sound wave can concentrate enough energy in a small enough volume to cause the emission of light is still unsolved. This mystery has caused many scientists to research and create extensive studies on the subject. These studies have developed to define two types of sonoluminescence: single-bubble (SBSL) and multi-bubble (MBSL). Single-bubble sonoluminescence generally produces a brighter light than multi-bubble. For this reason we have made it our main intention to focus on SBSL. We also intend to focus on the effects of different liquids, such as oil and gasoline, in the testing of sonoluminescence. To gain a better understanding of our subject we are currently gathering the materials and other resources that are necessary to successfully achieve sonoluminescence at school. When we collect all of the essential equipment we will proceed to experiment under the guidance of our physics teacher and with the aid of a physics professor at nearby San Juan Community College. With the assistance of the two physics teachers we will test our theories on how different substances will react under a controlled environment.

Other than experimentation, we have done research on the internet, tried to correspond with scientists, and tried to locate a mentor with vast knowledge on the subject. So far we haven't had a response from any of the potential sources contacted. When we finally receive a reply from one of the scientists that we contacted we will ask that person what fluid would yield the best results. In addition to this we hope to receive information pertaining to the ideal environment or conditions best suited for the most successful results. Perhaps, we may even be able to obtain an equation that will useful to us in our programming.

Our program will be written in the great computer language of C++. Some major factors in our program will be the density and/or the stability along with the temperature of the liquid involved in the sonoluminescence procedure. Upon running the program the user is enabled to input various factors concerning the sonoluminescence experiment. The program will then predict the resulting yield of energy based on equations acquired from our various sources. Unfortunately, we have not yet been able to find the proper equations needed for our program to run successfully.

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  • James Karlin
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