Physics Interactives

Welcome to Physics Interactives! This section of our website features a collection of HTML5 interactive pages that allow a user to explore a physics concept. Some Interactives are simulations that allow a user to manipulate an environment and observe the effect of changes in variables upon the simulation. Other Interactives are skill building exercises in which a user practices a skill that is crucial to learning some aspect of physics. And still other Interactives provide game-like environments that require the user to use a physics concept to meet a challenge. The Interactives are intended to be used by the individual student or learner who is attempting to further understand the concept or by a teacher-led classroom as part of a lesson or homework assignment. Most of the Interactives are accompanied by an activity sheet that suggests ways to use the Interactive. Learn more About the Physics Interactives.

Interactives are organized by topic. Click a topic below to view interactives for that topic.


1-Dimensional Kinematics

Match an animated motion to a verbal description or a graphical description in the Name That Motion and Graph That Motion Interactives. Build a ramp along which a ball will roll in order for its motion to match a given graph with the Graph and Ramps Interactive. Earn your Rocket Scientist badge with the Two Stage Rocket Simulator. Combine the Accelerometer Interactive with the acceleration sensors on your mobile devices to measure the acceleration of your device. Learn how displacement and distance are different in the Vector Walk Interactive.

Visit 1-D Kinematics Interactives.

Newton's Laws of Motion

Explore relationships pertaining to applied force, friction force, mass, and acceleration with the Force Interactive. Practice your skill of constructing free-body diagrams with the Free Body Diagram Interactive. Learn about Newton's second law of motion with the Rocket Sled and Skydiving Interactives. Find out why you feel weightless and weighty with the Elevator Ride Interactive. Use our Atwood's Machine simulator to explore the role of hanging masses and pulleys upon the acceleration of objects.

Visit Newton's Laws Interactives.

Vectors, Projectiles and Two-Dimensional Motion

Learn important rules about adding vectors with the Vector Addition Interactive. Practice adding vectors by adding their components with the Name That Vectors Interactive. Be smart ... be fast ... and challenge your friends at the Vector Guessing Game. Use the Projectile Simulator to uncover some fundamental principles pertaining to motion in two dimensions. Practice your projectile problem-solving skills as you prevent Birdman from soiling the school football field in our Turd the Target and Turd the Target 2 projectile games. And explore an age-old question with the Monkey and Zookeeper Interactive.

Visit Vectors, Projectiles, and 2-D Motion Interactives.

Forces in Two Dimensions

We just opened this section of the Physics Interactives section in March of 2021. We have big plans for it. But for now, the Balance It! activity will have to satisfy your passion to combine vector components with Newton's Laws.

Visit Forces in Two Dimensions Interactives.

Momentum and Collisions

Conduct an Egg Drop study and learn about factors affecting the collision force. Investigate collisions with the Cart and Brick Interactive. Study momentum conservation with the Fish Catch and Exploding Carts Interactives. Explore collision and explosion principles like never before with the Colliding Carts Interactive.

Visit Momentum and Collisions Interactives.

Work and Energy

Investigate force and work with the It's All Uphill Interactive. Learn how speed affects stopping distance with the Stopping Distance Interactive. Build a coaster or use a pre-built coaster to explore the physics of roller coasters with the Roller Coaster Model. Practice your skill with work-energy bar charts using the Chart That Motion Interactive. Explore the conservation of mechanical energy with our Vibrating Spring simulator.

Visit Work and Energy Interactives.

Circular Motion and Gravitation

Explore uniform circular motion principles with the Circular Motion Interactive. Apply a force to a car to race it around an oval race track; compete with friends to finish the race in the least number of moves with the Race Track Interactive. Explore the forces acting on a roller coaster car with the Roller Coaster Model Interactive. Learn about the variables that affect the thrill and safety of a roller coaster ride with the Roller Coaster Design Interactive. Learn about weightlessness and weightiness with the Elevator Ride Interactive. Study Kepler's laws with the Orbital Motion Interactive. Launch the Gravitation Interactive and discover the universal law of gravitation. Explore universal gravitation, gravitational field strength, the value of g, and your weight on other planets with our many other out-of-this-world Interactives.

Visit Circular and Satellite Motion Interactives.

Balance and Rotation

Set a couple of bugs on a rotating platform and spin them around while you learn about the relationship between linear and rotational velocity using our Rotational Motion Simulation. Construct an object with a given shape and hang it from a push pin on a corkboard in our Center of Mass Simulation. Play with masses hung from a balance beam and discover the rule of balance with our Balance Beam Simulator.
Visit Rotation and Balance Interactives.

Static Electricity

See the otherwise unseen with our Aluminum Can Polarizaation simulation. Learn about the law that governs the force acting between charged objects with the Coulomb's Law Interactive. Explore charging methods with the Charging simulation or the Name That Charge skill-builder activity. Explore the complex set of electric field lines that surround a single charge or a configuration of charges with the Electric Field Interactive. Use charge interactions and field forces to guide a charged puck into the goal in the Put the Charge in the Goal Interactive. And explore the electric potential around a charged object with our Electrostatics Landscape Interactive.
Visit Static Electricity Interactives.

Electric Circuits

Build a circuit. Add a resistor or a light bulb and a meter to measure current or voltage drops. Tap/click a battery or resistor to change its voltage or resistance. Build single-resistor circuit and study the voltage-current-resistance relationship. Or build a series, parallel or combination circuit and explore how they work. Study just about anything and everything pertaining to electric circuits with the DC Circuit Builder Interactive.

Visit Electric Circuits Interactives.


Observe the interaction between a bar magnet and the needle of a compass with our Magnetic Field Simulator.

Visit Magnetism Interactives.

Waves and Sound

Explore the nature of a wave and the relationship between waves and sound with the Simple Wave Simulator. Study the motion of waves on a string and the effect of tension, density and damping upon their behavior with the Slinky Lab Interactive. Create standing waves and investigate their patterns with the Standing Wave Maker Interactive.

Visit Waves and Sound Interactives

Light and Color

Study the mixing of colored lights with the RGB Color Addition Interactive. Use the Painting with CMY Interactive to investigate how primary pigments combine to produce a specific color. Explore color addition and subtraction in our Shadows Interactive. Study color subtraction with filters using the Colored Filters Interactive. Be amazed by the results of shinging stage lights on objects on the stage with our Stage Lighting Interactive. Practice your skill at anlayzing two-point source interference patterns with the Young's Experiment Interactive.

Reflection and Mirrors

Study plane mirror images with the Who Can See Who? Interactive. Use the Optics Bench Interactive to explore the images formed by concave and convex mirrors. Practice your skill

Refraction and Lenses

Explore the refraction of light at a boundary between two media with the Refraction Interactive. Launch the Least Time Principle Interactive and discover the fundamental law that explains why light refracts as it does when traveling between two locations on the opposite side of a boundary. Use the Optics Bench Interactive to explore the images formed by converging and diverging lenses.

Visit Refraction and Lenses Interactives.



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