PHYS345 Electricity and Electronics


Laboratory work is an essential part of the introductory physics course. It will likely play an important role in your career as scientist or engineer as well. Time spent in the laboratory, developing skill and experience in making good measurements, is a critical part of your training. Our laboratory schedule presents twelve laboratory exercises that have been selected to develop further your ability to:

Finally, this laboratory experience should provide you with the opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of some of the concepts of introductory electricity and electronics.

 The principles of science, the definition, almost, is the following: the test of all knowledge is experiment. Experiment is the sole judge of scientific truth. 
 Richard Feynman, 1963 

Xiaohui Xiang
 Xiaohai Xiang
Office: Sharp Lab 304
Office Hours: Tuesday 1-2, Friday 1-2


All laboratory sections meet in Sharp Lab 101B.

Wednesday   Thursday
Sec. 10   Sec. 12
12:30 - 2:30   1:00 - 3:00
Sec. 11    
7:00 - 9:00    

Satisfactory laboratory work is required to receive a passing grade for this course. Attendance is mandatory; attendance at a section different from your normally scheduled one may be arranged beforehand with permission of the lab instructor. The grading schedule for late reports and the makeup policy for missed labs will be announced by the lab instructor. Lab reports are due by noon Monday. [added 9/29] The lowest lab grade will be dropped; this can be used to accomodate one missing lab assignment.

The lab manual should be studied before coming to the lab meeting. A short discussion will be given at the beginning of each lab to orient each student to the equipment and instructor's expectations. Generally the lab exercises will be performed by teams of either two or four students. Lab reports should be submitted in whatever format and notebook is recommended by the lab instructor.

The drop box for completed PHYS345 laboratory reports is Box #2. This is located in the array of drop boxes located near the Sharp Lab 131, the auditorium.

 The joy of engineering is to find a straight line on a double logarithmic diagram. 
 Source unknown 

Laboratory sections begin meeting regularly during the second week of classes.

Lab# Week of Topic
  Sept. 1 no lab
1. Sept. 8 Introduction to Electrical Measurements
2. Sept. 15 Lights Out! - Batteries and Lamps
  Sept. 22 Hurricane Floyd makeup
3. Sept. 29 Introduction to the Oscilloscope
4. Oct. 6 Introduction to "Electronic Workbench"
5. Oct. 13 Introduction to Transmission Lines
6a. Oct. 20 Lights, Camera, Action! - Transients in Circuit
6b. Oct. 27 Transients in Circuit (contd.)
7. Nov. 3 Digital Logic (with Electronics Workbench)
8. Nov. 10 Sequential Logic (with Electronics Workbench)
9a. Nov. 17 Working with Integrated Circuits
  Nov. 24 no lab
9a. Dec. 1 Lab Wrap-Up

Laboratory schedule will be completed as the semester progresses.

A Closing Thought on Grading of Laboratory Notebooks:

  Quality . . . you know what it is, yet you don't know what it is. But that's self-contradictory. But some things are better than others, that is, they have more quality. But when you try to say what the quality is, apart from the things that have it, it all goes poof! There's nothing to talk about. But if you can't say what Quality is, how do you know what it is, or how do you know that it even exists? If no one knows what it is, then for all practical purposes it doesn't exist at all. But for all practical purposes it really does exist. What else are the grades based on? Why else would people pay fortunes for some things and throw others in the trash pile? Obviously some things are better than others . . . but what's the "betterness"? . . . So round and round you go, spinning mental wheels and nowhere finding anyplace to get traction. What the hell is Quality? What is it? 
 Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
Robert M. Pirsig

Online References:
Uncertainty of Measurement Results from the NIST Reference on Constants, Units, and Uncertainty

Last updated Oct. 18, 1999.
Copyright George Watson, Univ. of Delaware, 1999.