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Kung Fu Science

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Author:Institute of Physics
Description: Watch martial artist Chris Crudelli demonstrate to physicist Michelle Cain how she can break a wooden plank with one strike of her bare hand. Before actually attempting the feat herself, Cain applies Newton's laws and the conservation of energy to calculate how many Joules of energy she needs to transfer to the board in order to break it. Chris and Michelle also talk about how speed, body mass, surface area, and the grain of the wood affect this stunt. With high-speed footage and step-by-step analysis of the physics. Requires Flash. Written, produced, and directed by Sam Rae on behalf of the Institute of Physics as part of Einstein Year.

Levels: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College
Languages: English
Resource Types: Multimedia, Problems/Puzzles, Fun for Kids
Math Topics: Mechanics of Solids

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