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Published on October 25th, 2021 | by University of Mississippi


‘Spooky Physics’ Returns in Person to Haunt University of Mississippi Campus

Department of Physics and Astronomy offers fun and frights for all ages

After having to go virtual last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the University of Mississippi Department of Physics and Astronomy will present its annual “Spooky Physics Night” in-person on October 29.

The free program starts at 6 pm at Lewis Hall. The family-friendly show includes demonstrations of energy, electricity, magnetism, sound and waves, the physics of ultracold temperatures and more. The event will include both indoor and outdoor demonstrations and will close around 8:30 pm.

Children and adults are encouraged to wear costumes. Prizes will be awarded.

“We are very happy to be able to host the ‘Spooky Physics Night’ in-person once again,” said Jake Bennett, assistant professor of physics and co-coordinator of the evening’s activities. “It should be an evening of fun and excitement!”

Two demo shows will be held in Lewis Hall, Room 101, featuring physics demonstrations including an air cannon and imploding a barrel using only temperature changes, at 6:15 and 7:30 pm. Low-temperature physics shows will be held concurrently in Room 109 and will feature the spooky effects that come with ultracold temperatures, including using liquid nitrogen to flash-freeze ice cream.

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An outdoor show will be added this year and is set for 7 pm outside Lewis Hall.

Bennett said the annual event is the department’s way to give something back to the community.

“The ‘Spooky Physics Night’ is always a lot of fun,” he said. “We enjoy thrilling and amazing kids and other community members and hopefully sharing the enthusiasm and excitement we have for the science behind the demonstrations.”

By Edwin B. Smith

Archive Photo: Volunteers from the Department of Physics and Astronomy demonstrate how air can be used to lift objects with the help of a participant during ‘Spooky Physics Night’ in 2018. Photo by Megan Wolfe/Ole Miss Digital Imaging Services
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The University of Mississippi, affectionately known as Ole Miss, is Mississippi’s flagship university. A member of the elite group of R1: Doctoral Universities - Highest Research Activity by the Carnegie Classification, Ole Miss has a long history of producing leaders in public service, business, academics and the professions. Its 16 academic divisions include a major medical school; nationally recognized schools of accountancy, law and pharmacy; and an Honors College acclaimed for a blend of academic rigor, experiential learning and opportunities for community action. Acclaimed as one of the nation’s most beautiful, Ole Miss's main campus is in Oxford, which is routinely recognized as one of the nation's best college towns.

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