A South African grade 10 learner, Ronaldo Mphofela, in a short video, outlined how electricity has helped to improve the living conditions of people in his community.
The role that physics plays in our everyday life is not easily comprehended and appreciated.
In a developing country like South Africa we have our battles with poor science education, attracting women and girls into physics, learning physics in a rural setting with no lab and having to improvise, but we also have our highlights such as the SKA coming to South Africa, the discovery of the CAT machine and recently the digital laser in South Africa among other stories.
What would happen without physics?
There is development, change, and the improvement that physics has brought to our education, opening windows to SET careers and basic necessities that physics has brought to our villages, townships, and everyday lives. For example, thinking of physics in our daily lives, one may ask the question: “What has physics done for my village, for my township or community?”
- Suppose there was no physics of electromagnetic waves; when an emergency comes, there will be no cell phone to call an ambulance.
- Without optical physics, there will be no spectacles for granny at the village.
- Solar physics has enabled refrigeration of vaccines at rural clinics, etc.
The technology of tomorrow
Surely, the physics of today is the technology of tomorrow. Think of the following!
- PHYSICS improves our health; (COVID19 Modelling, MRI, XRAY, CANCER Isotopes, etc)
- PHYSICS connects the World; (Internet, Satellites, Fibre, Telephone, WiFi, etc)
- PHYSICS brings High-Technology (Computers, LCDs, Sensors for Automation, etc)
- PHYSICS lights up our World (Nuclear Power, Solar Power, LED lights etc)
- PHYSICS drives Big Science (CERN, Large Hadron Collider, SKA, LIGO)
- PHYSICS fills our Homes; (DVD players, Radios, Plasma TVs, Microwaves Ovens, Video Games)
- PHYSICS keeps us Safe (Seismology & Earth Warning Systems, Weather-forecast, Military Radar Systems)
- PHYSICS moves us around the World (GPS Navigation Systems, Aerodynamics)
The South African Institute of Physics launched a call for contributions from the South Africa community to showcase how physics is impacting our communities in South Africa. Here is one of such contributions.
Ronald Mphofela is a Grade 10 learner at Makhwese Secondary School majoring in Mathematics, Physical Sciences, Life Sciences and Geography. He enjoys reading books, experimenting and writing books. His life goals include opening his own IT company, chicken farm and publishing his three books. His interests are to see local people having equal access to a better life.
Summary of Mphofela’s entry
My village, Ga-Mokgotho, is a developing community as a result of electricity availability. Physics is helpful to my community as a physics principle (Faraday’s law) was applied in the generation of electrical energy. My short video outlines how electricity is generated and how it improved the conditions of people in my community.
It first starts by outlining how the heating effect of electrical current is applied in some virtual home appliances like stove and fryers. It further outlined how magnetic effects of electric current helps people like my grandmother with news updates from a television.
I conclude by outlining how electrical current has helped my community people with appliances such as clothes washing machine.
This post was initially shared by the South African Institute of Physics.