Why do we need physics?
So with this year’s GCSE students starting their revision countdown before the summer, how much of your school science do you remember? Remember the bunsen burners, test tubes and strange formulas? Can you recall anything of the periodic table or the names of everything inside your body and how it all works? Personally, physics was the trickiest one and as I help my son revise, he often asks me what is the point in knowing this stuff and what impact does it have on our daily lives?
Well, physics relates to daily life in a huge way because without physics we wouldn’t have things like X-rays and many other medical tools. Without physics, sending electricity from one place to another would be impossible, which means physics is responsible for allowing us to use phones, televisions and almost all devices that we can’t seem to live without these days. Without a knowledge of physics, it would be impossible to know how to keep cars and planes moving, or how to construct buildings. So it seems physics is pretty important after all.
Physics allows doctors and medical staff to use X-rays and ultrasounds, which is vital when diagnosing a problem with a patient or helping a woman give birth. Physics also enables us to use lasers, so we can use processes like laser eye surgery that otherwise would not exist. Without physics, it would be impossible to understand how energy moves and it would be impossible to send energy from one point to another safely. The field of physics called kinematics is used to determine whether a mode of transport will be able to move. It is also used by architects to develop buildings. It is the Physicists who determine the safety of modes of transport and vehicles by calculating their weights and forces. It also allows Drain Lining Company specialists such as https://www.wilkinson-env.co.uk/sewer-repairs-drain-lining-concrete-cutting/ to remove blocakges and create channels for our drainage.
So we see that almost everything actually relates to physics in some way or another. Physics has many real-life applications, for example any time someone drives a car, lifts something heavy or tries to stay warm in the winter. Driving a car requires a basic understanding of the principles of physics, whether the driver is conscious of them or not. For instance, the balance of a car changes as the car accelerates, decelerates or turns. To keep the car on the road, the driver must anticipate these forces acting on the car, make adjustments and we seem to do this without even really thinking about it.
When we turn on the heating in our homes to stay warm in the winter, we are using the principles of physics to understand how to make better use of the heat that is already in our homes. Heat flows via conductive, radiant and convective means and understanding the differences between these will allow an us to insulate a house better. For example, by using ceiling fans someone can make the convective heat flow in a house work to their advantage and also by placing foil behind a radiator to reflect heat back into a room, all this uses physics.