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TheAustralian

Curriculum

Subjects Physics

Yearlevels Unit1,Unit2,Unit3,Unit4

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TheAustralianCurriculum
Science

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Physics CurriculumSeniorSecondary

Unit1:Thermal,nuclearandelectricalphysics

Unit1:Thermal,nuclearandelectricalphysicsDescription

Anunderstandingofheatingprocesses,nuclearreactionsandelectricityisessentialtoappreciatehow
globalenergyneedsaremet.Inthisunit,studentsexplorethewaysphysicsisusedtodescribe,explain
andpredicttheenergytransfersandtransformationsthatarepivotaltomodernindustrialsocieties.
Studentsinvestigateheatingprocesses,applythenuclearmodeloftheatomtoinvestigateradioactivity,
andlearnhownuclearreactionsconvertmassintoenergy.Theyexaminethemovementofelectrical
chargeincircuitsandusethistoanalyse,explainandpredictelectricalphenomena.

Contextsthatcouldbeinvestigatedinthisunitincludetechnologiesrelatedtonuclear,thermal,or
geothermalenergy,electricalenergyproduction,largescalepowersystems,radiopharmaceuticalsand
electricityinthehomeandrelatedareasofsciencesuchasnuclearfusioninstarsandtheBigBang
theory.

Throughtheinvestigationofappropriatecontexts,studentsunderstandhowapplyingscientificknowledge
tothechallengeofmeetingworldenergyneedsrequirestheinternationalcooperationofmultidisciplinary
teamsandreliesonadvancesinICTandothertechnologies.Theyexplorehowscienceknowledgeis
usedtooffervalidexplanationsandreliablepredictions,andthewaysinwhichitinteractswithsocial,
economic,culturalandethicalfactors.

Studentsdevelopskillsininterpreting,constructingandusingarangeofmathematicalandsymbolic
representationstodescribe,explainandpredictenergytransfersandtransformationsinheating
processes,nuclearreactionsandelectricalcircuits.Theydeveloptheirinquiryskillsthroughprimaryand
secondaryinvestigations,includinganalysingheattransfer,heatcapacity,radioactivedecayandarange
ofsimpleelectricalcircuits.

Unit1:Thermal,nuclearandelectricalphysicsLearningOutcomes

Bytheendofthisunit,students:

understandhowthekineticparticlemodelandthermodynamicsconceptsdescribeandexplain
heatingprocesses
understandhowthenuclearmodeloftheatomexplainsradioactivity,fission,fusionandthe
propertiesofradioactivenuclides
understandhowchargeisinvolvedinthetransferandtransformationofenergyinelectrical
circuits
understandhowscientificmodelsandtheorieshavedevelopedandareappliedtoimprove
existing,anddevelopnew,technologies
usescienceinquiryskillstodesign,conductandanalysesafeandeffectiveinvestigationsinto
heatingprocesses,nuclearphysicsandelectricalcircuits,andtocommunicatemethodsand
findings
usealgebraicandgraphicalrepresentationstocalculate,analyseandpredictmeasurable
quantitiesassociatedwithheatingprocesses,nuclearreactionsandelectricalcircuits
evaluate,withreferencetoempiricalevidence,claimsaboutheatingprocesses,nuclear
reactionsandelectricaltechnologies
communicatephysicsunderstandingusingqualitativeandquantitativerepresentationsin
appropriatemodesandgenres.

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Physics CurriculumSeniorSecondary

Unit1:Thermal,nuclearandelectricalphysicsContentDescriptions

ScienceInquirySkills

Identify,research,constructandrefinequestionsforinvestigationproposehypothesesandpredict
possibleoutcomes(ACSPH001)

Designinvestigations,includingtheprocedure/stobefollowed,thematerialsrequired,andthetypeand
amountofprimaryand/orsecondarydatatobecollectedconductriskassessmentsandconsider
researchethics(ACSPH002)

Conductinvestigations,includingusingtemperature,currentandpotentialdifferencemeasuringdevices,
safely,competentlyandmethodicallyforthecollectionofvalidandreliabledata(ACSPH003)

Representdatainmeaningfulandusefulways,includingusingappropriateSystmeInternationale(SI)
unitsandsymbolsorganiseandanalysedatatoidentifytrends,patternsandrelationshipsidentify
sourcesofrandomandsystematicerrorandestimatetheireffectonmeasurementresultsidentify
anomalousdataandcalculatethemeasurementdiscrepancybetweenexperimentalresultsanda
currentlyacceptedvalue,expressedasapercentageandselect,synthesiseanduseevidencetomake
andjustifyconclusions(ACSPH004)

Interpretarangeofscientificandmediatexts,andevaluateprocesses,claimsandconclusionsby
consideringthequalityofavailableevidenceandusereasoningtoconstructscientificarguments
(ACSPH005)

Select,constructanduseappropriaterepresentations,includingtextandgraphicrepresentationsof
empiricalandtheoreticalrelationships,flowdiagrams,nuclearequationsandcircuitdiagrams,to
communicateconceptualunderstanding,solveproblemsandmakepredictions(ACSPH006)

Select,useandinterpretappropriatemathematicalrepresentations,includinglinearandnonlineargraphs
andalgebraicrelationshipsrepresentingphysicalsystems,tosolveproblemsandmakepredictions
(ACSPH007)

Communicatetospecificaudiencesandforspecificpurposesusingappropriatelanguage,nomenclature,
genresandmodes,includingscientificreports(ACSPH008)

ScienceasaHumanEndeavour(Units1&2)

Scienceisaglobalenterprisethatreliesonclearcommunication,internationalconventions,peerreview
andreproducibility(ACSPH009)

Developmentofcomplexmodelsand/ortheoriesoftenrequiresawiderangeofevidencefrommultiple
individualsandacrossdisciplines(ACSPH010)

Advancesinscienceunderstandinginonefieldcaninfluenceotherareasofscience,technologyand
engineering(ACSPH011)

Theuseofscientificknowledgeisinfluencedbysocial,economic,culturalandethicalconsiderations
(ACSPH012)

Theuseofscientificknowledgemayhavebeneficialand/orharmfuland/orunintendedconsequences
(ACSPH013)

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Physics CurriculumSeniorSecondary

Scientificknowledgecanenablescientiststooffervalidexplanationsandmakereliablepredictions
(ACSPH014)

Scientificknowledgecanbeusedtodevelopandevaluateprojectedeconomic,socialandenvironmental
impactsandtodesignactionforsustainability(ACSPH015)

ScienceUnderstanding

Heatingprocesses

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Energysecurityandsustainabilityemergingenergysources
Thescienceofheatingprocessesisofkeyimportancetopredictingfutureenergyneedsandthebestmix
ofenergysourcestomeettheseneeds(ACSPH015).Sustainableenergyproductionwillrequire
renewableenergysourcesthatcanbeusedalongsidecurrentpowergenerationmethods.Development
ofefficientandcosteffectivemethodsforharnessingrenewableenergysourcessuchassolarand
geothermalenergyisdependentuponunderstandingofheatingprocessesandenergytransfersand
transformations(ACSPH015).Ithasbeendifficulttopredictfutureenergyusageaccurately.The
complexityoftheproblemiscompoundedbyfactorsincludingtheemergenceofnewenergysources,
improvementsintheefficiencyofexistingenergysources,improvedscientificunderstanding,changesin
demandandsocial,economicandpoliticalpressures(ACSPH012).

EnergybalanceofEarth
Circulationofenergyintheatmosphereandoceansevensoutsolarheatingimbalancesontheplanets
surface,resultinginamoreuniformtemperaturedistribution.Increasesinincomingoroutgoingenergy
disturbEarthsradiativeequilibriumandaffectglobaltemperatures.Predictionsofhumaninducedclimate
changeandthepossibleeffectsofsuchchangerelyheavilyonthescienceofheatingprocesses
(ACSPH014).Predictionsarerefinedandimprovedasnewdatabecomesavailableandscientific
understandingimproves,butthecomplexityandnumberoftheassumptionsinvolvedpreventsscientists
fromprovidingabsolutelydefiniteanswers(ACSPH014).Newtechnologiesarebeingdevelopedto
addressboththecauseofhumaninducedclimatechangeandtheconsequenteffectsonthenaturaland
builtenvironment(ACSPH011).

Developmentofthermodynamics
Thedevelopmentofthermodynamictheoryarosefromaneedtoincreasetheefficiencyofearlysteam
engines,andledtoimportanttechnologicaldevelopmentsincludingtheinternalcombustionengine,
cryogenicsandelectricitygeneration.ThedevelopmentofthesteamenginethroughtheSaveryandWatt
enginesledtoimportantadvancesintheunderstandingofheatprocesses,energytransferand
transformation,andhowheatingcanbeusedtodomechanicalwork(ACSPH010).Pioneersinthisfield,
suchasJosephBlack,LavoisierandJamesJoule,producedquantitative,reproducibleexperimentsthat
increasedunderstandingofthermodynamics(ACSPH009).Otherscientists,includingRankine,Kelvin,
MaxwellandGibbs,builtfurtheronthiswork,leadingtothedevelopmentofimportantlawsandtheories
suchasthegaslaws,thelawsofthermodynamics,andconceptssuchasheatcapacityandlatentheat

Physics CurriculumSeniorSecondary

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(ACSPH010).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmQ=\mathrmm\mathrmc\operatorname\Delta\mathrmT\)

\(\mathrmQ=\\)heattransferredtoorfromtheobject,

\(\mathrmm=\\)massofobject,\mathrmc=\specificheatcapacityoftheobject,

\(\\operatorname\Delta\mathrmT=\\)temperaturechange

\(\mathrmQ=\mathrmm\mathrmL\)

\(\mathrmQ=\\)heattransferredtoorfromtheobject,

\(\mathrmL=\\)latentheatcapacityofthematerial,

\(\mathrmm=\\)massofobject

\(\mathrm\eta\=\\frac{\mathrme\mathrmn\mathrme\mathrmr\mathrmg\mathrmy\\mathrmo\mathrm
u\mathrmt\mathrmp\mathrmu\mathrmt}{\mathrme\mathrmn\mathrme\mathrmr\mathrmg\mathrm
y\\mathrmi\mathrmn\mathrmp\mathrmu\mathrmt}\\\times\\frac{100}1\%\)

\(\mathrm\eta=\\)efficiency

Heattransferoccursbetweenandwithinsystemsbyconduction,convectionand/orradiation(ACSPH016)

Thekineticparticlemodeldescribesmatterasconsistingofparticlesinconstantmotion,exceptat
absolutezero(ACSPH017)

Allsystemshavethermalenergyduetothemotionofparticlesinthesystem(ACSPH018)

Temperatureisameasureoftheaveragekineticenergyofparticlesinasystem(ACSPH019)

Providedasubstancedoesnotchangestate,itstemperaturechangeisproportionaltotheamountof
energyaddedtoorremovedfromthesubstancetheconstantofproportionalitydescribestheheat
capacityofthesubstance(ACSPH020)

Changeofstateinvolvesinternalenergychangestoformorbreakbondsbetweenatomsormolecules
latentheatistheenergyrequiredtobeaddedtoorremovedfromasystemtochangethestateofthe
system(ACSPH021)

Twosystemsincontacttransferenergybetweenparticlessothateventuallythesystemsreachthesame
temperaturethatis,theyareinthermalequilibrium(ACSPH022)

Asystemwiththermalenergyhasthecapacitytodomechanicalwork(thatis,toapplyaforceovera
distance)whenworkisdone,theinternalenergyofthesystemchanges(ACSPH023)

Becauseenergyisconserved,thechangeininternalenergyofasystemisequaltotheenergyaddedor
removedbyheatingplustheworkdoneonorbythesystem(ACSPH024)

Energytransfersandtransformationsinmechanicalsystems(forexample,internalandexternal
combustionengines,electricmotors)alwaysresultinsomeheatlosstotheenvironment,sothatthe

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usableenergyisreducedandthesystemcannotbe100percentefficient(ACSPH025)

Ionisingradiationandnuclearreactions

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Radioisotopesandradiometricdating
Radiometricdatingofmaterialsutilisesavarietyofmethodsdependingontheageofthesubstancesto
bedated.Thepresenceofnaturalradioisotopesinmaterialssuchascarbon,uranium,potassiumand
argonandknowledgeabouttheirhalflifeanddecayprocessesenablesscientiststodevelopaccurate
geologictimescalesandgeologichistoryforparticularregions(ACSPH011).Thisinformationisusedto
informstudyofeventssuchasearthquakesandvolcaniceruptions,andhelpsscientiststopredicttheir
behaviourbasedonpastevents(ACSPH014).Datingofwoodandcarbonbasedmaterialshasalsoledto
improvementsinourunderstandingofmorerecenthistorythroughdatingofpreservedobjects
(ACSPH014).

Harnessingnuclearpower
Knowledgeoftheprocessofnuclearfissionhasledtotheabilitytousenuclearpowerasapossiblelong
termalternativetofossilfuelelectricitygeneration(ACSPH013).Nuclearpowerhasbeenusedvery
successfullytoproduceenergyinmanycountriesbuthasalsocausedsignificantharmfulconsequences
inanumberofspecificinstances(ACSPH013).Analysisofhealthandenvironmentalrisksandweighing
theseagainstenvironmentalandcostbenefitsisascientificandpoliticalissueinAustraliawhichhas
economic,culturalandethicalaspects(ACSPH012).Themanagementofnuclearwasteisbasedon
knowledgeofthebehaviourofradiation.CurrentproposalsforwastestorageinAustraliaattemptto
addresstheunintendedharmfulconsequencesoftheuseofradioactivesubstances(ACSPH013).

Nuclearfusioninstars
Energyproductioninstarswasattributedtogravityuntilknowledgeofnuclearreactionsenabled
understandingofnuclearfusion.AlmostalltheenergyusedonEarthhasitsoriginintheconversionof
masstoenergythatoccurswhenhydrogennucleifusetogethertoformheliuminthecoreofthesun
(ACSPH010).AccordingtotheBigBangTheory,alltheelementsheavierthanheliumhavebeencreated
byfusioninstars.Thestudyofnuclearfusioninthesunhasproducedinsightsintotheformationandlife
cycleofstars(ACSPH010).Anunexpectedconsequenceofearlyunderstandingoffusioninstarswasits
usetoinformthedevelopmentofthermonuclearweapons(ACSPH010).Researchisongoingintotheuse
offusionasanalternativepowersource(ACSPH013).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmN={\mathrmN}_\mathrmo\left(\frac12\right)^\mathrmn\)(forwholenumbersofhalflivesonly)

\(\mathrmN=\\)numberofnuclidesremaininginasample,\(\mathrmn\\)=numberofwholehalflives,

\(\operatorname\Delta\mathrmE\=\operatorname\Delta\mathrmm\mathrmc^2\\)

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\({\mathrmN}_\mathrmo=\\)originalnumberofnuclidesinthesample

\(\triangle\mathrmE=\\)energychange,\(\operatorname\Delta\mathrmm=\\)masschange,\(\mathrm
c=\\)speedoflight

\(\left(3\\times10^8\\text{m}\text{s}^{1}\right)\)

Thenuclearmodeloftheatomdescribestheatomasconsistingofanextremelysmallnucleus,which
containsmostoftheatomsmassandismadeupofpositivelychargedprotonsandunchargedneutrons
surroundedbynegativelychargedelectrons(ACSPH026)

Nuclearstabilityistheresultofthestrongnuclearforce,whichoperatesbetweennucleonsoveravery
shortdistanceandopposestheelectrostaticrepulsionbetweenprotonsinthenucleus(ACSPH027)

Somenuclidesareunstableandspontaneouslydecay,emittingalpha,betaand/orgammaradiationover
timeuntiltheybecomestablenuclides(ACSPH028)

Eachspeciesofradionuclidehasaspecifichalflife(ACSPH029)

Alpha,betaandgammaradiationhavesufficientenergytoioniseatoms(ACSPH030)

Einsteinsmass/energyrelationship,whichappliestoallenergychanges,enablestheenergyreleasedin
nuclearreactionstobedeterminedfromthemasschangeinthereaction(ACSPH031)

Alphaandbetadecayareexamplesofspontaneoustransmutationreactions,whileartificialtransmutation
isamanagedprocessthatchangesonenuclideintoanother(ACSPH032)

Neutroninducednuclearfissionisareactioninwhichaheavynuclidecapturesaneutronandthensplits
intotwosmallerradioactivenuclides,withthereleaseofneutronsandenergy(ACSPH033)

Afissionchainreactionisaselfsustainingprocessthatmaybecontrolledtoproducethermalenergy,or
uncontrolledtoreleaseenergyexplosively(ACSPH034)

Nuclearfusionisareactioninwhichlightnuclidescombinetoformaheaviernuclide,withthereleaseof
energy(ACSPH035)

Moreenergyisreleasedpernucleoninnuclearfusionthaninnuclearfissionbecauseagreater
percentageofthemassistransformedintoenergy(ACSPH036)

Electricalcircuits

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Electricalenergyinthehome
Thesupplyofelectricitytohomeshashadanenormousimpactonsocietyandtheenvironment.An
understandingofKirchhoffscircuitlawsinformsthedesignofcircuitsforeffectiveandsafeoperationof
lighting,powerpoints,stovesandotherhouseholdelectricaldevices(ACSPH015).Increasesintheuseof
householdelectricityduetoextremeweatherinAustraliansummersandEuropeanwinterscreates

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problemsinsupply,causingbrownouts,powerfailuresanddamagetohouseholdappliances
(ACSPH015).Developingnewhouseholdelectricaldevices,improvingtheefficiencyofexistingdevices
andensuringconsistencyofelectricalstandardsrequireinternationalcooperationbetweenscientists,
engineersandmanufacturers(ACSPH009).

Poweringthedigitalage
Computers,smartphonesandtheinternethavechangedtheworld,butnonewouldbepossiblewithouta
reliablesupplyofelectricity.Thefirstbatteries,whichenabledtheinvestigationofcurrentelectricity,were
developedbyAlessandroVoltaafterachancediscoverybyLuigiGalvaniabouttheproductionof
electricity(ACSPH010).Later,MichaelFaradaydevelopedthefirstelectricgeneratorsandtheelectrical
agebegan.Withthedevelopmentofsmartphones,tabletsandsimilardevicesthatallowforconstant
communicationandinformationflow,thedesignoflonglastingbatteriestopowerthesedevicesisan
industrypriority(ACSPH014).LonglastingbatterytechnologyisalsoessentialforsafetydeviceslikeGPS
locators,satellitephonesandemergencybeacons.

Electriclighting
Theintroductionofelectriclightinghadasignificantimpactonsocietyandtheenvironment.Thefirst
efficientelectriclampswerethefilamentlampsdevelopedbyThomasEdisoninthe1880s.Sincethat
time,social,economicandculturalinfluenceshaveledtodevelopmentofavastarrayofelectriclight
sourcesincludingfluorescentlamps,halogenlamps,sodiumlamps,lightemittingdiodesandlasers
(ACSPH012).Researchanddevelopmentofelectriclightsourceshasbeenunderpinnedby
developmentsinourunderstandingofelectricity,atomicphysicsandelectromagnetism.Concernsabout
sustainableenergyusageandglobalwarminghaveledtointernationalresearchanddevelopmentto
improvetheenergyefficiencyofelectriclighting(ACSPH015).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmI=\\frac{\mathrmq}{\mathrmt}\)

\(\mathrmV=\frac{\mathrmW}{\mathrmq}\)

\(\mathrmR=\frac{\mathrmV}{\mathrmI}\)

\(\mathrmP=\frac{\mathrmW}{\mathrmt}=\mathrmV\mathrmI\)

Equivalentresistanceforseriescomponents,\(\mathrmI=\\)constant

\({\mathrmV}_\mathrmt={\mathrmV}_1+{\mathrmV}_2+..{\mathrmV}_\mathrmn\)

\({\mathrmR}_\mathrmt={\mathrmR}_1+{\mathrmR}_2+..{\mathrmR}_\mathrmn\)

Equivalentresistanceforparallelcomponents,\(\mathrmV=\)constant

\({\mathrmI}_\mathrmt={\mathrmI}_1+{\mathrmI}_2+..{\mathrmI}_\mathrmn\\)

\(\frac1{{\mathrmR}_\mathrmt}=\frac1{{\mathrmR}_1}+\frac1{{\mathrmR}_2}+..\frac1{{\mathrm
R}_\mathrmn}\)

\(\mathrmI=\\)current,Vt=totalpotentialdifference,\({\mathrmV}_\mathrmn\)=thepotentialdifference
acrosseachcomponent,\({\mathrmR}_\mathrmt=\\)equivalentresistance,\({\mathrmR}_\mathrmn\)=
resistanceofeachcomponent

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Equivalentresistanceforparallelcomponents,\(\mathrmV=\)constant

\({\mathrmI}_\mathrmt={\mathrmI}_1+{\mathrmI}_2+..{\mathrmI}_\mathrmn\\)

\(\mathrmV=\)potentialdifference,\({\mathrmI}_\mathrmt=\\)It=totalcurrent,\({\mathrmI}_\mathrmn\)
=currentineachofthecomponents,\(\frac1{{\mathrmR}_\mathrmt}=\\)thereciprocaloftheequivalent
resistance,\(\\frac1{{\mathrmR}_\mathrmn}=\\)1Rn=thereciprocaloftheresistanceofeach
component

Electricalcircuitsenableelectricalenergytobetransferredefficientlyoverlargedistancesand
transformedintoarangeofotherusefulformsofenergyincludingthermalandkineticenergy,andlight.
(ACSPH037)

Electriccurrentiscarriedbydiscretechargecarrierschargeisconservedatallpointsinanelectrical
circuit(ACSPH038)

Energyisconservedintheenergytransfersandtransformationsthatoccurinanelectricalcircuit
(ACSPH039)

Theenergyavailabletochargesmovinginanelectricalcircuitismeasuredusingelectricpotential
difference,whichisdefinedasthechangeinpotentialenergyperunitchargebetweentwodefinedpoints
inthecircuit(ACSPH040)

Energyisrequiredtoseparatepositiveandnegativechargecarrierschargeseparationproducesan
electricalpotentialdifferencethatcanbeusedtodrivecurrentincircuits(ACSPH041)

Poweristherateatwhichenergyistransformedbyacircuitcomponentpowerenablesquantitative
analysisofenergytransformationsinthecircuit(ACSPH042)

Resistanceforohmicandnonohmiccomponentsisdefinedastheratioofpotentialdifferenceacrossthe
componenttothecurrentinthecomponent(ACSPH043)

Circuitanalysisanddesigninvolvecalculationofthepotentialdifferenceacross,thecurrentin,andthe
powersuppliedto,componentsinseries,parallelandseries/parallelcircuits(ACSPH044)

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Unit2:LinearMotionandWaves

Unit2:LinearMotionandWavesDescription

Inthisunit,studentsdevelopanappreciationofhowanunderstandingofmotionandwavescanbeused
todescribe,explainandpredictawiderangeofphenomena.Studentsdescribelinearmotionintermsof
positionandtimedata,andexaminetherelationshipsbetweenforce,momentumandenergyfor
interactionsinonedimension.

Studentsinvestigatecommonwavephenomena,includingwavesonsprings,andwater,soundand
earthquakewaves,andcomparethebehaviourofthesewaveswiththebehaviouroflight.Thisleadsto
anexplanationoflightphenomena,includingpolarisation,interferenceanddiffraction,intermsofawave
model.

Contextsthatcouldbeinvestigatedinthisunitincludetechnologiessuchasaccelerometers,motion
detectors,photoradar,GPS,energyconversionbuoys,music,hearingaids,echolocators,fibreoptics,
DVDsandlasers,andrelatedareasofscienceandengineeringsuchassportsscience,carandroad
safety,acousticdesign,noisepollution,seismology,bridgeandbuildingdesign.

Throughtheinvestigationofappropriatecontexts,studentsexplorehowinternationalcollaboration,
evidencefromarangeofdisciplinesandmanyindividuals,andthedevelopmentofICTandother
technologieshavecontributedtodevelopingunderstandingofmotionandwavesandassociated
technologies.Theyinvestigatehowscientificknowledgeisusedtooffervalidexplanationsandreliable
predictions,andthewaysinwhichitinteractswithsocial,economic,culturalandethicalfactors.

Studentsdeveloptheirunderstandingofmotionandwavephenomenathroughlaboratoryinvestigations.
Theydevelopskillsinrelatinggraphicalrepresentationsofdatatoquantitativerelationshipsbetween
variables,andtheycontinuetodevelopskillsinplanning,conductingandinterpretingtheresultsof
primaryandsecondaryinvestigations.

Unit2:LinearMotionandWavesLearningOutcomes

Bytheendofthisunit,students:

understandthatNewtonsLawsofMotiondescribetherelationshipbetweentheforcesactingon
anobjectanditsmotion
understandthatwavestransferenergyandthatawavemodelcanbeusedtoexplainthe
behaviourofsoundandlight
understandhowscientificmodelsandtheorieshavedevelopedandareappliedtoimprove
existing,anddevelopnew,technologies
usescienceinquiryskillstodesign,conductandanalysesafeandeffectiveinvestigationsinto
linearmotionandwavephenomena,andtocommunicatemethodsandfindings
usealgebraicandgraphicalrepresentationstocalculate,analyseandpredictmeasurable
quantitiesassociatedwithlinearandwavemotion
evaluate,withreferencetoevidence,claimsaboutmotion,soundandlightrelatedphenomena
andassociatedtechnologies
communicatephysicsunderstandingusingqualitativeandquantitativerepresentationsin
appropriatemodesandgenres.

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Unit2:LinearMotionandWavesContentDescriptions

ScienceInquirySkills

Identify,researchandconstructquestionsforinvestigationproposehypothesesandpredictpossible
outcomes(ACSPH045)

Designinvestigations,includingtheproceduretobefollowed,thematerialsrequired,andthetypeand
amountofprimaryand/orsecondarydatatobecollectedconductriskassessmentsandconsider
researchethics(ACSPH046)

Conductinvestigations,includingthemanipulationofdevicestomeasuremotionandthedirectionoflight
rays,safely,competentlyandmethodicallyforthecollectionofvalidandreliabledata(ACSPH047)

Representdatainmeaningfulandusefulways,includingusingappropriateSIunitsandsymbolsorganise
andanalysedatatoidentifytrends,patternsandrelationshipsidentifysourcesofrandomand
systematicerrorandestimatetheireffectonmeasurementresultsidentifyanomalousdataandcalculate
themeasurementdiscrepancybetweentheexperimentalresultsandacurrentlyacceptedvalue,
expressedasapercentageandselect,synthesiseanduseevidencetomakeandjustifyconclusions
(ACSPH048)

Interpretarangeofscientificandmediatexts,andevaluateprocesses,claimsandconclusionsby
consideringthequalityofavailableevidenceandusereasoningtoconstructscientificarguments
(ACSPH049)

Select,constructanduseappropriaterepresentations,includingtextandgraphicrepresentationsof
empiricalandtheoreticalrelationships,vectordiagrams,freebody/forcediagrams,wavediagramsand
raydiagrams,tocommunicateconceptualunderstanding,solveproblemsandmakepredictions
(ACSPH050)

Select,useandinterpretappropriatemathematicalrepresentations,includinglinearandnonlineargraphs
andalgebraicrelationshipsrepresentingphysicalsystems,tosolveproblemsandmakepredictions
(ACSPH051)

Communicatetospecificaudiencesandforspecificpurposesusingappropriatelanguage,nomenclature,
genresandmodes,includingscientificreports(ACSPH052)

ScienceasaHumanEndeavour(Units1&2)

Scienceisaglobalenterprisethatreliesonclearcommunication,internationalconventions,peerreview
andreproducibility(ACSPH053)

Developmentofcomplexmodelsand/ortheoriesoftenrequiresawiderangeofevidencefrommultiple
individualsandacrossdisciplines(ACSPH054)

Advancesinscienceunderstandinginonefieldcaninfluenceotherareasofscience,technologyand
engineering(ACSPH055)

Theuseofscientificknowledgeisinfluencedbysocial,economic,culturalandethicalconsiderations
(ACSPH056)

Theuseofscientificknowledgemayhavebeneficialand/orharmfuland/orunintendedconsequences
(ACSPH057)

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Scientificknowledgecanenablescientiststooffervalidexplanationsandmakereliablepredictions
(ACSPH058)

Scientificknowledgecanbeusedtodevelopandevaluateprojectedeconomic,socialandenvironmental
impactsandtodesignactionforsustainability(ACSPH059)

ScienceUnderstanding

Linearmotionandforce

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Roadsafetyandtechnology
Knowledgeofforcesandmotionhasledtodevelopmentsthathavereducedtherisksfordrivers,their
passengers,andotherroaduserssuchascyclistsandpedestrians.Carsafetyhasimprovedthroughthe
developmentanduseofdevicessuchasseatbelts,crumplezonesandairbags.Anunderstandingof
motionhasalsoledtothedesignandimplementationoftrafficcalmingdevicessuchasspeedbumps
andsafetybarriers(ACSPH056).Knowledgeofforceandlinearmotionisusedinforensicinvestigations
intocaraccidents.Roadlawsandregulations,includingthesettingofspeedlimitsinparticularlocations,
arebasedonthesescientificinvestigationsandhaveresultedinlowerroadaccidentinjuriesandfatalities
(ACSPH057).

Sportsscience
Thestudyoflinearmotionandforceshasledtomajordevelopmentsinathletetrainingprograms,
sportingtechniquesandequipmentdevelopment.Biomechanicsappliesthelawsofforceandmotionto
gaingreaterunderstandingofathleticperformancethroughdirectmeasurement,computersimulations
andmathematicalmodelling(ACSPH054).Equipmentsuchasbicycleframesandrunningshoeshas
beenimprovedtoreducestressesandstrainsonathletesbodies.Manysportsteamsemploy
biomechanicsexpertstoimprovekicking,throwingorothertechniquesusingknowledgeofforcesand
motion.Advancesininterpretationofvideotechnologies,dataloggingandelectronicdetectionandtiming
systemshasalsosignificantlyimprovedreliabilityofjudgementsinsportingevents(ACSPH055).

DevelopmentandlimitationsofNewtonsLaws

IsaacNewtonsinterestinhowobjectsfallandtheorbitsofplanetsledtothewritingandpublicationof
PrincipiaMathematica,whichoutlinedtheLawsofMotion.Newtonslawsprovidedanexplanationfora
rangeofpreviouslyunexplainedphysicalphenomenaandwereconfirmedbymultipleexperiments
performedbyamultitudeofscientists(ACSPH053).Newtonslawsofmotionenablescientiststomake
reliablepredictions,exceptwhenconsideringobjectstravellingatornearthespeedoflight,orverysmall
objectslikeatomsorsubatomicparticles,orwhenverystronggravitationalfieldsareinvolved
(ACSPH058).Phenomenarelatedtosemiconductors,superconductorsanderrorsinGPSsystemscannot
bepredictedusingNewtonsLawsandothertheoriesmustbeused(ACSPH058).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

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\(\mathrmv=\mathrmu+\mathrma\mathrmt,\\)\(\mathrms=\mathrmu\mathrmt+\frac12\mathrm
a\mathrmt^2,\)\(\mathrmv^2=\mathrmu^2+2\mathrma\mathrms\)

\(\mathrms=\\)displacement,\(\mathrmt\)=timeinterval,\(\mathrmu=\)initialvelocity,\(\mathrmv=\\)
finalvelocity,\(\mathrma=\\)acceleration

\(\mathrma=\frac{\mathrmF}{\mathrmm}\)

\(\mathrma=\\)a=acceleration,\(\mathrmF=\)force,\(\mathrmm\=\)mass

\(\mathrmW=\operatorname\Delta\mathrmE\\)wheretheappliedforceisinthesamedirectionasthe
displacement,\(\mathrmW=\mathrmF\mathrms,\\)

\(\mathrmW\)=work,\(\\mathrmF=\\)force,\(\\mathrms=\)displacement,\
(\operatorname\Delta\mathrmE=\\)changeinenergy

\(\mathrmp=\mathrmm\mathrmv,\\\mathrm\Delta\mathrmp=\mathrmF\mathrm\Delta\mathrmt\)

\(\mathrmp\)=momentum,\(\mathrmv=\\)velocity,\(\mathrmm\=\)mass,\(\mathrmF\\)=force,\
(\triangle\mathrmp=\)changeinmomentum,\(\mathrm\Delta\mathrmt\)=timeintervaloverwhichforce\
(\mathrmF\)acts

\({\mathrmE}_\mathrmk=\\frac12\\mathrmm\mathrmv^2\)

\({\mathrmE}_\mathrmk=\)kineticenergy,\(\\mathrmm=\)mass,\(\mathrmv=\\)speed

\(\operatorname\Delta{\mathrmE}_\mathrmp=\mathrmm\mathrmg\operatorname\Delta\mathrmh\)

\(\operatorname\Delta{\mathrmE}_\mathrmp=\\)changeinpotentialenergy,\(\mathrmm=\\)mass,\
(\mathrmg\=\\)g=accelerationduetogravity,\(\triangle\mathrmh=\)changeinverticaldistance

\(\mathrm\Sigma\mathrmm{\mathrmv}_{\mathrmb\mathrme\mathrmf\mathrmo\mathrmr\mathrm
e}=\\mathrm\Sigma\mathrmm{\mathrmv}_{\mathrma\mathrmf\mathrmt\mathrme\mathrmr}\)

\(\mathrm\Sigma\mathrmm{\mathrmv}_{\mathrmb\mathrme\mathrmf\mathrmo\mathrmr\mathrm
e}=\\)vectorsumofthemomentaofallparticlesbeforethecollision,\(\mathrm\Sigma\mathrmm{\mathrm
v}_{\mathrma\mathrmf\mathrmt\mathrme\mathrmr}=\)vectorsumofthemomentaofallparticlesafter
thecollision

Forelasticcollisions:

\(\mathrm\Sigma\frac12\mathrmm\mathrmv_{\mathrmb\mathrme\mathrmf\mathrmo\mathrmr\mathrm
e}^2=\\mathrm\Sigma\frac12\mathrmm\mathrmv_{\mathrma\mathrmf\mathrmt\mathrme\mathrm
r}^2\)

\(\mathrm\Sigma\frac12\mathrmm\mathrmv_{\mathrmb\mathrme\mathrmf\mathrmo\mathrmr\mathrm
e}^2=\)sumofthekineticenergiesbeforethecollision,\(\mathrm\Sigma\frac12\mathrmm\mathrm
v_{\mathrma\mathrmf\mathrmt\mathrme\mathrmr}^2=\)sumofthekineticenergiesafterthecollision

Uniformlyacceleratedmotionisdescribedintermsofrelationshipsbetweenmeasurablescalarandvector
quantities,includingdisplacement,speed,velocityandacceleration(ACSPH060)

Representations,includinggraphsandvectors,and/orequationsofmotion,canbeusedqualitativelyand
quantitativelytodescribeandpredictlinearmotion(ACSPH061)

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VerticalmotionisanalysedbyassumingtheaccelerationduetogravityisconstantnearEarthssurface
(ACSPH062)

NewtonsThreeLawsofMotiondescribetherelationshipbetweentheforceorforcesactingonanobject,
modelledasapointmass,andthemotionoftheobjectduetotheapplicationoftheforceorforces
(ACSPH063)

Momentumisapropertyofmovingobjectsitisconservedinaclosedsystemandmaybetransferred
fromoneobjecttoanotherwhenaforceactsoveratimeinterval(ACSPH064)

Energyisconservedinisolatedsystemsandistransferredfromoneobjecttoanotherwhenaforceis
appliedoveradistancethiscausesworktobedoneandchangestokineticand/orpotentialenergyof
objects(ACSPH065)

Collisionsmaybeelasticandinelastickineticenergyisconservedinelasticcollisions(ACSPH066)

Waves

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Monitoringearthquakesandtsunamis
MajorcatastrophesliketheJapaneseandIndianOceantsunamisandtheChristchurchearthquakeshave
ledtoanincreasedneedtomonitorandrecordtheplatemovementsthatcausethesephenomena.
Variousdevicesincludingseismographsandcomputermodellingareusedtodetect,determinethe
locationofandpredicteffectsofearthquakesandtsunamis(ACSPH058).Knowledgeofdifferenttypesof
wavesandtheirmotionthroughtheoceanandthecontinentsallowspredictionofthepossibleextentof
damageorthetimingofatsunami.Earthquakeengineeringaimstolimitseismicriskthroughdesignand
constructionofstructuresthatarebetterabletoresisttheeffectsofearthquakes.Avarietyofmethods
includingdampingandsuspensionhavebeendevelopedtoprotectbuildings(ACSPH055).

Noisepollutionandacousticdesign
Noisepollutioncomesfromavarietyofsourcesandisoftenamplifiedbywalls,buildingsandotherbuilt
structures.Acousticalengineering,basedonanunderstandingofthebehaviourofsoundwaves,isused
toreducenoisepollution.Itfocusesonabsorbingsoundwavesorplanningstructuressothatreflection
andamplificationdoesnotoccur(ACSPH058).Whennewroadsarebuilt,considerationisgiventonoise
barrierdesign,surfacematerialsandspeedcontrol.Buildingscanbedesignedtolimitthenoisethat
entersfromoutsidesourceslikeroadwaysandlowflyingaircraft.Noisemitigationisalsoachievedby
usingparticularmaterialsforinsulationanddesigningboththeinteriorandexteriortoreflectsoundin
particularways.Safetyequipmentsuchasearprotectioniscompulsoryandextensivelytestedforusein
industrialsituationsduetothepossiblehealthconsequencesofexposuretoexcessivenoise
(ACSPH059).

Developmentofthewavetheoryoflight
Inthelate17thcentury,RobertHookeandChristiaanHuygenspublishedearlytheoriesoflightasawave

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(ACSPH053)andaround1800ThomasYoungshowedthroughexperimentationthatlightpassing
throughadoubleslitshowedinterferenceandthuswaveproperties.Youngalsodevelopedprinciplesof
coherenceandsuperpositionoflight.Formanyyears,thepresenceoftheluminiferousaetherwas
proposedasthemediumbywhichlightispropagated,anideathatwaslaterdisprovedbyexperiments
suchastheMichelsonMorleyexperiment(ACSPH054).Later,inthe1860s,JamesClerkMaxwell
developedatheoryofelectromagnetismandshowedthatelectromagneticwaveswouldtravelthrough
spaceatthespeedoflight,implyinglightwasanelectromagneticwave(ACSPH054).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmv=\mathrmf\mathrm\lambda\)

\(\mathrmv=\)speed,\(\mathrmf=\)frequency,\(\mathrm\lambda=\)wavelength

angleofincidence=angleofreflection

\(\mathrml=\\mathrmn\frac{\mathrm\lambda}2\)forstringsattachedatbothendsandforpipesopenat
bothends

\(\mathrml=\left(2\mathrmn1\right)\frac{\mathrm\lambda}4\\)forpipesclosedatoneend

\(\mathrmn=\)wholenumbers1,2,3relatingtotheharmonic,\(\mathrml=\)lengthofstringorpipe,\
(\mathrm\lambda=\\)wavelengthofsoundwave

\(\mathrmI\propto\frac1{\mathrmr^2}\\)

\(\\mathrmI=\)intensity,\(\mathrmr=\)distancefromthesource

\(\frac{\sin\mathcali}{\sin\mathrmr}=\\frac{{\mathrmv}_1}{{\mathrmv}_2}=\frac{{\mathrm\lambda}_1}
{{\mathrm\lambda}_2}\)

\(\mathrmi\=\\)i=incidentangle(relativetothenormal),\(\mathrmr\=\\)r=angleofrefraction(relative
tothenormal),\({\mathrmv}_1=\)velocityinmedium1,\(\{\mathrmv}_2=\)velocityinmedium2,\
({\mathrm\lambda}_1=\\)wavelengthinmedium1,\({\mathrm\lambda}_{2\}\)=wavelengthinmedium2

Wavesareperiodicoscillationsthattransferenergyfromonepointtoanother(ACSPH067)

Longitudinalandtransversewavesaredistinguishedbytherelationshipbetweenthedirectionof
oscillationrelativetothedirectionofthewavevelocity(ACSPH068)

Wavesmayberepresentedbytimeanddisplacementwavediagramsanddescribedintermsof
relationshipsbetweenmeasurablequantities,includingperiod,amplitude,wavelength,frequencyand
velocity(ACSPH069)

Mechanicalwavestransferenergythroughamediummechanicalwavesmayoscillatethemediumor
oscillatethepressurewithinthemedium(ACSPH070)

Themechanicalwavemodelcanbeusedtoexplainphenomenarelatedtoreflectionandrefraction(for
example,echoes,seismicphenomena)(ACSPH071)

Thesuperpositionofwavesinamediummayleadtotheformationofstandingwavesandinterference
phenomena,includingstandingwavesinpipesandonstretchedstrings(ACSPH072)

Amechanicalsystemresonateswhenitisdrivenatoneofitsnaturalfrequenciesofoscillationenergyis
transferredefficientlyintosystemsundertheseconditions(ACSPH073)

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Lightexhibitsmanywavepropertieshowever,itcannotbemodelledasamechanicalwavebecauseit
cantravelthroughavacuum(ACSPH074)

Araymodeloflightmaybeusedtodescribereflection,refractionandimageformationfromlensesand
mirrors(ACSPH075)

Awavemodelexplainsawiderangeoflightrelatedphenomenaincludingreflection,refraction,total
internalreflection,dispersion,diffractionandinterferenceatransversewavemodelisrequiredtoexplain
polarisation(ACSPH076)

Thespeedoflightisfiniteandmanyordersofmagnitudegreaterthanthespeedofmechanicalwaves
(forexample,soundandwaterwaves)itsintensitydecreasesinaninversesquarerelationshipwith
distancefromapointsource(ACSPH077)

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Unit3:Gravityandelectromagnetism

Unit3:GravityandelectromagnetismDescription

Fieldtheorieshaveenabledphysiciststoexplainavastarrayofnaturalphenomenaandhavecontributed
tothedevelopmentoftechnologiesthathavechangedtheworld,includingelectricalpowergeneration
anddistributionsystems,artificialsatellitesandmoderncommunicationsystems.Inthisunit,students
developadeeperunderstandingofmotionanditscausesbyusingNewtonsLawsofMotionandthe
gravitationalfieldmodeltoanalysemotiononinclinedplanes,themotionofprojectiles,andsatellite
motion.Theyinvestigateelectromagneticinteractionsandapplythisknowledgetounderstandthe
operationofdirectcurrent(DC)andalternatingcurrent(AC)motorsandgenerators,transformers,and
ACelectricitydistributionsystems.Studentsalsoinvestigatetheproductionofelectromagneticwaves.

Contextsthatcouldbeinvestigatedinthisunitincludetechnologiessuchasartificialsatellites,navigation
devices,largescaleelectricalpowergenerationanddistribution,motorsandgenerators,electriccars,
synchrotronscience,medicalimagingandastronomicaltelescopessuchastheSquareKilometreArray,
andrelatedareasofscienceandengineeringsuchassportsscience,amusementparks,ballistics,
forensics,blackholesanddarkmatter.

Throughtheinvestigationofappropriatecontexts,studentsexplorethewaysinwhichmodelsand
theoriesrelatedtogravityandelectromagnetism,andassociatedtechnologies,havedevelopedovertime
andthroughinteractionswithsocial,economic,culturalandethicalconsiderations.Theyinvestigatethe
waysinwhichsciencecontributestocontemporarydebateaboutlocal,regionalandinternationalissues,
includingevaluationofriskandactionforsustainability,andrecognisethelimitationsofsciencetoprovide
definitiveanswersindifferentcontexts.

Studentsdeveloptheirunderstandingoffieldtheoriesofgravityandelectromagnetismthrough
investigationsofmotionandelectromagneticphenomena.Throughtheseinvestigationstheydevelop
skillsinrelatinggraphicalrepresentationsofdatatoquantitativerelationshipsbetweenvariables,using
linesofforcetorepresentvectorfields,andinterpretinginteractionsintwoandthreedimensions.They
continuetodevelopskillsinplanning,conductingandinterpretingtheresultsofprimaryandsecondary
investigationsandinevaluatingthevalidityofprimaryandsecondarydata.

Unit3:GravityandelectromagnetismLearningOutcomes

Bytheendofthisunit,students:

understandthatmotioningravitational,electricandmagneticfieldscanbeexplainedusing
NewtonsLawsofMotion
understandhowtheelectromagneticwavemodelexplainstheproductionandpropagationof
electromagneticwavesacrosstheelectromagneticspectrum
understandtransformationsandtransferofenergyinelectromagneticdevices,aswellas
transformationsandtransferofenergyassociatedwithmotioninelectric,magneticand
gravitationalfields
understandhowmodelsandtheorieshavedevelopedovertime,andthewaysinwhichphysical
scienceknowledgeandassociatedtechnologiesinteractwithsocial,economic,culturaland
ethicalconsiderations
usescienceinquiryskillstodesign,conduct,analyseandevaluateinvestigationsintouniform
circularmotion,projectilemotion,satellitemotionandgravitationalandelectromagnetic

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phenomena,andtocommunicatemethodsandfindings
usealgebraicandgraphicalrepresentationstocalculate,analyseandpredictmeasurable
quantitiesrelatedtomotion,gravitationaleffectsandelectromagneticphenomena
evaluate,withreferencetoevidence,claimsaboutmotion,gravityandelectromagnetic
phenomenaandassociatedtechnologies,andjustifyevaluations
communicatephysicsunderstandingusingqualitativeandquantitativerepresentationsin
appropriatemodesandgenres.

Unit3:GravityandelectromagnetismContentDescriptions

ScienceInquirySkills

Identify,researchandconstructquestionsforinvestigationproposehypothesesandpredictpossible
outcomes(ACSPH078)

Designinvestigations,includingtheproceduretobefollowed,thematerialsrequired,andthetypeand
amountofprimaryand/orsecondarydatatobecollectedconductriskassessmentsandconsider
researchethics(ACSPH079)

Conductinvestigations,includingthemanipulationofforcemeasurersandelectromagneticdevices,
safely,competentlyandmethodicallyforthecollectionofvalidandreliabledata(ACSPH080)

Representdatainmeaningfulandusefulways,includingusingappropriateSIunits,symbolsand
significantfiguresorganiseandanalysedatatoidentifytrends,patternsandrelationshipsidentify
sourcesofuncertaintyandtechniquestominimisetheseuncertaintiesutiliseuncertaintyandpercentage
uncertaintytodeterminetheuncertaintyintheresultofcalculations,andevaluatetheimpactof
measurementuncertaintyonexperimentalresultsandselect,synthesiseanduseevidencetomakeand
justifyconclusions(ACSPH081)

Interpretarangeofscientificandmediatexts,andevaluateprocesses,claimsandconclusionsby
consideringtheaccuracyandprecisionofavailableevidenceandusereasoningtoconstructscientific
argumentsInterpretarangeofscientificandmediatexts,andevaluateprocesses,claimsandconclusions
byconsideringtheaccuracyandprecisionofavailableevidenceandusereasoningtoconstructscientific
arguments(ACSPH082)

Select,constructanduseappropriaterepresentations,includingtextandgraphicrepresentationsof
empiricalandtheoreticalrelationships,vectordiagrams,freebody/forcediagrams,fielddiagramsand
circuitdiagrams,tocommunicateconceptualunderstanding,solveproblemsandmakepredictions
(ACSPH083)

Select,useandinterpretappropriatemathematicalrepresentations,includinglinearandnonlineargraphs
andalgebraicrelationshipsrepresentingphysicalsystems,tosolveproblemsandmakepredictions
(ACSPH084)

Communicatetospecificaudiencesandforspecificpurposesusingappropriatelanguage,nomenclature,
genresandmodes,includingscientificreports(ACSPH085)

ScienceasaHumanEndeavour(Units3&4)

ICTandothertechnologieshavedramaticallyincreasedthesize,accuracyandgeographicandtemporal
scopeofdatasetswithwhichscientistswork(ACSPH086)

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Modelsandtheoriesarecontestedandrefinedorreplacedwhennewevidencechallengesthem,orwhen
anewmodelortheoryhasgreaterexplanatorypower(ACSPH087)

Theacceptanceofscienceunderstandingcanbeinfluencedbythesocial,economicandculturalcontext
inwhichitisconsidered(ACSPH088)

Peoplecanusescientificknowledgetoinformthemonitoring,assessmentandevaluationofrisk
(ACSPH089)

Sciencecanbelimitedinitsabilitytoprovidedefinitiveanswerstopublicdebatetheremaybeinsufficient
reliabledataavailable,orinterpretationofthedatamaybeopentoquestion(ACSPH090)

Internationalcollaborationisoftenrequiredwheninvestinginlargescalescienceprojectsoraddressing
issuesfortheAsiaPacificregion(ACSPH091)

Scientificknowledgecanbeusedtodevelopandevaluateprojectedeconomic,socialandenvironmental
impactsandtodesignactionforsustainability(ACSPH092)

ScienceUnderstanding

Gravityandmotion

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Forensicscienceprojectiles
Ballisticsisthestudyoftheflightofprojectiles,especiallybullets.Thepathofabulletcanbepredictedby
understandingtheeffectsofairresistanceandgravity,anddeterminingtheeffectofenvironmental
conditions.Scientistsstudyandrecordthemotionofbulletsthroughuseofanalyticalmethodssuchas
highspeedvideoanalysisand3Dcomputermodelling(ACSPH086).Databaseshavebeencreated
recordingthemotionofavarietyofbulletsfromdifferentweaponsandcomputermatchingisusedto
identifyweaponsusedincrimes(ACSPH086).Forensicevidenceisoftenusedincourtthough,despite
messagesinthepopularmedia,forensicsciencecannotalwaysprovidesufficientconclusiveevidenceto
leadtoconvictions(ACSPH090).

Artificialsatellites
Artificialsatellitesareusedforcommunication,researchandobservation.Knowledgeoforbitalheights
andspeedsallowsatellitestobebestpositionedforobservationofweather,naturalphenomena,traffic
andmilitarymovements(ACSPH092).CommunicationviasatelliteisnowusedinGPS,satellitephones
andtelevision.Orbitsandusesofsatellitesareclassifiedbyaltitude(LowEarth,MediumEarthorHigh
Earth)andbyinclination(equatorial,polar,polarsunsynchronous).Thousandsofdecommissioned
satellites,spentrocketstagesandfragmentsfromcollisions(collectivelycalledspacedebris)continueto
orbitEarth,causingproblemsuponcollisionwithfunctionalsatellitesandposingdangeruponreentryinto
Earthsatmosphere.Variousstrategiesincludingactiveremovalareinplacetotrytolimitanincreasein
orbitingdebris(ACSPH089).

Physics CurriculumSeniorSecondary

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Developingunderstandingofplanetarymotion
Ptolemaicastronomyproposedageocentricmodelofthesolarsystemthatusedtheideaofepicyclesto
explainplanetarymovement.ThismodelwasuseduntilCopernicusproposedaheliocentricmodelofthe
solarsystem(ACSPH087)whichwaslaterchampionedbyGalileo,causingconflictwiththeCatholic
church(ACSPH088).JohannesKeplerproposedthreelawsofplanetarymotionwhichformthebasisof
ourmodernunderstandingoforbits.Newtonwasabletoshowhowtheselawswerederivedfromhis
theoryofgravitation(ACSPH087).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmw=\mathrmm\mathrmg\)

\(\mathrmw\=\\)weightforce,\(\mathrmm\=\\)mass,\(\mathrmg\=\\)accelerationduetogravity
(gravitationalfieldstrength)

\(\mathrmF=\frac{\mathrmG\mathrmM\mathrmm}{\mathrmr^2}\)and\(\mathrmg=\frac{\mathrmF}
{\mathrmm}=\frac{\mathrmG\mathrmM}{\mathrmr^2}\)

\(\mathrmF\=\\)gravitationalforce,\(\mathrmG\=\\)G=universalconstantofgravitation

\(\left(6.67\\times\10^{11}\\mathrmN\\mathrmm^2\\mathrmk\mathrmg^{2}\right)\),\(\mathrmM\=\\)
M=massoffirstbody,\(\mathrmm\=\\)massofsecondbody,\(\\mathrmr\=\\)separationbetweenthe
centresofmassofthetwobodies,\(\mathrmg\)=accelerationduetogravity

\({\mathrmv}_\mathrmy=\mathrmg\mathrmt+\{\mathrmu}_\mathrmy\),\(\mathrmy=\\\mathrm
g\mathrmt^2+\{\mathrmu}_\mathrmy\mathrmt\),\({\mathrmv}_\mathrmy^2=2\mathrmg\mathrmy+\
{\mathrmu}_\mathrmy^2\),\({\mathrmv}_{\mathrmx\}=\{\mathrmu}_\mathrmx\)and\(\mathrmx=\
{\mathrmu}_\mathrmx\mathrmt\)

\(\mathrmy\=\)verticaldisplacement,x=horizontaldisplacement,\({\mathrmu}_\mathrmy=\\)initial
verticalvelocity,\(\{\mathrmv}_\mathrmy=\\)verticalvelocityattime\(\mathrmt,\\),\({\mathrm
u}_\mathrmx=\)initialhorizontalvelocity,\({\mathrmv}_\mathrmx\=\)horizontalvelocityattime\
(\mathrmt,\\),\(\mathrmg\=\)speedoflightaccelerationduetogravity,\(\mathrmt,\\)timeintoflight

\(\mathrmv=\frac{2\mathrm\pi\mathrmr}{\mathrmT}\)

\(\mathrmv=\\)tangentialvelocity,\(\\mathrmT\)=period

\({\mathrma}_\mathrmc=\frac{\mathrmv^2}{\mathrmr}\)

\({\mathrma}_\mathrmc\=\)centripetalacceleration,\(\mathrmv\=\)tangentialvelocity,\(\mathrmr\=\)
radiusofthecircle

\({\mathrmF}_{\mathrmn\mathrme\mathrmt}=\\frac{\mathrmm\mathrmv^2}{\mathrmr}\)

\({\mathrmF}_{\mathrmn\mathrme\mathrmt}=\\)netforce,\(\mathrmm\=\)massofbodyundergoing
uniformcircularmotion,\(\mathrmv=\\)v=tangentialvelocity,r=radiusofthecircle

\(\frac{\mathrmT^2}{\mathrmr^3}=\frac{4\mathrm\pi^2}{\mathrmG\mathrmM}\)

\(\mathrmT\=\)periodofsatellite,\(\mathrmM\=\)massofthecentralbody,\(\mathrmr\=\)orbital

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radius,\(\mathrmG\=\\)universalconstantofgravitation

\(\left(6.67\\times\10^{11}\\mathrmN\\mathrmm^2\\mathrmk\mathrmg^{2}\right)\)

ThemovementoffreefallingbodiesinEarthsgravitationalfieldispredictable(ACSPH093)

Allobjectswithmassattractoneanotherwithagravitationalforcethemagnitudeofthisforcecanbe
calculatedusingNewtonsLawofUniversalGravitation(ACSPH094)

Objectswithmassproduceagravitationalfieldinthespacethatsurroundsthemfieldtheoryattributes
thegravitationalforceonanobjecttothepresenceofagravitationalfield(ACSPH095)

Whenamassmovesorismovedfromonepointtoanotherinagravitationalfieldanditspotentialenergy
changes,workisdoneonorbythefield(ACSPH096)

Gravitationalfieldstrengthisdefinedasthenetforceperunitmassataparticularpointinthefield
(ACSPH097)

Thevectornatureofthegravitationalforcecanbeusedtoanalysemotiononinclinedplanesby
consideringthecomponentsofthegravitationalforce(thatis,weight)parallelandperpendiculartothe
plane(ACSPH098)

Projectilemotioncanbeanalysedquantitativelybytreatingthehorizontalandverticalcomponentsofthe
motionindependently(ACSPH099)

Whenanobjectexperiencesanetforceofconstantmagnitudeperpendiculartoitsvelocity,itwillundergo
uniformcircularmotion,includingcircularmotiononahorizontalplaneandaroundabankedtrack
(ACSPH100)

NewtonsLawofUniversalGravitationisusedtoexplainKeplerslawsofplanetarymotionandtodescribe
themotionofplanetsandothersatellites,modelledasuniformcircularmotion(ACSPH101)

Electromagnetism

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Medicalimaging
MagneticResonanceImaging(MRI)usesthepropertyofnuclearmagneticresonance(NMR)to
magnetisenucleiinsidethebodyandcreateclearandaccurateimagesofinternalstructures.MRIhas
manyadvantagesoverotherimagingtechniquessuchascomputedtomography(CT)scansandXrays,
includinggreatercontrastbetweensofttissues(ACSPH086)andanabilitytotakeimageswithouttheuse
ofionisingradiation(ACSPH089).Duetothestrongmagneticfieldsusedinthesemachines,thereare
manysafetyproceduresthatmustbefollowedandtheprocedureisoftenunsuitableforpeoplewith
metallicimplantsorpossibleallergiestothecontrastagentsused(ACSPH089).

TheSquareKilometreArray
TheSquareKilometreArray(SKA)isalargeradiotelescopeprojectjointlydevelopedbyanumberof
countriesandorganisations,whichistobebuiltinmultiplecountriesbutprimarilyAustralia,NewZealand

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andSouthAfrica(ACSPH091).Currentinformationindicatesitwillbetensoftimesmoresensitivethan
anyotherradioinstrument,withanabilitytosurveytheskythousandsoftimesfaster.Oneofthemajor
challengesistherequirementforextremelyhighdatatransferandcomputingpower.Advancesinthis
areawillflowthroughtoallareasofeverydaycomputing(ACSPH086).Aimsoftheprojectinclude
gatheringinformationtoadvanceourknowledgeofdarkmatterandenergy,cosmicmagnetismandtests
ofgeneralrelativity,whichwouldnotbepossiblewithouttheSKA(ACSPH086).

Superconductivity
Superconductivityisthephenomenaobservedwhencertainmaterialsarecooledbelowacharacteristic
temperature,andzeroelectricalresistanceoccurs.SuperconductorsalsoexhibittheMeissnereffect,
whereallmagneticfluxinsideiscancelled.Superconductivitywasdiscoveredin1911whentheresistance
ofmercurywasfoundtodroptozeroatverylowtemperatures.Aseriesofdiscoveriescausedanumber
oftheoriestobeputforwardtoexplainthephenomena,butitwasnotuntilthelate1950sthatacomplete
atomicscaletheoryofsuperconductivitywasproposed(ACSPH087).Sincethen,thedevelopmentof
hightemperaturesuperconductorsandpracticalapplicationsforthemhavebeenthefocusofresearch.
Superconductorsareusedinmagneticlevitation,suchasinmaglevtrains,massspectrometers,andin
magneticimaging(MRI).Anextremelypowerfulandlargesuperconductingmagnethasbeenbuiltforuse
insidetheLargeHadronCollideratCERN(ACSPH092).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmF=\\frac1{4\mathrm\pi{\mathrm\varepsilon}_0}\frac{\mathrmQ\mathrmq}{\mathrmr^2}\)

\(\mathrmF=\)force,\(\frac1{4\mathrm\pi{\mathrm\varepsilon}_\mathrmo}=\)Coulombconstant

\(\left(9\\times\10^9\\mathrmN\\mathrmm^2\\mathrmC^{2}\right)\),\(\mathrmq\=\)chargeonthe
firstobject,\(\mathrmQ\=\)chargeonthesecondobject,\(\mathrmr\=\)separationbetweenthecharges

\(\mathrmE=\frac{\mathrmF}{\mathrmq}=\frac1{4\mathrm\pi{\mathrm\varepsilon}_0}\frac{\mathrmq}
{\mathrmr^2}\)

\(\mathrmE\=\)electricfieldstrength,\(\mathrmF\=\\)force,\(\mathrmq\=\)charge,\(\mathrmr\=\)
distancefromthecharge,\(\\frac1{4\mathrm\pi{\mathrm\varepsilon}_\mathrmo}=\)Coulombconstant

\(\left(9\\times\10^9\\mathrmN\\mathrmm^2\\mathrmC^{2}\right)\)

\(\mathrmV=\frac{\mathrm\Delta\mathrmU}{\mathrmq}\)

\(\mathrmV\=\)electricalpotentialdifference,\(\mathrm\Delta\mathrmU\=\)changeinpotentialenergy,\
(\mathrmq\=\)charge

\(\mathrmB=\frac{_\mathrmo\mathrmI}{2\mathrm\pi\mathrmr}\)

\(\mathrmB\=\)magneticfluxdensity,\(\mathrmI\=\)currentinwire,\(\mathrmr\=\)distancefromthe
centreofthewire,\(\\frac{_\mathrmo}{2\mathrm\pi}=\)magneticconstant

\(\text{(2}10^{7}\text{T}\text{A}^{1}\text{m)}\)

Forastraight,currentcarryingwireperpendiculartoamagneticfield\(\mathrmF=\mathrmB\mathrm
I\mathrml\)

\(\mathrmB\=\)magneticfluxdensity,\(\mathrmF=\)forceonthewire,\(\mathrml=\)l=lengthofwirein
themagneticfield,\(\mathrmI\)=currentinthewire

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Forachargemovingperpendiculartoamagneticfield\(\mathrmF=\mathrmq\mathrmv\mathrmB\)

\(\mathrmF=\)forceonachargemovinginanappliedmagneticfield,\(\mathrmq\=\)charge,\(\mathrm
v=\\)velocityofthecharge,\(\mathrmB\=\)magneticfluxdensity

\(\mathrm\phi=\mathrmB{\mathrmA}_\perp\)

\(\mathrm\phi=\\)magneticflux,\({\mathrmA}_\perp=\\)areaofcurrentloopperpendiculartotheapplied
magneticfield,\(\mathrmB\=\)magneticfluxdensity

\(\mathrme\mathrmm\mathrmf=\\frac{\mathrmn\bigtriangleup(\mathrmB{\mathrmA}_\perp)}
{\operatorname\Delta\mathrmt}=\\mathrmn\frac{\operatorname\Delta\mathrm\phi}
{\operatorname\Delta\mathrmt}\)

\(\mathrme\mathrmm\mathrmf=\)inducedpotentialdifference,\(\triangle\mathrm\phi\=\)changein
magneticflux,\(\mathrmn\=\)numberofwindingsintheloop,\({\mathrmA}_\perp=\\)areaofcurrent
loopperpendiculartotheappliedmagneticfield,\(\operatorname\Delta\mathrmt\=\)timeintervalover
whichthemagneticfluxchangeoccurs,\(\mathrmB\=\)magneticfluxdensity

\(\frac{{\mathrmV}_\mathrmp}{{\mathrmV}_\mathrms}=\frac{{\mathrmn}_\mathrmp}{{\mathrm
n}_\mathrms}\)

\({\mathrmV}_\mathrmp=\)potentialdifferenceacrosstheprimarycoil,\(\{\mathrmV}_\mathrms=\\)
Vs=potentialdifferenceacrossthesecondarycoil,\({\mathrmn}_\mathrmp\=\)numberofturnson
primarycoil,\({\mathrmn}_\mathrms=\)numberofturnsonsecondarycoil

\({\mathrmI}_\mathrmp{\mathrmV}_\mathrmp={\mathrmI}_\mathrms{\mathrmV}_\mathrms\\)

\({\mathrmI}_\mathrmp=\)currentinprimarycoil,\({\mathrmV}_\mathrmp=\\)Vp=potentialdifference
acrossprimarycoil,\({\mathrmI}_\mathrms\)=currentinsecondarycoil,\(\{\mathrmV}_\mathrms\)=
potentialdifferenceacrosssecondarycoil

Electrostaticallychargedobjectsexertaforceupononeanotherthemagnitudeofthisforcecanbe
calculatedusingCoulombsLaw(ACSPH102)

Pointchargesandchargedobjectsproduceanelectricfieldinthespacethatsurroundsthemfieldtheory
attributestheelectrostaticforceonapointchargeorchargedbodytothepresenceofanelectricfield
(ACSPH103)

Apositivelychargedbodyplacedinanelectricfieldwillexperienceaforceinthedirectionofthefieldthe
strengthoftheelectricfieldisdefinedastheforceperunitcharge(ACSPH104)

Whenachargedbodymovesorismovedfromonepointtoanotherinanelectricfieldanditspotential
energychanges,workisdoneonorbythefield(ACSPH105)

Currentcarryingwiresaresurroundedbymagneticfieldsthesefieldsareutilisedinsolenoidsand
electromagnets(ACSPH106)

Thestrengthofthemagneticfieldproducedbyacurrentiscalledthemagneticfluxdensity(ACSPH107)

Magnets,magneticmaterials,movingchargesandcurrentcarryingwiresexperienceaforceina
magneticfieldthisforceisutilisedinDCelectricmotors(ACSPH108)

Magneticfluxisdefinedintermsofmagneticfluxdensityandarea(ACSPH109)

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Achangingmagneticfluxinducesapotentialdifferencethisprocessofelectromagneticinductionisused
instepupandstepdowntransformers,DCandACgenerators,andACinductionmotors(ACSPH110)

Conservationofenergy,expressedasLenzsLawofelectromagneticinduction,isusedtodeterminethe
directionofinducedcurrent(ACSPH111)

Electromagneticwavesaretransversewavesmadeupofmutuallyperpendicular,oscillatingelectricand
magneticfields(ACSPH112)

Oscillatingchargesproduceelectromagneticwavesofthesamefrequencyastheoscillation
electromagneticwavescausechargestooscillateatthefrequencyofthewave(ACSPH113)

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Unit4:Revolutionsinmodernphysics

Unit4:RevolutionsinmodernphysicsDescription

Thedevelopmentofquantumtheoryandthetheoryofrelativityfundamentallychangedourunderstanding
ofhownatureoperatesandledtothedevelopmentofawiderangeofnewtechnologies,including
technologiesthatrevolutionisedthestorage,processingandcommunicationofinformation.Inthisunit,
studentsexamineobservationsofrelativemotion,lightandmatterthatcouldnotbeexplainedbyexisting
theories,andinvestigatehowtheshortcomingsofexistingtheoriesledtothedevelopmentofthespecial
theoryofrelativityandthequantumtheoryoflightandmatter.Studentsevaluatethecontributionofthe
quantumtheoryoflighttothedevelopmentofthequantumtheoryoftheatom,andexaminetheStandard
ModelofparticlephysicsandtheBigBangtheory.

ContextsthatcouldbeinvestigatedinthisunitincludetechnologiessuchasGPSnavigation,lasers,
modernelectriclighting,medicalimaging,nanotechnology,semiconductors,quantumcomputersand
particleacceleratorsandrelatedareasofsciencesuchasspacetravel,thedigitalrevolutionandthe
greenhouseeffect.

Throughtheinvestigationofappropriatecontexts,studentsexplorethewaysinwhichthesemodelsand
theories,andassociatedtechnologies,havedevelopedovertimeandthroughinteractionswithsocial,
economic,culturalandethicalconsiderations.Theyinvestigatethewaysinwhichsciencecontributesto
contemporarydebateaboutlocal,regionalandinternationalissues,includingevaluationofriskandaction
forsustainability,andrecognisethelimitationsofsciencetoprovidedefinitiveanswersindifferent
contexts.

Throughinvestigation,studentsapplytheirunderstandingofrelativity,blackbodyradiation,wave/particle
duality,andthequantumtheoryoftheatom,tomakeand/orexplainobservationsofarangeof
phenomenasuchasatomicemissionandabsorptionspectra,thephotoelectriceffect,lasers,andEarths
energybalance.Theycontinuetodevelopskillsinplanning,conductingandinterpretingtheresultsof
investigations,insynthesisingevidencetosupportconclusions,andinrecognisinganddefiningtherealm
ofvalidityofphysicaltheoriesandmodels.

Unit4:RevolutionsinmodernphysicsLearningOutcomes

Bytheendofthisunit,students:

understandtheconsequencesforspaceandtimeoftheequivalenceprincipleforinertialframes
ofreference
understandhowthequantumtheoryoflightandmatterexplainsblackbodyradiation,the
photoelectriceffect,andatomicemissionandabsorptionspectra
understandhowtheStandardModelexplainsthenatureofandinteractionbetweenthe
fundamentalparticlesthatformthebuildingblocksofmatter
understandhowmodelsandtheorieshavedevelopedovertime,andthewaysinwhichphysical
scienceknowledgeandassociatedtechnologiesinteractwithsocial,economic,culturaland
ethicalconsiderations
usescienceinquiryskillstodesign,conduct,analyseandevaluateinvestigationsintoframesof
reference,diffraction,blackbodyandatomicemissionspectra,thephotoelectriceffect,and
photonicdevices,andtocommunicatemethodsandfindings
usealgebraicandgraphicalmodelstosolveproblemsandmakepredictionsrelatedtothe

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theoryandapplicationsofspecialrelativity,quantumtheoryandtheStandardModel
evaluatetheexperimentalevidencethatsupportsthetheoryofrelativity,waveparticleduality,
theBohrmodeloftheatom,theStandardModel,andtheBigBangtheory
communicatephysicsunderstandingusingqualitativeandquantitativerepresentationsin
appropriatemodesandgenres.

Unit4:RevolutionsinmodernphysicsContentDescriptions

ScienceInquirySkills

Identify,researchandconstructquestionsforinvestigationproposehypothesesandpredictpossible
outcomes(ACSPH114)

Designinvestigations,includingtheproceduretobefollowed,thematerialsrequired,andthetypeand
amountofprimaryand/orsecondarydatatobecollectedconductriskassessmentsandconsider
researchethics(ACSPH115)

Conductinvestigations,includinguseofsimulationsandmanipulationofspectraldevices,safely,
competentlyandmethodicallyforthecollectionofvalidandreliabledata(ACSPH116)

Representdatainmeaningfulandusefulways,includingusingappropriateSIunits,symbolsand
significantfiguresorganiseandanalysedatatoidentifytrends,patternsandrelationshipsidentify
sourcesofuncertaintyandtechniquestominimisetheseuncertaintiesutiliseuncertaintyandpercentage
uncertaintytodeterminethecumulativeuncertaintyresultingfromcalculations,andevaluatetheimpactof
measurementuncertaintyonexperimentalresultsandselect,synthesiseanduseevidencetomakeand
justifyconclusions(ACSPH117)

Interpretarangeofscientificandmediatexts,andevaluateprocesses,claimsandconclusionsby
consideringthequalityofavailableevidenceandusereasoningtoconstructscientificarguments
(ACSPH118)

Select,constructanduseappropriaterepresentations,includingtextandgraphicrepresentationsof
empiricalandtheoreticalrelationships,simulations,simplereactiondiagramsandatomicenergylevel
diagrams,tocommunicateconceptualunderstanding,solveproblemsandmakepredictions(ACSPH119)

Select,useandinterpretappropriatemathematicalrepresentations,includinglinearandnonlineargraphs
andalgebraicrelationshipsrepresentingphysicalsystems,tosolveproblemsandmakepredictions
(ACSPH120)

Communicatetospecificaudiencesandforspecificpurposesusingappropriatelanguage,nomenclature,
genresandmodes,includingscientificreports(ACSPH121)

ScienceasaHumanEndeavour(Units3&4)

ICTandothertechnologieshavedramaticallyincreasedthesize,accuracyandgeographicandtemporal
scopeofdatasetswithwhichscientistswork(ACSPH122)

Modelsandtheoriesarecontestedandrefinedorreplacedwhennewevidencechallengesthem,orwhen
anewmodelortheoryhasgreaterexplanatorypower(ACSPH123)

Theacceptanceofscienceunderstandingcanbeinfluencedbythesocial,economicandculturalcontext
inwhichitisconsidered(ACSPH124)

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Peoplecanusescientificknowledgetoinformthemonitoring,assessmentandevaluationofrisk
(ACSPH125)

Sciencecanbelimitedinitsabilitytoprovidedefinitiveanswerstopublicdebatetheremaybeinsufficient
reliabledataavailable,orinterpretationofthedatamaybeopentoquestion(ACSPH126)

Internationalcollaborationisoftenrequiredwheninvestinginlargescalescienceprojectsoraddressing
issuesfortheAsiaPacificregion(ACSPH127)

Scientificknowledgecanbeusedtodevelopandevaluateprojectedeconomic,socialandenvironmental
impactsandtodesignactionforsustainability(ACSPH128)

ScienceUnderstanding

Specialrelativity

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Developmentofthespecialtheoryofrelativity
Manyscientists,includingAlbertMichelson,HendrikLorentzandHenriPoincar,contributedtothe
developmentofthespecialtheoryofrelativity.LorentzsTransformationandhisideasabouttheaether
initiallyexplainedtheDopplereffect.Theywereimproveduponbythenextgenerationofscientists
developingtheoriesaboutelectromagneticmassandideasaboutinertialframesofreferenceandrelative
motion.AlbertEinsteinsworkonspecialrelativitybuiltupontheworkofscientistssuchasMaxwelland
Lorentz,whilesubsequentstudiesbyMaxPlanck,HermannMinkowskiandothersledtothedevelopment
ofrelativistictheoriesofgravitation,massenergyequivalenceandquantumfieldtheory.TheMichelson
MorleyandFizeauexperimentsprovidedevidenceforthespecialtheoryofrelativity(ACSPH123).

Ringlasergyroscopesandnavigation
Ringlasergyroscopes(RLG)areinertialguidancesystemsthatdonotrelyonsignalsfromanexternal
sourcebutfrominstrumentsonboardamovingobject.RLGsusesmalldifferencesinthetimeittakes
lighttotravelaroundtheringintwodirections,knownastheSagnaceffect.RLGshavemanyadvantages
overothersystems:theyarehighlyaccurate,havenomovingparts,arecompactandlightweight,anddo
notresistchangestotheirorientation(ACSPH122).RLGsarecommonlyusedinaircraftforaccurate
navigationandhavemilitaryapplicationsinhelicopters,ships,submarinesandmissiles.

Nuclearreactors
Specialrelativityleadstotheideaofmassenergyequivalence,whichhasbeenappliedinnuclearfission
reactors.Nuclearreactorsaremostcommonlyusedforpowergeneration,propulsionandscientific
research.Researchreactorshaveresultedinadvancesinareassuchasmedicineandmaterialstesting
andfabricationthroughprovisionofnuclearisotopesforindustrialandmedicalapplications.Although
nuclearreactorsprovidearangeofbenefits,thereisconsiderablepublicconcernoversafetyandsecurity
issues(ACSPH124).Datafromthenuclearindustryindicatesthatnuclearpowerreactorsposean
acceptablerisktopublicsafetyandthatmuchhasbeendonetolimitthatrisk.However,othergroups

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arguethatsuchariskisnotacceptable,and,evenifnoaccidentsoccur,storageoftheradioactivewaste
producedfromnuclearfacilitiesremainsasafetyconcern(ACSPH126).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmt\=\frac{{\mathrmt}_\mathrmo}{\sqrt[{}]{\left(1\frac{\mathrmv^2}{\mathrmc^2}\right)}}\)

\(\mathrmt\=\)timeintervalinthemovingframeasmeasuredbytheobserverintheproperframe,\
({\mathrmt}_\mathrmo=\)propertimeinterval(timeintervalforaclockatrestintheobserversframe),\
(\mathrmv\=\)relativespeedofthetwoinertialframes,\(\mathrmc\=\)speedoflightinavacuum\
(\left(3\\times10^8\\text{m}\text{s}^{1}\right)\)

\(\mathrml=\{\mathrml}_\mathrmo\sqrt[{}]{\left(1\frac{\mathrmv^2}{\mathrmc^2}\right)}\)

\(\mathrml=\\)lengthintervalintheframemovingatvelocity\(\mathrmv\)withrespecttotheobserver,\
({\mathrml}_\mathrmo=\\)lo=properlength(lengthinaframeatrestwithrespecttotheobserver),\
(\mathrmc\=\)speedoflight\(\left(3\\times10^8\\text{m}\text{s}^{1}\right)\)

\({\mathrmp}_\mathrmv=\frac{\mathrmm\mathrmv}{\sqrt[{}]{\left(1\frac{\mathrmv^2}{\mathrm
c^2}\right)}}\)

\({\mathrmp}_\mathrmv=\)relativisticmomentumforanobjectmovingwithvelocity,\(\mathrmv\)with
respecttotheobserver,\(\mathrmm\)\(=\)mass,\(\mathrmc\=\)speedoflight

\(\left(3\\times10^8\\text{m}\text{s}^{1}\right)\)

\(\operatorname\Delta\mathrmE=\mathrm\Delta\mathrmm\mathrmc^2\)

\(\mathrm\Delta\mathrmE=\)changeinenergy,\(\\mathrm\Delta\mathrmm=\)changeinmass,\
(\\mathrmc=\\)c=speedoflight

\(\left(3\\times10^8\\text{m}\text{s}^{1}\right)\)

ObservationsofobjectstravellingatveryhighspeedscannotbeexplainedbyNewtonianphysics(for
example,thedilatedhalflifeofhighspeedmuonscreatedintheupperatmosphere,andthemomentum
ofhighspeedparticlesinparticleaccelerators)(ACSPH129)

EinsteinsspecialtheoryofrelativitypredictssignificantlydifferentresultstothoseofNewtonianphysicsfor
velocitiesapproachingthespeedoflight(ACSPH130)

Thespecialtheoryofrelativityisbasedontwopostulates:thatthespeedoflightinavacuumisan
absoluteconstant,andthatallinertialreferenceframesareequivalent(ACSPH131)

Motioncanonlybemeasuredrelativetoanobserverlengthandtimearerelativequantitiesthatdepend
ontheobserversframeofreference(ACSPH132)

Relativisticmomentumincreasesathighrelativespeedandpreventsanobjectfromreachingthespeed
oflight(ACSPH133)

Theconceptofmassenergyequivalenceemergedfromthespecialtheoryofrelativityandexplainsthe
sourceoftheenergyproducedinnuclearreactions(ACSPH134)

Quantumtheory

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Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

Developmentofthequantummodel
MaxPlanckandEinsteinwerethefirsttodescribelightandenergyasbeingquantised,afindingthatled
tolightbeingdescribedasspatiallyquantisedphotonsofenergy.TheBohrmodeloftheatomwasbuilt
onthisquantiseddescriptionoflightenergyandRutherfordsnuclearmodel.TheBohrmodelwasa
quantumbasedmodificationtoRutherfordsmodelandwasrapidlyacceptedduetoitsabilitytoexplain
theemissionlinesofatomichydrogen.PriortoBohrsmodel,theRydbergformuladescribingthe
wavelengthsofspectrallinesofmanychemicalelementswasknownbutcouldnotbeexplained.Amore
elaboratequantummechanicalmodeloftheatom,however,wasrequiredtoexplainotherobservations
madeaboutatoms.Thequantummechanicalmodeloftheatomusesquantumtheoryanddescribes
electronorbitalsthatcanbeusedtocalculatetheprobabilityoffindinganelectronataspecificpoint
(ACSPH123).

Blackbodyradiationandthegreenhouseeffect
Allobjectsintheuniverse,includingthesunandEarth,emitblackbodyradiation.Thenatural
temperatureofEarthcanbepredictedusingtheStefanBoltzmannblackbodyradiationequationwhich
assumesthereisabalancebetweenincomingandoutgoingradiation.Thetruetemperatureis
significantlyhigherduetotheabsorptionofemittedblackbodyradiationfromthesurfacebymoleculesin
theatmosphere(thegreenhouseeffect).ModelsofEarthsenergybalanceenablescientiststomonitor
changesinglobaltemperature,assesstheevidenceforchangesinclimateduetotheenhanced
greenhouseeffect,andevaluatetheriskposedbyanthropogenicclimatechange(ACSPH125).Further
developmentofmodelsofEarthsenergydynamicsandclimatechangeenablesscientiststomore
accuratelypredictthescenariosthatwillresultinglobalwarming,thetimeframesinvolved,andthelikely
impactsofthesechanges(ACSPH128).

Mathematicalrepresentationsandrelationships

\(\mathrmE=\mathrmh\mathrmf\)

\(\mathrmE\=\)energyofphoton,\(\mathrmf\=\)frequency,\(\mathrmh\=\)

\(\left(6.626\\times\10^{34}\\mathrmJ\\mathrms\right)\)

\({\mathrm\lambda}_{\mathrmm\mathrma\mathrmx}\=\frac{\mathrmb}{\mathrmT}\)

\({\mathrm\lambda}_{\mathrmm\mathrma\mathrmx}=\\)peakwavelength,\(\mathrmT\=\\)absolute
temperature,\(\mathrmb\=\)Wiensdisplacementconstant\(\text{(2.898}10^{3}\\text{mK)}\)

\({\mathrmE}_\mathrmk=\mathrmh\mathrmf\\mathrmW\)

\({\mathrmE}_\mathrmk=\\)Ek=kineticenergyofphotoelectron,\(\mathrmh\mathrmf\=\)energyof
incidentphoton,\(\\mathrmW\=\\)workfunctionofthematerial

\(\mathrm\lambda=\frac{\mathrmh}{\mathrmp}\)

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\(\mathrm\lambda=\)wavelengthassociatedwithparticle,\(\mathrmp\=\)momentumofparticle,\
(\mathrmh\=\)Plancksconstant\(\left(6.626\\times\10^{34}\\mathrmJ\\mathrms\right)\)

\(\mathrmn\mathrm\lambda=2\mathrm\pi\mathrmr\)

\(\mathrmn\=\)aninteger1,2,3,4...,\(\mathrm\lambda=\)wavelengthofelectron,\(\mathrmr\=\)orbital
radiusofelectron

\(\mathrmm\mathrmv\mathrmr=\frac{\mathrmn\mathrmh}{2\mathrm\pi}\)

\(\mathrmm\=\)massofelectron,\(\mathrmv\=\)velocityofelectron,\(\mathrmr\=\)orbitalradiusof
electron,\(\mathrmn\=\)aninteger1,2,3,4,etc.,\(\mathrmh\=\)Plancksconstant\
(\left(6.626\\times\10^{34}\\mathrmJ\\mathrms\right)\)

\(\frac1{\mathrm\lambda}=\mathrmR\left(\frac1{\mathrmn_\mathrmf^2}\frac1{\mathrmn_\mathrm
i^2}\right)\)

\(\mathrm\lambda=\)wavelengthofspectralline,\({\mathrmn}_\mathrmi=\\)principalquantumnumber
ofinitialelectronstate,\(\{\mathrmn}_\mathrmf=\\)nf=principalquantumnumberoffinalelectronstate,
\(\mathrmR\=\)Rydbergsconstant\(\text{(1.097}10^7\\text{m}^{1}\text{)}\)

Atomicphenomenaandtheinteractionoflightwithmatterindicatethatstatesofmatterandenergyare
quantisedintodiscretevalues(ACSPH135)

Ontheatomiclevel,electromagneticradiationisemittedorabsorbedindiscretepacketscalledphotons
theenergyofaphotonisproportionaltoitsfrequencyandtheconstantofproportionality,Plancks
constant,canbedeterminedexperimentally(forexample,fromthephotoelectriceffectorthethreshold
voltageofcolouredLEDs)(ACSPH136)

Awiderangeofphenomena,includingblackbodyradiationandthephotoelectriceffect,areexplained
usingtheconceptoflightquanta(ACSPH137)

Atomsofanelementemitandabsorbspecificwavelengthsoflightthatareuniquetothatelementthisis
thebasisofspectralanalysis(ACSPH138)

TheBohrmodelofthehydrogenatomintegrateslightquantaandatomicenergystatestoexplainthe
specificwavelengthsinthehydrogenspectrumandinthespectraofothersimpleatomstheBohrmodel
enableslinespectratobecorrelatedwithatomicenergyleveldiagrams(ACSPH139)

Ontheatomiclevel,energyandmatterexhibitthecharacteristicsofbothwavesandparticles(for
example,Youngsdoubleslitexperimentisexplainedwithawavemodelbutproducesthesame
interferencepatternwhenonephotonatatimeispassedthroughtheslits)(ACSPH140)

TheStandardModel

Examplesincontext

SupportmaterialsonlythatillustratesomepossiblecontextsforexploringScienceasaHumanEndeavour
conceptsinrelationtoScienceUnderstandingcontent.

EvidencefortheHiggsbosonparticle

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TheHiggsbosonparticlewaspredictedintheearly1960sbytheStandardModelofparticlephysics.
EvidencefortheHiggsbosonparticlewouldconfirmtheexistenceoftheHiggsfieldandhelptoexplain
whyfundamentalparticleshavemass.Discoveryoftheparticlewouldguideothertheoriesand
discoveriesinthisfield,includingvalidationoftheStandardModel,andinsightsintocosmicinflationand
thecosmologicalconstantproblem(ACSPH123).ProductionoftheHiggsbosonrequiresanextremely
powerfulparticleaccelerator.TheLargeHadronCollideratCERNwasbuilttotestparticlephysics
theories,andspecificallytotrytoproduceanddetecttheHiggsbosonparticle.Sincethecommencement
ofitsoperation,previouslyunobservedparticleshavebeenproduced(ACSPH123)andmostrecentlya
newparticlehasbeenobservedthatisconsistentwiththetheorisedHiggsbosonparticle.

ParticleAccelerators
Particleacceleratorspropelchargedparticlestohighspeedsusingacombinationofelectricandmagnetic
fields.Highenergyparticleacceleratorsareusedinparticlephysicsresearchtocreateandobserve
particles.Thesemachineshavegraduallyincreasedinsize,complexityandintheirabilitytoaccelerate
particlestohigherspeeds,thusincreasingscientistsabilitytoobservenewparticles(ACSPH122).More
practicalusesofparticleacceleratorsincludetheiruseinproductionofradioisotopesformedical
treatmentsandassynchrotronlightsources.TheconstructionoftheAustralianSynchrotroninvolved
collaborationbetweenAustralianandNewZealandscienceorganisations,stateandfederalgovernments
andinternationalorganisationsandcommitteesincludingtheInternationalScienceAdvisoryCommittee
andtheInternationalMachineAdvisoryCommittee(ACSPH127).

TheBigBangTheory
TheBigBangTheorydescribestheearlydevelopmentoftheuniverseincludingtheformationof
subatomicparticlesfromenergyandthesubsequentformationofatomicnuclei.Thereisavarietyof
evidencethatsupportstheBigBangTheoryincludingCosmicBackgroundRadiation,theabundanceof
lightelementsandtheredshiftoflightfromgalaxiesthatobeyHubblesLaw.Alternatetheoriesexist
includingtheSteadyStatetheory,buttheBigBangTheoryisthemostwidelyacceptedtheorytoday
(ACSPH123).Thereisoppositiontothistheoryinbothscientificandreligiouscommunitiesduetoits
inabilitytoexplainwhatcamebeforethesingularityandbecauseitcannotexplainallaspectsofthe
universeasitexiststoday(ACSPH124).

TheStandardModelisbasedonthepremisethatallmatterintheuniverseismadeupfromelementary
matterparticlescalledquarksandleptonsquarksexperiencethestrongforce,leptonsdonot
(ACSPH141)

TheStandardModelexplainsthreeofthefourfundamentalforces(strong,weakandelectromagnetic
forces)intermsofanexchangeofforcecarryingparticlescalledgaugebosonseachforceismediated
byadifferenttypeofgaugeboson(ACSPH142)

Reactionsbetweenparticlescanberepresentedbysimplereactiondiagrams(ACSPH143)

Leptonnumberandbaryonnumberareexamplesofquantitiesthatareconservedinallreactions
betweenparticlesconservationlawscanbeusedtosupportorinvalidateproposedreactions
(ACSPH144)

Variationsofreactionscanbefoundbyapplyingsymmetryoperationstoknownreactions.Theseinclude
reversingthedirectionofthereactiondiagram(timereversalsymmetry)andreplacingallparticleswith
theirantiparticlesandviceversa(chargereversalsymmetry).Energyandmomentummustalsobe
conservedforsuchareactiontobepossible.(ACSPH145)

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HighenergyparticleacceleratorsareusedtotesttheoriesofparticlephysicsincludingtheStandard
Model(ACSPH146)

TheStandardModelisusedtodescribetheevolutionofforcesandthecreationofmatterintheBigBang
theory(ACSPH147)

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