Download iMecaProf (en)


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These websites provide all details and programs for students: 
FR-Smartphones & Mécanique du Point

To use iMecaProf

                1- download iMecaProf on your PC
                2 - upload a "data streamer" application on your smartphone: 
see below 
                                                                    (it transfers sensor data to PC in real time)

Download iMecaProf on your laptop

Download sensor data on your iPhone
The needed 10$ Apple app is: 



iMecaProf is intended to be an innovative experimental tool to teach Basic Mechanics using Smartphone. 
It is directly related to:
- Physics 1 Classical Mechanics  MIT OpenCourseWare
- Cours de Mécanique du Point Matériel de l' Université Joseph Fourier Licence de Sciences et Technologies (french)


See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORcu-c-qnjg


All this, because of the embedded sensors in Smartphone: accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer, cameras, microphone, speaker,... Pocket Lab

Thanks to these sensors, one can know in real time (i.e. at 100Hz) :

  • the iPhone orientation in space (yawl, roll and pitch)
  • a acceleration vector (ax, ay, az) in iPhone frame
  • g the gravity vector in iphone frame (gx, gy, gz)
  • B the earth magnetic field component (Bx, By, Bz)

One can then add that «iPhone is perfect for learning science».


Here we show it for Basic Mechanics. 

We are then talking about description of movement (frame, trajectory, velocity, acceleration) and the relation between displacements and forces, i.e. Newton Laws.


Why is this interesting? Five reasons:  

Reason 1: It is fun to do real physics using a smartphone. Especially fun as one can do very good experiments. They are often far better and more pedagogical than what is done using regular pedagogical materials. 

Reason 2: Working on real data measured by real sensors. Just define the situation. 

Reason 3: Visual real time representation on a screen of displacement using the formal and abstract description provided by Basic Mechanics (frames, vectors, projections, angles, energies,...)  applied to real data. 

Reason 4: Save data. After, using any commercial spreadsheet. All data treatment possible according to theoretical framework. See below in case of pendulum. 

Reason 5: Just realize: guys in companies that design smartphones with embedded sensors, they know all this. They do have good scientists at home. Why do they just propose kids and teens to play cubes with this instead of helping us to improve teaching using this real Pocket Lab ?  


The first video (this the first one: ugly, too long, not precise enough, etc... but it does exist)




Following videos: they are shorter, cleaner, more convincing but still far from OK.


Rotation, orientation, frames, vectors:



Circular motion studied using iMecaProf: 






- the formal background here is in Wikipedia or in  Hyperphysics
- a complete lecture is found here . This video is from:
Lecture 5: Circular Motion - Centrifuges Moving - Reference Frames - Perceived Gravity
This lecture was recorded by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MIT 
author: Walter H. G. Lewin, Center for Future Civic Media 

iMecaProf: Using Smartphone sensors to interactively introduce students to Basic Mechanics on the basis of real experiments. 
iMecaProf  includes three distinct levels:
- rotation versus translation; 
- frames; vectors; vector projections; 
- uniform rotation description using velocity and acceleration; pendulum: acceleration, velocity, potential energy, kinetic energy and total energy.
More is coming: 1D displacement (elevator, solid friction, oscillation/mass-spring). 

iMecaProf is first built to investigate well defined movements such as uniform rotation, pendulum oscillation, 1D displacements such as free fall, elevator, oscillations of a mass attached to a spring. 

But we also want to move to real situation: 
Illustration of the strategies is  in Grenoble (France) tramway is suggested here.
Think you are in tramway, cars... with your iPad and you look at the screen to observe in real time a scientific description of the displacement. 

Guys very good at this game and not for Tramway:  
- inertial navigation

We believe it can be used first by teachers at universities and possibly at the end of highschool. In a first attempt, with a group of 10 students, we already used it when teaching Basic Mechanics at University Joseph Fourier Grenoble France (academic year 2011-2012)

Again sorry for the video quality: no quality as no attention paid yet to quality and presentation. This is a first message to show what we are doing. If you are interested or if you want to collaborate, let us know... we find it a difficult project in term of pedagogy.


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