One of the most important things that the SPS does is outreach and physics education for all ages. Below are the outreach events that we put on or participate in. Click on each one for more information.

Physics Field Day

This is a high school physics competition run by the SPS. The competition begins with a two-hour written exam composed of multiple choice and free response questions followed by a ‘back of the envelope’ section. The top scorers on the written exam proceed to the second stage: a hands-on lab competition, while students who do not make it may go listen to talks and participate in demos. The top three competitors receive cash prizes.


Spark, Spin, and Freeze

This physics demonstration is one way that SPS shows off physics to the public. As the name suggests, the demonstration is split into three parts. In Spark, we use simple metal rods and a cloth to demonstrate static electric repulsion and attraction. We also use Van Der Graaf generator to shock a few volunteers (it’s mostly harmless!) and display a Tesla coil to demonstrate the awesome power of electricity. In Spin, we show the often unintuitive effects of conservation of angular momentum and precession with a bicycle wheel, a few hand weights, and a rotatable stool. In Freeze, we use liquid nitrogen to deflate balloons, shatter coins, and make instant, deliciously edible ice cream.


Outreach Committee

Physics demonstrations such as Spark, Spin, and Freeze and developed and tested by our Outreach Committee, which is our SPS chapter’s primary interface with the public. The goal of our outreach committee is to spread the beauty and excitement of physics and demonstrate that it is as fascinating as it is mysterious. If you’re interested in collaborating or asking for our committee to host a demonstration, please contact us at or send a message via the Contact Us page.