By Head of Community Engagement Gordon Mathis
Using different mediums, Upper Learning science teacher Dr. Cassie Mattox introduces her students to contemporary applications of scientific concepts in the modern world. What better way to learn science than through a blockbuster film? Last week, our Conceptual Physics students attended a matinee of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Dr. Mattox explained some of the science you can see (true to form or manipulated) in the movie: “The ability to transmit sound waves into light is a phenomenon known as sonoluminescence. We frequently see the Black Panther suit light up when it is impacted by some form of energy.”
“The concept of magnetic levitation is that there is nothing supporting a ‘floating’ object other than the magnetic fields surrounding it,” Dr. Mattox continued. “We see this used in the Black Panther films when some large objects are being transported from one place to another.” Magnetic levitation is currently used in high-spee trains in China, Japan, and South Korea.
Of course, this unique field trip was a hit with students. “The movie was actually really educational,” said physics student Manuel Goico ‘24. “It was a fun way to look at physics. The subject itself can be scary but using superheroes made it super interactive and interesting.”