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A load of balls

The proof of the pudding is in the eating…so here it is. I took 55 golf balls and rolled them down a ramp towards the “atom”, they hit the ring after they’d interacted with the atom and stayed put. The plum pudding/Thomson atom worked but it should really have been symmetrical – those damn creases have skewed the results. A better model would have produced a symmetrical version of the bottom half of the image. Also the thinner plastic it was made from really wasn’t that great. So drilling holes in thicker plastic etc does sound better all round.

I divided the atom into eleven slots and rolled five balls down the ramp in each position. They all went from the same height (no change of eV here). You can see in the picture above that very few went straight through, only about 8%, and only 2% had a large deflection. Compare that with the Rutherford atom:

We have about 10% that had a very large deflection and something like 46% went straight through. Whereas in the top picture there are many smaller deflections, in the bottom picture there are far fewer. If that isn’t real science I don’t know what is…

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May 2013
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