Archive for the “laboratory” Category

Usually the students thought that this aspect of physics, in particular, and science, in general, is not important. However, it is not the same mistakes in an exercise on paper than on a real problem of engineering or science.

To give a value to this entry, we attached some news and the causes of the accidents that have occurred for reasons that should never happen.

  1. The NASA’s mission Mars Climate Orbiter (September 1999), had a part of the engineering team working in English units (feet, inches and pounds) and another one working in the decimal metric system. Incredible but true and below are some links for verification:
    1. Official site for the mission here.
    2. CNN news related to this fact, here and here.
    3. News on the Washington Post.
    4. Or on the BBC.
  2. On July 23, 1983, Air Canada Flight 143, a Boeing 767-233 jet, ran out of fuel at an altitude of 41,000 feet (12,000 m), about halfway through its flight originating in Montreal to Edmonton. Fuel loading was miscalculated due to a misunderstanding of the recently adopted metric system kp which replaced the imperial system pounds.
    1. CBC digital archives.
    2. Another reference in a classroom of mathematics, here.
    3. News on the New York Times.
  3. The Tokyo Disneyland’s Space Mountain:
    1. Metric/English conversions errors.
    2. Confusion between units or systems of measurement.
    3. Some famous unit conversion errors!
  4. Can you find more examples?

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