Chemistry and Physics Faculty Articles

Title

The Visualization and Measurements of Mass Functions with LEGO

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

8-10-2020

Publication Title

Research Notes of the American Astronomical Society

Keywords

Astronomy data visualization, Stellar mass functions, Initial mass function, Interdisciplinary astronomy, Pareto distribution, Mass ratio

ISSN

2515-5172

Volume

4

Issue/No.

6

First Page

134

Abstract

We promote the concept of mass functions for interdisciplinary science education and communication. A mass function characterizes the frequency distribution of the masses of objects in the universe. We present an experiment to demonstrate this concept to a diverse audience of science students, using popular LEGO toys. We discovered that the LEGO mass function is surprisingly similar compared to mass functions of astronomical objects such as stars and galaxies.

Comments

©2020. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

Additional Comments

Nova Southeastern University's President's Faculty Research and Development grant #: 335510

DOI

10.3847/2515-5172/abad29

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