School of Physics Lecture Demonstration Manual

Wd-4 Resonance Smashing of a Wine Glass

Published: Wednesday 15 March 2006 - Updated: Wednesday 30 March 2011

Aim

To smash a wine glass using sound waves at the resonant frequency.

Apparatus

Diagrams

Click on pictures to enlarge.

Wine Glass Diagram

Videos

Smashing a Wine Glass

Description

A clean wine glass is positioned a few centimetres from the horn loudspeaker in the cabinet shown above. A light mirror rests against the rim and acts as a detector of resonance. The frequency of the signal generator is swept slowly through the 1000 1600 range until resonance is indicated by a circular Lissajous figure projected on the screen. At this point the amplifier output is increased whereby the glass will explode under the action of the rim oscillations.

Safety notes

Electrical safety 

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Sharps safety 

Maintenance 

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