SIO 210 Tank Experiment Guidelines – Fall 2016


Teaching assistant


Weijie Wang, Nierenberg Hall 422


(757) 525-1834


Secondary: Shantong Sun, Nierenberg Hall 224



About the teams

Teams of 2-3 students will perform experiments using the SIO rotating tank following the guidelines and requirements in this document. Some useful links to find examples and instructions are and



1.      Practice running tank experiment prior to presentation. Ensure that all necessary material are available and if something is missing, constructing a new piece may be required. Some materials should be provided by the grad department, consult with Weijie about each individual situation.


2.      Record the practice experiment and edit the video to show it during your presentation. If you do not have a camera, the grad department can lend you a GoPro. Contact Gilbert Bretado ( in case you need it. You really want to record your practices, as some times the experiment will not work during the class.


3.      Review the theory behind the dynamics demonstrated by your experiment. You do not need to get too deep into the math, just explain the relative importance of the terms in the momentum equations and any special considerations for the observed phenomenon. Identify some real-world oceanographic/atmospheric examples of the phenomenon.


4.      On the day of your experiment (usually Mondays), arrive to Ritter 229 at LEAST 30 minutes ahead of time (11:30 am). The tank will need to be transported from Ritter to Vaughan 100. In order to ensure that your tank is in solid body rotation, it should spin up for at least 15 minutes beforehand.


5.      Perform the tank experiment at the beginning of the class on your assigned date. Present the theory and real-life examples to help illuminate the concepts for the rest of the class. Make a hard copy of any materials presented to the class and submit to Lynne and Weijie. DO NOT EXCEED THE ALLOTED 10 MINUTES.


6.      Join the SIO Rotating Tank Wiki at To do so, you will need to create a wikispaces username and the request to join.


7.      After completing the experiment, edit the page specific to your experiment. Include a description of the tank setup, a blurb about any problems encountered during the experiment, a section on real-world examples, and tips for future students on using the tank or purchasing/constructing any required items.


8.      Submit a short (2-4 pages double spaced) report on your experiment. It should include a section on theory, experimental setup, results, troubleshooting, real-life examples, and finally a 2-3 sentence per member itemization of the individual work each one did.