Quanta & Waves Resources

With the great Professor Jim Al-Khalili
Part 2 of 2 with Professor Jim Al-Khalili, he really is as nice in real life! Eat your heart out Brian Cox, Jim is MILES, I mean M-I-L-E-S better!

Resources: Notes and video (flash learning AH CfE Virtual Physics)

Read the notes, watch the video and answer the questions below, in a way that makes them form a good note about the subject.

  1. What three pieces of key evidence didn’t fit with classical physics?
  2. In 1911 Rutherford put forward his model of the atom, a) State the important features of this model b) What provides the centripetal force for the electrons in this model?
  3. Describe black body radiation.
  4. State two changes with the black body radiation curve as temperature increases.
  5. Describe the UV catastrophe.
  6. Who helped solve the UV catastrophe and in what ways?
  7. Which piece of the photoelectric effect experiment demonstrates that energy is not transferred as waves?
  8. From the photoelectric effect state the link between the energy of the photon and a) the frequency of the radiation, b) the wavelength
  9. What did Bohr postulate about angular momentum?
  10. State the formula for angular momentum in Bohr’s model of the atom, (define each term)
  11. State the limits for the Bohr model of the atom
  12. Explain the observation made by GP Thomson in 1920 which led to further debate on the issue.
  13. What did de Broglie imply was the link between electrons as waves and particles?
  14. Explain the confusion caused when looking at the double slit experiment with single particles.
  15. What happens when you observe an electron passing through the slit?
  16. What two quantities cannot be measured together with much certainty and why?
John Sharkey’s Virtual Physics CfE AH Particles from Space
John Sharkey’ SHMs Virtual Physics CfE AH
John Sharkey’s Waves Virtual Physics CfE AH
This is additional support for travelling waves

Here is a nice little video on Standing Waves. Standing waves are formed when a wave interferes with its reflection to produce nodes and antinodes.

…..and here is the explanation for the standing wave video

John Sharkey’s Interference Virtual Physics CfE AH
John Sharkey’s CfE AH Polarisation

Below are some cracking resources from Sally Weatherly, find her here!


Below are some accumulated resources. Thanks to all of those who produced them.

ah-quanta-summary notes problems-2015 Thanks to RGC for these notes

quanta-and-waves-student-booklet-i-ror Thanks to Mr Orr for these.

Quanta and Waves Student booklet I ROR pdf version of the above

4.2 Energy changes during simple harmonic motion

ah waves summary notes and problems 2013 RGC notes thanks for these

PhysicsQuantaandWaves_tcm4-726389 Andrew McGuigan Numerical Questions

ah quanta summary notes and problems 2015 LA

ah quanta tutorial solutions 2015

ah uncertainties experiments 2013

ah waves summary notes and problems 2013

ah waves tutorial solutions 2013



stellar  physics pdf       stellar physics.doc



cosmic-rays A quick research task on cosmic rays.

cosmic-rays-answers The answers to the sheet above.



Scientist think that the Earth is due a “Magnetic Flip” Research this starting at the link below and then answer the AH Revised question on this from the 2015 Paper Q11

Here is a Radio 4 programme talking about the consequences of a polar flip. If you want to view further programmes click on the link below.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/curious case of Rutherford and Fry



The number of sunspots is an indication of solar activity. Research this and then complete the AH Revised 2013 paper Q6.



Quantum Tunnelling – strange but true


What is the Uncertainty Principle? Minute Physics

Quantum Tunnelling is the process by which a particle gets across a barrier that it cannot classically pass.

It is related to wave-particle duality in that it is a result of the wave nature of a particle.

The probability of the particles getting through the barrier drops exponentially with the thickness of the barrier.

“>What is Quantum Tunnelling? Minute Physics

How to walk through walls- Quantum Tunnelling

Is Quantum Tunnelling faster than the speed of light?

Quantum Entanglement








Tutorial AH Revised Booklet v2



December 2020

AH Past Papers

If you wish to do your past paper questions in topic order then Mr C Davie from Glenrothes High School has completed the task for you and you can access it clicking on the link below.

If you want to go and revise some Higher stuff click on the link above

Past Paper Questions for the National Qualification Advanced Higher Physics

Digital Paper
2022 AH 2022
No exam2021 key messages 2021
No exam2020
AH QP & MI SpecimenAH QP & MI
2019 Digital QPN AH 20192019MI 2019Report 2019
2018 Digital QPNAH 20182018MI 2018Report 2018
2017 Digital QPN AH 20172017MI 2017Report 2017
2016 Digital QPN AH 20162016MI 2016Report 2016
Exemplar AH
Specimen AH
SpecimenExemplar AH
Specimen AH
Marking Principles

Below are the Revised Advanced Higher Past Papers, the content is very very similar to the new National (CfE) Advanced Higher, although the marks would be different. These were the last past papers with half marks!

Revised AH Paper YEARMarking
Exam Feedback
Rev 20152015MI 2015Report 2015
Rev 20142014MI 2014Report 2014
Rev 20132013MI 2013Report 2013

These are the traditional Advanced Higher Past Papers Remember some of this material is no longer on the syllabus, and some is relevant to Higher.

AH 20152015MI 2015Report 2015
AH 20142014MI 2014Report 2014
AH 20132013MI 2013Report 2013
AH 2012
2012MI 2012Report 2012
AH 20112011MI 2011Report 2011
AH 20102010MI 2010Report 2010
AH 20092009MI 2009Report 2009
AH 20082008MI 2008Report 2008
AH 20072007MI 2007Report 2007
AH 20062006MI 2006Report 2006
AH 20052005MI 2005Report 2005
AH 20042004MI 2004Report 2004
AH 20032003MI 2003Report 2003
AH 20022002MI 2002Report 2002
AH 20012001MI 2001
20002000 MIs
MI 1999 CSYS
1998 MIs
CSYS 19971997
MI 1997 CSYS

Conditions of use

The past papers are copyright to SQA. They may be reproduced to support SQA qualifications only, on a non-commercial basis. If they are to be used for any other purpose, written permission must be obtained from SQA’s Marketing team on permissions@sqa.org.uk

This site is non commercial, and purely for helping the teaching of physics in Scotland.


Thanks to Mr Stuart Farmer and Mr Andy McPhee for the course reports- their filing systems are so much better than mine, but then that’s why I am doing this! Thanks guys!