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I have a window on the 3rd floor of my home that was broken, it is a single pane of glass. The large majority of the  glass that was broken is on the outside roof.  The window was still locked. My assumption is that it was broken from the inside can you confirm this assumption.



Actually, no.  Breaking glass in these situations is surprisingly complicated.  If the glass had been forcibly ejected several meters and an obvious object were involved, then yes.  However, sometimes when glass is struck it will (you can see it vibrate on high speed cameras) flex back and forth before actually shattering.  From there, the process of a pile of shards of glass tumbling could take it in either direction.  Given the slope of the roof, this could have a number of outside origins (bird strike, baseball, etc) and still created the pile of glass shown.


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Dr. Stephen O. Nelson


I can answer most basic physics questions, physics questions about science fiction and everyday observations of physics, etc. I'm also usually good for science fair advice (I'm the regional science fair director). I do not answer homework problems. I will occasionally point out where a homework solution went wrong, though. I'm usually good at explaining odd observations that seem counterintuitive, energy science, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics, and alternative theories of physics are my specialties.


I was a physics professor at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, research in nuclear technology and nuclear astrophysics. My travelling science show saw over 20,000 students of all ages. I taught physics, nuclear chemistry, radiation safety, vacuum technology, and answer tons of questions as I tour schools encouraging students to consider careers in science. I moved on to a non-academic job with more research just recently.

Ph. D. from Duke University in physics, research in nuclear astrophysics reactions, gamma-ray astronomy technology, and advanced nuclear reactors.

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