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Find out what happens to the distance travelled by two standard tubes of different circumferences down a wooden ramp

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Toni Bull 9A2 Coursework. Aim- To find out what happens to the distance travelled by two standard tubes of different circumferences down a wooden ramp propped up by books, when I alter the height of the ramp and make the release height higher, and also whether the circumference of the tube affects the distance travelled. Background Information - As the tube is higher up, it will have more potential energy so it will carry on rolling further. We can work this out by using this formula: E = m x g x h. There will be different amounts of friction depending on the texture of the surface on the ramp and on the floor that the tube is rolling onto; this will also affect the speed gained by the tube. Also another force acting upon the ramp and the tubes will be gravity. Gravity will be pulling the tube down and so the more energy it has the faster it will go. This will only happen though if the speed of the tube is greater than the gravitational pull acting upon the tube. Obviously, the more potential energy the trolley has got, the faster it will move down the ramp. So, theoretically, the only factors that can affect this experiment are the height and the mass and the gravity. ...read more.


Fair testing- I will keep these variables the same throughout the experiment otherwise it would be classed as an unfair test. The experiment will be a fair test as there will only be two variable factors: the height of the ramp and the weight of tube, but I will only use two different weight tubes. All the other factors will stay the same such as the material used for the ramp this means that there will not be any bias issues in this experiment. If these were not abided by the experiment would be classed as an unfair test as none of the results would be the same, also you would not be able to make tables and graphs out of them. You also need to be consistent in the height, a bad thing to do would be to do it a 3cm then 7cm then 11cm. You should make sure they go up in 5's or 2's and so on. Also with changing the weight of the tube you have to be careful as you cannot go too mad and do loads of different weights a couple of variables for the weight is fine. Obtaining Evidence - Changes to my plan- When I did my investigation I did not need to change anything, on the surface I rolled it onto which ended up to be carpet as it rolled too far on a smooth surface. ...read more.


As I knew what I was doing but a stranger may not be able to follow it if it's in a paragraph. I could get extra evidence by doing extra heights, testing two different surfaces, one a flat smooth floor and the other a carpet, and test even more circumference tubes, as you would be able to get a better idea. But that would not be possible in a school environment due to the fact there is not enough space, the only two spaces you could do it on are the tennis courts and the astro-turf. This extra evidence will help me to paint a bigger picture as to the factors affecting the distance travelled by different tubes down different heights. I would like extra evidence to prove that the smaller tube's results were either wrong or right, this is because I am being a bit weary as to whether they are correct, as they seem to not tally up with any known scientific queries. I did not have that many anomalous results just a few results that were not on the line, which I don't think are anything to worry drastically about. My anomalies results were probably caused by carelessness when I was performing the experiment. I will be extra vigilant to prevent this re-occurring next time. I believe in the end my results showed a clear pattern even though there were a few factors affecting them as I mentioned above. ...read more.

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