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How does the length of putty affect resistance in a circuit?

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Physics Coursework:

How does the length of putty affect resistance in a circuit?

I was asked to find out what changes the resistance of conductive putty, therefore I could have tested many variables. Length, Density, Temperature, Cross Section and Substance. I tested the variable of length to find out the change of resistance.


I will repeat the experiment 3 times, thus making the test fairer by using averages. I will mark the putty with lines, one centimetre apart from each other for 10cm. The putty will be placed on insulating material. I will move the 2 metal conductors, used to complete the circuit, by inserting them into the putty, and changing the distance 1cm at a time, all of which will be repeated 3 times, therefore leaving 30 individual results, which I shall average.

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My Prediction

I predict that the larger the distance in the putty that the electricity has to travel, the larger the resistance, if the distance in the putty is smaller, the resistance will also be smaller.

It is possible for electricity to move through the putty, as the putty contains electrons. The shorter the distance in putty that the electricity has to travel, the less electrons the electrons will have to move through. The longer the distance of putty that the electricity must travel, the more electrons, the more resistance.


For results see results sheet.


I think that the experiment proved my prediction, the more putty that the electricity has to travel through, the more resistance that the electricity has to take. There was only one misfit result, which occurs on the 9th test.

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The experiment I did matched my prediction, the longer the putty, the more resistance. I was right in thinking that resistance is affected by length.

The graph angles upwards, in positive correlation, this is also shown in the line of best fit. The graph seems to get steeper, maybe if we had done the experiment up to 20cm of putty, the resistance would be so high, no electricity would be able to get through, and the circuit would stop working, electricity would not flow.

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