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Speed of a Falling Object

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Speed of a Falling Object Aim The aim of this investigation is to find the factors affecting the rate of fall of a body through the air. Fair Test The variables that will need to be the same to make this a fair test are: * The shape paper cases that are used :- The shape of the paper case affects the air resistance acting upon it. * The weight of the paper cases that are used :- The weight affects the speed of fall and would therefore end up in incorrect results. Theory Gravity is the force which pulls objects together. It depends on the mass of both objects, an object with a large mass will have a large gravitational force compared to an object with a smaller mass which will have a smaller gravitational force. This can be shown using the moon and the Earth as the Earth has a larger mass it has larger gravitational field strength. Gravitational forces between objects decrease if they have less mass or are further apart. ...read more.


Weights of paper cases: * 1 = 0.31g * 1 1/4 = 0.34g * 1 1/2 = 0.44g * 1 3/4 = 0.50g * 2 = 0.56g Results 0.5m Weight of Paper Case 1st Time Taken (s) 2nd Time Taken (s) 3rd Time Taken (s) 4th Time Taken (s) Average Time Taken (s) 1 0.36 0.44 0.37 0.37 0.39 1 1/4 0.37 0.43 0.31 0.33 0.36 1 1/2 0.33 0.33 0.27 0.29 0.30 1 3/4 0.27 0.29 0.29 0.28 0.28 2 0.24 0.27 0.29 0.27 0.24 1.0m Weight of Paper Case 1st Time Taken (s) 2nd Time Taken (s) 3rd Time Taken (s) 4th Time Taken (s) Average Time Taken (s) 1 0.57 0.71 0.65 0.72 0.62 1 1/4 0.64 0.66 0.65 0.58 0.63 1 1/2 0.54 0.57 0.52 0.66 0.57 1 3/4 0.54 0.47 0.53 0.53 0.51 2 0.48 0.49 0.51 0.50 0.50 1.5m Weight of Paper Case 1st Time Taken (s) 2nd Time Taken (s) 3rd Time Taken (s) 4th Time Taken (s) Average Time Taken (s) ...read more.


Human error can be eradicated by setting up a computer system to measure the time. Writing a timing program for the computer and setting up motion sensors can achieve this and therefore get more accurate results. As mentioned above the results are very accurate with the apparatus available. This is shown by the graphs the lines fit the trend of Distance/time graphs and they are all similar shapes. Also the four results for every test are similar and by doing this they back each other up. Improvements for the future include the point mentioned above about using a computer to time rather than a person, to increase the accuracy. Another improvement could be to get a larger measuring device as I used three 1m rules held up by a clamp and this is not as accurate as one straight measuring device (e.g. rule) that is 2.5m long. Ways to extend the experiment are to ask the questions, "What would happen if other objects are used?" "What would happen if the air pressure was changed?" and "What would happen if there was a different gravitational force?" ?? ?? ?? ?? Speed of a Falling Object - 1 - Philip Dovey ...read more.

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