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To calculate the acceleration due to gravity by dropping a ball from a certain distance and recording the time

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Lab Report 3

Find acceleration due to gravity using ball drop method

Amine Alami IB1-3

Lab Report


To calculate the acceleration due to gravity by dropping a ball from a certain distance and recording the time


it is expected that the gravity should be within the same range for each trial


The independent variable = the distance

The dependent variable = the time

Controlled variables are: - the mass of the steel ball

                                         - the position of the trip plate

                                         -the length of the plumb line


  -  meter stick , half meter stick

  - 1 steel ball

  - Boss and clampimage00.png

  - Electronic Timing Device

  - Release mechanism

  - Plumb bob

   -trip plate


- A steel ball was inserted between the jaws of the release mechanism

...read more.


100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm



100 cm


Table 2. The time it takes the ball to fall half a meter






...read more.


 = Sum/20

= 9.049/20

0.452 ± 0.006

s = ½ g t^2

1 = ½ g (0.452)^2

1/g = (0.452^2)/2

G= 2/(0.452^2)

G=9.79 ± 0.4

Average Time in Table 2 = Sum/20

= 6.331/20

 0.317 ± 0.006

s = ½ g t^2

½  = ½ g (0.317) ^2

(1/2) / (1/2) = g (0.317)^2

1 = g (0.317)^2

g = 1 / (0.317)^2

G = 9.95 ± 0.4

- Percentage uncertainty of gravity 1 = (0.4/9.79) x 100 = 4.09%

- Percentage uncertainty of gravity 2= (0.4/9.95)x100 = 4.02%


- The results were in the same range

- The firs gravity was very close to the ideal gravity


- The method used was fairly accurate

-but there are many sources of error which may affect the result obtained using it

- Sources of Error:

   - Air resistance is an error, but it has a slight effect

   - The thumbscrew is clicked twice

   - The thumbscrew wasn’t pressed properly

   - The ball might not fall in the centre

   - The clamp may move slightly upwards or downward after every few measurements

- The same person should press the thumbscrew through out all the experiment

- The thumbscrew should be pushed with quickly and firmly

...read more.

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