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To find out the effect on speed of a trolley going down a slope

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Aim      To find out the effect on speed of a trolley    

         going down a slope

Safety   Use a barrier – so the trolley does not roll  


         Make sure the slope is secure – so it doesn’t    

         topple over

         Cello tape the weights down – so they don’t fall  


         Goggles are not needed for this experiment


Apparatus  Trolley, slope, books, weights, cello tape,  

           stopwatch and a metre ruler

Plan       I plan to find a surface suitable for the

           experiment and build my slope. At first I will

           use 2 books and gradually work my way up to 20

           books timing and measuring the distance it

           travels. I will then find the size slope  

           in which the trolley travelled the furthest

...read more.


           gravity will always stay constant.

Height of slope / cm

Distance / cm

Time taken / secs



































...read more.


I could make the experiment and results more accurate with more complex apparatus, time it more accurately, use heavier weights (I only used light weights and they did not really make a difference). To extend this work, we could conduct Galileo type experiments, but take them a step further. Perhaps, if we had the access to the right equipment, we could drop weights from different heights in a vacuum (i.e. no air resistance), calculate the speed using light gates and see if it produces theoretically perfect results. We could also try eliminating any other opposing forces, such as friction, by polishing surfaces etc. and noticing if this changes the results.

...read more.

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