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We are aiming to investigate the effect of force upon a spring. We will also investigate Hooke's law, to see what happens using two springs in parallel and series, and how this effects the spring constant.

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Introduction

Philip Harford 10O

Investigation  - Hooke’s Law

Aim:        We are aiming to investigate the effect of force upon a spring.  We will also investigate Hooke’s law, to see what happens using two springs in parallel and series, and how this effects the spring constant.

Background:        I know that Hooke’s law states that spring extension is proportional to stretching force, so long as the spring was not permanently stretched. In this investigation we will explore this statement.    

Trial Run:        We did a trial run before starting the main experiment, and we found that we had to carefully put the weights on to the hanger, as the spring quickly stretches and could break.  We also had to make sure we took the measurements at the same place each time, i.e. at the bottom of the spring or the bottom of the hanger, as this could affect our results.  We also found that the spring could take 10N without deforming.

Prediction:        From the scientific knowledge above I can make a prediction about this experiment.  I predict that the extension of the

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Middle

20

353

333

363

343

338

0.026627

10

20

394

374

398

378

376

0.026596

Series Springs

Ex1

Ex2

Average

Force in

Newtons (F)

Distance to zero

Total Extension (mm)

Spring Extension (mm)

Total Extension (mm)

Spring Extension

(mm)

Spring Extension (mm) (e)

k            (F/e)

0

30

30

0

30

0

0

0

1

30

110

80

111

81

80.5

0.012422

2

30

190

160

191

161

160.5

0.012461

3

30

268

238

272

242

240

0.012500

4

30

353

323

355

325

324

0.012346

5

30

439

409

438

408

408.5

0.012240

6

30

496

466

509

479

472.5

0.012698

7

30

575

545

590

560

552.5

0.012670

8

30

647

617

679

649

633

0.012638

9

30

716

686

750

720

703

0.012802

10

30

785

755

832

802

778.5

0.012845

Parallel Springs

Ex1

Ex2

Average

Force in

Newtons (F)

Distance to zero

Total Extension (mm)

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Conclusion

                Lastly, the springs we used were not brand new, and had been slightly overstretched.  This has no effect on the stretching of the spring, and Hooke’s law still applies.  However, it did make it difficult to pick out a second spring exactly the same length for the experiment with two springs in parallel and series.  Again this could have an effect on our results.

        Although I think our experiment was carried out well and reliably, I think there was still potential for improvement.  If I were to repeat the experiment I would make a few changes.  I would make sure the springs were new springs, or not stretched past their yield point to make our results even more accurate .  I would also make sure the same person did the measuring each time and their technique used was  repeatable.

        To further improve my results and extend the experiment, I could make a few other changes.  I could take measurement at every 0.5 Newtons, which would increase the number of readings.  I could also use three springs in parallel and series to see what effect this has.  Lastly, I could extend the springs to beyond their yield point and see what effect this had on the results.

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