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What factors affect the efficiency of the bounce of a ball?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What factors affect the efficiency of the bounce of a ball?

Efficiency  = Energy after bounce

                         Energy before bounce

Planning

Factors

In order to find an appropriate way to measure the change in the efficiency of the bounce, we needed to look at and list the many different factors. We need to identify all of the factors that might affect our, preliminary, or final results.

The height at which the ball is dropped

We would use a meter rule to measure where we dropped the ball from and then what peak it reached whilst bouncing. This would be a very efficient way of measuring it, but there would be a few issues to deal with. For example the accuracy of the person watching the ball and recording the data.

The surface onto which it is dropped

This would mean we would use different surfaces for example, metal, wood and concrete and then drop the ball from the same height and record the data. This could be hard because the ball could dent the surface slightly changing the results.

The type of ball used

This would mean that the shape, circumference and mass of the ball would change with each experiment.

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Middle

60

80

100

120

140

160

180

200

Method

We used two-meter rules and stuck them up on a wall ready to measure, and then we used a clamp-stand to hold the ball steady at a certain height ready to be released. We started at 20cm and then progressed by 0.2m every time until reaching 2m. We did not drop the ball by hand because this would not be avoiding variables like, temperature and height.

The Actual results

Height from which dropped from    (cm)

Bounce 1

Height   (cm)

Efficiency of bounce

20

8

40

20

60

29

80

43

100

59

120

62

140

74

160

88

180

94

200

1.02

To discover the efficiency of the bounce we used the equation

Efficiency  = Energy after bounce                image00.png

                Energy before bounce                

And the energy was calculated by using this.

Change inP. E   = weight         change in height

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Conclusion

Evaluation

After finishing the experiment and completing the results table I found that the final results were very similar to my prediction. I predicted that the height of the bounce of the ball would be around ¾ proportionally of the original height unless made heavier or hotter. This is because on the graph there was a linear relationship and the ball behaved the same even at different heights. The things that would affect this would:

  1. The temperature of the ball. If the gas heated up in the ball then it would expand slightly which would make it less streamline. It would also get harder, also affecting the way it impacted the floor.
  2. The temperature would maybe affect the rubber lining causing it to soften and maybe damage more on impact.

These are all second order affects but if I did this experiment again I would definitely record the temperature before and after because there is a slight chance it could go up, thus affecting the next result.

Another thing that could change the speed of the ball and in effect, the efficiency of the bounce, is air resistance. This would only be an issue if there was a higher velocity and the objects were not streamlined. We could also create this affect by dropping the ball in a vacuum.

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This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Height and Weight of Pupils and other Mayfield High School investigations section.

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