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An Investigation into Factors Affecting Resistance of a Wire

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Rob Stanyer LEE 10 A                                                                                

An Investigation into Factors Affecting Resistance of a Wire

Plan:

         The possible variables I could use to find out factors affecting resistance are material wire is made of, length of wire, temperature and cross sectional area of wire. I will use cross sectional area of wire and length of wire because I think it will be hard to draw conclusions from the material of wire. I am not doing temperature because it would be hard to get results from and I think they wouldn’t be as accurate.

         I will set up a circuit to find out how length and cross sectional area affect resistance.

I will need the following components in my circuit to gather all of the necessary results:

  • Component holder- So I can change the wire that I am testing.
  • Voltmeter- Measuring potential difference across the wire, it will have to be across the wire and not just anywhere in the circuit so it is measuring the P.D across the wire I am testing only.
  • Ammeter – measuring current of the circuit, with his and the voltmeter I will be able to work put resistance (R=V/I). As a safety consideration I will keep the Current under 0.5 amps, so the wire doesn’t get too hot.
  • Rheostat- So I can vary the voltage in the circuit to take two readings for each wire at different voltages, I will work out an average of the two to reduce the margin of error.
  • Switch- A safety consideration, so the wire doesn’t overheat and burn if the circuit is left on for too long.
...read more.

Middle

Average Resistance (ohms)

0.028

10

0.98

0.59

1.66

0.54

0.26

2.08

1.87

0.028

30

1.13

0.2

5.65

1.9

0.35

5.43

5.54

0.028

50

2.87

0.33

8.70

1.59

0.17

9.35

9.02

0.028

70

2.89

0.23

12.57

1.91

0.16

11.94

12.25

0.028

90

2.18

0.14

15.57

2.99

0.18

16.61

16.09

0.028

110

3.17

0.16

19.81

2.42

0.12

20.17

19.99

0.028

130

2.58

0.11

23.45

3.42

0.14

24.43

23.94

0.028

150

3.44

0.13

26.46

2.75

0.1

27.50

26.98

0.028

170

2.74

0.09

30.44

3.09

0.1

30.90

30.67

1st Repeat

1st Repeat

1st Repeat

2nd Repeat

2nd Repeat

2nd Repeat

Length of wire (CM)

Cross Sectional Area of Wire (MM2)

 Voltage (volts)

 Current (Amps)

 Resistance

(Ohms)

...read more.

Conclusion

Evaluation:

                      Overall my investigation went well, I got the results required, I am quite sure that the results are reliable enough to support my conclusion as I took the average of 2 repeats, this reduces the margin of error, as does drawing lines of best fit. However if I were to do the experiment again then I would make several changes, to make my results more accurate.

  1. When testing the cross sectional area of wire I would use all the wires available, as I did, but I would double them up to give my self better results. This would make my graph more reliable as I would have more points on it, which looking at it is something that looking at it I think I need.
  2. I would attach the wire that I was testing into the circuit fully stretched, this is because sometimes when I was testing the length the wire coiled round and connected with itself, I made sure this didn’t happen, but it took up a lot of time.
  3. I would do 3 repeats instead of 2; this would increase the accuracy of my results.
  4. On my 1/Resistance graph, it appeared I had a few anomalies, doing more repeats would possibly prevent this from happening the second time round.

...read more.

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