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Investigate how the height a ball is dropped from affects the re-bounce of it.

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Introduction

Alice Tilton Physics Coursework February 2004. Aim - To investigate how the height a ball is dropped from affects the re-bounce of it. Equipment - 1 meter ruler stick - I chose this because it was more accessible and something else like a tape measure would not be reliable as it is not solid and can move more easily. I will use this to measure the bounce of my ball. 1 squash ball - I am using this because it was available and has a smooth round edge so it will bounce straight back upwards. This will be the ball I use in the experiment. 1 stand and clamp - I have chosen this so that it can hold up the ruler straight and not move it around like a person would. This will hold up the ruler straight. Diagram - Preliminary work has shown that the squash ball gives more reliable results compared to other types of balls, and works best on a hard surface. I plan to measure the re-bounce of a squash wall when dropped vertically from various heights; this will show me the how the height a ball bounces depends on its drop height. I will do this by using the planned procedure below: Method - ? Firstly, set up the apparatus, ensuring that the ruler is perfectly straight and that it is the right way up - 0-100 from the bottom of the surface. ? drop the ball from the first point and record the height the ball bounces back up to. ...read more.

Middle

8.2 8.1 8 77 40 10 9 10.2 10.03 75 45 10.1 10.3 10 10.13 77 50 13.2 11.8 11.9 12.3 75 55 12.2 11.7 12.5 12.13 78 60 14.2 14.3 12.9 13.8 77 65 14.3 12.8 15.3 14.13 78 70 15.7 16.3 16.5 16.167 77 75 17.3 17.5 16.7 17.176 77 80 17.7 17.9 18.2 19.9 75 85 18 19.3 18.8 18.7 78 90 18.4 18.1 19 18.5 79 95 19.7 19 19.8 19.5 79 100 20.1 20 21 20.407 80 Analysis: As the results and the graph attached overleaf shows, the line of best fit indicates that my prediction was correct, although due to experimental error it is not exact. However, as the end column displaying the percentage loses shows, although the percentage losses vary they are all around the same point. I think air resistance did have an affect and slow the ball down, this meant it was unable to pick up a lot of speed, meaning it didn't have much kinetic energy and what it did have was lost when it was still for a split second as it squashed; released more energy in the form of heat. Therefore the percentage loss increases near the end as the drop height increases. I think that my prediction about the percentage loss was right because the end column shows no big anomalies, which means that the ball was constantly losing the same amount of energy wherever I drop the ball. This indicates that the air resistance did not have as bid affect as I thought. ...read more.

Conclusion

Moreover, I would find a way to measure the level of the re-bounce that would be more dependable than using my own eyesight. This is because, as I have said, eyesight is not consistent as things such as the light intensity, which may affect the recording of the results, can influence it. Furthermore, I would increase my drop heights to 200cm, as I think if I carried on longer, my graph would show a definite point where terminal velocity came into action, and also that that graph would perhaps increase its gradient as the ball got hotter through the experiment. This would be useful as it would mean my results could be analysed further and draw a conclusion more valid. Although, if I did do the investigation again, I would keep the squash ball in my experiments. I believe it gave reliable results subject to the terms and conditions that applied freely. Also, I would use the same unit of measurements, as they showed the results clearly and were more appropriate than other methods. I could repeat the experiment under converse conditions by for instance changing the surface, or the air temperature. I could also vary the ball I used, as this would allow me to compare different bounce heights from the same drop height. This would mean I could calculate the efficiency of the balls I used. What's more I could change how I measure the height it bounces back, or actually what I measure. I could measure the efficiency of the ball, and how the height I drop it from affects the amount of energy is lost. ...read more.

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