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Investigating how the height of a ramp affects the speed of a trolley.

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Introduction

Investigating how the height of a ramp affects the speed of a trolley by Daniel Lynch 11FS

Prediction: I predict that the greater the gradient of the slope, the greater the velocity the trolley will go down the slope. So, the lesser the gradient of the slope, the lesser the velocity the trolley will go down the slope. I predict this because as the ramp gets higher, there will be more potential energy on the trolley and less friction, which will mean that when the trolley is let go, it will go faster because all of the potential energy stored will change to kinetic energy, so as the ramp becomes lower, there will be less potential energy on the trolley and more friction meaning that when the trolley is let go, it will travel slower because there will be less potential energy to transfer to kinetic energy.

Apparatus:

Equipment:

 ; Ramp

; Trolley

; Text Books

; Stop watch

Fair Test:

Constant

Control

Measure

The distance that the trolley has to travel will be kept constant because otherwise this could affect the stopwatch timing, affecting the results.

The height of the ramp will be varied because this will then test how different heights, and therefore different ranges of potential energy affect the velocity rates of a trolley.

The velocity rate of the trolley will be measured using a stopwatch, which will tell me how fast the trolley is moving.

The weight of the trolley will be kept constant because if the trolley is made heavier or lighter, then this will affect the speed of the trolley meaning that it will take a longer or shorter time for the trolley to finish moving, therefore affecting the outcome of the results.

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Middle

The height of the ramp will then be made higher, and the experiment will be completed once again. This will be done three times as well. There will be five different heights to test out altogether. These heights are 3cm, 8cm, 13cm, 18cm, and 23cm.

Results:

Height (cm)

Velocity (m/s)

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Conclusion

Improvements which could be made to improve the reliability of the evidence and the way in which the experiment is done, could be to make sure that the actual height of the ramp is known, to make sure that the ramp used has no bumps or chips in it because this could affect the speed of the trolley and to make sure that the trolley has no wonky wheels which could also affect how the trolley moves.

The evidence collected is quite reliable to support a firm conclusion because it still shows how the velocity rate can change according to different heights of the ramp, but I would suggest that the experiment to be tested again just so that the proper height of the ramp can be known for the velocity rates recorded down and to check whether or not the results collected before are accurate.

 Further which can be done, could be to see how gravity affects the velocity rate of a trolley or to see how variations in mass of the trolley can affect the velocity rates.

...read more.

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