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Investigating what factors effect the resistance of a wire

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Introduction

Investigating what factors effect the resistance of a wire I am aiming to investigate the factors that effect the resistance of a piece of wire. I will be focusing on the thickness of the wire but will also take the length of the wire into account. To do this experiment I will put a test wire into a circuit also containing a power pack anemometer and variable resistor. I will then connect the voltmeter in parallel, across he test wire. I will then measure the resistance of the wire by measuring the current flowing through it at 10cm intervals. I will do this with three wires of different thickness. This experiment will be effective because the only varying factor will be the thickness of the wire, everything else will remain the same. Due to this, I will be able to put my results into a table and graph and efficiently compare the outcome of the three tests and see how the thickness affects the resistance. ...read more.

Middle

0.83 2.57 50 1.80 0.83 2.17 40 1.42 0.83 1.71 30 1.05 0.83 1.27 20 0.68 0.83 0.82 10 0.36 0.83 0.43 26 s.w.g. (0.46mm) Length Voltage Current Resistance 100 5.77 0.83 6.95 90 5.19 0.83 6025 80 4.69 0.83 5.59 70 4.13 0.83 4.98 60 3.60 0.83 4.34 50 2.99 0.83 3.60 40 2.33 0.83 2.81 30 1.93 0.83 2.33 20 1.30 0.83 1.57 10 0.54 0.83 0.65 28 s.w.g. (0.37mm) Length Voltage Current Resistance 100 8.56 0.83 10.31 90 8.07 0.83 9.72 80 7.21 0.83 8.69 70 6.49 0.83 7.82 60 5.54 0.83 6.67 50 4.72 0.83 5.69 40 3.91 0.83 4.71 30 2.72 0.83 3.28 20 1.54 0.83 1.86 10 0.89 0.83 1.07 Looking at my table of results and my graph I can see that the thicker pieces of wire have less resistance. I have come to this conclusion by looking at my graph and realising that at 50cm a 24 s.w.g. wire has a resistance of 2.17 yet a 28 s.w.g. ...read more.

Conclusion

I chose to use three different thicknesses because if you use only two and something went wrong with one there would only be one set of data to compare it to. With three pieces of wire it is unlikely that there will be a problem with all three experiments and then if there was an anomaly you would be able to discard it and still have two sets of reliable data left. Fortunately, I encountered no problems with this investigation. I could improve my method by carrying out this experiment with other thicknesses, as that would give me more data to compare and to draw a conclusion from. I could also repeat the experiment several times in an attempt to achieve even more accurate results. A final suggestion would be to undergo this experiment with different types of metal for example, nickel or cobalt, as they are both good conductors. If I did all of these things I would be able to draw an even more accurate, useful and reliable conclusion of what factors effect the resistance of a piece of wire. ?? ?? ?? ?? Alexandra Kingcome 10:0 Physics Coursework ...read more.

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