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Investigation To Show How Resistance Is Affected By Length.

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Investigation To Show How Resistance Is Affected By Length

Plan of Action

In order to investigate “how resistance is affected by length” I will need to:

  • Present my aim
  • Show scientific knowledge relevant to the topic
  • Consider my hypothesis
  • Produce a list of apparatus required for my experiment
  • Consider an appropriate method
  • Show considerations of Safety
  • State the possible variables in my experiment
  • Show attention to accuracy
  • Include a circuit diagram
  • Decide on a clear method to show data  for example a results table, graph with line of best fit and error boxes
  • Analyse my results
  • Make a conclusion based on my results
  • Evaluate against my original intentions for my investigation

My Aim

My aim is to use conducting putty to investigate any possible relationship between the resistance of an object and its length.

Scientific Knowledge

Resistance determines how easily a charge can travel through a circuit. The higher the resistance the harder it is for the charge to flow through a circuit and visa versa. The longer the length the higher the resistance, this is due to there being more particles to slow down the flow of electrons (charges). The amount of charges will half when the length is halved. We know that resistance is inversely proportional to length and also to the cross sectional area.

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Circuit Diagram


Length (m)

Reading 1 (ohms)

Reading2 (ohms)

Average (ohms)









































The width of the conductive putty was 2.4cm (+/- 1mm) by 2.9cm (+/- 1mm).


From my results I have made a graph and included a line of best fit. The graph shows average resistance over length. The graph also shows that resistance is directly proportional to length. There is a pattern that arises which shows that as the length of putty increases so does the resistance. Also, as my results are not perfect due to human error and the variables in the experiment, I have made error boxes these are 2 mm each side of the line of best fit and 0.2 ohms. Although I have not completed a perfect experiment I have not had any anomalies. My results support my hypothesis which is that resistance is directly proportional to length and the longer the length of putty the higher the resistance. I also found while implementing my experiment I found that some things I had planned to do in my method I found were not necessary.

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To improve my investigation I would firstly, take more readings so that I could obtain a better average which will produce better results. Secondly, I would try to keep the room at a constant temperature as changes in temperature can affect the resistance of the putty. The warmer the putty the more particles move around therefore making it harder for current to pass through. Lastly, I could try minimising the contact my hands  with the putty as this will cause the same effect as the change in room temperature but maybe to more of an extend as my hands would be directly on the putty. Moreover, I would check that the copper squares were attached properly and find the resistance of the wires I use so that I could subtract it from my results.

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