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Looking at the factors that affect the resistance of a piece of wire.

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Looking at the factors that affect the resistance of a piece of wire.


The key variables

The variables that will affect my experiment are, the length of the wire, the cross sectional area, the temperature and the material.

Fair Test (Length):

To make sure that my experiment is carried out fairly, I will have to make sure that the length of the wire stays the same throughout the experiment because if it doesn’t the resistance may be varied. The temperature must remain the same throughout the experiment because if the temperature is varied, the resistance will also vary.

Only one type of metal wire can be used because different metals conduct different amounts of electricity and different metals may have more or less resistance, the metal I will be using is constantan.

Fair Test (Thickness):

The cross sectional area must remain the same because if it isn’t the results may vary.

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Method (2)

  1. I will set up my circuit with an ammeter, voltmeter, battery, a rheostat, electrical wires, the ruler and the piece of wire, as shown in the diagram.
  2. As I am testing the resistance of different thicknesses of the wires;
  • 22 SWG
  • 26 SWG
  • 28 SWG
  • 30 SWG
  • 32 SWG

       I will place the wires one by one in the circuit and then take the readings to work out the resistance = potential difference (V)

                                            Current (A)  


There is not much safety to be precautious of;

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So By performing this experiment I have found out that the higher the length of the wire the greater the resistance will be. This conclusion matches my prediction, so I made the correct prediction at the planning stage.


In only the graph labelled ‘Graph showing resistance different thicknesses’ there was one anomalous result, one of the points was way outside the line of best fit.. If I was to get another chance to carry out this experiment I would make sure that I would make sure I set the resistor correctly because I had to carry out the length experiment twice because the wire had set alight the first time.

Better I could carry out this experiment is that I could have done it in an area by myself so that I could’ve concentrated properly.

...read more.

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