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science pendulum experiment

Extracts from this document...


Jason Prasad

Science Coursework-



My aim of this investigation is to see how the length of the string affects the time it takes for a pendulum to oscillate.

There are many factors that could affect the pendulum swing.

  • Length of string
  • Angle Release
  • Gravity
  • Air resistance
  • Colour of bob
  • Mass of bob
  • Temperature
  • Thickness of string

After going through possible factors, I have narrowed my search for a factor down to four possible ones.

 The length of the string is a factor. Changing this will affect the distance traveled because the longer the piece of string the more distance it has to cover. This should make the pendulum take longer to complete one full osolation. This is important because the further the pendulum swings, the longer it will take.

The angle of the swing angle is another factor that may affect the pendulum. The higher the angle, the longer it will take for the pendulum to swing because it has further to travel.

Air resistance may also affect the time taken for the pendulum to osolate. Unfortunately I cannot control this factor, but in the science lab I don’t think that this will be a

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I predict that the longer the string, the more time it will take for the pendulum to swing.  I predict this because when the string is shorter the distance it needs to travel is also shorter, therefore reducing the time.

I will also need to draw a graph in the latter stages of this investigation. I think that the graph will look like this:


        First to complete the investigation I will need to get all my apparatus. When I have collected this I will need to set it up in the correct way so that my investigation will be a fair and accurate one.  I will get a clamp stand and clamp 2 blocks of wood together. In between the two blocks of wood a piece of string, attached to it a weight (the bob), will be present. This string will be moved up and down so that I can use different lengths. Some tape will be wrapped around a protractor, which will be attached to the two wooden blocks. When the experiment is set up in the correct manner, the investigation can be performed. image01.png

         I will time ten swings for each length of string, and will right the results down in the results table.

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The measurement of the string could also be improved. More precision in measuring lengths could be used for more accuracy in the results. Again, I do not believe this will affect the outcome of the final conclusion.

The equipment that was used could also be improved. More updated, better conditioned equipment would help to the accuracy of the results.

If the experiment could be extended, I would try a few other things. I would test the other variables; for example the release angle and mass of the bob, and see how they affect the oscillation of the pendulum. I would also try out further lengths of string. This would improve my experiment by making it more reliable and more accurate. Sticking with the string, I would test different materials to see if the material of the string affected the pendulum oscillation. One other thing that I may do is see if there is another way to swing the pendulum, for example instead of swinging the pendulum backwards and forwards I would try and swing it in a horizontal circular path (conical pendulum), and compare those results with these ones.

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