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'The Effect of heat on a Squash Ball'.

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By Habibur Rahman 11B-1 (11-9-03)

Science GCSE


‘The Effect of heat on a Squash Ball’

A squash ball is a hollow ball made of rubber, with air inside. Before starting a game of squash, most players will “warm up” the ball by knocking it around the court. This raises the temperature of the ball and increases the “bounciness”.

Energy changes in a Bouncing Ball

Initially, before the ball is released energy is stored as gravitational potential energy (mgh). As the ball falls its speed increases and the potential energy is converted to kinetic energy (1/2mv2) of the moving ball until at the impact with the ground it has no potential energy. Notice that if there are no energy losses the total energy (i.e. PE + KE) stays constant.

When the ball hits the ground it begins to slow down and as it does so it deforms. What’s happening here is that kinetic energy of the ball is being used to do work deforming the ball. Some this energy is stored as potential energy in the deformed ball (sometimes called elastic potential energy) and some is converted to heat and sound.

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 Then boil the water at 300c and hold the squash ball with the tongue so that the whole of the squash ball is in the water.Once it has reached the temperature quickly get the ball out and let it bounce once. Record the results. Follow the same method another two times to ensure accurate results. Done second experiment. Follow steps 10-15 for the next seven temperatures.

Fair Test

To ensure the experiment is carried out fairly the following factors will be considered:

  • Make sure I record the height accurately.
  • Use the same ball for all experiments.
  • Drop the ball on the same table from the same height.

These variables should be considered:

  • The volume of water
  • The starting temperature of the water
  • The size and shape of the container
  • Whether the container was insulated

Safe Test


To ensure that the experiment is safely carried out the following factors will be considered:

  • Care will be taken when taking out the squash ball from the water by using the tongue because it may cause the skin to burn.
  • The experiment will be done in the middle of the table because if it is done near the end it could fall.
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The evidence is sufficient to support a firm conclusion. I have plenty of evidence to support the conclusion and the evidence is mostly accurate. I can tell the evidence is generally accurate because the line of best fit on the graph runs through most pf the points. To extend this investigation I could use extra squash balls to ensure the ball doesn’t dome how get affected. I could investigate in the different massed squash ball and see how weight affects the bounce of a squash ball. For further investigation how different characteristics of a squash ball affects the bounce of a squash ball. For instance if it I used a Neoprene squash ball or a Norbonene squash ball. These are two different types of rubber material.

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